Hamsters enjoy playing in the sand, at the same time they use it to clean their bodies.
But can hamsters use beach sand, is it safe for them?
Hamsters can use sand from the beach if it has been previously cleaned and disinfected, for which it should be baked in the oven for up to 80-90 minutes.
When the sand from the beach is disinfected then there will be no danger of bacteria and other harmful residues.
In today’s article, you will find out if hamsters can use beach sand, how to make beach sand safe for hamsters, and similar questions related to the topic.
Is beach sand safe for hamsters?
Beach sand can only be safe for hamsters if you disinfect it first. To make it safe you need to bake it in the oven for about an hour and a half to destroy all the bacteria.
If you live in an area that is close to the beach, you can use the sand for your pet.
Beach sand reminds hamsters of nature and they will love to play and clean themselves in it.
Can my hamster play on beach sand?
Yes, hamsters can play in beach sand, they will use it to dig and explore in it. Beach sand is good for playing in, but not good for a hamster to burrow in and protect itself from potential predators.
When you let the hamster play in the sand from the beach, just be careful that it doesn’t escape, so always put protective barriers around the sand, because if the hamster escapes, then you will hardly find it.
The hamster will have fun in the sand, but he will not forget to try to escape, so be careful.
How to make beach sand safe for hamsters?
Beach sand has a lot of bacteria, fungi, and debris from various objects and glass that can injure the hamster.
That is why it is most important that the sand is safe and disinfected before you let your pet play and clean dirty in it.
So take the following steps to make sand safe for your pet:
- First take all the sand to remove any large debris, then pass it through a sieve to remove any other small pieces and debris.
- Check the sand if there is mold anywhere, which will be black in color, and remove it, which will make it easier to recognize it.
- Make a solution of equal parts cleaner and water and spray all over the sand. Then wipe off the sand and repeat this cleaning process to make sure there is no residue.
- The next step is to put the cleaned sand to dry in the sun, and then you can put it in a bowl and bake it for 80-90 minutes at 350-400 degrees.
- In the end when you finish baking, just take out the sand, wait for it to cool and you can use it for your hamster.
Can hamsters use beach sand for a bath?
Yes, beach sand can be used as a bath for hamsters. When the sand is disinfected, there is no reason why the sand should not be used to clean your pet.
Hamsters will use the sand from the beach to play in it and clean off any dirt and oils stuck to their body.
Your hamster will look nice and clean by the time he’s done cleaning himself on the beach sand.
Do hamsters need beach sand in their cage?
Beach sand is not an ideal substrate for hamsters, as they cannot burrow in it as they can in bedding.
Sand in contact with water from the hamster’s bottle can become wet, which your pets will not like.
As the sand dries it will be more destructive to the hamster’s tunnels and they may have to make them all over again afterward.
But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use it in their cage because it has its positives.
The biggest benefit of beach sand for hamsters is the opportunity to have fun, be a little happier, and clean themselves.
Can hamsters get sick from beach sand?
Yes, hamsters can get sick from beach sand if it is not properly processed before use.
Since beach sand can contain bacteria, parasites, salt, and other ingredients and debris, it can cause health problems for hamsters.
That is why it is important to always first sterilize the sand before it starts to be used for hamsters, by cleaning it and then baking it in the oven.
How deep should the beach sand be for hamsters?
When you use sand from the beach for a bath for hamsters you need to pay attention to its depth because it should not be too deep.
The ideal depth of beach sand should be 1.5 – 2 inches, because if it is deeper then the hamster will have trouble getting out.
On the other hand, never put sand that is less than 1 inch deep, because it will not be enough for the hamster to use and clean in.
How often should you use beach sand for a hamster bath?
It all depends on the environment in which your hamster is because if it is a drier environment then he will use the sand more often.
Hamsters usually use the sand once or twice a week.
You can notice whether your pet will use it more or less after scratching, if they scratch more often then they need a sand bath more often.
Read more: Do Hamsters Need Sand Baths? Complete Guide
How often should the beach sand be changed for a hamster bath?
To know when to change the sand from the beach to the hamsters, you need to pay attention to how long the hamster uses it.
If he uses it every day then you should change it once every three days. If the hamster uses it less often, i.e. twice a week, then change the sand once a week.
If the hamster poops and pees on the beach sand and gets dirty, then you will need to change it immediately.
In any case, the sand from the beach should be changed once a week because it will get dirty and can cause problems with the hamster’s respiratory organs when it is inhaled.
Alternatives to beach sand for hamsters
Alternatives to beach sand for hamsters can be chinchilla sand, reptile sand, desert sand, and other sands that are safe for your pet.
- Reptile sand – it is made of 100% natural sand, there is no dust, it is not toxic and it does not contain harmful chemicals.
- Desert sand – is fine and non-toxic, making it safe to use for hamsters.
- Shonshila sand – helps clean oil and dirt from hamsters’ fur and is safe for your pet to use.
What sands to avoid for hamsters?
Sands that contain chemicals, artificial fragrances and ingredients that are not healthy for hamsters should be avoided, so here is a list of a few that are harmful to them.
- Scented sand – this type of sand has an artificial smell that is not safe for hamsters because the chemicals it contains can cause problems with the respiratory organs, and additionally cause irritation to the hamster’s skin.
- Clay-based sand – this sand is not safe for hamsters because the small particles of clay can cause irritation to the fur and skin of hamsters, and if they swallow it, they can get digestive problems.
- Pumice sand – is made from volcanic rock and is quite popular, but it is not safe for hamsters because it can cause damage to the hamster’s skin and gastrointestinal blockages if the hamster ingests it.
The sand from the beach can be used as a bath for the hamsters, but only before it is cleaned of all the residues in it, and then it should be baked in the oven.
This way the sand will be sterilized and can be used for your pet. The sand from the beach helps the hamster to get play in it and clean the dirt from its fur and skin.
Beach sand should be changed regularly to prevent problems with the hamsters’ respiratory organs from accumulated dirt.
As an alternative to beach sand, you can use reptile sand, chinchilla sand, and other sands that are safe for your hamster.