Product Description – Eco-Straw uses special technology to compress high fiber wheat straw into a pellet that is twice as absorbent as newspaper-based litter and will absorb 300 percent its weight in moisture. This litter is your ideal choice for a safe, dust-free litter or bedding for your small animal. Available in a 20 lb. bag.
Review – I had planned originally to use this in a litter pan to try and train my guinea pig,Tutu. Her cagemate had recently passed and while I thought I would have her as a single for a while on short notice I adopted a second little guy and realized none of my fleece bedding was clean. I had no paper bedding left either. I didn’t want to put them together for the first time in a cage she had obviously marked. So, I took the whole bag of Bene Terra Eco-Straw and filled the cleaned out 2X4 C&C cage. The 20lb bag fills the 2X4 perfectly. The instructions call for 1/2in to an 1in of litter.
The first thing I noticed is that the pellets seem pretty hard and against the coroplast they’re a bit noisy. I was a little concerned about the guinea pigs feet but didn’t see any issues after a few days of checking. It does tend to roll around and guineas aren’t the most agile animals and seemed to slip a little trying to walk on it. The problem in my case was that I was trying to bond two animals that hadn’t any experience with each other so every quick turn or jump caused the litter to shift, make noise and scare them. If you have pigs that are very comfortable with each other, that most likely won’t happen.
After a couple of days I noticed that the odor control is terrific. In fact, I was starting to wonder if anyone was peeing in there. You can see where the pellets disintegrate and it’s easy to just scoop it out. If you have a drippy water bottle, you probably want to put something under it to keep it from making a mess.
It can be a little dusty when you finally empty out everything to change it but not as bad as the paper bedding, in my opinion. It doesn’t seem to kick up much dust when the guys are running around in it. When it’s wet it’s heavy. Remember you’ve dumped a 20lb bag of pellets in there that are now holding water. It does stick when wet to the bottom of the coroplast but not so badly that you can’t knock it out or wipe it out easily. It’s probably more suited for smaller cages and litter pans.
All in all I was pretty pleased with it although I think I would use it as a layer beneath my fleece to catch the pee. My two just startle too easily then seem to blame each other for the noise, which starts a chitter-fest. Also, I think I’d like to try litter training them and I think this litter is perfect for that.