Can Hamsters Breathe Under Bedding?

There is no denying the fact that hamsters are extremely cute creatures. Owning a hamster as your pet is a privilege in itself. However, most hamsters tend to exhibit a wide range of surprising habits like burrowing deeply that might appear odd to new pet owners. Therefore, it is crucial to understand the behavior of these creatures for all hammy owners.
Can Hamster Breathe Under Bedding

If you are worried about whether or not your hammy can breathe under bedding, then don’t be anymore! It is a highly rare situation for a hamster to suffocate under bedding. The natural instinct of a hamster is burrowing –irrespective of where he will be living –at home or in the wild. However, it will only take multiple layers of bedding to suffocate them. This is because hamsters are capable of breathing under the bedding effectively. 

Hamsters are capable of digging up to 0.7m in depth at times. For ensuring their proper burrowing and nesting, it is imperative to provide a safe substrate material for their overall safety. Let us know more about hamsters and their bedding preferences. 

Why Do Hamsters Dig or Burrow?

Burrowing or digging deeply in one of the odd behaviors that these creatures exhibit. Some more strange behaviours that you can come across are chewing crazily, stuffing their cheeks, and sleeping when you are awake. However, all these behaviors are quite normal in the hamster’s life cycle and do not impose any major concern. 

When they are in the wild, hamsters are capable of digging up multiple channels of tunnels. The given notion helps in being safe from the common predators including wild cats or foxes. Moreover, the given tunnels also offer them the space for storage, sleeping, and for being safe from harsh weather conditions. 

Some of the common reasons why hamsters consider burrowing are:

  • Storing their food
  • Sleeping or hibernating
  • Exercising or simply enjoying the process
  • Escaping extreme weather conditions
  • Protecting themselves against predators

Even after the fact that captive or pet hamsters are not required to be worried about food shortage, attack from predators, or extreme weather conditions, still they will engage in the given behaviour at some instance. 

Can Hamsters Breathe Under Bedding?

Hamsters are easily able to breathe under bedding. As a matter of fact, hamsters adore sleeping under their bedding. While it might appear as an unusual behaviour, it is completely normal for these creatures to do so. 

In logical terms, in case the hamster is spending too much time under the bedding, it actually implies that he is quite comfortable in there. In case it is not so, the hammy will come out of the bedding and not get under the sheets again. The mere fact that your hammy chooses to be under the bedding implies that he likes it. Otherwise, he would simply prefer coming out.

However, the specific type of wheel and cage that you select to purchase for your pet can have a major impact on the overall well-being of the pet. To your surprise, not all wheels and cages are designed to suit your beloved pets. You should avoid buying hamster-specific products featuring smaller gaps wherein your pet can get its head stuck. In an accident, your hammy can damage its neck or even suffocate. 

Can Hamsters Suffocate in Bedding?

It is highly unlikely for a hamster to suffocate from digging into the bedding. It is because of the natural behaviour of digging that these creatures possess. These small creatures are amazing burrowers. If your pet is enjoying burrowing, there is nothing to worry about.

However, it is recommended to spend some time in choosing the right bedding for your beloved pet. It is recommended to make sure that the bedding of your pet is clean. It should not be harmful to the hamster in any given case. 

What Should be the Depth of Hamster’s Bedding?

A recent study report on the basics of bedding depth for hamsters revealed that cages featuring around 15 inches or 40 cm of bedding will help in improving the overall well-being of the creatures. 

As per the conclusion of the study, it was reported that deep bedding turns out to be quite beneficial for Golden Hamsters that are kept at pets. They are capable of living completely fine in cages featuring the bedding of depth of around 80 cm or 30 inches. However, it is recommended to prefer cages having a bedding of depth 40 cm.

Can Hamsters Choke on Bedding?

It would totally depend. There are specific substrates that might pose real danger to your pets all around the world. Therefore, you should avoid these materials at all costs. When you are not able to provide your hammy with the best-ever bedding material, it could negatively impact the overall health and well-being of the creature.

Usually, hamsters might choke on the bedding. All substrates for hamster bedding posing a potential choking hazard to the pets should be avoided under all circumstances. 

What are Safe Hamster Bedding Types?

In case you are not sure of the best substrate for hamster bedding, let us help you know about some of the best bedding materials for hamsters.

Some of the safer options for hamster beddings are:

Paper-based Bedding

It is one of the most common bedding options for your beloved pets. Paper-based bedding materials are available in a wide range of forms, textures, colors, and variations. This offers you the option to customize the cage of your hammy. 

Kaytee Soft Granule Bedding

It is a great and safe option for hamsters in terms of bedding. It is mostly made out of wood fibers. These make up a great option for smaller areas of the pet’s cage. These are safe and comfortable. Additionally, these are highly absorbent and soft as well.


It is completely safe for hamsters to breathe under bedding. The devotion of the creatures to burrowing, their natural instinct, and the overall experiences are some great reasons to make these creatures great burrowers. Have fun with them!

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a little about me
Hi, im Sofia
Hi, im Sofia

I'm a mother of 2, hamster enthusiast, animal lover, and blogger. I have had five hamsters in my life, each with their own personality!

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