When choosing a new home for their guinea pig, most people prefer to go to the pet store and buy their favorite cage. In the pet store, of course, the cells are good, but it will be quite difficult, if not impossible to find a cage of sufficient size for your pig. And although large-sized cages are sold in pet stores, they usually have the minimum size you need for your guinea pig, and often less than that. And while such cells are expensive.
However, there is another way that will provide your guinea pig comfort and safety, as well as save your money. The solution is simple - do it yourself, and the main building material will be corrugated board and a metal grill. This article includes step-by-step instructions on how to how to make a cage for a guinea pig with your own hands. If you already have a cage, then make a house for the guinea pig.
Benefits of a DIY Guinea Pig Cage
Do-it-yourself cages have many advantages over a cage purchased from a pet store. Firstly, you will save money. Having spent a significant amount of money at the pet store, you will receive a cage half as small as that made by your own hands. If you use cage fleece litter, you will save even more money. After all, there is no need to change the fleece litter, as it is easy to clean - just cut out the debris and put it back.
Using a homemade guinea pig cage will make you healthy and happy. After all, piglets will not be limited to a small residential area. If you have several guinea pigs living together, then a homemade cage will give them more places for privacy.
Another advantage of a do-it-yourself guinea pig cage is that you have plenty of opportunities to create unique and exciting cells! You can create multi-level cells, L-shaped cells, skyscraper cells and others. The possibilities are endless.
In addition, you will not have a bunch of leftover parts. From the remaining building materials prepared for the manufacture of the cage, you can make a food zone, a feeder for hay and a house for a guinea pig. From the remaining bars, you will get excellent bunk beds. Bend them to create a lift and attach the ties to the sides of the cage. There is much more to be done - you just need to turn on your fantasy.
A homemade guinea pig cage is very easy to clean with your own hands. Being spacious and open, nothing will disturb you during cleaning, and the fleece litter is also easily replaced. There are no inaccessible places in it and there is no need for its dismantling.
Now that you know all these benefits, let's look at how you can make a cage for a guinea pig with your own hands.
The following materials will be needed in order to build a guinea pig cage with your own hands:
- Multilayer corrugated cardboard from various containers, such as boxes and packages of medium and large household appliances. For water resistance, paste the cardboard from the inside with a wide adhesive tape, leaving no exposed areas. Alternatively, you can cover the inside of the finished box with acrylic or fiberglass. Corrugated cardboard is excellent for the manufacture of guinea pig cages - it is easy to handle, in particular bend at an angle of 90 degrees for the corners of the cage, it is lightweight, quite durable. Also, cardboard can be found in various colors, or pasted with adhesive tape of the desired color. Another important advantage is that it is practically free, every home has household appliances, which means cardboard packaging from under it.
- A metal grill with a mesh size of not more than 3 cm for an adult and not more than 1 cm for small piglets. In large cells, guinea pigs can get stuck. The grill of the required size can be bought in the store of household goods or in the market. It is not necessary to look for large lattice panels, small pieces of the lattice are also suitable - they will be interconnected by cable ties.
- A bundle of plastic cable ties. Buy more, you will use them more often than you think.
- Stationery knife.
- Duct tape.
- A large ruler or tape measure.
Choose the size of the future cell
First, you must choose the size of the cage for the guinea pig, determine how large it will be.
The bigger the cell, the better! If you want your guinea pigs to be healthy and cheerful, provide them with as much living space as possible. Follow the minimum cell size standards listed in the table and you will see how your favorite guinea pig’s behavior improves significantly. Enjoy the new tricks of your happy, healthy and revitalized guinea pigs, who finally got into the proper living conditions.
|Standard cell sizes|
|The number of pigs||Minimum area||Preferred Area||in cm|
|0.7 sq. m||the bigger, the better||70 x 100|
|0.7 sq. m||1 sq. m||70 x 140|
|1 sq. m||1.2 sq. m||70 x 170|
|1.2 sq. m||the bigger, the better||70 x 210|
For babies, very young or very small guinea pigs, as well as for pregnant females, it is necessary to make temporary additional protection on the sides of the cage (for their own safety). In addition, any wire feeder for hay should be used with extreme caution if you have very small guinea pigs.
Exercise has great health benefits for guinea pigs. Like humans, overweight guinea pigs have an increased tendency to health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, bladder infections, respiratory problems, and more.
Adult males tend to lose muscle tone in the stool pocket, which is located in the anus, as a result of which litter begins to get stuck in it (weakened muscles can no longer properly push it out). A large cage that allows you to exercise will help keep your guinea pigs toned and fit.
Adult females tend to gain excess weight over time, which is deposited in the abdomen. This makes it difficult to find and diagnose ovarian cysts, and also entails other problems associated with overweight in females.
Even if you play enough time with your guinea pigs every day, they should still have the opportunity to study independently. Guinea pig activity changes throughout the day. Many pigs are especially active in the morning and evening, and not necessarily at a time convenient for you. If they have a sufficiently large cage, then your pets can exercise at any time they want.
Like humans, guinea pigs are very bored, being all their lives in the same old small cage, in which there is nothing special to do. Imagine being locked forever in your room, which is the size of a dressing room. And here you are in this small space having fun, eating, sleeping, swimming - and so hour after hour, day after day, year after year - until you die. Even if they let you out and allow you to “play” periodically, it’s still a numbing, dreary existence.
More fun for you
Happy guinea pigs are more fun, they feel good. Healthy guinea pigs - fewer visits to the vet, worries and costs. The easier it is to maintain, the happier the relationship with the animals. You will spend less time cleaning the cage, get more time to enjoy them and your life.
Next, you will need to decide what the height of the box of your cell will be. We recommend making the box height approximately 15cm.
Then select the dimensions of the rectangle of the bottom of the cell. The size of the base will depend on how big your cell will be. Think carefully about this very important step.
Draw on the cardboard the base of the box of your future cage. After that, measure a distance of 15 cm on each side and connect with lines - these will be the sides of the box.
Corrugated cardboard consists of two layers and air pockets between the layers. If you cut through only the top layer, the corrugated cardboard is easily bent by 90 degrees. This is ideal for creating corners. In principle, you can not cut through the top layer, but then the bend will be uneven.
Along the red lines, make an incision only in the first layer of the corrugated cardboard. Be careful - do not cut through! Cut the sheet in black lines, make cuts in the places indicated by black lines.
If you have already cut a sheet of corrugated cardboard, start collecting the box. Do not forget to paste the tape with tape!
Fold the edges to create sides, one at a time. Corrugated cardboard is easily bent in one direction. Bend the protruding edges of the sides to the other side and glue together with adhesive tape.
As a result, you should get a shallow, rectangular box without a top. Consider a cage for a guinea pig with your own hands half assembled.
Now that you have made a box of corrugated cardboard, you can begin to assemble the sides of the metal gratings that will go around the perimeter of your cage.
Prepare metal grilles. To do this, cut out the panels of the required size from them. The height of the panels should be approximately 2 times the height of the assembled box. If you plan to make a multi-level cell, then select the appropriate height. Work on the edges of the metal panels so that they cannot be injured.
Using cable ties, connect the prepared panels of grids in the upper and lower parts, as well as in the center.
Scissor the long ends of the cable ties.
Collect each side separately. Check that the length of the opposite sides is appropriate. If necessary, adjust the dimensions of the resulting sides.
We combine a cardboard box with grates
You are almost there! All that remains is to connect the sides of the grill panels to each other to form a rectangular shape that will exactly match the cardboard box.
Tie the edges of the assembled sides together using cable ties. It is also necessary to tie in the upper and lower parts, as well as in the center. The resulting angle should be straight. Do not tie the sides together too tightly - otherwise there may be problems with the connection of the sides at the opposite end of the cell.
Voila! That's all!
After you assemble the outer perimeter of the cage from the panels of the metal grill, you can step back and enjoy your masterpiece. Now all you have to do is equip the cage inside. Put a soft fleece litter, place a toilet, a feeding trough, a drinking bowl and toys. Your guinea pig will be very excited and pleased to see so much space for running and games, and you will be happy to look at it and understand how much money you saved!
Your guinea pig will be very happy, having at your disposal a cage that you made yourself!
What should be a cell: basic requirements
The most important thing is space. The guinea pig should have a place to run around and go about their business. In pet stores there is a large selection of cells that will help you decide.
Do not make a home yourself. Some mistakenly believe that guinea pig can be put in a box or a jar. Wooden houses will not be the best option either. The likelihood that the animal will escape increases.
The cage must be with a lid. It is desirable that it be removable. It’s easier to interact with your pet.
Guinea pigs have quite sensitive legs. For this reason, special attention should be paid to the pallet. The mesh bottom is not suitable for them. Prefer a solid pallet that will resemble a regular floor. It can easily be covered with hay or other soil.
It is desirable that the pallet is removed. It’s easier to clean the cage. This should also be done regularly.
IMPORTANT! The cage must close well. Only in this case your animal will not run away.
Space and size
Immediately pay attention to the large and spacious cells. Two-story cages are more suitable for hamsters. As for guinea pigs, they will prefer upright spacious cages, which are usually acquired by rabbits.
By their nature, guinea pigs move quite a lot. In freedom, they have to walk kilometers in order to get food. It is for this reason that they need movement. Otherwise, the animal will suffer from obesity and other diseases.
For guinea pigs, an area of 1 square meter is desirable. Height should allow the pet to stand on its hind legs and make the jumps that they demonstrate when they are happy.
It is advisable to keep these animals in comfortable domestic cages. If you have a private house, then on the site make a small fence for the guinea pig. Thus, she will be able to run along the grass.
The minimum cell size for one pig should be from 60x40 cm. Try to release the guinea pig from the cage daily so that it can run more and stay at large.
The most common materials for making cells are metal, plastic and wood. Some prefer to settle in a guinea pig in an aquarium.
Metal cells are the most durable. The rods are made of stainless steel, which are resistant. Detergents also do not adversely affect quality.
The plastic tray is well washed. It is also resistant to all types of detergents. The main disadvantage is scratches.
Wooden cages are a bad decision. They quickly absorb moisture. For this reason, an unpleasant odor can be observed, which is almost impossible to remove. The sharp teeth of the guinea pig will soon render this home unusable.
First of all, the cage for a guinea pig should be spacious, comfortable and not traumatic. Only in this case, your pet will feel good throughout life.
Double-decker cages are a bad decision. As you know, guinea pigs do not know how to climb. One-story construction is the best choice. As for elevation, the guinea pig can easily sit on the roof of its house, which should also be installed in a cage, because the animal needs to hide somewhere in order for the dream to be better.
The pallet should be well fixed. In this case, the cage is conveniently transferred to another place without the risk that it may fall apart and the animal will be injured.
The distance between the rods should be large. But it is worth considering the fact that the pig can calmly stick its head in and get out. This must not be allowed. For this reason, try to find the optimal size between the rods.
As for the place of installation of the cage, it is better to choose a place that will be on a raised platform. The fact is that guinea pigs are curious creatures. They like to watch everything that happens. The pet will also be calm if the owner is in sight.
What are the cells for guinea pigs
The pet store offers a huge selection of cells that may be suitable for guinea pigs. The following types of cells exist:
The aquarium is often chosen as a home.
Sellers call only the pros of this content. Hay through glass walls does not fall on the floor, the sounds of a guinea pig at night do not interfere with the owner and the smell spreads less. However, you cannot keep guinea pigs in the aquarium. It will be too crowded. Thick walls also do not allow enough oxygen to pass through. Despite frequent cleaning, the pig will inhale ammonia fumes, which will lead to serious illnesses in the future.
The cage is often used for rabbits and guinea pigs. The high pallet, which is made of plastic, perfectly protects against the spread of sawdust.
Ventilation works great thanks to the grill. For bars it is also convenient to cling objects for home improvement. The disadvantage of such a cell is insufficient area. The guinea pig will be crowded in it, and the animal needs space.
Dune is also a type of cage, which is a plastic container resembling a terrarium. Minus one - ventilation. In such a dwelling, it is not enough, which leads to various diseases.
Aquarium and Terrarium
It has already been mentioned that the aquarium and the terrarium are not the best solution for guinea pigs. Despite this, many still prefer to choose these houses for their convenience.
In this case, the house provides order, because the hay will not be scattered across the floor.
Getting a guinea pig, you need to think about its comfort. Поэтому стоит выбрать такое жилище, которое полностью подходит для содержания. Ведь только в таком случае хозяин может наслаждаться игривым настроением своего питомца.
Для шиншилл и дегу
Для этих животных приобретается преимущественно решетчатая конструкция достаточно больших размеров. They often have several floors, which allows them to climb. The most popular option for such animals consists of three floors, which is not suitable for guinea pigs.
It is worth noting that guinea pigs do not know how to climb. Most likely it will always be below. At the same time, the guinea pig does not even explore the top floor. Such cells are useless for these animals.
This type of cell resembles a terrarium. There is always a lattice door on the ceiling that serves as ventilation. The plus is the absence of drafts, debris on the floor and convenient monitoring of the pet.
Such a cell is characterized by a sufficiently high threshold, which does not allow hay to be scattered throughout the apartment.
Showcases for keeping guinea pigs are popular. As a rule, they are made by hand. Often use old furniture. This will make the home comfortable and save money.
The disadvantage of this content is poor ventilation, which will not bring anything good for the animal.
This type of content is a good option. A good level of ventilation is provided. The pig feels good.
Try to choose a cage with a comfortable bottom and size. Only in this case can you provide a good life for your pet. You should not choose a small cell in order to save money. Think of an animal that should be comfortable with you.
This type of content is the most favorable. In this case, a comfortable size is provided that will allow the guinea pig to be more active.
Allowing the content of several individuals at once. So they will be more fun.
REFERENCE! As a rule, aviaries are built only if there is a private plot. It is impossible to do this in the apartment.
Where to place the cage?
Do not place the cage in a swine and never leave a pet on the balcony. Guinea pig can catch a cold. Direct sunlight also negatively affects the health and well-being of the animal. Try to choose a place that is not too dark.
Items that are placed in the cage should not have sharp corners. It is advisable not to choose wooden houses and other accessories. The likelihood that a guinea pig can drive a splinter in its claws is increasing, which will bring it discomfort, which the owner may not even know about.
The place should not be noisy. Try to place a cage in your room. Only in this way will the guinea pig feel safe. Especially if she will watch her beloved master.