Lining Your Bird’s Cage

There are different types of liners for cages, but not all of them are suitable. Lining the birdcage helps make cleanup a lot easier for you. Easier cleanups make for a neater, sweeter cage that is healthier for your bird.

Wood chips, especially those that have a strong odor such as cedar, are toxic to birds. They can also cause skin irritations and allergies. Even untreated pine chips which are safer can be accidentally ingested and cause intestinal problems.

Kitty litter is another no-no. Anything dropped in the damp clumping type may adhere to the food or toy and cause digestive problems if accidentally eaten. With clay litter, there is the risk of inhaling dust that can damage to your bird’s respiratory system.

Crushed walnut shells are natural but if ingested they can be an irritant to internal organs, causing inflammation and damage. The shells also can be a breeding place for molds and bacteria. Your bird would be at risk for respiratory diseases. If swallowed, the shells can cause a blockage.

Crushed corn cobs are also natural, but are highly absorbent. When damp they can turn moldy. The dust they produce and accidental ingestion are health hazards.

Sand is difficult to clean up and very messy. Some people believe that sand harbors fleas as well.

Pine shavings become moldy when wet and if ingested can cause blockages.

The answer to what liner to safely use is simple and it’s something you have at home all the time – paper. Paper towels, newspaper, paper bags, all usuable as cage liners. Paper has advantages – easy cleanup, inexpensive. Paper also allows you to monitor your bird’s droppings to ensure his/her good health. You are able to see the color, consistency and number of droppings. It can also be free – just ask your neighbors to save some newspapers for you. Newspapers use soy based ink that is thought to have antibacterial properties making it a healthy choice for a birdcage liner. You can ask your local newspaper if you can purchase end rolls too.

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