Q: My guinea pigs kick their bedding out of the cage onto the table a lot. I have put less bedding in the cage and tried different types of bedding. Nothing seems to work — they are just messy! Do you have any suggestions on how to keep them from kicking the bedding out of the cage?
A: There are several different ways to address this situation. If purchasing a new cage with higher sides or a deeper pan is not in the budget, then place clean 2-inch strips of cardboard around the outside of the cage. The guinea pig may chew on it, but cardboard is something they can chew safely. Tape the corners to hold it in place.
Newspaper folded and taped like the cardboard is another option, but this definitely needs replacement on a regular basis.
Another possible solution is using coroplast on the outside of the cage. Coroplast is a plastic version of corrugated cardboard. Guinea pigs might chew on it, but there does not seem to be any known repercussions from guinea pigs chewing on this product. Coroplast can be found at most sign shops and can be cut to order.
Other possible ways to manage the flying bedding is to set the cage inside a short-sided box. It could be a box you simply cut down. Cutting it down yourself means you can adjust the height of the sides should you want more in the back than the front or more height on the sides.
These are just a few of the ways I have seen folks combat the mess from guinea pigs that like to kick out bedding. It’s not that they mean to, it just means they are kicking up their heels with happiness, and bedding happens to be flying out as a result.