Pine or wood shavings are available for guinea pig’s bedding. But, guinea pigs are very sensitive, so you need to choose a safe bedding option for your piggies. You may have heard of kiln-dried pine. But, Is kiln-dried pine really safe for guinea pigs?
Kiln-dried pine is safe for guinea pig’s bedding because it goes through a special drying process. This makes it free from aromatic oil and dust that’s harmful to guinea pigs.
But, is kiln-dried pine good for guinea pig’s bedding?
kiln-dried pine is a great choice for guinea pigs’ bedding as it’s dust extracted, highly absorbent, and can control odor. Besides, it has no volatile oil or added chemicals that could be dangerous for guinea pigs.
In this article, I will explain what experts this about kiln-dried pine and if you should use it as a guinea pig’s bedding.
Table of Contents
Why is kiln-dried pine safe for guinea pigs?
You may know about pine shavings for pets’ bedding. But, What’s kiln-dried pine that’s used for guinea pigs?
kiln-dried pine is dried and thermally processed pine wood shavings that are friendly for guinea pigs.
Pine contains aromatic oils that are dangerous for piggy’s health. kiln-dried pine has to go through a special drying process. This method eliminates volatile oil, dust, and scent. That’s why kiln-dried pine is safe for guinea pigs.
Volatile oils are dangerous for guinea pigs’ health and cause different respiratory illnesses.
Dust causes breathing problems and lung infections.
You may like the good odor of pine shavings but it can be irritating to your guinea pigs. The scent actually comes from phenol presenting within the pine. This can lead to breathing difficulty and allergies for your little pets.
Your piggies are also sensitive to bacteria and microorganisms. So, if they are exposed to these, they may suffer from various illnesses.
kiln-dried pine has none of these substances and microorganisms. So, you can use it safely.
You may also find that many people tell you to avoid this product. But, many renewed pet organizations and rescues use the same product for small pets as well as guinea pigs without having any issues. Besides, many experts recommend this as well because of its advantages.
Why is kiln-dried pine good bedding for guinea pigs?
Let’s take a look at the Pros of using kiln-dried pine shavings as guinea pigs’ bedding.
Aromatic oil-free and dried shavings
This is the main advantage of using kiln-dried pine shavings. One of the main ingredients of pine is aromatic oil or phenols that may cause serious respiratory problems to your guinea pigs.
Kiln-dried pine shavings go through a special drying process that removes almost all of the aromatic oils. So, this product is safe for your piggies.
But, before buying it choose the perfect brand that produces kiln-dried pine shavings for guinea pig’s bedding.
Guinea pigs are too sensitive to dust. Dust cause breathing problems that are harmful to their lung. Sometimes it may be life-threatening.
So kiln-dried pine shavings are specially prepared for your piggies by removing dust particles that are friendly to them.
However, you must check the product’s label before you buy it and ensure that it’s dust extracted.
So, always go with a trusted brand.
Our recommended product:
Pillow Wad pine bedding
You as well as your guinea may be sensitive to the smell of bedding products. But, kiln-dried pine is odorless or has a naturally pleasant smell and you both will like it.
Regular pine contains phenol that spread a good smell. But, this is irritating for piggies and cause health issue.
But, this is not the case with kiln-dried shavings.
Some bad smells can attach flies if you put the guinea pig’s hutch outside and that’s dangerous for your guinea pigs. But, you don’t have to worry about that if you are using kiln-dried pine.
Safe for guinea pigs
As kiln-dried pine bedding is free from dust, added scents, colors, and aromatic oils, it’s safe for piggy’s lungs and overall health. However, make sure you are using the right product.
Extremely well absorbancy
As a guinea pig owner, you know how hard it’s to keep bedding dry. So, if you are looking for bedding that has good absorbent properties, kiln-dried pine can be a great choice.
If you aren’t happy with the absorbancy of fleece and aspen shavings, you can try this pine bedding.
Piggies make the bedding wet frequently. The kiln-dried pine absorbs moisture from the urine and poops well and keeps the bedding dry.
When your piggies pee on it, it will go under the pine shavings. So, the top portion will remain dry.
Moreover, when they poop on the bedding, it also stays under the top layer because of the structure of the shavings. So, it also prevents your guinea pigs from stepping foot on their poop.
You may be concerned about the bad smell that develops after a few days of putting guinea pig’s bedding. This smell comes from their poop and pee.
But, kiln-dried pine extremely works well to prevent any foul-smelling.m because they absorb moisture nicely, and poop easily goes under the shavings so they don’t stick on the paws of the piggies.
Provide natural environment
Pine shavings are natural products and your guinea pigs will like them. In addition, using kiln-dried pine makes it friendly for them.
Today you can get kiln-dried pine shavings from an online store easily. Unscented pellets are hard to find sometimes but that’s not the case with these products.
Kiln-dried pine shavings come at a very reasonable price compared to aspen shavings and paper bedding materials. If you can’t bear the costly bedding options, you can definitely go with kiln-dried pine bedding.
No need to change the whole bedding frequently
Other guinea pigs’ bedding may need to replace whole bedding after a while. But, if you use kiln-dried pine shavings, you don’t need to change the whole bedding frequently.
You only need to replace some portions of shavings to keep the bedding clean.
Low maintenance cost
As you don’t need to replace the whole bedding frequently, maintenance cost is also very low.
kiln-dried pine bedding is more hygienic than many bedding options because it allows your guinea pig’s feet to stay clean, control moisture, and prevent bad smells. It can also prevent the build-up of bacteria and fungus.
Unlike other bedding, kiln-dried pine shavings last longer and stay strong between the replacing schedule.
Moreover, you don’t need to replace the whole bedding every day. Just clean the top layer where there is some waste. However, you must change the bedding timely to maintain hygiene.
Can be composted
kiln-dried pine is good natural bedding and can be composted. This makes it a good choice and great for the environment. However, it needs a few times to rot down.
Soft and comfortable
You know how sensitive is your guinea pig’s feet are. kiln-dried pine shavings are soft and safe for your guinea pig’s feet. It won’t hurt their soft paws when they walk on to run over this bedding.
If you have doubt, you will also find many pet organization that uses kiln-dried pine shavings for guinea pigs and it works really great.
No additional colors or chemicals
Many bedding adds colors, scents, and chemicals to bedding ingredients that are harmful to guinea pigs’ health. kiln-dried pine shavings have no such extra ingredients.
Good for other pets
Pine shavings are natural products. Besides, it’s dust-extracted and free of bad smell. So, if you have other pets in your home, it won’t cause any problem for them.
What are the cons of kiln-dried pine over other bedding for guinea pigs?
Every product has its disadvantages and kiln-dried pine is also not exceptional. Here are the cons of using kiln-dried pine shavings as bedding for guinea pigs
Little bit messy
Whether it’s pine shavings or kiln-dried pine, it becomes messy after a while. However, most of the bedding for guinea pigs becomes more or less messy.
So, it may not be the case of disliking the product. However, it depends from person to person.
If you are the person who hates your piggies’ room being a little bit messy, you can always pick a product that’s not messy such as fleece.
If you put the cage inside your house, you may need to worry about this problem. But, if the cage is outside your home, you can definitely use kiln-dried pine shavings.
Another factor is how you build the enclosure for your guinea pigs. If you make the wall with a cage, it will likely become messy. But, if you use wood with a perspex front, it won’t get messy.
Know more about fleece as bedding for guinea pigs.
Requires continuous buying
kiln-dried pine bedding is disposable. Though buying cost is reasonable, you need to replace the whole pine shavings regularly and buy a new pack of shavings.
That means you have to keep buying the bedding again and again. In that sense, it’s costly. When you use a fleece blanket it has maintenance costs and you can use the same product for months.
Moreover, it composts down slowly.
Bad for hairless guinea pigs
If you have a hairless guinea pig, don’t use these pine shavings. Their soft and delicate skin can not bear the roughness of the shavings. Choose something like fleece bedding.
Harmful with stitches or after a cut
kiln-dried pine can be a good idea if your guinea pigs recently have surgery and stitch or there’s a cut somewhere in their body. Those rough pine shavings will be painful for their wound and this will delay the healing process.
When can you not use kiln-dried pine shavings?
Baldwin, skinny pigs, or hairless guinea pigs are sensitive to rough pine shavings. So, if you have these breeds, stay away from kiln-dried or any type of pine shavings, as these can irritate their soft, skinny and delicate body.
As I mentioned before, avoid using the shavings, if your guinea pigs have a wound or cut in their body recently. Pine shavings can hurt them and delay the healing process.
If your guinea pig is recovering from an operation or has stitches on its body pine shavings are also bad for them.
What are the factors to be considered before using kiln-dried pine shavings?
You need to buy a good product from a well-known brand because many pine shavings are bad for guinea pigs’ health. Here are the factors you should consider while purchasing it.
Be sure the kiln-dried pine for your guinea pigs is free of dust. You can see a label on the pack like 99% or 100% dust extracted.
Check if the pack has a label of kiln-dried and aromatic oil-free.
Kiln-dried pine should be odorless as the guinea pigs can’t tolerate the odor. Know if the product ensures it.
No added ingredients
Make sure that the product doesn’t contain any added ingredients for color, scent, or any other purpose that may be harmful to your guinea pigs.
Soft and cozy
Usually, kiln-dried pine shavings are soft and comfortable for guinea pigs. But, you have learned if the product you are using is ok. You can also switch to another product if your guinea pigs didn’t like the previous one that you used.
Choose popular brand
Not all brands maintain the quality of the products for your guinea pigs. If you choose a product to cut down your cost without ensuring the quality, you may end up spending more money in the long run. You may wonder, how?
Low-quality pine shavings are dangerous for piggy’s respiratory system and overall health.
So, if they get sick, it will not only cost you more for a vet but also you will be risking their life.
Not sharp or rough
You have to make sure that the kiln-dried pine shavings don’t contain any sharp pieces or aren’t too rough which is bad for guinea pigs. The good brand provides soft, cozy, and fluffy shavings normally.
Kiln-dried pine vs regular pine shavings: Which is better for guinea pigs?
Though kiln-dried pine and pine shavings are made of the same pine wood, they are different in many aspects.
kiln-dried pine shavings are made especially considering the health of your piggies. It’s unscented, dust extracted, and free from aromatic oils.
On the other hand, regular pine shavings contain aromatic oils and a strong scent that’s dangerous for guinea pigs. They may not be dust extracted as well.
All of these are bad for guinea pigs’ health and that’s why regular pine is the worst bedding.
Kiln-dried pine vs cedar shavings: Which is better for guinea pigs?
kiln-dried pine is better than cedar shavings for guinea pig’s bedding because kiln-dried pine doesn’t contain aromatic oil, dust, and any other scent that is harmful to guinea pigs’ health.
Cedar shavings must be avoided as it contains high amounts of aromatic oils that cause serious respiratory illness and chronic liver problems to your guinea pigs.
These aromatic oils spread a very strong odor that will cause these issues.
So, you should never think of using cedar shavings.
Kiln-dried Shavings vs Sawdust: which one is better?
Sawdust shouldn’t be compared to kiln-dried pine shavings because sawdust is dangerous for guinea pigs and must be avoided as a bedding option. Sawdust is wood dust and excessive dust causes serious health issues for your guinea pigs.
However, you can go for different alternatives to sawdust.
Kiln-dried pine vs wood shavings: Which is better for guinea pigs?
kiln-dried pine is better than any other wood shavings as they are safe to use and make good bedding for guinea pigs. Aspen shavings are the only bedding materials that can be compared and the best alternative to kiln-dried pine. However, kiln-dried pine shavings are better in terms of absorbency compared to aspen shavings.
So, many people like aspen bedding over kiln-dried pine bedding because of other advantages. Aspen bedding is also much safer for piggies.
If you don’t want any controversy, choose aspen shavings and it’s also a great option to make proper bedding.
Top 3 kiln-dried pine bedding for guinea pigs
Here are the top and safe kiln-dried pine shavings for guinea pig’s bedding that you can buy.
1. PETSPICK Pine Small Pet Bedding
2. Living World Pine Shavings
3. Pillow Wad Softwood Woodshavings Pine bedding
Our recommended product is PETSPICK Pine Small Pet Bedding or Pillow Wad Softwood Woodshavings pine bedding.
If you want to use pine shavings for your guinea pig’s bedding, you should choose kiln-dried, dust extracted, and odorless pine shavings. Unlike other pine shavings, kiln-dried pine is safe to use as bedding as it’s dried and thermally processed to eliminate aromatic oils, dust, and other harmful chemicals for the guinea pigs.
This type of bedding has a good absorbency rate and comes at a cheap price.
I will suggest you use the product as a temporary solution if you are looking to cut down your costs. But, you should use other high-quality bedding materials for your guinea pigs in the long run.
Also keep in mind that, there is always an exception, even if kiln-dried pine is safe for guinea pigs.
So, if you see your piggies don’t like that or cause any issue or you find the smell is too strong, you can switch to other products.