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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey All!
I was planning on getting my girls a new cage due to them chewing a small whole in their current one. I was thinking Petco Rat Manor one because its big enough for them yet small enough for my room (I'd get Critter nation but I don't have the room ): ) anyway I noticed the rat manor's levels are wire and I'm pretty sure that's bad for their feet. What have you all done or suggest I could do? Thank you!!!
 

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I just got the same cage on Sunday. I used fleece to cover the levels and the ladders.
 

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I used the rat manor for over a year (until we moved and I got a bigger cage). It is all metal, so will solve your chewing problems. It is a bear to clean though... I'd suggest washing in a tub with a shower head or outside with a hose (so many small areas for pee to collect).

As to your question, the wire in and of itself isn't bad, it is the wire getting dirty and not being clean (and touching their feet) that can cause bumblefoot. I ended up removing the smaller wire shelves and just hung more hammocks and used ropes for climbing. I'd actually remove the center floor if I knew the cage would still be stable... My rats tended to stay in the top half all the time.

How many rats do you have? I housed 3 females in the RM and it was sufficient for them. I would not use it for males though, as I think it would be too small.

If you are planning on putting a wheel in, you can fit a large Silent Spinner on the bottom level, but you must remove the top of the cage to get it in place.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for your responses. I have two girls about 5 and 8 mo. I knew my cage was small I was just tight on cash at the time. I also read they chew due to boredom which I was afraid the small cage would do. I take them out and put them on my bed with my quilt so they run around and I'll sit with them and they crawl all over me. I haven't let them go anywhere else because I don't have any place for them to truly roam. What toys and stuff do you all use in their cages? You mentioned rope, where did you get the rope and how did you secure it?! Thank you for the help! I appreciate it. My previous rat (years ago) never chewed their her cage so this is new to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you! For the fleece, I'm looking at Petco's but they are large squares, did you cut it or how did you make it fit to the ladders/levels?
 

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For the ladders, I just eye-balled it. It isn't perfect but it works. I cut holes in the corners and slipped it over the hooks.

The levels though, I had my husband measure it out and mark it, then I cut it down. We have it tied on the corners, and zip-tied as well to secure it. Seems to be holding up so far.

I also have 2 girls! Both love to stay on the very top level, or in their hammock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Okay so you did cut the big squares smaller to fit but didn't measure it. Perfect! I've found a youtube page that shows how to sew them and velcro it but I don't have a sewing machine haha so i'll make do for now! thank you linkmoom for helping me!
 

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I don't have one either, but I want one now lol

You're welcome :)
 

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I have a rat manor. We bought it off a friend that had rats. I love how tall it is and that nothing is plastic. But, thats all I love about it. The difficulty of cleaning, accessing the rats and decorating far outweighs the positives in my book. I will also tell you that the smell of the rats in very noticeable. So much so I left my son to play with the girls in their playpen while I took the cage to the shower. Soap, a scrub brush and a shower sprayer didn't help long. The sides are sticky again and my son's room smells already. I will also tell you that pee and poo tends to get flung out, so watch out for your carpet. I am waiting to squirrel away some cash and then buy a SCN. It is big, but not that much bigger and if it helps with easier maintenance I'll be much happier.

Don't get me wrong, it's a good cage, especially for small females. But from the maintenance and work side of, things could be much easier if they would have used larger doors. Then it would have been a perfect cage.
 

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I used two kinds of ropes... The cheap rope dog toys from dollar tree (attached to each other and the sides of the cage with shower curtain rings which they sell there) and also the booda (I think that's the brand) bird rope perches... They have plastic screw on ends to attach to the cage sides... I get mine from amazon or drs foster and smith.

I would agree that if you can wait longer and have the room for a critter nation, it would be an easier cage to clean.. It also holds odor less because the bar spacing isn't as bad... I think it's mainly the mesh shelves in the RM that retain odor so bad.

Chewing can be boredom, but it can also just be instinct. My males never chew anything, but my females... they chew constantly. They chew their plastic litter pans, the plastic clips that hold their hammocks up, their fleece, etc. You can give them wooden chew toys (check the bird toys aisle), you can also give them disposable chew things like the dollar tree baskets and cardboard boxes / tubes. Many people also use the whimzees chews for dogs, mine like them but they eat them fast.

As for fleece, I'd suggest you look for cheap fleece throws.. sometimes they have them at walmart, walgreens, or big lots. You can also look for remnants at a fabric store like jo-ann's. You cut them to a little bigger than the platform and then use bulldog / binder clips to attach them. You will need something to absorb the pee under them though...like dishcloths or uhaul moving blankets. I would not use the ramps that come with the cage.. The girls will easily learn to climb and it will give them exercise and leave you with more room for toys, etc.
 

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I still use my Rat Manor as a vacation cage. It works great for that purpose. You can actually cover up the shelves with fabric if you're worried about their feet. I use fleece liners on mine, and I attach them with binder clips. I use a puppy pad on the bottom level. =P
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you for the advice. Yea the doors are super hard to open but I dont have the cash for the SCN and i don't think it'll fit my room. The smell doesn't bother me and I'll keep an eye out for poo- i do find all the bedding everywhere but they did that for their old cage too. I havn't cleaned the cage yet-probably do it tonight. How often do I need to clean the bars? Yea my girls are females and use it a lot but they chew so much so I gotta find things they like.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
@sinnamon Thank you for the advice. Yea the doors are super hard to open but I dont have the cash for the SCN and i don't think it'll fit my room. The smell doesn't bother me and I'll keep an eye out for poo- i do find all the bedding everywhere but they did that for their old cage too. I havn't cleaned the cage yet-probably do it tonight. How often do I need to clean the bars? Yea my girls are females and use it a lot but they chew so much so I gotta find things they like
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
@artgecko what does the shower curtain do? just for them to go through stuff like that? Oh that would be easy with those types of ropes. I'll look into it. I haven't seen them really use the rope much but then again i'm not home during the day.

I probably will end up getting the critter nation when I get more cash. I heard a lot of good things about it. They are only on amazon? The smell isn't that bad.

Yea they chew sooo much. I have chew toys but they don't use them much and i have wooden blocks for them and again they use it but not as much. I'll get more and figure out which they like. I'll try the dog whimzes-see if they like that. How easy was it for you to litter train them? I want too but I don't know how to train them.

I bought fleece at jo-ans and covered the ladder with it and they sit on it all the time. I don't like the ladders the cage came with cuz they knock it off so easily. I have the ledge close enough to the bottom so they can hop on instead of crawling up. Ohhh i'll use towels or cardboard underneath the fleece.

thank you so much for the advice.
 

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I just cleaned out my cage last night. I just wipe down the bars with a baby wipe. I would say, unless it gets bad, wipe it down during cage cleaning time. Or every other day. Really whatever works to keep smell down and keep it clean will be fine. If you get baby wipes, get non scented, thats also what i use to "bathe" my girls. I do that during cage cleaning time. Clean cage, clean rats, it all smells nice lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
ohhh! smart idea. I'll get baby wipes to wipe down the cage and the babies. I haven't bathed them yet since they do and I tried to have them swim in the tub, yea they didn't have that haha. My oldest, Storm, shes' a **** nibbler she was trying to eat through my bedsheets and they tore up my quilt. Haha I need to find a chew toy they like! Thank you for your help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
See I thought they'd like it to cool down but nope she tried to get out SO fast haha. I felt bad for her. I'll try the wipes instead. They don't smell and the cage isn't bad so I change the bedding once a week.

I'll try those! They do chew on the wooden chews but its not much and I see them biting the cage bars, my quilt, me, anything haha. Hopefully they'll chew on those! Do you have yours litter trained by chance!?
 
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