And we are back online and settled someplace new!

Bob

Sleepy Bob. He’s getting up there but still seems so healthy and most certainly handsome. The older he has become the more glorious his long, satin coat has become. He is my special heartham.

So, we just did an over 2,000 mile drive. Moved halfway across the country. From East Coast to far West Texas! We drove through several states that had 100-102 F temperatures. And oh the humidity! So, on any stop my husband (driving his separate vehicle) would lock his doors with the engine running to keep air conditioning on the fuzzbutts. What little we stopped.

It was so hot that even my energetic little humans didn’t want to stay outside of the nice air conditioned vehicle long. The drive did take us 5 days. And in all of that the hamsters and gerbils were amazing through it all.

Instead of water bottles while the vehicles were moving I gave them hunks of cucumber and apple and celery for hydration. At stops I’d put their bottle back in. And then we stayed in pet friendly motels. I always recommend La Quinta. Though sometimes we had to stop at Best Westerns and the like who have a fee but usually do allow pets. La Quinta allows our furry family members in the rooms without a fee.

I made the bathtub an obstacle course so the furries could get some adventure. All of them seemed to take the vibration of the vehicle, the constant assault of new smells and sounds, and in and out of motel rooms with stride. I’m so proud of them!

Now they are all settled in here in El Paso. And none seem worse for the wear. Though my two robo brothers are definitely becoming more feeble. But that has nothing to do with the trip.

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Bob is back in the Kevin 82. I do not have a place to put the 40 gallon tank. Bob gets hotter easier than he used to so I wanted to put him in something with alot more ventilation. Bob has always loved this cage. He acted like he was greeting an old friend once I put him in there. For travel he was in a 105 qt Bin cage. So, I know he was pleased to be out of that. And for those I know who are curious  – that beautiful, wild looking quilted hammock was made with TLC and skill by Rittles N Bittles on etsy! Go visit her page!

Gabriel

Gabriel, my Chinese hamster, is back in the Tamburino. He has never been keen on bigger cages. But when I clutter it with a lot of hideaways and climbing toys that he can tunnel under and climb upon he seems right at home. He spent hours awake playing in every inch of his cage once I put him in. I’ve never seen him do that before. He must have been thrilled to be out of his small travel cage as well.

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My gerbils Lennon and Mercury are still in the smaller gerbilarium I made them. I am brainstorming something bigger for them but as for now they seem content in this.

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My Roborovskis Snow and Patch are becoming feeble and slow. Age has come to them. They mostly sleep now. They had trouble climbing around too much and seem to get lost or confused if they are too far from their house. So, they are in 64 qt bin cages. Bins without lids pretty much. Since they can’t climb out and to let in plenty of air flow. They certainly are happy to be in something smaller but not as small as their travel cages were. snow

 

I will take pictures of all my little guys soon to post. It feels good to be back online and settled somewhere new. And we are SO thankful we didn’t lose any of our rodents on such a long, extremely hot, journey.

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Roborovski’s get a cage makeover

I needed some serious cheering up in the hammy room. I go in there and someone is noticeably missing.

So I picked up from last night when I was interrupted from cleaning the bookcase cage for the Robos due to one being AWOL as discussed in the previous post. Ahem!

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I am glad Snow distracted me because last night I would have done humdrum. Tonight I did color. I gave them a toy and hide out change out too. So far they seem pretty impressed. Gave them a little excitement in their life.

Snow’s up close :

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And Patch’s:

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October 2013 Cages of the Rodents of Hammy Happenings Tour!

Alrighty! October’s Cage Tours of all my rodent babies. And of course – pictures of my rodent babies! All of these pictures were taken today and tonight except the one of Bob. The picture I took of him tonight wasn’t so great. But I had taken the one I posted a few days or so ago and love it.

OKAY THEN! So!

Let’s start with Penny. Ladies First! She had been taking a nibble at her chews.

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Penny is in a Marchioro Kevin 82cm Cage. I purchased this cage for $119 at PetStore.com but it is also available at ThatPetPlace.com. It usually ranges between $119-$134. In the United States it’s one of the best sized cages you can get for any species of hamster but especially Syrian’s. It has 7mm bar spacing so ideal for as big as Syrians to as tiny as Mice and Chinese Hamsters.

Up Next! Bob having a moment beneath the toad stools

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Bob is in the Ware Luxury Rabbit Cage. It retails a bit over $100 bucks. I got mine used for $20. It has 1” bar spacing so it needs to be meshed for hamsters. This is an awesome cage. It has casters and opens from the top and a large front door. The tray slides out for easy cleaning and then slides back in. I wish I could find another just like this for Penny. The height is much less scary than the Mamble which I had her in before. It’s long and narrower so it takes up less space without sacrificing footprint.

Now Strawberry as he lounges in his space pod.

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Strawberry is my eldest hamster (I think!). He’s a hybrid Cambells/WW or “Russian” hamster. He has slowed down. Looks great. Healthy. Eating and such. But really not very active.  I have plenty for him to do now. And I love his “retirement” cage. A Grreat Choice Pet Home for Small Animals cage from Petsmart. It’s 24 inch long, 15 inch wide, 14 inch tall. Below the RSPCA guidelines for a dwarf hamster cage. It’s suitable for a retirement cage for a dwarf and honestly, it depends on the hamster. Strawberry has never liked large cages. I’ve tried. He has been really happy in here so far. I find it easier to interact with him and get him out and check on him in this too. And it’s easier to make a jungle gym for him in there. He loves to climb though I can tell he’s struggling with it nowadays. The high base is ACE for my little digger. He has epic tunnels going on around the entire cage.

 

Gabriel’s Turn! He likes to meditate and other business in his sand box.

gabriel sand gabriels cage collageMy Chinese hamster is also older. In fact he probably is older than Strawberry but I will never know. He is adopted with barely any known history. I’m his 3rd and final home! He is in the FOP Gabbia Tamburino Linera Natura – a hybrid of a tank and cage. I had hammocks and suspension ladder toys and the like going on in here and other cages I tried putting him in – he had no interest. Today I decided to leave the top grill off (the grid lid) because he cannot climb out. This gives me better view of him from above and I don’t have to meddle with lifting it up and putting it down (it’s loud because it needs a handle). Anyway, he prefers his environment low to the ground and with plenty of hideouts. He does like to climb driftwood and such. I go with a forest floor type of habitat for him.

Finally, for the hamsters –  the Roborovski’s Snow & Patch! Having their nightly sand bath.

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patch sand

robos cage

The Roborovski brothers were separated due to my ignorance. I began with them together when I brought both home from the shop. I had one wheel. Multiple platforms. One house. If you are to keep your robo’s social due keep in mind – no platforms. A home and toy for each. Two Robo’s = two wheels, two food bowls, two houses. Or some will say better to have no houses but instead numerous hide outs. By the time I realized my mistake it was too late. They were drawing blood. Snow reminds me of this whenever I see the sections taken from his ear by Patch’s past nips. So, I did a DIY cage out of a book shelf that a neighbor was throwing out. It was a dollhouse style bookshelf. I simply put vinyl tiles down for the floor. Contact paper along the walls. And made a partition that is removable for clean out. It’s also vinyl and is attached from the inside with heavy duty velcro. They cannot climb out. I forgot the measurements but it’s as long as Bob’s rabbit cage and a little narrower in width compared to his. It’s the most space they’ve ever had and it’s easy to clean and fun to and easy to watch them. They’ve never been happier!

Last but not least: My Gerbil’s Mercury and Lennon! Waiting patiently for their treat. They also give me kisses!

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My gerbils have sampled many a layout/aquarium. I had them originally in a tall 28 gallon. Then 20 long. Then a 110 qt Bin cage. And finally a 40 long. Then I DIY’d a topper to put on top. I change around their set up every time I clean out. I have large pieces of drift wood I trade out each time to keep it fresh. Various tunnels and bridges and such they bury down into the bedding. You can barely see the current drift wood I put in there. It was a smaller piece than usual. In the topper they have water bottles, a sand pot where they do all their business. A Gnawsome hut to chew on and they prefer to snack within with the treats I give them. The topper has 2 floors. Or two separate “lofts” where I put their food dish. Or just for a perch and look out. They are pretty spoiled methinks. They are worth it. My little daytime buddies!

And that is the October 2013 cage tour of the Rodent’s of Hammy Happenings!

Penny’s custom Hammocks and Cage Tour

So, as many of you have noticed I cannot get enough of Rittles N Bittles custom made quilted hammocks. Holly makes the most awesome, beautiful hammocks EVER. Seriously, wish I could afford for her to quilt me a queen sized comforter for my bed! Or my own quilted hammock to hang somewhere in the house. You have to also check out her PRECIOUS blog of her Rats and of her quilting projects and etc. Rittles and Bittles. GAH. I don’t know how I don’t have a mischief of Rats already in my home after following her blog for so long now.

Penny’s hammocks are a total honor for this little girl. As you all have come to see Penny is a wild and crazy girl. Sure, she’s slowing down and calmer with maturity. She’s a lady now. But no one will ever forget her youth. She was Lady Gaga of Syrian Hamsters! And so, she got her wild and crazy art deco like hammocks made. And they are amazing. In fact in person they are 10 times more beautiful and amazing. Sturdy! For my chewer – she made these thicker. There is fleece in the inside with the zebra fabric over it as an underside. This is something she doesn’t normally do but since Penny has a thing about fleece and digging (and I mean She really loves to dig the heck out of fleece) Holly came up with this idea. And so far she hasn’t been gnawing, digging, roughing up the hammocks at all. Not like those cheap hammocks I was getting from Amazon and such before. I’ve checked in on her already several times tonight and she’s always found on one of her two hammocks.

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I could flip the hammocks over and use just straight zebra pattern if I wanted. It’s tempting as I love zebra. But I just love the crazy pattern too much. The zebra underside is very noticeable as I have her cage on a shelf that is to my chest height. When I walk into the room I catch the underside of the hammocks with my eye.

Penny when she first checked out the hammock and gave her seal of approval by stretching comfortably within it.

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And an updated tour of her cage set up.  The log thing is an edible log from Walmart. It is a stool for her to get into her sand box (icecream container) and also she can go underneath it like a tunnel. Her igloo house is in the back corner behind the platforms.

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Can you find Penny in this picture below? She has two wooden platforms that are covered in contact paper. A Wodent Wheel and Flying Saucer both 12 ”. A hanging plastic tube and Space Pod (Sputnik in the UK) her two quilted hammocks, her woven grass hammock, And her wooden 3 tiered hearts platform I made her.

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And I have a few dangling toys. One of which isn’t pictured as I just put it in tonight. It’s the woodies flower garland that was in the Gerbil’s cage. They never bothered to play with it or chew it so it’s in Penny’s for her to play and chew or at least look cute hanging in there since they are pink and purple flowers. Matches.

Penny’s Current Cage layout.

HELLO!!!! I missed posting. Well, we had a vacation which of course included travel. So, I’ve been out of the loop. I need to catch up on my favorite blogs as well!

I have made some changes since these photos were taken. Mostly just additions. More toys and such. I put Penny’s favorite bell and wicker loops toy inside. Etc. I haven’t been taking many photos of the hams. But I did take these just for Marquelle so I thought I’d post them here too.

Holly – Gabriel’s hammock is in Penny’s because Gabriel is not doing much climbing anymore. He’s getting pretty old. He mostly sleeps now. 😦 Penny hasn’t even tried to tear it up. At least I can’t see that she has. I don’t want to test it too long so I’m excited her personalize hammock will be on the way! (For those of you in the US admiring my beautiful quilted hammocks in my hammy’s cages check out RITTLES N BITTLES on Etsy!!! Quilted hammocks made with complete TLC. She has a high standard. Her hammocks are made to withstand regular washes. I am addicted to her hammocks. They are a piece of artwork and love in every hamster cage! (If you have Rats keep her in mind – She originally began to make them for her Ratties!)

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I found Contact Paper with the French Toile (?) look and covered her wood platforms/ledges with it. Pee proof but also pretty. I also made that wood heart platform using non-toxic (children’s finger paint). The flower box is a tissue box. 4

A great sand /digging box – Blue Bunny icecream container. It’s plastic. I cut a hole /half of the lid and pour sand in. Penny and Bob both have one – her’s is Mint Chocolate Chip and Bob’s is Strawberry LOL – and they LOVE hopping in there and doing their business and Penny puts some of her favorite treats in there too. I could have saved money not buying plastic litter trays with how much I find they love these instead. Also they take up much less space and are deep so I fill them with a lot more sand than I could with trays.5 6

Converting a Bookcase to Roborovski Cage

The Roborovskis get their bookshelf!

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As some may remember I found a bookcase style dollhouse out on someone’s trash curb for bulk pick up. I am big on recycling things so I snatch it up. The bottom portion I found to be unstable. There was a crack in the stilt. So I cut it down to just the two shelves and it proved to be quite sturdy.

My son didn’t care for it. I had hoped to make it into his Ninja Turtle lair/ sewer but he prefers the smaller shelf set up I made him for his Transformers so I decided to make use of this for the Roborovskis.

They are the tiniest of the hamster species and aren’t really great at climbing. DIY cages for Robos have a half partition usually for better visual as they most likely aren’t going to become super hams and fly over. So with that in mind I used the spare vinyl tiling I used to waterproof their floor to also make a portion. Also I used contact paper for the walls.

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The measurements are 38 inches in length and 13 inches in width. Pretty much perfect for Roborovskis. I do love my Robos but find they aren’t my type of hamster so after these guys I doubt I’d have more of this species. What I like about this bookcase cage is I can get different materials like acrylic sheets and mesh and vents and convert this to a Chinese hamster set up in the future. Or make the two shelves connect for a two floor cage.

I plan to do more for their set up inside. Not sure how long that will take me. It’s nothing fancy right now. But they seem pleased.

Here is a close up of Snow’s

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And close up of Patch’s

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Gabriel’s Setup August 2013

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Gabriel is in the Marchioro Kevin 82 Mouse Cage. 32.25 Inch W x 20 Inch D x 14.25 Inch H

Since I last posted Gabriel’s cage I have added a suspension bridge and edible perch and a wood arch hideout. Also inside are spoon stairs like what Erinshamsters did for her Chinesy. And like her I hung a cup. He also has a wood shelf and a terra cotta pot, sand box, foraging toy, suspended basket, ceramic acorn hideaway, wood cabin by Rosewood Boredom Breakers from Bobby’s Bunny Boutique, Crittertrail mushroom water dispenser, a hanging coconut hideaway from Dr. Foster and Smith, a Fying Saucer, a Crittertrail Wheel, and a quilted hammock by Rittles N Bittles. Also some brick and rocks and driftwood. A little wood Petco bridge and Petco wood tunnel. And his substrate is Ecobedding crinkle paper.
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