cage plans

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by rnmom23, Aug 3, 2005.

  1. rnmom23

    rnmom23 Well-Known Member

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    I'm posting this here rather than in the rabbits forum as I think it would get more of a response- so, does anyone have any sites to recomend with instructions on home-made rabbit cages/pens? This would actually be for one or two guinea pigs (my son is turning 4 on Friday and LOVES small animals-figure it would be a good way to help teach him responsibility) I'd prefer not to spend $50-60 on an ugly store bought one and am lucky to have a "handyman" husband. We have lots of chicken wire and scrap wood, but have read that wood is not a good choice. Any suggestions? Thanks.
     
  2. Shrek

    Shrek Singletree Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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  3. rnmom23

    rnmom23 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Shrek. That's a GREAT site- I added it to my favorites. However, I didn't seem to find what I was looking for. It had chicken coop plans and dog house plans, but didn't find any small animal cage or pen plans. I'll keep searching. Thanks
     
  4. CurtisWilliams

    CurtisWilliams Well-Known Member

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    There are many variables to consider, the main one being 'what do you have on hand, or can buy cheaply'. I once built a cage using hardware cloth and scrap wire to tie the seams together. I set this inside a small plastic tub (similar to a cat litter box) with some scraps of metal to hold up the cage off of the bottom of the pan.

    Here is a decent link that gives basic cage building techniques.

    http://www.rabbitweb.net/hutchsystem3.asp

    http://www.Klubertanz.com sells cage building supplies at reasonable prices, otherwise TSC and Bomgaars have the materials, I don't know where else you could get decent materials, maybe at Home Depot, ect... If all you can get is hardware cloth, this will work well, but welded wire is a much better choice.

    For 2 Guinea pigs, six square feet of floor space is good, the cage should be at least 15 inches high. A little bigger would be better, as then it would also work for a rabbit as well. Cut the door about 12" high x 15" long. The piece you cut out will NOT work for the door. You want the door to have about 1" overlap on all sides.

    You can buy/make a pan to go in the bottom with the animal sitting directly in the pan, but I would recommend building your cage so that the animals sit on the wire bottom suspended above the bottom of the pan with an inch or so clearance. This will keep the critters from living in their own wastes and will go a long way to preventing worms.

    With a wire bottom cage, you need to balance the wire spacing with the size of the animals feet vs the size of its droppings. You want the droppings to pass thru, while the feet stay safely on top. For a guinea pig, hardware cloth should work well, I wouldn't go any bigger than 1/2", preferably smaller.

    That's enough about cage theory from me. A little web research will yield a lot more information than I could ever have.
     
  5. Hovey Hollow

    Hovey Hollow formerly hovey1716

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    Unlike rabbits you can't put guinea pigs on a wire floor. They have much smaller feet and their little feet can fall through the wire and break a leg. We built a cage out of a metal shelf system and enclosed the bottom shelf with plywood covered in laminated (tub surround) material. Then we wired it in with hardware cloth. I will take some pictures of it when I get home if anyone is interested.
     
  6. rnmom23

    rnmom23 Well-Known Member

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    Hovey, I'd love to see pictures!
     
  7. Hovey Hollow

    Hovey Hollow formerly hovey1716

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    Actually found a picture on my computer here at work. It's not the greatest picture of the actual cage, more a picture of the shelf system in general. I'm sure I have others at home and will post later.


    [​IMG]
     
  8. travis91

    travis91 Formerly 4animals.

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    cavycages.com the best! i have tow pigs in mine