Every chinchilla needs bedding.
But with so many options out there, what is the best chinchilla bedding?
My advice: ignore all but two.
The absolute best option is fleece liners.
But you need to get ones specifically fit for your cage (or make your own).
If neither is an option in your case, then go with Aspen shavings. They are the only other choice worth considering.
Keep reading to learn why these are the only types of bedding that make sense, along with specific recommendations on which brands are best.
Best Chinchilla Bedding
If you have a different cage, see if there are fleece liners made for your model. If not, you might be able to find generic liners (I’ll provide some links below) that fit. Or you can make your own.
Best Fleece Liners
|$$$$||10 / 10|
|Living World Aspen Shavings
Best Aspen Shavings
|$$||9.5 / 10|
|Kaytee Aspen Bedding
Aspen Shavings Runner-Up
|$$||9.3 / 10|
|Small Pet Select Aspen Bedding
Aspen Shavings 2nd Alternative
|$$||9.0 / 10|
Keep reading to learn why I prefer these choices for chinchilla bedding and other tips/advice to implement and follow.
Piggy BedSpreads Fleece Liners For Critter Nation Cage
Before you think I’m totally against using shavings like the aspen ones listed above, I want to make one thing clear.
I’m 100% not against using shavings for chinchilla bedding.
Shavings make for perfectly good bedding for chinchillas. But I do not believe aspen shavings are the best chinchilla bedding you can choose.
That is what this post is ultimately about.
I’m just a much bigger advocate for fleece liners that are designed to line the trays of the cage.
First, fleece liners are incredibly easy to clean.
During playtime or when your chinchilla is out for a dust bath, simply remove the liners from the cage and wash them in your regular old washing machine with cold water.
You want to be sure to use cold water, so you avoid shrinking them.
Second, in between full-blown washings, a simple shop vacuum to vacuum all the chinchilla poop nuggets keeps the cage clean.
I much prefer this to aspen shavings, because the cage always looks, smells, and remains clean for longer durations of time.
As far as urine, you have a few options.
I went through the process of getting my chinchilla to pee in a Critter Litter Pan (Link to Amazon).
This takes time and can be frustrating in the beginning, but it does work. You can learn more about this by reading my post about potty training your chinchilla.
If you don’t feel like going through this hassle, simply wash the fleece liners more frequently. Twice a week would be good.
It’s not like it takes more than 30 minutes to do so and doesn’t require anything except getting your chinchilla out for playtime as you should be doing anyway.
The only issue, as mentioned, is that these fleece liners are designed specifically for the Critter Nation Dual or Single Level Cages (Link to Amazon).
That said, as of 2020, fleece liners are becoming available for more and more chinchilla cage models. They must be recognizing that fleece is one of the best beddings for chinchillas as well.
Here are some links to other fleece liner options that can be adapted for a number of different cages.
- Expawlorer Fleece Cage Liners
- Paw Inspired Fleece Cage Liners
- Bwogue Fleece Cage Liners
- Kerrogee Fleece Cage Liners
You can find the Piggy BedSpreads fleece liners for the Critter Nation cage using the button below.
Living World Wood Aspen Shavings
Aspen shavings come in as my second-best option for chinchilla bedding. It’s really the only other option, if you ask me.
Aspen just works better than other materials and not using anything is not an option. You can’t have your chinchilla sitting on nothing but the black tray liners or wire bottom cages.
First, this is gross.
Second, this could cause infections or other illnesses.
And third, the aspen shavings and (or fleece liners) absorb the urine from your chinchilla.
The aspen shavings don’t provide the same level of comfort as the fleece liners, but they certainly still get the job done.
Another downfall to aspen shavings is that you need to continue purchasing more shavings. You can’t reuse them. It also takes longer to clean the cage when using shavings (of any kind).
Would you rather spend $60.00 dollars now on a permanent chinchilla bedding solution, or spend less now, but continue to spend more and more over the life of your pet? And have more cleaning work to do?
That’s ultimately what I asked myself when I made the switch over to the fleece liners.
However, if Aspen Shavings are the direction you want to go, I highly recommend purchasing the Living World shavings.
It’s the same shavings my chinchilla breeder recommended to me when I first adopted my chinchilla. They are affordable and readily available on Amazon.
Pros And Cons Of Fleece Liners
Let’s take a quick look at the overall pros and cons of using fleece liners for your chinchilla bedding, as opposed to using Aspen shavings.
Pros Of Using Fleece Liners For Chinchilla Bedding
- ✅Easy to clean
- ✅One time purchase
- ✅More physically appealing inside the cage
- ✅More comfortable for your chinchilla
- ✅Customizable and less odor emitted
Cons Of Using Fleece Liners
- 👎Higher up-front cost
- 👎Must be washed weekly
- 👎May eventually need to be replaced over time (hasn’t happened to me yet)
Pros And Cons Of Aspen Shavings
Now, let’s look at the pros and cons of using aspen shavings for your chinchilla bedding.
Pros Of Using Aspen Shavings
- ✅Cheaper up-front cost
- ✅Discard after use
- ✅Doesn’t require washing
Cons Of Using Aspen Shavings
- 👎Could cause allergies
- 👎More cleanup required
- 👎Not as comfortable for your chinchilla and more odor (typically)
- 👎Need to purchase more throughout your chin’s life
Best Bedding For Chinchillas: Final Thoughts
The most significant takeaway that I wanted to get across in this post is that either fleece or aspen shavings are the best options to use for your chinchilla bedding.
I wouldn’t even bother with other things like newspaper. That has a few big problems. Read “Can You Use Newspaper For Chinchilla Bedding?” for more, if you are considering newspaper for your bedding.
I personally believe fleece is the best chinchilla bedding but if you aren’t quite ready to make the switch, aspen shavings are a great runner up.
Always, keep in mind that you need to keep your chinchilla cage clean regardless of which of these chinchilla bedding options you ultimately choose.
As long as your chinchilla has plenty of space, a loving home, and time to interact, it will not be too picky about which chinchilla bedding you ultimately decide to use.
So, to recap briefly, what’s the best bedding for a chinchilla?
Fleece liners are by far the superior choice in my book, but aspen shavings work great as well.
If you keep your chinchilla clean and spend time bonding with your chinchilla, your chinchilla will be happy regardless.
Best of luck with your new chinchilla adoption and finding the best chinchilla bedding!
Chili and I wish you the best of luck with your new chinchilla and the journey you have ahead of you.
What do you believe to be the best chinchilla bedding?
Do you prefer using fleece liners or aspen shavings as your preferred chinchilla bedding?
Be sure to share those thoughts, stories, and concerns by dropping a comment below.
As always, Chili and I appreciate you stopping by and reading today and we will see you again next time.