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I am considering getting rats one day and I don't know what kind of bedding/substrate to get. I've heard that rats are prone to respiratory issues if certain kinds of bedding/substrate is used, any suggestions?
 

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I like to use Care Fresh Small Animal Bedding. It isn't too dusty, so the rat's lungs can stand it. It is absorbent and rats can dig through it.
 

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I like to use Care Fresh Small Animal Bedding. It isn't too dusty, so the rat's lungs can stand it. It is absorbent and rats can dig through it.
You'll often here people saying carefresh is not safe as they used to add dusty bicarb to their product but as far as I know this isnt the case for a long time but there may be some old batches floating around still I suppose.

I have been using oxbow pure comfort bedding which is great value, bulky and cheap. However my rats dont like bedding, they throw it all out!!
 

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I use fleece liners over loose bedding. I find it’s cheaper and of course it’s ok for their respiratory systems. I used carefresh in the beginning but found it too dusty and sneezing went away as soon as I took it out.
 

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I use fleece liners over loose bedding. I find it’s cheaper and of course it’s ok for their respiratory systems. I used carefresh in the beginning but found it too dusty and sneezing went away as soon as I took it out.
I take this statement back actually. Found out that fleece is horrible for keeping ammonia down I’ve since switched to Flax bedding and I highly recommend it! Not dusty, pleasant smell, SUPER absorbent and the rats love it.
 

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I use paper cat litter.
You just need to make sure that the litter doesn't have any ink or baking soda in it ,as this can irradiate your rats skin.
Most good brands say that it is suitable for small animals.
Peckish Paper Pet Bedding is also good. 🐭
 

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I take this statement back actually. Found out that fleece is horrible for keeping ammonia down I’ve since switched to Flax bedding and I highly recommend it! Not dusty, pleasant smell, SUPER absorbent and the rats love it.
I use fleece for their main bedding. I agree that fleece by itself is not good for ammonia smells. However, I recently discovered (thanks to the internet) that putting a piece of UHaul blanket (recycled denim fabric) underneath the fleece helps absorb the urine and odors. So far it's working out great. It's much cheaper and less messy than having loose bedding everywhere. Also, because the rats enjoy burrowing and pooping in loose bedding, I give them a couple of burrow/litter boxes with Carefresh.
 

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I use fleece for their main bedding. I agree that fleece by itself is not good for ammonia smells. However, I recently discovered (thanks to the internet) that putting a piece of UHaul blanket (recycled denim fabric) underneath the fleece helps absorb the urine and odors. So far it's working out great. It's much cheaper and less messy than having loose bedding everywhere. Also, because the rats enjoy burrowing and pooping in loose bedding, I give them a couple of burrow/litter boxes with Carefresh.
I originally had puppy pads under their fleece when it was just my first two girls, but I stopped using them because they would just chew through the fleece and in turn chew up the puppy pads. I just started layering the fleece a couple of times because they would still chew through to get inside but they couldn’t chew on puppy pads that weren’t there anymore. Then in July I brought home two more girls who have a very bad chewing habit so I definitely couldn’t try using pads with them (too small cage and no enrichment) and they’re now currently getting treated for being sick which happened after they were on fleece. That’s just why I don’t suggest it but of course if that works for you and your rats and it’s not causing them any issues then that’s just as great
 
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