Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Rat cage updates

Edit: We changed the rats' food to a better brand and they lost weight, allowing them to squeeze out of their cage. I would now recommend using the "pantry shelving" if you build your own rat cage, which has 5/8" spacing.

I just finished the new rat cage about a month ago, but I was already thinking of ways to change it. It was built as two separate cages because I'd read that putting two separate groups of rats together could be dangerous and tricky. But the rats didn't really seem happy in their separate sides and Sirius and Regulus had started chewing everything, which wasn't an issue before. I decided to take out the center of the cage and just make it one big cage, but first we had to get the rats to agree to live together as one big happy family. To do that, we used water and peas.

From left to right: Sirius, Blue, Regulus (on the side of the tub), Chester Rattington, and Rude Pete's rear end and tail.

I read online that a good way to unite two groups of rats was to throw them in the tub together. They'll either love the water or hate it, but either way they'll probably be too busy to fight. That was definitely the case for us. Regulus and Rude Pete hated it the most. The rest of them freaked out a little bit, but eventually stopped running around and starting shelling peas. It was hilarious.

After that they were all best friends. They sleep in a big pile now. So now that they're all happy together, here's the new cage.

The wheel isn't exactly right yet. The bottom of the wheel hits the cage; I need some different hardware.

Slide. I think I'm going to put a rag box at the bottom of it.

They have two feeding areas: one for regular food and water, and one for treats. They're connected by a wooden ramp.

I covered up the edges of the doorways with this plastic trim, but I'm not loving it. I'd like to put actual hinged doors in, but I'm still working out the details on that.

Rat face.

I still want to cut doors on the sides toward the bottom--I put a litter box in but it's pretty impossible to get to it right now. They've also knocked their food bowl down and it's hard to get to that, too, but I mostly need to figure out a way to keep that in place. I'm thinking a dish that hooks onto the side of the cage is the best bet.

So far I really like it, and I think they do too.

No comments:

Post a Comment