Every Pet Deserves A Good Home…

Red cedar, pine, and my rat…?

Brownie and SummerI’ve been using pine bedding for my rat, and I noticed red cedar was cheaper, so I got that when I ran out of the pine. But I noticed when I put my rat in, she jumped from her wheel to her bowls, and wouldn’t touch the bedding. I thought maybe she was just excited, so I watched for a few moments to see if she calmed down. Then I noticed she started scratching her face and nose, and I thought the bedding was bothering her. I removed it, and lined the cage with paper towels until I could go to the store and get some new bedding.

Now I’ve read that cedar really can make them very sick. Why would they put pictures of mice and rats on the front when it’s so dangerous? I’ve also read that cedar can be used for litter boxes. Is that safe? If it is, I want to use it on my cat. I don’t want an entire bag to go to waste.
I’ve also come across some articles that says pine can be dangerous. Yet my rat isn’t bothered by it at all. She even burrows in it. Is that bad as well? And if it is, can I just use straw in her cage? I can get all the straw I want for free, thankfully.

Best Answer – Chosen by Voters

pine and cedar shavings are toxic! This can, and will, damage your rat’s lungs and possibly cause liver damage, no matter what pet shop sales people try to tell you.

This is because the shavings have chemicals in them called phenols, which is the cause of the problems. So please, for your rat’s sake, do not use pine or cedar shavings.

You will rather want to purchase recycled paper pellet products, Corn cob bedding,rabbit pellets ( I use these and they are great. I place a deep layer and remove the poop each day. I only need to change it every 10-15 days and it gives off a pleasant smell. It is also non toxic and will not harm the rats if digested. It is also affordable). Please try to not use newspaper It might seem like its economical, but the ink can transfer to their fur which they will lick off and ingest, which wont do them good in the long run. Also newspaper tends to absorb moisture too quickly and your rat will end up sleeping in its own wet puddles!

Another addition is a hammock for your rats – they will love sleeping in it and the added bonus is that its washable so your rats always have a clean bed, that’s off the litter that they poop and pee on! If you cant find a hammock cut out 2 nice biggish pieces of material ,polar fleece or winter pajama material is great, insert a large safety pin in each corner ( joining the two materials together) hook these to the roof of the cage and watch your ratties snuggle up between the two pieces ( if you ratties are slow to catch on then take a smaller safety pin and hook up the center of the top piece of material to create a tent).

Straw is an absolute no no because of the dust and mites.

Here is a great print friendly guide for you to keep http://www.ratanooga.za.net/RNGuide_Text…

**Pine and cedar are both bad! so is straw for rats!

You need to use something that isn’t dusty and doesn’t contain pine or cedar. recycled paper bedding is the best. you should try Carefresh or Yesterdays News or something like that.

Also, you really shouldn’t have one rat living on its own, they’re social animals and need company

January 31, 2011 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, Just One More Pet, pet products, responsible pet ownership | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment