Author Topic: Critter nation add on  (Read 1722 times)

Offline keegen456

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Critter nation add on
« on: March 04, 2016, 02:57:11 PM »
Hi guys!  My name is Tawnya and I'm new here. I'm getting a couple of rats in a few weeks and have been researching cages. I love the critter nation but I have a spot picked out for the cage and already have a table to put the cage on. I was thinking about getting the add on. That is a complete cage right? It just doesn't have the stand like the CN?  I was also thinking about the petco rat manor but that looks harder to decorate and rearrange things. I have been pouring over cages for almost a week now. I'm pretty sure my eyes are bleeding lol.
Tawnya- Hercules, Frost, Sparkle, Minnie

Offline gawgeouspaws

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2016, 03:09:15 PM »
Yeah, the add-on doesn't have a stand. But you'd have to make sure to have something underneath of it to keep anything from getting onto your table.
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Offline keegen456

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2016, 03:29:45 PM »
So it doesn't have a tray just the wire bottom? Bummer. I was hoping it would be just like the single critter nation but without built on stand and wheels. So I guess I'll get the pet manor then.
Tawnya- Hercules, Frost, Sparkle, Minnie

Offline gawgeouspaws

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2016, 03:31:02 PM »
No, it has a tray! But it'll be easier for them to kick stuff through the side bars and directly onto the table. I definitely recommend the Critter Nation over the Manor.
currently snuggling mario
rip henrietta, penelope, and angus
came back to this forum again as of 1/23/2017

Offline keegen456

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2016, 03:34:06 PM »
Oh ok good! I was envisioning pee puddles on the table and that just doesn't work for me lol.
Tawnya- Hercules, Frost, Sparkle, Minnie

Offline Vonda Z

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2016, 03:36:23 PM »
My understanding is that it is not a complete cage. I am fairly certain that it does not come with a top panel (you use the top panel of the single or double you are adding to) and the bottom panel that it comes with is the panel with the cutout - so the bottom has a "hole" in it. It really isn't meant to be a standalone cage.

Offline gawgeouspaws

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2016, 03:38:25 PM »
Huh, I thought it came with it's own bottom? But maybe I was mistaken. There is a hole, but it's possible to close it off; plenty of people have "divided" DCNs. I don't have too much experience with the add-on, though, maybe it would be best to just buy the regular CN and not attach the stand?

« Last Edit: March 04, 2016, 03:52:23 PM by gawgeouspaws »
currently snuggling mario
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came back to this forum again as of 1/23/2017

Offline Vonda Z

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2016, 03:46:55 PM »
Huh, I thought it came with it's own bottom?

It does come with a bottom and with the bottom tray (both have a cutout that would need to be closed off somehow. It DOES NOT come with a top panel. You remove the top panel from your existing unit, insert the bottom panel of the add-on along with the add-on sides, then use your old top panel to close off the cage.

Also note that the way the cage goes together, many of the panels have metal prongs that stick out and down. They go into holes in the lower panels or the stand. I suspect that the bottom of the add-on will have these prongs and may not sit flat on a table because of that - however, I am not positive as I have never tried to build just the top panel. I have modified the cage in many other ways, though - making a quad and turning on the side and removing all levels of a double to make a bird flight - but I don't know how well just the top portion of the cage will work on its own as that is one modification I have never tried.

Offline keegen456

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2016, 04:01:16 PM »
Shoot. Does anyone know of a cage that is easy to get into and clean out but doesn't come with a built in stand?
Tawnya- Hercules, Frost, Sparkle, Minnie

Offline Michael C

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2016, 04:17:19 PM »
The add-on wouldn't work well as a complete cage. Like Vonda said,
1. the plastic tray is not a full tray
2. I don't think it comes with a top (being that the top of the cage you're adding it onto would just be moved up to the new top position).
3. the cage is built on pegs. The pegs that protrude from the bottom of the cage are what hold it in place on top of the existing cage.

The Critter Nation does not work well as a table top cage.

The price difference between a single and an add-on isn't that great. If you like the Critter Nation, I would skip the idea of trying to put it on a table.

If you want a table top cage, a Martin's cage might be a better option. From everything I've heard, they're far better quality than the Rat Manor. Also, you have more options for size and layout. For 2-3 rats, the R-680 ($105) or R-685 ($126) might be perfect! If you like the Martin's cages, be sure to order it powdercoated. I guess the unfinished galvanized steel can absorb urine and smell over time.

Here's a 122 page picture thread of people's Martin's cages.

Offline Vonda Z

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #10 on: March 04, 2016, 04:39:04 PM »
You might be able to use a single Critter Nation without the stand if you turned it upside down to avoid the prong issue (or keep it on the stand but turn it upside down so the stand sticks up in the air). In the bird flight that I made out of a DCN on its side, I left the stand on, but it just sticks off the side of the table. That way, I don't have to alter it when I turn it back into a rat cage (aside from putting the levels and shelves back in). I am pretty sure that the shelf bracket will fit into the slots upside down or right side up and I can't think of anything else that might be a problem - but I have never tried to do this so I can't be sure.

I would also second the Martin's cages as an alternative to a Critter Nation. I use a Martin's R695 as a quarantine cage and it is a well built cage that can sit on a table. The doors are large and wide - not as nice as the Critter Nation doors, but larger than the store-bought cages. If you decide that you cannot make a Critter Nation work, then Martins' cages would be the next best choice.

Offline keegen456

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #11 on: March 04, 2016, 05:10:22 PM »
Thanx for the help! I think I might just rearrange some things and end up with either the CN or the DCN.  I'm driving my hubby crazy with my indecisiveness lol.
Tawnya- Hercules, Frost, Sparkle, Minnie

Offline BigBen

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Re: Critter nation add on
« Reply #12 on: March 04, 2016, 09:10:20 PM »
I like both the CN/DCN and Martin's cages.  For table-top use, a Martin's would be the way to go.  Get a 685 for two or three days, or a 695 for up to four.  Martin's cages are very lightweight, and if you assemble the cage with cable ties instead of the metal clips Martin's provides, you can easily collapse it for cleaning or transport.  As already suggested, get it powder-coated, because it is almost impossible to get the urine smell out of galvanizing.

The CN/DCN is a much heavier cage, but the advantage is that the doors are the full width of the cage, which gives wonderful access for cleaning and decorating.  The disadvantage is that disassembling and reassembling the cage is time-consuming and a bit tricky, so you're not going to want to do that very often.

Both these brands are great cages.  The Rat Manor, on the other hand, is not.  It is a cramped cage, hard to decorate, and barely large enough for two small rats.  I do not recommend it.
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