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Old 12-30-2012, 03:24 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Is sawdust safe?

just watched a video on hamster healthcare and it says sawdust isn't safe?
Is this true? Do I need to worry?
I have heard of carefresh. If sawdust isn't safe will buy some caefresh immediately.
So worried...
The video said I can cause skin and breathing problems..
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:31 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

Shavings that haven't been prepared properly can be dangerous, but UK shavings, as long as dust free, and aired before use, to rid the strong smell aren't unsafe.

They can cause breathing issues and skin allergies in some hams, and we don't use them for hams, as we've had an issue with one previously. But many people use them fine with no issues at all, so please don't panic if your ham has shown no symptoms.

If you wanted to change over for peace of mind, there are options other than carefresh, such as megazorb, fitch and aubiose (search them on the forum for more info on them).
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:34 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

wood shavings are safe if killin dried, which it needs to be for humans let alone hamsters, but sawdust is a bit 50-50
i was always told not to use it, and its bad for them, but I know one of the longest running hamsterys use sawdust for their LH males
you need to sieve out the dust, which is time consuming, can make your hands hurt and you end up throwing loads out as unusable dust, but the left over micro flakes are safe.

un sieved it can be breathed in and can give them resparitory infections

its too much bother for me to sieve sawdust, i use shavings/megazorb/fitch/carefresh
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

Well,yes but I have never had a problem but right now one of my hamsters is on carefresh and the other one isn't because I have yet to switch him over to carefresh!!!

You could go for a cheaper option and get horse bedding such as megazorb,auboise or fitch which are much cheaper for the amount you get or EVEN cheaper you could shred some paper up in a shredding machine, plain white paper, and give your hamster that but it won't absorb as good so give him/her a nice big thick layer and do spot cleans!!!
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:41 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

Agree with Mona. Look through the Housing section for information on safer alternatives. Sawdust is just that...dust. Don`t use it. Sawdust is a by product of the wood mills. Shavings are a personal choice, but I would also avoid them due to the strong aroma they give off even if they have been dust extracted and aired. Airing wood shavings does help reduce this fresh aroma, but even after a month in an open topped storage bin, the scent is still relitively strong, especially for hamsters and other small furries who rely on their sense of smell. I wouldn`t fancy living and sleeping on something perfumed all day long either!

The alternatives are out there, it`s looking for what you can get locally or buy online. I use Aubiose (hemp bedding sold for horses) but there is also Carefresh (I don`t particularly like it as it`s dusty), Megazorb sold for horses and the newer Fitch paper bedding. Sold online.

Don`t use newspaper either as the inks on newspaper can be toxic if ingested.

For nesting, you can safely use cheap plain white toilet paper from the supermarket own brands. Rip up the toilet paper into a pile for your hamster to nest with. It`s cheap and it`s safe.
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:41 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

Thanks for the help peeps...
No longer that worried.
For peace of mind will switch.
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

Sawdust is a definite no no, shavings however can be ok. They are different but actual sawdust is just dust so thats not good at all.

I recommend fitch personally
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

oh i forgot to mention
the recycled soy ink newspaper pellets from finacard/back 2 nature and other cat litter brands are safe and the wood cat pellets are safe too, the newspaper ones are softer for them and have no smell and are very absorbent!

I will be getting fitch soon, its cheep, compact and dust free! and really absorbent so seems a win win situation
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:31 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

Oh yeah sorry I use wood shavings not sawdust!!!
I didn't read the thread properley, sawdust is mainly dust but wood shavings are average they're not loved by many owners!!!
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:51 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is sawdust safe?

I use megazorb Megazorb 85 litres | Small Animal Beddings | GJW Titmuss

I find it to be great and also much better than wood shavings or sawdust. It's very absorbant.
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