Register FAQ Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Navigation
Front Page
Forum
Gallery
Wiki

Ads by Google


Go Back   Hamster Central > >

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-21-2019, 12:33 PM   #21
alpacassei
PM Fluffy for custom title
 
alpacassei's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Cornwall, UK
Posts: 1,112
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

Yes! That’s lichen, it’s completely safe!
__________________
<3 Sunflower Custard, Bigfoot, Petal, Stormy, Flurry, Vanilla <3
___________
Angel hamsters: Francisco, Marcello, Peppermint, Mishka, Stephano, Sundae, Peach <3

Last edited by alpacassei; 11-21-2019 at 12:34 PM. Reason: Spelling
alpacassei is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2019, 12:45 PM   #22
Otaku
Hamster Pup
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 83
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

Quote:
Originally Posted by alpacassei View Post
Yes! That’s lichen, it’s completely safe!
Thank you so much alpacassei! I have no idea about plants (unless it's packaged with a label on it) so I really appreciate your identification. I'm relieved that it it not harmful to hamsters as I don't have to faff about with returns and because I actually like the mint green colour, it's aesthetically pleasing.
Otaku is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2019, 06:27 AM   #23
Otaku
Hamster Pup
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 83
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

Apologies for my absence everyone, I have been reoccupied with uni and work.
Ok, so my dad's idea of using plastic was a no-go as the plastic he has is only 20cm deep, so we went to Builders Warehouse and purchased a big board of plywood (1829 x 607 x 12mm) - I know the untreated pine would have been the safer option but they were charging approx. £52 for the size I needed while this cost £24.59.
My dad cut the plywood to size according to my blueprints and gave it a couple of coats of (pet safe) Ronseal Garden Paint, and attached fixed metal brackets to the rear of the shelves and metal swivel/pivoted latch-like pieces to the sides and front of the shelves.

01.jpg

02.jpg

These first two images show the shelves in the cage (which is now so heavy I don't want to lift it by the handles). I might change the height of the shelves as those on the lower half are very close together - initially I wanted gaps of 10cms, but I have decided 15cm is probably more comfortable.

03.jpg

This plastic Samla is the "burrow box". My dad will cut two exit holes approx. 1cm from the bottom. The top will remain open for ventilation and access from the top shelf. I intend to attach a bendy bridge to the top of the cage to act as a barrier to prevent the hamster from falling over the edge of the box down to the middle shelf.

04.jpg

05.jpg

These two images show my initial layout with the smaller Rolly wheel attached in case I get a baby hamster. I have a Hugro hemp mat on the middle shelf and bottom shelf (which was surprisingly thick) and sewn together two "Small Pet Rug"s (zooplus) using twine, to cover the 2 half shelves. I decided to do this because I think my room is cold and though my dad will bring in a radiator to keep away the chill I don't want tiny paws being subjected to cold shelves.

If you have any comments, suggestions, recommendations or warning against anything please let me know, I really won't be offended.
I will attach the next 5 images and continue this journey with you all xoxo
Otaku is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2019, 06:46 AM   #24
Otaku
Hamster Pup
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 83
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

Some images are really dark, I'm sorry about that. The cage was on the floor because it's the easiest place to set it up, and the shelves also create dark, shadowy spaces. It reduces visibility for me but I hope it makes the hamster feel more secure.

06.jpg

07.jpg

08.jpg

09.jpg

10.jpg

As you can see I now have the silent spinner in the cage for an adult Syrian. I purchased this wheel around 11 years ago. It's a good wheel, but very bulky. I am considering buying the Trixie wooden wheel as it is about 5cm shallower in overall depth, allowing for more space to move around the cork log, but this is a good wheel so I'll see how messy the new hamster is.

Only the base and first two shelves will be accessible to the hamster while it settles in so as not to overwhelm it. The Trixie playhouse and cabin, in addition to the cork log, both offer ways to access the first shelf. This is currently lined with the Hugro hemp mat as it was all that I had left. I have ordered more "Pet Rugs" to line the entire shelf, plus a small shelf for the top half of the cage, and also to cover the bendy bridge to avoid injury and the willow tube because since joining the forum I have since become concerned about the little gaps and potential for injury, so I need more mats. (Hamsters are not cheap, but they are fun!)

On the lower half shelf is a coconut shell with some shredded tissue and food hidden within, and a plastic thing which offers a bit of cover for comfort, again with some shredded tissue and food hidden within.

Just a few more images to share. Meanwhile, again I encourage all suggestions. If I can do something better I will try, and if I can add anything for enrichment then I would love to hear about it!
Otaku is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2019, 07:01 AM   #25
Otaku
Hamster Pup
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 83
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

11.jpg

12.jpg

13.jpg

Ok, so these images really are dark!

So the Kaytee C&C is all to one side of the base right now to avoid getting bedding tangled in the wheel (which occupies so much space ) and because in the far corner, behind the cork log, is a corner litter tray with JR Farm Chinchilla Sand.

Inside the Trixie playhouse is some food and shredded tissue, but I don't know how practical it is for a Syrian. The external dimensions are great, but inside it is divided into four sections.
Does anyone else have this house for Syrians? How do you feel about it?

In the litter tray I have covered the surface area with sand plus a little more on top, but don't know if that is too stingy. How deep should the sand be?

I am ordering Hugro hemp bedding for the burrow box but when I went to P@H to feel for the softest hay, I wasn't satisfied with any. Can I use a mixture of hemp and Kaytee C&C or should I just find Oxbow and try to remember which is the softest?

Thank you all for viewing my thread! I will provide more images when the borrow box has been installed and any other changes are made.
Any feedback will be greatly appreciated! (I'm still trying to decide where to put the water dispenser so any recommendations are welcome!) xoxo
Otaku is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2019, 12:10 PM   #26
Engel
Senior Hamster
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: UK
Posts: 463
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

Looking good. I always put less substrate around the wheel to stop it getting all caught up and while spinning it makes a squeaking noise. Also as your wheel has a stand you could have a much bigger sand box and have the wheel stood in it.

Personally with the bottle I'd have it on the bottom shelf initially as its likely your ham will stay on the bottom shelves for a bit until they're settled. You could add a second on the full shelf or permanently move the bottle from the bottom shelf to the 2nd full one?

Not sure how youre going to add the bendy bridge at the top. Unless you're on about having it from (top) floor to ceiling.

The wooden house at the bottom looks big enough, if the gaps are a tad small you could modify it and make them slightly bigger.

Initially I'd leave the sand box as it is. No point adding loads of it's not going to get used. If (s)he loves to have a sand bath chuck loads more in. More the merrier. If it's only used as a toilet maybe it'll be ok. See how your ham reacts and go from there.

Rather than use a bendy bridge you could get a bigger box for nesting and have it fill the whole gap at the top. Have one hole at the bottom to get out and leave the top open so (s)he can get to the top shelf that way. Add some wooden or hang loofah chews from the top and voilà
Engel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2019, 05:12 PM   #27
LunaTheHamster1
Hamster Addict
 
LunaTheHamster1's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 895
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

I have that house to my Syrian. When my luna was alive and she had one of those houses she actually just nawed part of the circular holes on the inside to make it bigger for her I guess but other than that I think it's fine.
__________________
Cosmic Hamsters YouTube Channel
LunaTheHamster1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-16-2019, 01:52 AM   #28
Ria P
PM Fluffy for custom title
 
Ria P's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Wiltshire, UK
Posts: 2,031
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

A set up also depends on the individual hamster's preferences because they are all different. I adjusted my non burrowing, height loving Syrian's cage once i got to know him a bit better.

I'd make sure that all essentials including food and water are kept on the ground floor initially until your hamster gets familiar with his/her multilevel cage.
__________________
Housemate of Henry & Gordon & Edwina & Ozzy
always in my thoughts Percy
Ria P is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-19-2019, 04:21 PM   #29
Otaku
Hamster Pup
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 83
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Engel View Post
Looking good. I always put less substrate around the wheel to stop it getting all caught up and while spinning it makes a squeaking noise. Also as your wheel has a stand you could have a much bigger sand box and have the wheel stood in it.

Personally with the bottle I'd have it on the bottom shelf initially as its likely your ham will stay on the bottom shelves for a bit until they're settled. You could add a second on the full shelf or permanently move the bottle from the bottom shelf to the 2nd full one?

Not sure how youre going to add the bendy bridge at the top. Unless you're on about having it from (top) floor to ceiling.

The wooden house at the bottom looks big enough, if the gaps are a tad small you could modify it and make them slightly bigger.

Initially I'd leave the sand box as it is. No point adding loads of it's not going to get used. If (s)he loves to have a sand bath chuck loads more in. More the merrier. If it's only used as a toilet maybe it'll be ok. See how your ham reacts and go from there.

Rather than use a bendy bridge you could get a bigger box for nesting and have it fill the whole gap at the top. Have one hole at the bottom to get out and leave the top open so (s)he can get to the top shelf that way. Add some wooden or hang loofah chews from the top and voilà
Thanks Engel, Luna and Ria P!

My plan is to have the wheel in the bottom half when I first get a hamster, then after it has settled in and I open up the top half I intend to move the wheel to the top half of the cage to allow me to cover the base with substrate (except for the corner litter tray which will have chinchilla sand as a potential sand bath/litter tray - whichever if preferred really). I want to scatter the food as a form of enrichment/entertainment.

As for the water bottle, Engel, your suggestion to put it on the first shelf is a good idea. Hopefully this way any drips won't saturate the substrate.

I was thinking of tying the bendy bridge to the top bars with twine. The bendy bridge will be bent into an "L" shape to prevent the hamster from going over the edge of the burrow box AND the shelf, leaving one corner open for access using Natural Stairs ordered from Zooplus. Because it will be bent into an "L" shape it cannot be flipped up by a nudging nose so I'm confident this will be fine (there should be no/almost no gap between the top of the cage and the bendy bridge). I don't want the burrow box right against the top of the cage because I need to be able to cover the top of the box when I have to take it out for cleaning. (As I said, this cage is HEAVY! All the shelves are mounted on the bars and the only way to get the shelves out is to lift the whole top off the base tray, lay it on it's side, and fight the shelves free. If I don't cover the top of the burrow box I'll end up with hemp bedding all over my bedroom floor. )

The house is a good side overall, it is just the sections seem small for an adult Syrian. Luna, I hope any hamster I get has the common sense to do what your hamster did! haha. Otherwise I'll have to get stuck in myself!

Ok, sand seems to be a good level so I need to get some wood or loofah chews.. ok. Yes, toys/boredom breakers. Good plan Engel!

Ria P, that's a very good point! I sure hope I get a hamster that enjoys this style! I should create a little application form for potential residents. hehe.


Ok, so besides doing my essays I need to check out toys/boredom breakers for a fun home... and wrap the Christmas presents... I think I chose the wrong time of year to want a hamster. haha.
Thank you all!!
Otaku is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2020, 06:49 PM   #30
Otaku
Hamster Pup
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Posts: 83
Default Re: Customised adaptions to cage

Ok, so I have spent this half term neglecting uni work and focusing on changing the shelves as the custom made wooden shelves made the cage too heavy to lift safely.
Sturdy cardboard doubled over has replaced the wooden shelves and is supported by wooden beams. Not as aesthetically pleasing but just as effective.
I had also attempted to fit more shelving, just to give my little guy more space, but this is the best I can do without making it cramped...

latest.jpg

The red biscuit box is all that remains of the burrow box, the original having been removed for inactivity.

Burrow box trial 01.jpg

Burrow box trial 02.jpg

Burrow box trial 03.jpg

Prior to putting the burrow box in the cage I placed Tank inside and though he explored the surface he showed no interest in digging, only doing so when mummy wouldn't let him climb out. (He was VERY shy and skittish when he came home 2 months ago and though he was soon stretching in his cage he took a long time to grow comfortable with me. He'll take food from my hand but won't climb on me so rather than accept mummy's offer of a lift out of the box he chose to dig and find his own way out.)
I used Hugro hemp bedding layered with hay, but digging doesn't seem to interest him. The Kaytee Clean & Cosy gets trodden down instead of burrowed through - they say 6 inches should inspire the mole in him, but he seems to be so lazy!!!!


Tank 01.jpg

Tank is a gorgeous little guy but is typically awake between the hours of 2am and 9am. I'm glad to see progress in his socialisation after 2 months but realise he may never be interested in handling (which sucks) therefore I need to ensure he is happy with other aspects of his life.
He enjoys his food (but doesn't always bother to take everything I hide around the cage), he enjoys his wheel (typical hermeseta), loves his sand bath and overall he seems content, BUT I have found evidence of bar chewing in one area of his cage (where I have since screwed 2 wooden carrot chews).

Does anyone have any suggestions for further enriching Tank's life? After Easter I will be back in the small bedroom so this is the maximum size cage I can accommodate (80 x 80 x 50cm with one full 80 x 50cm shelf, and two 40 x 50cm shelves, each with a 25 x 40cm add-on (the top add-on being a grass-mat hammock).
I purchased a coco fibre brick and put a tub of it in the cage this evening. He came out, had a sniff, ate or pouched some (which is said to be safe) and then went back to bed, so again, this boy seems to have forgotten how to dig.
I also made a couple of DIY toilet roll boredom breakers but when the food didn't fall out with ease he walked away (he'll demolish cardboard boxes but can't be bothered to destroy the boredom breakers (-_-) ).

Any ideas for the cage or entertainment for Tank would be so welcome! Thanks everyone!
Otaku is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cage, shelves, hamster, make, burrow, box, colder, thinking, lid, 20cms, wall, hammocks, ensure, cancer, chemicals, kaytee, substrate, popular, soiled, supposed, suggestions, forum, fitch, great, burrowing

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Parts of this site powered by vBulletin Mods & Addons from DragonByte Technologies Ltd. (Details)
Copyright © 2003-2020, Hobby Solutions
All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:12 AM.