C&C cage questions

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Post   » Sun Oct 29, 2017 10:59 pm

I might be making a C&C cage for my guinea pigs. I have some questions about how to make them, costs, etc.

1. Where can I get the cage grids for cheapest? Is online better, or can you get them in person?
2. What is coroplast and where can I get it? I know it goes on the bottom, but that's it :)
3. Does it need a top? Or is open fine? I don't have any other pets, so I don't need to worry about a cat or anything.
4. Do I need fleece bedding on the whole thing? My friend has a rabbit and she has a "litter box" and a sheet on the floor. Is that enough?
5. I have two pigs. If they have a 15 - 20 square foot space, do they still need floor time?
6. If I am able to build it, it'll be in a corner and under a loft bed. Can I use the two walls as sides of the cage and only make two sides, or do I need to make a 4-sided cage against the wall?
7. What is the average cost of building a C&C cage?
8. Finally, will their behavior/dominance change in a large space? They aren't super attached to each other, so I figured with more space, they might get along better, but I also know that tensions can get more stressed in a larger space. They're around 3 or 4 months, so they'll be entering their "adolescent" period soon as well, from what I understand. I think dominance will remain the same as it's pretty clear who's who (hint: one is afraid of her own shadow - literally), but I know their interactions might change.

Thank you answering my questions! I really appreciate it.

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Post   » Sun Oct 29, 2017 11:35 pm

There's a ton of information on C&C cages over at Guinea Pig Cages -- http://www.guineapigcages.com. Look at the stickies at the top of the "About Cages" forum -- there's one on where to find materials for the cages. On the main page of the site, look on the left -- there are instructions on how to build the cage. There are also thousands of pictures in the Photo Gallery.

I don't know where you got the idea that "tensions can get more stressed in a larger space," but that's totally backwards. Tensions are much higher in a cage that's too small, and the pigs are in danger of injuring each other.

I'd make a four-sided cage. Otherwise, they may eat the baseboards.


Post   » Sun Oct 29, 2017 11:38 pm

Ok, thanks. I feel like I remember reading about someone saying their pigs got more territorial in a cage that was bigger, but I'm glad to know it's not an issue (at least not usually). Thanks for the quick reply.

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Post   » Mon Oct 30, 2017 2:19 am

I had a VERY bossy and territorial pig once. The bigger the cage, the happier she was, the less she bossed the others around.

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Post   » Mon Oct 30, 2017 8:04 am

To keep the walls clean and protect them (and the baseboard), you could put up a spare strip of corroplast (high). You can also use wire shelving as the sides and end. You just want something to safely contain them. Just a sheet won't be good enough. Rabbits are much better about using a litter box. You can expect pee all over. Guineapigcages has lots of good ideas. This is what we have here:



Post   » Mon Oct 30, 2017 9:26 pm

Then, do I need to use absorbent fleece bedding on all of it? And if so, how do I get fleece that's so wide? (I"m planning maybe a 4' x 4' or 4' x 5' cage).

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Post   » Mon Oct 30, 2017 10:45 pm

Sew two pieces of fleece together.


Post   » Mon Oct 30, 2017 10:53 pm

Be aware that fleece by itself is not absorbent. You must have an absorbent layer (like cotton towels) underneath the fleece. The moisture is wicked down into the absorbent layer and the fleece itself stays relatively dry. How often they need changed out depends on how many pigs you have and how big your cage is.

Yes, you do need to cover the entire cage bottom with either a loose bedding or with "fleece." You will have trouble fitting a piece of fleece (with an absorbent layer) into that large a space. You also will have to actually step into the cage to clean it, as you will not be able to reach all the way into the cage from one side (one of the reasons I always made my cages only 2 grids deep).

If you can sew, you could make yourself some cage blankets. I always made them for my cages. A blanket big enough to fit into a 2x2 grid space is very handy. You could cover a 4 x 4 cage space with 4 of them. And they are not too bulky to fit into the washing machine. I would buy fleece and cotton sheets or blankets at the local thrift store and then sew them together. Very handy. Smaller blankets can be used to layer under areas that the pigs tend to sit more often like under hideys or food dishes.

Many people make a "kitchen" area for hay and use a loose bedding in that area. I liked using plastic kitten litter boxes for hay areas. I'd put wood stove pellets under the hay.


Post   » Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:09 am

I have absorbent fleece pads, don't' worry! they are UHaul pads and fleece. I can make several, but how do I keep the pigs from burrowing? Mine are really bad when it comes to that and when I hear more pads, I think more burrowing opportunities. Unfortunately, I don't think sewing fleece together will work because our washing machine can barely handle an 8 square foot pad, never mind a 16- or 20- square foot one!

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Post   » Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:46 am

I use fleece over wood pellets, which are the absolute best at odor control. I have about a three inch deep layer of pellets in my cage, and I haven't changed the pellets in six months. But the fleece is light, and my washer can easily handle four fleece covers (each 30 x 72 inches).

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Post   » Tue Oct 31, 2017 12:28 pm

You could try throwing a single piece of fleece in the cage for the burrowers, or even a lighter weight pad. That used to satisfy my burrower.


Post   » Sun Mar 11, 2018 12:41 pm

New question about a C&C cage: I've noticed that almost everybody has long, skinnier cages that are 2 grids wide. My space is more square, so is it possible to do 4x3 instead? Otherwise, the maximum I could do is around 4x2, which isn't much better than their current cage.

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Post   » Sun Mar 11, 2018 12:56 pm

Four by three is even better than anything two wide.

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Post   » Sun Mar 11, 2018 2:41 pm

For daily cleaning (I use a stiff hand broom) I find that anything more than 2 grids wide is hard for me to reach. Sometimes I will grab a corner of the fleece and pull it so the poop rolls toward me in an easier pile. I haven't noticed much of a problem with my pigs burrowing. I try to put the hidey huts or other objects in the corners so they are less likely to dig those up. I'm glad to hear about the UHaul under bedding - I tried some off brand and it basically fell apart in the washer. I haven't sewn our fleece together - we have one large piece from the fabric store (just unhemmed yardage) and two smaller fleece blankets. I figure the ones I got from the thrift store are likely to have already been washed enough that they will keep the pigs dry. I just lay them on top of each other to cover the whole cage.


Post   » Sun Mar 11, 2018 6:36 pm

Thanks for the info about the fleece! As for cleaning, I'll be able to access the cage on both sides and based on my current cage should be able to reach the center... anyway, the hidey will probably be against one side, so that's where most poop sweeping will have to happen, anyway. I think that I've accepted that I won't be able to use my current pads, in which I actually put a couple layers of UHaul pads in fleece and sewed the whole thing together (so there's just 1 pad to deal with, and that's all of it) since they'll be too heavy for the washing machine to handle.

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