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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What do I do with it all?

It seems silly, I'm sure. I was so stoked to get one, because of how big it was and how happy the furballs would be, but now I've built it and... Jeez... Even after putting their stuff in it I'm like... It's so sparse...

What do y'all use to cover the flooring? What toys do you use to take up some of the space?
 

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My girls love it when I make toys out of boxes. :3 They can be large or small and I usually make them entirely with cardboard, so there's no tape or glue for them to eat. I make them more interesting by cutting out square holes in them and shoving the cut-out chunks into small slits to make separate levels in the box. XD
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Like shoe boxes and what not? Or cereal boxes? Because we go through cereal in this house like you wouldn't believe. I'll definitely have to do that - Thanks so much! I was looking at this huge cage just going "Oh crap, if I have to fill this thing I'll go broke". What do you cover all the flooring with? or do you bother at all?
 

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I use fleece and a diaper material under it for the pans.

Also, I've found that any boxes work. Shoe boxes, shipping boxes, cereal, they love it all! XD Also, if you've got popsicle sticks and a hot glue gun, you can make some pretty fun things too. Of course, I wouldn't recommend this if you have chewers, but them chewing the nontoxic hot glue won't be too bad in small amounts. I'm a nervous person when it comes to that stuff though, they don't even have plastic toys in their cage. XD
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I've heard fleece isn't great because of soaking up urine? Or maybe it was because it doesn't soak it up... I've forgotten now. I hadn't thought of diaper material though, I'll give that a shot! Thanks :)
 

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Fleece cannot soak up urine alone. You have to have something under it to soak up the liquid. The fleece can only be used as a separator between the rat and the urine. The diaper material soaks up the urine on top of the fleece. :3 Also, this is the diaper material that I use:

http://wazoodle.com/index.php/zorb.html
 

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I use the IKEA Borris doormats to cover my pans. For toys, I try to leave the floors bare because my girls like to pee on anything on the floor. So all their toys hang: hanging chews, hammocks, hideaways, a lava ledge, a sanded bird perch, a wheel... The only things on the floor are their litter boxes and the dig box I have for them. I try to make it so that they have a lot of running space and are encouraged to climb.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You know, I saw a lava ledge at Petsmart. Do they actually use it?
 

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I use fleece as well to cover the floors.Vinegar can help take out urine smells. I use bird toys that I dangle from either the sides of the cage or the top. I also sometimes take a plastic level from another cage I have (for quarantine or other purposes, not full time) and jimmy it in there. They love the Lounging Logs from PetsMart and pillow cases I binder clip in to act as hammocks. I like to take out the ramps the CN comes with, my boys climb up the sides to get to the upper levels even with the ramps in there. I got a WhackAMole bird toy, link bird toy (Its just like a plastic chain), and little wooden sticks and rolling balls.
 

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I line my DCN with IKEA mats too.

I also make use of boxes. I have asked people at my office to donate smallish boxes to me. I also use cereal boxes.

I once built a little rat city. It was neat, and I wish I took a picture of it. It was two cereal boxes and about six other boxes. I usually cut out two sides of each box. One side was open to the floor. No sense trapping urine stains more than I have to (but this is inevitable when building multi-level box cities). The other side was open to the cage side. I wanted to watch the rats navigate in the city like an ant farm.

I then arranged the boxes ahead of time on the floor, keeping in mind that it can't be more than 2 feet wide. I then cut holes in the boxes to provide access to each other. When I put the boxes in the cage, I used binder clips to keep them pushed up against the cage wall. Rats will move boxes around pretty easily, but having loose boxes can be fun too.

Then when the boxes looked or smelled funky , I tore them down and disposed of them. Hopefully by then I have more boxes from the office.

The bottom of my cage is actually pretty open right now, but I think I'll leave that alone. They tend to use that to run around and chase each other. I might not put obstacles there. I'll use other places for obstacles.

Oh, and I followed someone's advice and cut out chunks of poplar about 4"x3"x3/4". I drilled holes in them and screwed them into place from the outside. Now I have little ledges for them to run across. My wife thought the wood looked boring and dyed them in food coloring to make them pop.
 

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I line my DCN with IKEA mats too.

I also make use of boxes. I have asked people at my office to donate smallish boxes to me. I also use cereal boxes.

I once built a little rat city. It was neat, and I wish I took a picture of it. It was two cereal boxes and about six other boxes. I usually cut out two sides of each box. One side was open to the floor. No sense trapping urine stains more than I have to (but this is inevitable when building multi-level box cities). The other side was open to the cage side. I wanted to watch the rats navigate in the city like an ant farm.

I then arranged the boxes ahead of time on the floor, keeping in mind that it can't be more than 2 feet wide. I then cut holes in the boxes to provide access to each other. When I put the boxes in the cage, I used binder clips to keep them pushed up against the cage wall. Rats will move boxes around pretty easily, but having loose boxes can be fun too.

Then when the boxes looked or smelled funky , I tore them down and disposed of them. Hopefully by then I have more boxes from the office.

The bottom of my cage is actually pretty open right now, but I think I'll leave that alone. They tend to use that to run around and chase each other. I might not put obstacles there. I'll use other places for obstacles.

Oh, and I followed someone's advice and cut out chunks of poplar about 4"x3"x3/4". I drilled holes in them and screwed them into place from the outside. Now I have little ledges for them to run across. My wife thought the wood looked boring and dyed them in food coloring to make them pop.
I just went to IKEA yesterday and picked up 17 Borris mats. I'm eager to see how well they work. Thank you for the advice on how to wash them, too. :)

If you ever make another Ratopolis, be sure to post photos!
 

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I just use a cheap towel under my fleece. I bought a bunch at target, and change them out every three days or so. It works well!
 

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NEWSPAPER!!! Couple of pages, torn into big pieces, place in the cage. Let the rats do their ratty thing. Boxes are great, I use a lot of food boxes. Soda can boxes that are long are fun for them. I don't even bother adding holes, they do that on their own. Use an old pair of jeans, cut off a leg, use shower curtain hooks to hang it. Decent hit but they definitely like nice hammocks better.

Not trying to hijack but why do you need something under the fleece? I just got a FN and the big pans are covered with just fleece and it's working fine as far as I can tell. I've seen pics of the cages that are basically solid hammocks but I look at mine and think "How on Earth do people have room for that?" I have a lot of floor space so do you just ignore floor space, remove shelves, or are there not as many hammocks as it seems?
 
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