Making bin cage doors

So I tried to find some cheap or free used cages to use the doors for bin cages but had no luck. So I thought I would just make my own door for Penny’s second level of her bin cage. I also want to do this for Strawberry’s bin in the future especially with how well it turned out with Penny’s.

I took a useless Super Pet or Crittertrail(?) play pen fence piece that I cut down to size with steel cutters and zip tied the bottom to the mesh of the front of her 2nd story bin. I chose the blue piece as it matched the blue Crittertrail door I have on the bottom bin. Then made a sliding latch to hold it in place just like the way the doors of her Ferret Kit cage secure. I also had extra plastic door guards from my bunnyrabbit.com order for the use of my homemade gerbil tank topper. So I used them to keep the sides of the clipped mesh from scratching Penny or myself.

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Now I am working on the mesh lid. I wanted as much mesh as possible so I could give her back that system of hammocks I had going for her in the old cage now in this cage.

Guys! I have never seen Penny so content. She never begs to get out. She stays so busy. It’s so odd!

Penny in a double decker bin cage

Well, I came to a decision after a few issues with Penny in the Ferret Kit 100 aka Mamble.

My issues
1. Having to clear out the room I have the hams as i have to use the room for something else so less space.
2. I have trouble lifting the top off the base for cleaning and replacing it.

Penny’s issues
1. She fell a few weeks ago within the cage and broke a tooth. Two nights ago I saw her climb up the sides and fall twice in a row from taking gutsy fearless chances.
2. She is destroying the hammocks by obsessive digging and during free range obsessive digging in carpet tearing it up. The base to the cage is deep but not deep enough for the amount of substrate she needs to get her digging fix.
3. She started to bar chew.
4. She is bored in the cage.

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So, I thought … Why not make a double decker bin cage for her? Two 110 qt. bin cages which are both 80cm in length and with room to grow higher as well when I decide what type of bin to use for the 3rd floor. Initially it seemed it was a downgrade. At least in length. But once I set it all up with shelves and such I realized overall it was actually and upgrade in space. And the levels are safer for her as well give her more enrichment having “rooms”.

At least this is what I observed since putting her in.

Upon her first introduction she began to excitedly dig. And dig. And dig dig dig dig dig dig in the deep layer of substrate which is her personal favorite: Kaytee Comfy Cozy.

On this floor i wanted the convenience of a door that opens out to put things in like food and such and after seeing how my friend Kerri added a door to her bin cage using a cheap cage she got used it hit me to use the door off the cage my adopted hamster Gabriel came to me in. It works so well! I am on the look out for another used or free cage like that to make a door for the top bin as well.
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Also there is the pink plastic round shelf which I just soldered holes in the bin where the screws for the shelf needed to go to be secured on. Also I put her main litter /sand box on a little platform to keep it stable. Her pink igloo hideaway. And her food dish on the shelf. And to connect her to the 2nd floor is a Petco wood bendy bridge. That sits on the pink shelf and a hole is above in the lid and the bottom of the top bin. She easily climbs up and climbs down.
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For the 2nd floor I used a bin cage I already had made that wasn’t in use. I put in Ecobedding crinkle paper and a wooden platform I put together long ago originally for Strawberry but he never cared for it. She has another sand bath/litter box on this platform so it doesn’t take away from her floor space. Also her new flying saucer is in as her 12 inch wheel is too tall for these bins. She has a water bottle that attaches to the mesh and I plan to fix one to the bottom bin some how as well.
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The new space pod/ Sputnik hideaway works great and I am having a hammock custom made to fit her bin eventually. And lastly I soldered holes to attached the wood ledge just as an extra place for her to climb and find treats. I might make her a little side mesh window there someday.

For the top lid I am considering all mesh lid. But as I want to add a 3rd bin at the top I might hold off on that for awhile.

Finally I put new matching borders of decorative duct tape on both windows to make it pretty and Pennyful.

All I can say is that Penny has been busy and content for the past couple nights I have wached her. She hasn’t begged to come out and as she is acclimating to a new space I wanted to leave her alone a couple nights anyway.

This morning she was still very awake and burrowing tunnels in the cozy substrate in the bottom bin.

As for space this bin despite so much inside is decently light considering and sits on top of Bob’s cage. I am very very pleased. Relieved. So much space was freed up. Etc. I do not have to worry that she is going to fall and injure herself anymore. As she gets much older I won’t have to worry even more about the height issue of the ferret cage.

Pens and Bins

Summer time and we are doing many activities. And I have been a little bit preoccupied as well. I miss posting here but I believe until summer is over it will be few and far between but we’ll see!!!

For now I leave a picture of the Syrians. I miss free ranging them but Penny became super destructive – more on that later and Bob is accident prone. So yeah – this and the ball is all I can do to really give them out of cage time.
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And here is one of the travel bins! Excuse the mess resting on top. I attached a shelf or “loft” inside too. I only made two so far. I need to make two more but these are just way too small for the Syrians so I have to come up with something different for them.

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Making the bendy wood ladder

So, many of us American hammy enthusiasts are members of UK hamster forums. And we are teased by their variety of hamster products that we cannot attain here in the states. On item I have wanted for some time is the bendy wood ladder. Or suspension ladder. Etc. This one.

So, I bought two of these and already had this steel thick bendable wire and made my own.

Just cut off the rope and push through two pieces of wire and then make hoops at the end to attach hooks or string or however you plan to attach it to where ever in you cages.

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Cube Shelf Play Pen

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This is my new play pen which is originally a plastic cube shelf.

When you put it together in this fashion there are not enough clip things so one would either need to use big bull dog clips or zip tie it. Etc. but overall a very nice plastic and sturdy pen! It breaks down for easy storage for us for the future for trips and moving. Of course as with any playpen set up hammy’s need constant supervision. They chew and if one got a notion to escape they need only work on it for a few minutes to get a hole big enough to squeeze through.

I ordered this fun polar fleece fabric but it hasn’t arrived yet. It’s for the floor of the pen. It makes me think of Marquelle’s bed comforter except zebra instead of cheetah.

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