Make your own free website on Tripod.com

Kiln dried wood pellets

Aspen pellets

Oxbow is the only brand with this product. It is made from aspen but instead of being aspen shavings, it is pelleted. Although aspen is a hardwood & therefore safe for cavies, I don't really recommend Aspen pellets. This is 'cos pellets break down into powder when wet. There is a strong chance of this powder causing eye or nose irritation to your cavies. Aspen pellets are fine when used as litter in the litter tray, but I don't recommend using it as bedding, even if a very generous amount of hay or straw is placed on top of it. This is 'cos cavies tend to dig so despite the hay, they might still reach the powder which I feel is not good.

Aspen pellets are much less comfortable than recycled paper bedding pellets. Aspen pellets are very hard & tend to be sharp. Try pushing your fist into an opened bag of aspen pellets & you'll know what I mean. Paper pellets however are softer. Once again, use your fist & you'd get what I mean! Therefore there's a possibility your cavy might be uncomfortable on aspen pellets. So that's two reasons why I feel aspen pellets are better used as litter than bedding.

Oxbow's distributor is Eagle Territorial Agency which you can contact at 6841 6663 or eagle@starhub.net.sg. I don't have a picture of aspen pellets but I believe they should look about the same as any other wood pellets.

I read on Oxbow's website that they are phasing out Aspen Fresh & replacing it with Eco-Straw which is pelleted bedding made from wheat straw. So far I've not seen Oxbow Eco-Straw being sold in Singapore. Whatever Oxbow Aspen Fresh you see in shops will be "old stock" since Oxbow is no longer making it.

Supposed to be good at moisture absorbancy.
Supposed to be good at odour control.
Rather costly.
Some cavies might find it uncomfortable.
Will break down when wet. Powder may cause eye or nose irritation.
When very wet, it becomes mushy & gooey! Eew!!


Other wood pellets

Kiln dried pine pellets come in many brands but the more common ones are All Pet Pine, Feline Pine & Pinnacle Pine. These are a bit different from Woody Pet brand pellets which is made from saw dust & kiln dried white wood shavings. However all wood pellets behave the same way.

Generally as long as the wood pellets have been kiln dried to remove aromatic oils & hydrocarbons, it is safe for cavies. Wood pellets absorb moisture & when they are saturated, they crumble into powder. This powder could cause eye or nose irritation. Wood pellets are fine when used as litter in the litter tray, but I don't recommend using it as bedding, even if a very generous amount of hay or straw is placed on top of it. This is 'cos cavies tend to dig so despite the hay, they might still reach the powder which I feel is not good.

Wood pellets are much less comfortable than recycled paper bedding pellets. Wood pellets are very hard & tend to be sharp. Try pushing your fist into an opened bag of wood pellets & you'll know what I mean. Paper pellets however are softer. Once again, use your fist & you'd get what I mean! Therefore there's a possibility your cavy might be uncomfortable on wood pellets. So that's two reasons why I feel wood pellets are better used as litter than bedding. The pic below is from Woody Pet website but all wood pellets react this way.

If you ever wondered what dry & wet wood pellets look like, the picture below will be useful. The first pic you see below is dry Feline Pine in a removable tray. Below that is another pic of the same tray of Feline Pine after one day. You can see some of it has broken down into powder.

If you can't quite see, I've a zoomed in version of both pics below.

All wood pellets behave the same way regardless of brand. So it doesn't matter if you're using Feline Pine or Woody Pet, they behave the same way & look about the same too. I shall now go into a bit of detail for each brand mentioned earlier.

All Pet Pine & Feline Pine are similar except Feline Pine pellets are a bit longer since its meant for cats, but it is safe for cavies too. Both are made from kiln dried pine & are equally good at odour control & moisture absorbancy. However I Feline Pine is more worth it 'cos it comes in larger bags of 7 & 20 lbs. In the long run using Feline Pine would be cheaper than All Pet Pine. There might be a bit of wood smell but airing the pellets for a day should lessen it. But this isn't compulsary 'cos the pellets are supposed to be kiln dried & hence safe.

Pinnacle Pine Natural Cat Litter is labelled as cat litter but once again since its not made from clay, silica & other harmful chemicals, it is safe for cavies. Pinnacle Pine, like Feline Pine & All Pet Pine, is made from kiln dried pine although their manufacturer claims the moisture level in their pellets is less than 5% which is supposedly drier than other pellet manufacturer's.

I feel that Pinnacle Pine's moisture absorbancy is about the same as Feline Pine however I felt that the odour control was not as good as Feline Pine. The biggest bag of Pinnacle Pine I've seen I believe is 19 kg & costs about $30+. So its quite worth it 'cos as usual when you buy in bulk, you have some savings. The bag can't be re-sealed so ensure you have a suitable place or huge container to store it.

Pinnacle Pine also produces a bedding called Pinnacle Pine Small Animal & Bird Bedding & their manufacturer tells me it is exactly the same as Pinnacle Pine Cat Litter & only the packing is different. It comes in 10 lb bags which cost $8.95.

Woody Pet is slightly different from All Pet Pine, Feline Pine & Pinnacle Pine. Those three are made from kiln dried pine wherelse Woody Pet is made by compressing saw dust & kiln dried white wood shavings. The pellets are really big, almost four times the size of kiln dried pine pellets! I feel that Woody Pet has a horrible smell which might be due to the different type of wood used. However like I said, all kiln dried wood pellets behave the same way.

If you have trouble finding Woody Pet, you can contact their dealer which is Petsmall located at Block 112 Depot Road #01-1007. The contact person is Mr Dave Ang who can be reached at 6272 7271. The 15 lb bag costs $20 & its $35 for the 30 lb bag. PLC sells the 3 kg bag for $7.

Please look out for a similarly named product called "Woodypets wood shavings". It is different from Woody Pet. The Woody Pet which is safe for cavies is pelleted. The "imposter" Woodypets wood shavings is softwood shavings NOT kiln dried wood pellets. So don't just look at the name. Look at the product itself too. If you see shavings, you know you've picked up the "imposter" Woodypets and not the genuine Woody Pet.

Supposed to be good at moisture absorbancy.
Supposed to be good at odour control.
Some cavies might find it uncomfortable.
Will break down when wet. Powder may cause eye or nose irritation.
When very wet, it becomes mushy & gooey! Eew!!