As mentioned in a previous post, I researched the cost, care and other information on guinea pigs for quite some time. It took some planning before my husband and I decided we would allow our son to have one. They are social animals, you should adopt two. We like to take random trips, do we really have time to care for them? What about their living situation?
Countless posts recommended creating your own cage because there are endless opportunities in terms of size, design and quality. Although I'm pretty handy, I didn't want to do that. It would have been a cheaper alternative, but it would mean whatever room I built the cage in, it would have to stay there. Because, disassembling a quality, wooden, nailed down c&c cage wouldn't be as simple as disassembling a wire cage.
One to two guinea pigs require at least a 4' x 2' habitat. After some research and preparation, I found the perfect home.
Dudley isn't 100% healthy, he's obese and has breathing issues but he's very friendly. He is a loner, cannot be in a cage with other guinea pigs because he would suffocate them, but he's really sweet to humans and loves attention. Although his health is not ideal, my son liked him once we saw him at the shelter, and wanted him. We expected to adopt two, because that's how they are usually kept, but my son thought this one was lonely and wanted to bring him home. Dudley may look small in photos, but after measuring him he is 11" long and weighs double what he should.
The size and durability of the Guinea Habitat Plus TM was ideal. Initially I wasn't happy, because my habitat arrived with a few bent racks. I was going to return it, but it wasn't damaged to the point where I couldn't at least try to straighten it. It took putting a bent rack on the floor, placing the fleece blanket over it and lightly adding weight to it (by stepping on it) to get it to bend back in place.
After straightening the racks, I saw how good this cage really was. It's large and easy to set up. Once the base, the leak proof PVC lined canvas is added, you can actually lift up the entire cage with the help of someone else. That is, if you choose to move the cage to another location. The top is removable. If you don't want to close it, you don't have to!
This cage was perfect for us, because it's 8 square feet which is the recommended space. It's leak proof, washable, durable, it comes with a cover and you can include a wall for a divider. It also has a ramp. On the base, I placed a fleece blanket on the side where the guinea pig spends most of its time. Also a potty, hideaway, chew toy, bowls for greens and nuggets and a water bottle. In the smaller area is where I keep hay. Hay only in that section and lots of it, because Mr. Dudley enjoys burrowing under the hay. The design of this cage allows us to attach multiple cages if necessary.
In addition to the cage, we purchased two play pens that can be attached for more space. My house is carpeted throughout, so I refuse to let the guinea pig roam free. But, they do need free play daily! In the playpen, Mr. Dudley has lots of room to run around!