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Home > General > 6 Best Sugar Glider Wheels in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

6 Best Sugar Glider Wheels in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

fat sugar glider on exercise wheel

Sugar gliders are packed full of energy. As well as jumping and gliding, they love to charge around and have fun. No matter how big their cage, there won’t be enough room for them to stretch their legs and hit full speed. Like a lot of small animals that are kept in tanks and cages, the sugar glider benefits from having a suitable wheel in its cage.

Available in plastic or metal, and as free-standing or able to connect to the bars of a cage, the sugar glider wheel will be your glider’s main source of physical exercise each day. Ensure that it is sugar glider appropriate, is the right size, and that it will fit efficiently in your cage setup. Below, we have included reviews of six of the best available sugar glider wheels you can buy to help you choose the most appropriate.

divider-hamsterA Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2024

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Suncoast Sugar Gliders Wodent Wheel Suncoast Sugar Gliders Wodent Wheel
  • Sturdy construction
  • Tail shield
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Ware Flying Saucer Wheel Ware Flying Saucer Wheel
  • Quiet operation
  • No risk to toes and tails
  • Good choice of colors
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Wheel Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Wheel
  • Silent operation
  • No center axel
  • Choice of sizes and colors
  • Kaytee Silent Spinner Wheel Kaytee Silent Spinner Wheel
  • Can be used freestanding or attaches to wire cage
  • Choice of sizes
  • Bearings offer quiet spinning
  • Kaytee Comfort Small Animal Exercise Wheel Kaytee Comfort Small Animal Exercise Wheel
  • Use freestanding or connect to a metal cage
  • Ridged surface for better grip
  • The 6 Best Sugar Glider Wheels

    1. Suncoast Sugar Gliders Wodent Wheel – Best Overall

    Suncoast Sugar Gliders Wodent Wheel Senior & Tail Shield

    The Suncoast Sugar Gliders Wodent Wheel is designed specifically for use by sugar gliders. It has an 11-inch diameter with a tail shield to protect your little one’s delicate tail. According to the manufacturer, sugar gliders prefer the closed wheel design utilized in the Wodent Wheel.

    The closed design also means that the Suncoast Wheel is more structurally rigid than some fragile wheels so it should last for years. The wheel can also be combined with the company’s nail trimming accessory to help better care for your glider. As is often the case with solid front constructions, the wheel can be difficult to take apart and put back together when it is time to clean.

    In terms of price, it is a little more expensive than comparably sized open wheels but if you do want a solid wheel, and are prepared to fiddle with it when it is time to clean, it is a good choice.

    Pros
    • Sturdy construction
    • Tail shield
    Cons
    • Difficult to clean
    • Large

    2. Ware Flying Saucer Wheel – Best Value

    Ware Flying Saucer Small Animal Exercise Wheel

    The Ware Flying Saucer Wheel is a saucer design. The saucer does take up more room than a wheel, but your sugar glider won’t get its feet or its tail caught in the wheel.

    The manufacturers claim it runs silently. It does make some noise but is quieter than most standard wheels until it is full of food and bedding. Most owners have had to endure the constant overnight squeaking of an exercise wheel. Sugar gliders seem to appreciate the saucer design because it lets them survey the area while running.

    The Flying Saucer Wheel comes in a variety of sizes, but they are quite small so it may be worth getting the size up. They are also available in a range of colors to match your cage setup. The Flying Saucer design is more expensive than a simple wheel, but should still be affordable for most budgets. In most cases, it will come down to the preference of the individual sugar glider, as to whether it prefers a wheel or a saucer. We think this is the best overall sugar glider wheel out there.

    Pros
    • Quiet operation
    • No risk to toes and tails
    • Good choice of colors
    • Choice of sizes
    Cons
    • Not as cheap as wheels
    • Not as quiet as claimed

    3. Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Wheel – Premium Choice

    Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Small Animal Exercise Wheel

    The Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Wheel is another that claims to be completely silent, utilizing a double bearing to help eliminate squeaking.

    Available in three sizes, sugar glider owners will want the medium 12-inch size, because this allows room for your glider to stretch out without causing pain in the back. The Silent Runner Wheel is a free-standing wheel and it is made using a heavy-duty stand material that won’t wobble. The wheel has also been designed so that it doesn’t have a center axle, which eliminates the risk of getting feet and tails stuck in this section.

    The wheel is expensive, but it is quiet, although the size of the wheel means that it might rock in the cage, so while it doesn’t squeak, you might hear some rocking against a plastic or glass bottom. Removing and replacing the front of the wheel can be tricky, but this is a high-quality wheel, hence it costs a premium.

    Pros
    • Silent operation
    • No center axel
    • Choice of sizes and colors
    Cons
    • Metal base can rattle against the cage
    • A bit fiddly to remove and replace the front
    • Expensive

    4. Kaytee Silent Spinner Wheel

    Kaytee Silent Spinner Small Animal Exercise Wheel

    The Kaytee Silent Spinner Wheel is designed to spin quietly while offering your sugar glider the exercise it needs every day. The wheel comes with a fitting so that it can be fixed to a metal wire, or it can be used as a standalone wheel for your little glider. The wheel comes in a selection of sizes, with the large wheel being an appropriate size for the sugar glider. Although gliders are quite small, they need a larger wheel than similarly sized animals because they need to be able to stretch out while running.

    The Kaytee Silent Spinner Wheel uses bearings in the wheel mechanism to reduce noise. The manufacturer claims the wheel is silent, but you should still expect a little bit of noise, and no matter how silent the wheel spins, it will rattle when it has food and other debris in it. Although not as cheap as some other wheels, the quiet operation, good size, and competitive price mean that the Kaytee Silent Spinner Wheel represents the best sugar glider wheel for the money.

    Pros
    • Can be used freestanding or attaches to wire cage
    • Choice of sizes
    • Bearings offer quiet spinning
    Cons
    • Can rattle when used on wire cages

    5. Kaytee Comfort Small Animal Exercise Wheel

    Kaytee Comfort Small Animal Exercise Wheel

    The Kaytee Comfort Small Animal Exercise Wheel comes in two choices of size, including a 12-inch model that is ideal for sugar gliders. The wheel comes with a heavy-duty wire stand, as well as a clip that can be used to attach the wheel to a wire cage. It has a ridged surface, offering greater traction for your glider when it’s trying to run.

    This enables him to get a better speed without the fear of slipping and sliding. The construction means that there is no danger of catching feet or tails in the frame when running, but while the manufacturer claims that it offers whisper-quiet operation, it has a tendency to clatter and it can be a little wobbly when being used by larger animals.

    The design has a metal frame, and once your glider is in the wheel, it means that the balance is top-heavy, causing vibration and potential toppling. This shouldn’t be as much of a problem with a sugar glider as it would with a rat, but if your little glider is a vigorous runner, take care.

    Pros
    • Use freestanding or connect to a metal cage
    • Ridged surface for better grip
    Cons
    • A bit rickety
    • Not silent

    6. Wodent Wheel Sugar Glider Wheel

    Wodent Wheel Sugar Glider

    The Woden Wheel Sugar Glider Wheel is a wheel specially designed for sugar gliders. It is a large wheel, with a diameter of 11 inches, but you must get a large wheel for your glider. They need the space so that they can stretch their back out and not injure themselves.

    It is a little pricier than other similarly-sized wheels, but it has a solid side that sugar gliders appreciate, and it incorporates a tail guard so there won’t be any nasty accidents with your little marsupial. It does take some effort to take the wheel apart for cleaning, and although the wheel itself is largely free from squeaking and whirring noises, it can clack around as it rocks around the cage.

    Pros
    • 11” diameter is ideal for sugar gliders
    • Solid sides encourage gliders
    Cons
    • Pricey
    • Difficult to take apart
    • Wobbly when being used

    divider-hamster

    Buyer’s Guide: Picking the Best Sugar Glider Wheel

    Native to Australia, Papua New Guinea, Tasmania, and surrounding islands, the Sugar Glider is a marsupial. Young gliders, called Joeys, grow in their mother’s pouch for the first 60 to 70 days. They have a webbed membrane that runs from the wrists to the ankles, which they spread when jumping, allowing them to glide as far as 150 feet through the air. In the wild, they use this to glide from treetop to treetop.

    Their large eyes help them triangulate landing position and ensure a smooth flight. They have a very complex diet, and you do need to do thorough research to ensure that you meet all of their dietary requirements. They can live up to 15 years and, despite only weighing around 5 ounces, they have a ton of energy and they love to whizz around their cage and environment.

    They also require regular handling, if you want them to stay happy and to form a close bond with you, and sugar gliders usually fare better if they are one of two or more kept together. Read on for some more care tips and guidelines, as well as information on how to choose the best exercise wheel for your sugar glider.

    Caring for Your Glider

    A sugar glider needs a large cage with plenty of space. The recommended size for a sugar glider cage is 2 feet wide, 2 feet deep, and 3 feet tall, but if you can provide even more space then your glider will appreciate it. You should ensure that the bars or wire mesh are close enough together to prevent your little sugar glider from escaping. Sugar gliders enjoy exploring vertically as well as horizontally.

    They would normally eat up in the trees, and to replicate this you should place food bowls high in the cage. The cage should not be placed in direct sunlight your sugar gliders should be able to easily discern between day and night by how bright it is.

    sugar glider sitting at a human hand
    Image Credit: Madoka Shiozaki, Shutterstock

    The Sugar Glider’s Cage

    Sugar gliders are playful and energetic little animals. They need a lot of stimulation, both physical and mental, which means that you should provide yours with multiple toys, ideally of different types. You can provide bird toys like ladders. Offer tunnels to hide and play in. Give them balls and bells to play with. Your gliders might develop some favorites, but they may choose to play with all of the toys over time. Eucalyptus branches and leaves not only provide climbing opportunities but also allow for healthy foraging.

    Do Sugar Gliders Need a Wheel?

    An exercise wheel is another essential piece of cage equipment for a sugar glider. It enables them to stretch out while running. Without a wheel, they would only be able to run back and forth across the cage, which is limited exercise, at best.

    Choosing the Best Sugar Glider Wheel

    Ensure that you choose glider-friendly wheels. If you bought a cage with a built-in wheel, there is a good chance that it is designed for hamsters or other small animals and may not be suitable for your new pet. Sugar glider wheels are appropriate for the size and physical requirements of the species, which require a wheel up to 12 inches in diameter.

    • They should not have a bar in the center of the wheel, because this can damage their backs and cause serious injury. Gliders tend to hop, rather than run flat, so they will come into contact with any bar or axel in the middle of the wheel.
    • The glider’s tail can get caught in a bearing mechanism inside the wheel, so choose a wheel that features this on the outside.
    • Adding nail trimming paper helps manage the length of your little one’s nails and claws. But because your sugar glider needs to grip onto the surface while he runs, you should avoid wheels that have this paper all over the surface.

    As well as these safety factors, consider the following factors to find the best sugar glider wheel for your furry friend.

    Wheels and Saucers

    Most exercise wheels take the form of an upright wheel. The design has been popular in small animal cages for decades. Saucers, also called flying saucers, are more horizontal in design. They can be suitable for animals like sugar gliders, which tend to hop or bounce rather than run, and they prevent your little one from getting caught in wheels or in the bearing mechanisms. However, a lot of gliders prefer the upright wheel design. A saucer also takes up more room in the cage, while a vertical wheel can often be attached to the side of the cage and take up minimal space.

    sugar glider in the cage
    Image Credit: MARVIK, Shutterstock

    Metal or Plastic?

    Choose between metal and plastic designs. Most wheels are made from a combination of materials, but the wheel itself is normally made from plastic. Plastic is flimsier and more fragile than metal, but metal can warp, bend, rust, and it tends to be heavier than plastic.

    Size

    Small animal wheels vary in size from the smaller 8-inch models to much larger ones. The larger wheels are usually designed for rats, but you will need at least an 11 to 12-inch wheel to ensure that your sugar glider has ample room in which to run and exercise. Anything smaller, and they can get stuck or suffer back injuries.

    Freestanding or Fixed?

    Wheels can either be freestanding or fixed to the cage. Those that fix to the cage will usually have a clip or an X frame, which slots through the bars of a metal cage and then fastens securely. Because these sit tight up against the cage, they can take up a lot less room than the freestanding variants. However, if the connection isn’t secure, there is a good chance that the wheel will rattle or squeak when in use. With a nocturnal animal like a sugar glider, the wheel tends to be in use during the night, which is when you least want the wheel squeaking and knocking.

    Silent Wheels

    Most wheels are billed as being silent or quiet wheels. Some use bearing and even double bearing mechanisms for the spinning axel. These mechanisms are smoother and they remove the chance of metal rubbing against metal or plastic, which is what usually causes the squeaking noise of a hamster wheel. Double bearings should be more effective at noise cancelling than single bearings, but both are more effective than standard mechanisms.

    sugar glider
    Image Credit: KAMONRAT, Shutterstock

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    Conclusion

    The sugar glider is an energetic and fun-loving little marsupial that can form a close bond with its owner and that needs a lot of daily exercise. As well as encouraging him to glide and carrying him around in your homemade pouch, you should also provide your glider with a suitable cage, packed full of the equipment and accessories that he needs. Our top pick of sugar glider wheels is the Suncoast Sugar Gliders Wodent Wheel. The option for its best value is the Ware Flying Saucer Wheel. If you’re looking for a premium option, the Exotic Nutrition Silent Runner Wheel is the right one for your sugar glider.

    As well as making sure your glider has plenty of room to move around, including vertical and horizontal levels, you should provide toys, food bowls, and more. The exercise wheel is one important cage accessory. Available in plastic or metal, and in 11 and 12-inch sizes that are appropriate to the shape of your sugar glider, you can choose between saucer and traditional wheel designs.

    There are a lot of choices, including those that can be enhanced to keep your glider’s nails trim and those that utilize a double bearing mechanism to offer whisper-quiet use. Hopefully, the reviews above have helped you choose the model that is best for your sugar glider and you.


    Featured Image Credit: Monkeyoum, Shutterstock

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