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.

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3 thoughts on “Penny in a double decker bin cage

  1. Well done! After researching more about mice- I have 3 little girls- I found the typical cages, even with all the extra tubes and hideouts connecting 3 together, are not beneficial to the little darlings (same with hamsters). So I found about hacking things like Ikea bookshelves, cabinets, tables, and the bins like you used for Penny. My girls are SO much happier in their kitchen cabinet-turned-mouse habitat. I change things around a little every week when I clean it out, and they do not get bored. I think you will find Penny will remain quite satisfied with the house you have made her 🙂

    • Thank you for your comment!! And awwww mice! I had mice as a teen and I loved them dearly but not knowing any better I kept them in a small tank with just a metal wheel 😦 and tp rolls to chew. Oh if I could go back in time to whisper wisdom in my young ears!

      I would like to have mice again one day.

      Penny adores her knew home. I was really worried as her old cage was longer. It seemed huge as it was very tall and long. But somehow she has more to do and more enrichment and more area to explore in this double decker bin cage than she had in the old.

      I love to see an IKEA hack!!!! Detolfs also make awesome “tank” style homes for small critters. When I am more settled in one place and no longer moving around I will set up one!

  2. Hi, sorry for commenting to such an old post but I just found your blog and this bin cage setup matches most to what we got going in our household for our little syrian Shaggy (he also has the same purple flying saucer 🙂 I’m interested in how your syrian goes up or down? Shaggy first had a tube, but he didn’t want to climb up after two days (he has food and water in the bottom level), which surprised me, because our previous hammy was such a climber. We then put a big hiding place made from cardboard box bellow the hole and a ladder, but he still wouldn’t climb up. now we made wooden shelves and he has totally three platforms to climb through to get to the hole and go up. And yesterday night he finally went up and he seemed so surprised he has all this new space 😀 But I’m a little concerned about him falling when he’s jumping up and down the platforms, what do you think? His bottom bin is the biggest bin from Ikea, so it would be a pretty bad fall, since the bin is so tall…

    Thank you for writing this beautiful blog and sorry for my English, it’s not my primary language.

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