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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > DIET & CARE > Home made carefresh
Last Post by Sammy at 5/08/2010 1:24 PM (26 Replies)
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User is Offline Bougatsa
227 posts Send Private Message
4/27/2010 8:02 AM

I ran into this today about how to make carefresh-like litter on your own:

1. Shred newspaper in a paper shredder. I collect the shredded paper in an unused litter box.
2. Soak the paper in warm water mixed with a few squirts gentle, biodegradable dish soap (like Ecover). The shredded paper takes on a cooked oatmeal consistency. The paper won’t come completely clean, but the water will turn grey.
3. Drain the water (an old colander works wonders) and repeat the soaking process minus the soap.
4. Sprinkle baking soda liberally on the wet paper. Knead it in to the mixture (you might want to wear gloves to avoid getting ink on your hands).
5. Squeeze the remaining moisture out until it’s as dry as you can get it.
6. Crumble over a screen and leave to dry (it takes a few days).

What do you guys think? Do you think it's going to be dangerous?It does save a lot of money.

 


User is Offline Andi
B.C. Canada
1057 posts Send Private Message
4/27/2010 8:55 AM
Sounds like a lot of work LOL... If I had 1 bunny and the time, i may try that out. But I have 8 pooping machines and little time (plus i'm lazy LOL).

I think it's a really neat idea and wonder how well it would work? I woudl think it woudl be harder then regular carefresh ocne it was fully dried?
I once read about people useing sand in their gerbils cages, they would soak and wash it, drain, then bake it in the oven and re-use it.
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User is Offline Bougatsa
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4/27/2010 10:09 AM
I'm thinking about trying to make some but I dont know if I can find dish soap that's biodegradable here. What should be written in the bottle?? Any other suggestions about what soap I can use?

User is Offline Petzy
Northern AB Canada
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4/27/2010 10:13 AM
Why do you have to use soap in it? Even biodegradable soap is soap. Even though you rinse the paper mash there may be residues from baking soda and soap in it that can attach to your rabbit's feet, especially once her urine moistens the litter again. When she grooms herself she could ingest small amounts of it and over time this could make her sick. Where did you find this recipe?
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User is Offline Beka27
Cleveland, Ohio (USA)
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4/27/2010 10:48 AM
Wow, I really appreciate you posting the recipe, that's interesting. It does sound like a big process... and I'd also be concerned with the soap and baking soda.

Really, woodstove pellets or horse stall litter is sooo much easier and very cheap. And honestly, newspaper prices keep going up, so I'm not sure that this is any cheaper than woodstove pellets... especially for the amount you'd have to make.

I would just as soon use WSP as the primary litter and then if I had a picky bun, a think sprinkle of carefresh over top would work... or just a handful of the newspaper shredded and "unwashed"...
Meadow..... Photobucket ...... Max, my angel bunny

User is Offline Andi
B.C. Canada
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4/27/2010 11:07 AM
What is the concern on baking Soda?
Not that i use it in my pet litter (though i do UNDER one box, bunny pees down the side it get under and well YUCK!).

I ask b/c I went to buy some carefresh for my Degu & Gerbil bedding, after useing corncob for years, and noticed products just like carefresh all said "with baking soda", as I continues my looking, I noticed many of the cat litter brands also advertised this. I refused to purchace anything with a 'dust' on it that will be housing my small critters. Back to corn cob i guess.

So other then breathing in the dust, what other harm does it do?
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User is Offline lwayne
427 posts Send Private Message
4/27/2010 12:12 PM
I was actually wondering what the used to make Carefresh. I am considering using it only because of Arduina's sore hocks, and just putting a little on top of the newspaper pellets I use.

My question is: Is Carefresh compostable? I would still like to be able to compost all of the litterbox materials together.

User is Offline Monkeybun
Hillsboro, Oregon
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4/27/2010 12:14 PM
Hmm interesting. My carefresh says nothing about baking soda on it, i wouldn't use it if it did. Corn cob isnt any good either, it isnt nearly absorbent enough, and does nothing for odor control. Not to mention little critters like to nibble, and corn cob isnt good for the buns.

User is Offline Andi
B.C. Canada
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4/27/2010 12:42 PM
Corncob is GREAT bedding for small animals... terrible litter for other animals LOL
I've used it going on 7 years now, and swear by it. No allergies, no smell (as long as it's changed regularly), no mold, and no ones ever been interested in eating it, and it's not dusty. I would never use it in a litter box though, for many reasons including it being messy.

From what i understand carrefresh is just paper pulp... ahh here from their website .....
"CareFRESH Pet Bedding is manufactured from pulp waste material that has had harmful tree oils removed. It is then further heated to almost 400 degrees to get rid of any lingering bacteria or undesirable molds. The result of these treatments is a soft, non-dusty, extremely absorbent material that provides an excellent habitat for your pet. Odors, especially urine smells, are well-controlled, and CareFRESH lasts longer than other types of animal litter or bedding"

I dunno about the oder thing, as I just started useing carefresh again (for small critters) and found my Degu who is on it had to be changed MUCH sooner then he had on a corncob/pine pellet mix he was on before. They 'pink' was kinda cute though :p
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User is Offline Monkeybun
Hillsboro, Oregon
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4/27/2010 12:44 PM
Your degu must pee alot then I dont have to change my bunnies boxes very often, every 3 or 4 days really. I used to change it every day but wasted alot that way. And Monkey loves it. She likes to help me change her box and smooth the carefresh into the corners for me

User is Offline Andi
B.C. Canada
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4/27/2010 12:51 PM
aawww too cute. I had a kitty who did that, and would pretend to pee in the box as soon as it was clean. I have certain Rabbits that get mad at me for cleaing their litter or house LOL

Maybe Degu pee is just stinkier?
It's funny b/c I hate stinky animals and though a dirty bunny box can smell, I really don't find their urine very potent. Now if rabbits could just poop little squares instead of little balls my house would be so much tidier, no rolling poops everywhere. :p
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* Don't Breed or Buy while Homeless Pets Die. Opt' to Adopt!
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User is Offline jerseygirl
Australia
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4/27/2010 2:57 PM

I have come across that recipe too. ( thegreenists.com/tip-of-the-day/tip...itter/1044 it is posted elsewhere too)  I also looked at it's safety for rabbits. It was advised to skip the bicarb soda. Only because a rabbits might like the saltiness and ingest to much. I'm not real sure bicarb has much of an impact with rabbit urine smell anyway.  You'd want to make sure you rinse the pulp really well, and dry really, really well! I think the soap os to help break down the paper and strip some of the ink - though not real sure.

I considered making it for a day or two. Since I still haven't, I'm not likely ever to!   Too lazy.


User is Offline Bougatsa
227 posts Send Private Message
4/27/2010 9:23 PM

The thing is that wood stove pellets here (greece) are very expensive, like 10 euros(almost 14 US dollars) for 1 kilo. And it is gone in less than a month. A newspaper's price is about 1 euro. So yeah it saves me 9 euros.
So I might try it out... 
I'll skip the soda. Still dont know about the soap. Maybe skip that too? But without the soap it will have a bigger amount of ink. Just make sure that my bunny isnt eating any of that litter so that she wont digest any ink..hm?


User is Offline Monkeybun
Hillsboro, Oregon
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4/27/2010 10:04 PM
You could check with your newspaper to see what kind of ink they use, many use soy based instead of petroleum based these days, which is safe for buns to eat. But call and check to make sure.

User is Offline Petzy
Northern AB Canada
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4/28/2010 6:28 AM
What do people use for their horses where you live, Bougatsa? There must be a product available that you can buy in bulk. I just don't think it will be feasible for you to make your own carefresh style litter for your rabbit who can live 6 to 13 years. I make my own litter but it isn't as labor intensive. I shred cardboard boxes.
Photobucket "what happened? did something happen or can I just go back to my hay?"

User is Offline Bougatsa
227 posts Send Private Message
4/28/2010 9:56 AM
I have no idea what people use for their horses. I do not have an access to any farms anyway so it's not easy for me to find out.
Does cardboard work well? Doesnt your bunny eat it?

User is Offline Petzy
Northern AB Canada
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4/28/2010 10:00 AM
Yes, the cardboard works very well. It soaks up urine completely. I use plain corrugated cardboard without any tape or labels or dye on it. The rabbits are allowed to eat it but mine don't. You do need a good shredder for this though, one that can take 8 or more sheets of paper.
Photobucket "what happened? did something happen or can I just go back to my hay?"

User is Offline Bougatsa
227 posts Send Private Message
4/28/2010 10:22 AM
Hm I cant afford a shredder but there's always scissors. Maybe I'll give it a try! thanks

User is Offline Petzy
Northern AB Canada
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4/28/2010 10:30 AM

oh, it won't work with scissors. It has to be cut finely to expose the inside of the cardboard layers which is the absorbing portion. .
If you want low-cost litter material, and are not near any feed store, you could just go with torn up newsprint and top off with hay. For one rabbit this will do if you change the paper often, every other day for example.
 

Photobucket "what happened? did something happen or can I just go back to my hay?"

User is Offline Andi
B.C. Canada
1057 posts Send Private Message
4/28/2010 11:09 AM
I had a friend who put those "puppy pads" in her litter boxes to absorb urine, her rabbits didn't tear them either.
I used these for a handicap bunny over a year ago, it's great absorption, but not cheap.
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* Don't Breed or Buy while Homeless Pets Die. Opt' to Adopt!
* Adoption is the Living Option.
* Adopting One Rescued Animal Saves Two Lives. The Animal you Adopted, and the Homelss Animal that will take it's Place in the shelter.
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