Author Topic: how many cages have you gone through?  (Read 7712 times)

Offline -Kelly-

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how many cages have you gone through?
« on: August 21, 2005, 05:10:35 PM »
I just realized that the new superpet cages coming out do not have the bars all the way to the bottom. there is one at DH's store that does. now i'm afraid if that one gets sold, the new ones that come in will not be what I need.

So I called DH on his cell phone and asked him to grab that cage if he gets a good discount.

I swear i've gone through tons of cages in the years having rats. DH gets mad...but different rats require different housing.

I had a galvanized one and it was icky, got a superpet rat cage but didn't like the shelving back then (i'd rather have flat shelving now), had my marchioro, loved it, but the girls chewed the bottom, now I have the all living things one and can't clean it in this house.

So it's back to a superpet one!

how many cages have you all gone through?
Someday I will have ratties again, until then, chaotic (yet fun) mama life keeps me busy!

Offline kim

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2005, 05:48:24 PM »
once i got martins cages, i havent gone through any at all (except getting more and newer martins, etc). ive used almost every single cage out there for the rescue at one point (since we accept donations) and i currently use a marchioro for the guinea pig, but for the rats, ive been using martins cages since the late 90s and i havent had any cage since that has made me want to switch!
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Offline jessiree

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2005, 06:14:59 PM »
I started with a Prevue cage that had a nice hole in the base one day when I got home from class....I repaired it well enough to use until I ordered a Martin's. 

I LOVE the Martin's cages and have stayed with them since, and always will, but through different groups of rats we now have 3 Martin's cages of different sizes.  I'm a bit of a cage hog, I guess.  You never know when you might need a smaller/larger cage, so I even still have the horribly repaired ferret cage I started with stuck in storage as well as a small Martin's I usually use for quarantine and a 695 (which I'm debating on moving the boys to when I get a 4th one day.)
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Offline Dearpie

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2005, 07:11:27 PM »
When I first got Cocoa, I bought what I was 'told' would be a more than sufficient cage.  It didn't take long to realize that once he grew, the cage would be too small.  (18" x 12" x 14")  It had one shelf and a tube type of ramp.  I then got two new boys as companions, and a larger cage, from the same local guy, but realized it too wasn't the best.  Even though it wa 24" x 18" x 30", it wasn't set up very well.  The tubes were too close to the shelves, making it very difficult for larger boys to get through them, and the shelves were not wide enough to hold more than 2 boys comfortably.  I then bought a 685, had it a week, until I saw a friends 695, and sold the 685 to a different friend so I could buy the 695.  I now own 2 695's, a F435 and keep the other cages around just because you never know when you'll need a cage.  (Or rather, Any Rat Rescue has some of my extras, cuz they need them!)

Offline jixie

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2005, 09:51:57 PM »
I haven't had rats as long as some, so "not many", but there have been a couple different set ups. Started with a tank (20 long) knowing they'd need something much larger. I still use tanks for quarantine (new arrivals, sick, etc.).

Cage 1: I build my first boys a large cage out of PVC coated pantry shelving. It's very heavy and so a bit of a pain to clean, but worked wonderfully... until I got Asher, who is a chewer extraordinaire (extrodentaire?). He likes to strip the PVC off the wire. The cage is functional but it looks ugly, so once he's done with it I'm going to pitch it.

Cage 2: When the girls came I started building the bookshelf cage, and temporarily kept them in a 30 gallon tank. Which was fine housing for a trio, but Danielle instantly got along so well with the others (easiest introduction, ever), that I felt it was better to keep them all together. Except for...

Cage 3: Eudora who was in a 10 gallon tank with a cage topper because she had a litter before she was even out of quarantine. Once all the babies were adopted, she moved in with the other girls into...

Cage 4: The bookshelf cage. I did a lot of things to keep this cage long lasting when it was built, although we're still learning what did and didn't work... right now it looks like it will need some tile on the floors after all. On the bright side the primer works as wonderfully as people say.

Offline LifeInCircuit

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2005, 02:20:23 AM »
a LOT. Obviously as my rat knowledge grew, so did my cages, and I lost quite a few that way....but as for reasonably nice cages..well..

1) Got some random brand galvanized cage from the LPS..My girls never grew into it, so I got a new one and lent the galvanized one to a friend. They didn't take care of it(not that you can really avoid it becoming nasty) and it had to be trashed.

2) Second cage I got was a ferret cage with solid plastic shelves and PVC coating...they ate off most of the coating and chewed holes through the shelves....

3) got another ferret cage, this time for boys. It had larger bar spacing and non-solid shelves...boy got foot caught in the shelve, so I had to replace them. The boy population thinned, so I got new babies and had to put the cage in the basement due to bar spacing. Got paint spilled on it, gone.

4) Got my first martins. Had a party and fell into the doorway, bum first.(no rats were harmed..only pride). Trashed.

5) second martins, put it together with c-rings. Moved, eventually, and I could not fit the stupid thing out the door. Had to leave it there because I ran out of time.

6) More martins.....actually, these are all still in use, somewhere, by someone, as far as I know. lol. It's been a couple years since I've seen them, but I assume they're still fine. Maybe two or three of them. I never had a problem with a martin's cage that wasn't my own fault lol.

Offline DragonTamer

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2005, 04:01:25 AM »
10 total for rats alone..

1-  10 gallon tank, yeah.......   blah.   this was 11 years ago.

2-  galvanized nice sized cage for three rats, which is all I had.  it was a locally made cage sold in a local pet store, though..  was a little under 3 feet tall and eventually was a temp home for a chipmunk

3-  Midwest Ferret Playpen.  by far my favorite cage despite the bar spacing, and I have one now for Matisse..  I just whiped the ledges off daily and it was nice to have tons of room for hammocks, ladders, etc.  Was thrown out during the hospital incident..

4-  Galvanized one level cage with a base larger than the midwest ferret playpen.. but it was for an antisocial rat.  This cage was also locally made.  the bar spaces were far too large for small females. 

5-  galvanized three level cage for two rats.  locally made again..   after this one I learned my lesson about galvanized cages....

6-  Superpet 4 level ferret cage.  the purple base one with black bars.   LOVED the cage, but I had it many years and eventually when I moved on to a new cage, I was going to donate it and realized it had gotten rather yick in the years, with bars being chewed into oblivion and rusted underneath despite constant cleaning.  the plastic also had a permasmell it seemed like.. 

7-  superpet 3 level small creatures cage for VERY young girls.  when they outgrew it it was a new home to my short tailed opossum for the last two years of his life (he had a galvanized nice cage prior but I wanted to end galvanized cages).  I still have this cage today and use it for transport/whenever one needs seperation.

8-  LARGE cage I built that was the same size and dimensions as a martin's RUUD.  made out coated hardware cloth.  they chewed the stuff off the wires and eventually I just left it behind in my move. 

9 and 10-  my two martin's RUUD cages.  they don't hold odors, I scrub them off in the shower weekly, they're great cages.  the older of the two (with girls in it of course) is starting to get a lot of chewed off powder coating on one section...  though.

Offline Celeste

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2005, 12:34:49 PM »
3.  when i first got my rats, i put them in a 20 gallon tank.  that was bad, and too small, so i dug the old bird cage i had BUILT for my cockatiel years ago out of my closet, added a level in the middle, and put them in there.  well, that thing was HORRIBLE to clean.  absolutely impossible.  so i got a bookshelf from my dad that he wasn't using, took appart the old bird cage, and used the sides of the birdcage as the front of the bookshelf cage.  voila!
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Offline elle

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2005, 03:21:42 PM »
three cages -- loved them all, only switched because i was aquiring more rats and needed more space.

1. Martin's 670 for the two boys. I was going to have 2 rats, that's it.
2. Martin's 690 for the three boys. I was going to have 3 rats, that's it.
3. Martin's 435 for the 6 rats. Had six rats in it for about a year, now I'm down to only 3 rats :( .


Offline Suebee

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2005, 09:17:52 AM »
Most of my cage upgrading has been because of space, and not really any "wearing out." But, I didn't start out the bext, so I had some improving to do. ;)

1. 10 gallon tank for two rats
2. 20 gallon long tank for two rats
3. Some wire cage I got at PetsMart that I hated. It was for ferrets, but I think it was far too small for a ferret.
4. Martin's R-695 *insert choir of angels*

Recently, I adopted an R-680 as well, which I am currently using. I have no plans to get rid of the 695... it's currently just a spare. Maybe someday when I have more room, I will have two cages at once. :)

Offline -Kelly-

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2005, 03:10:08 PM »
I wish I could afford a Martins. But at the moment I can't.

Anyone care to "donate" one to me? LOL...

I started out with a HAMSTER cage!!! The thing was like 8" by 8"...obviously that was WAY to small for my one baby rat. So I got a 10 gallon. She grew so I went to the store my friend worked at and got a deal on a used glavanized cage. no shelves or anything. But she loved it. I had bird toys in there, ladders, etc. Got another rat then too.

Since then my # of cages has only gone up. I went through g. pig cages, "rat" cages, the superpet one (green & white) was cool but I didn't like the shelving. had a galvanized one, stunk to high heaven!

And now I need YET another one since mine won't fit in the darn shower and will be too hard to clean once Davey gets here.

Someone spare me a Martins!
Someday I will have ratties again, until then, chaotic (yet fun) mama life keeps me busy!

Offline Suebee

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2005, 04:00:24 PM »
Well, let's just say that cage #1 was obtained in 1996, cage #2 in 1997, Cage #3 in 1998... and cage #4 was purchased in 2000. Since I "splurged" for the Martin's FIVE years ago, I have not felt the need to purchase another cage. The 680 I got for free this past November, otherwise I would still be using the 695 exclusively. :)

Offline EmmaRatsMommy

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2005, 04:12:24 PM »
About seven. I started out with my first rat in a 10 gallon, then got my second rat and bought a generic cage from a local pet store. It had a pull out plastic tray so they chewed out within six months. I had to keep them in a pet carrier, but they chewed out of that too so they went back into the 10 gallon.
  Out of desperation a bought them a way too small two level All Living Things hamster mansion. I got a boy at that time and he lived in an old galvanized bird cage. I then bought the girls a huge ferret cage from Ebay, got another boy and moved them into the girls' old cage.
  The bar spacing on the ferret cage was too big for females and it was galvanized but the girls were elderly by then so they didn't try to get out and they didn't live much longer so it didn't get smelly.
  After the girls passed I was going to move the boys into the ferret cage when they got bigger but they didn't make it that long. So I got two more baby girls that had to live in the small petsmart cage. Several months later I decided to stop the rat thing for a while and I had a co-worker that had rats and wanted my girls, so the cage went with them.
  Just in the last year I have gotten more rats, they were older when I got the first two girls so I put them in a black bird cage with kind of big wire spacing. A few months later I got a baby and she got out of the cage so I bought an All Living Things rat cage which I hate. I just got another baby girl, and am planning on getting more by December so I am about to buy a Ruud.

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Offline shadowlily89

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2005, 05:22:52 PM »
1) When I got my first girl she was a teeny thing from a petstore, probablly not even supposed to be seperated from mom. The pet store people told me to house her in a 10-gallon until she grew a bit, so I trusted them and I did just that. I put her huge wheel in it, food dish, water bottle, and house.

2) Once we added all the stuff to the 10-gallon and added rat, she was in the tank for 10 minutes and we took out the old 45-gallon-long aquarium.

3) I discovered that rats need company so I went back to the pet store and got another girl. I put the girl in the 45-gallon and a week later she gave birth to 10 babies. The other girl went back to the ten gallon and the momma stayed in the 45.

4)The girl couldn't stay in a 10-gallon so I went a bit overboard and ordered her a Martin's 695 all for herself  :BlueDumboSmile:

5) The babies grew so...The three boys went into the dreaded 10-gallon tank and momma and girls went into the 695 with the other girl. (Dunno why I didn't think of putting the boys in the 45-gallon but this was a while ago)

6) Two of the girls I adopted out were returned on the thought that they were pregnant (they weren't, thank goodness)  so they were put into a very large three level hamster cage (witch was suitable for them as they were so small) untill we could be sure they weren't pregnant.

7) Finally all girls and boys were adopted out and I am back down to just the 695 with my two girls and neutered boy and glad of it!

Offline Kati33

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2005, 06:21:15 PM »
I started with a good sized white one from PetsMart, got a purple travel cage from someone off the old rfc forum for free, built a cage, attached the white one to the homemade one, bought a Martin's used, attached it to the white one and got rid of the homemade one (it was huge and didn't contain rats very well!). Then I kept my older girl in just the top level of the white one and put my new girls in the Martin's. Now I have just the Martins, plus I bought a small carrier for the girls to use when we do pets-n-people visits. I had a classmate offer me her cage since all of her girls are gone now and I think I'll take it- I have room in the attic and you just never know when you'll need a cage!
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Offline Grace

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2005, 06:58:23 PM »
heh, I don't know if I can even remember them all!    ::)  (It's been 10 years, after all!)

Cage 1:  A homemade cage built by my uncle.  It was a decent size, but single level and was galvanized.  After my first (and only, at the time) rat passed, I got rid of the cage.

Cage 2:  A decent sized random brand (from Ebay) galvanized cage.  It was ok for 2 rats, but then I got more...

Cage 3:  My first attempt at a homemade cage...  It was 36"x12"X48", and worked pretty darn well considering it was galvanized and wobbly.  That lasted a while, until I decided I wanted to try building another cage.  Onto...

Cage 4:  This cage was a MONSTER!  It was 36"x30"x48", and a beast to clean!  I did have fun making it though.  ;)  When I moved out of my fathers, it had to be cut in half to fit out of the room.  It then became a 36"x30"x24" cage, which worked well since by then the girls were starting to get older.

Cage 5:  After all my current crew had passed, I tried my first attempt at building a cabinet cage.  This was a small version (first mistake!), and was built VERY poorly!  It only lasted a couple months before it reeked...

Cage 6:  A used Martin's 695.  This was given to me from the shelter, since it was too big for the small animal room.  I loved it, and it worked great.  I had it right up until recently, when I gave it back to the shelter since I didn't need it.

Cage 7:  My first brand new Martins!  It was a 685, which I purchased when I adopted a trio of boys - one was elderly, only had 3 legs, and had a lung tumor. I needed something to house the 3 of them in that he'd be able to move around in easily.

Cage 8:  After Tripoli passed, I wanted to try out a Ruud.  I didn't have the $200 to spend on the real thing, so I built one.  It worked alright, and was made of coated wire.  I donated it to the Ark when I decided it was too much of a hassle to keep clean.  I think at that point I went back to using the two Martins - I don't really remember.

Cage 9:  I *believe* my next cage was a cabinet cage.  This was a full size cage, which worked well.  I wound up getting rid of it because the shelf layout and ramps weren't safe for my old boys anymore.

Cage 10:  Another cabinet cage, but this time built to accommodate old rats.  It is 48"x24"x36", and has full length shelves and carpeted ramps for my old guys.  It still works great, but I'm getting rid of it because I'm worried about ventilation issues.

Cage 11:  After my old boy Pompeii got beat up, he was seperated from the group, and is now residing in a single level cage with my two other old guys.  At the moment, he's in a generic spare cage, but after my new cage is built, they'll be back in their Marchioro (the large one - 120?).

Cage 12:  This cage ins't built yet, but will be soon!  It's a coated 36x24x48 cage, which shallow ramps if/when old guys live in it.  Hopefully it will curb my "cage building insanity" for a while.

There have also been several temporary cages, or ones I can't remember well.  In short, I've gone through way to many cages!  A HUGE part of my "problem" is that I LOVE building new cages for them, so I have to build a new one every now and then.  I still have the 685, which will remain a permanant resident here, as well as the two single level cages I have.  You can never have too many cages!    ::)


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Offline Sunilata

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #16 on: August 23, 2005, 08:32:44 PM »
I got the Coast "Ritz" cage from Petco, but once I went from two rats to four, I realized there was no way they'd be comfortable in there, so I ordered a Ruud about a year ago. I must say I'm really disappointed in the quality, though; so much of the powdercoating has chipped off! I like Martin's ferret cages a lot better than the rat cages. At the rate my Ruud is deteriorating, there is no chance I'll be able to sell it in a year or two when I have fewer rats and I can downgrade to a F435.
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Offline RKEM

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #17 on: August 26, 2005, 07:42:40 AM »
I've only had rats for a little over 3 years so not much potential to go through many cages.

When I first got rats, I bought a Martins R-690 but I felt that even though the cage calculator was saying it was enough, it wasn't really big enough.

Then my tax return showed up and I spent it all (over $1k) on a custom made cage by CD&E Animal enclosures : the Monkey Motel. Big enough for 30 rats, it's easy to divide into 2 or 3 separate cages and can be dismantled like Ikea furniture. I like it but it does require diligent cleaning to remain completely smell free. I also use a R-670 (I think) as my quarantaine / isolation cage.

I'm planning on keeping this cage for maybe 2 more years at which point I will order a cage made by Cages by Design as they now have new materials which would make an appropriate rat cage. The feature that I'm most attracted to in those cages is the wire : stainless steel baby! No more GW, no chance of zinc poisoning, no powdercoating that gets chewed off and it can  be washed over and over and over again. Plus they are fully customizable. I don't think I would go much bigger than my current cage. Bigger size means harder to clean and manipulate. When this happens,the Monkey Motel will go to a rat rescue of my choice.

Offline Fnordia

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #18 on: August 26, 2005, 02:25:40 PM »
Hi, this is my first post. 

I've been through two cages with my rats.  The first one, I'm not sure where it was from- it was about 24"x12"x12", and had two small female rats in it.  After they died, we threw it out because the (uncoated) wire was starting to wear and rust a little.

Our new female rats live in a Martin's R-695 (the sky-scraper) and I think it's easily large enough for at least one more rats.  If anyone wants a picture to see how large it is, let me know.  I think 3 males could fit too.

How do you generally clean your Martin's (powder coated) cages?  It's too big to fit in our tub, but the ever-so-intelligent rats have decided that their favourite thing to do is stand at the top left corner of the cage and whizz away.  I've been taking it out into the backyard and cleaning it with the hose and some animal-safe disinfectant cleanser.  I've used a sponge, but it keeps ripping on all of the metal rings that hold the pieces together.  Would you think it's safe to use a hard-bristle scrub brush?  I don't want to damage the coating.

Also, we're planning on getting another, smaller Martin's cage for introducing more rats into the family.  Anyone ever tried making some sort of connector between cages, to enhance/enlarge a living space?  (I'm thinking of a tube that goes from the door of cage 1 to the door of cage 2, made so that each end fits exactly to the door openings.)  Just wondering if anyone thinks this would work well/ be impossible.

Offline elle

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #19 on: August 26, 2005, 08:53:58 PM »

How do you generally clean your Martin's (powder coated) cages?  It's too big to fit in our tub, but the ever-so-intelligent rats have decided that their favourite thing to do is stand at the top left corner of the cage and whizz away.  I've been taking it out into the backyard and cleaning it with the hose and some animal-safe disinfectant cleanser.  I've used a sponge, but it keeps ripping on all of the metal rings that hold the pieces together.  Would you think it's safe to use a hard-bristle scrub brush?  I don't want to damage the coating.

Also, we're planning on getting another, smaller Martin's cage for introducing more rats into the family.  Anyone ever tried making some sort of connector between cages, to enhance/enlarge a living space?  (I'm thinking of a tube that goes from the door of cage 1 to the door of cage 2, made so that each end fits exactly to the door openings.)  Just wondering if anyone thinks this would work well/ be impossible.

I clean all mine in the shower (the 695 just fits in)... I use Nil-odor concentrate and a scum buster by black and decker (it's an electric scrub brush that really makes getting gunk off easy). The cleaning hasn't seemed to hurt the coating on any of the cages at all.

As for connecting cages, Martin's made redslurpee an awesome tunnel to connect her cages. I'm sure if you called them up and told them what you wanted they could make it.
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Offline star2

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #20 on: August 28, 2005, 06:48:40 PM »
First there's the cage that Aggie came to me in.  It was probably 12"  by 6".  And she was a full grown rat.  Sleeping in the corner took up almost half the cage.  It was sickening.

Then, since the plan was for me to return her back to the original owner, I bought a guinea pig cage, because I figured that was at least bigger than the "Shoebox" as I nicknamed her old cage. 

Then I found out I could keep her (woo-hoo!!)  So I got her the Martin's 670 and a pair of baby friends.  :)
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Offline Katie

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #21 on: August 28, 2005, 10:06:44 PM »
I've gone through two so far. An aquarium (yes I know... baaad), then a rabbit cage. I hated the aquarium... the rats didn't like it either so I switched to the rabbit cage. I put smaller wiring over it so the ratties couldn't escape. I got tired of how difficult it was to clean and moved onto the one I have now. A three story cage.

I'm about to get through this one though. The rats have had a field day chewing holes in the bottom of it, so in September I'm getting a new one for them. Hopefully all metal or something.
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Offline Ligeia

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #22 on: August 29, 2005, 05:10:17 PM »
I'm up to three and a half.

Before I got rats, I had a hamster.  And since I didn't know anything when I got my first rat, I put him in an old hamster cage.  It didn't take long to figure out that wouldn't work.  The poor baby was wider than the shelves.  :yelcutelaugh: 

So, I got him a ten gallon aquarium.  Satan was pretty much free range and was only in the aquarium if I was asleep or cooking something that might splatter, so I wasn't overly concerned about space.  But I did get him a cage topper (the half cage) eventually.

Soon, I started doing more research on rats and found out he needed a rattie friend.  So, I got Blue and when I put the boys together, I decided I needed a bigger cage.

That's when I got my Ferret Kingdom.  Of course, when I got it set up and realized just how much space it was, then I needed more rats.  Its about a year later, and the Ferret Kingdom is holding up really well.  Other than being way too hard to clean, I'm happy with it and will keep it until it falls apart.
Rats: All of the best features of "normal" pets in a convenient, easy to carry size.

Offline Ratwings

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #23 on: August 30, 2005, 12:16:29 PM »
Too many....  I think if I tried to go back and think about how many I've tossed or given away, and all the money and time I've spent  buying and assembling and making cages.....  I'd probably go crazy and run for the hills or something. ;)  At least 12... and that's in less than 5 years of owning rats.  Oy....

My main problems have been: Chipped powdercoating = stinky rustiness; either too small for all my growing numbers of rats; or too big for me to carry up and down 2 flights of stairs for much longer.  Now I have 4 medium sized cages for my current 10 rats.  Which means I am cleaning cages 4 days a week, but at least it doesn't take 3-4 hours out of my day, like my R-695 did... and my back no longer hurts. :D
~Julie

Offline Fnordia

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Re: how many cages have you gone through?
« Reply #24 on: August 30, 2005, 02:59:13 PM »
Wow.. why did the 695 take so long to clean?  Was it the pan, or the bars?