Saturday, 4 February 2012

Day 4: Big Clean

I don't know about you fellow small animal lovers but Saturday is my 'big clean' day. It's the day I blitz my house but also clean all the pigs cages out throughly. Everyday, I empty litter trays, top up water bottles and hoover but Saturday is a monumental task that takes exactly 2 hours (I admit to being a total neat freak).

All my own guinea pigs live in homemade C&C cages and rather than wood shavings I use what is called amongst indoor guinea pig enthusiasts 'the fleece method'. Basically, you line their cages with a towel on the base and a nice fleecy blanket on the top. The idea that the mess 'wicks' through the fleece into the towel (lovely I know). Then you place litter trays either lined with newspaper or some sort of non-toxic litter (I use Megazorb) on the top and fill them with tasty hay. You can just dust up the mess everyday and change the towels/fleece once a week = hence big clean day. My washing machine doesn't stop for hours.

Mouse is in a smaller 'shop bought' cage at the moment which serves the purpose temporarily. I don't like shop bought cages myself. They are often too small and confuse first-time pet owners into thinking they are acceptable accomodation. You can get very large nice ones if you have a good search online but sadly the majority are teeny (and very over priced). Most cages are about 3ft long or smaller (about 1 metre) when in reality for 2 pigs it should be roughly 5ft (1.5 metres) minimum. Buying cages is a minefield.

My group of 4 (Hera's gang) live in a cage that is roughly 11ft (3.5 metres long). It all sounds boring in metres and in all honesty to a human the numbers probably seem insignificant. However, half a metre here and there makes all the difference to a guinea pig. The bigger the better I say, so I build my own (I'm fairly sure you can't buy a 11ft long indoor cage!). I'm pretty proud of my handy work and it's certainly a focal point in the room (as well as a conversation starter).....
As you can see I have 2 house rabbits too (can you see George in the litter tray?). They are free-range but have a dog crate as a base which is handy for propping up the pig cage. I think C&C cages are ace. They are common place in America and are becoming well known over here too. Really hope it catches on.

Mouse however, will not be in a small cage for long. A lovely lady contacted our branch today to say she would like to donate 2 brand new large cages to Mouse and her future offspring! I was so chuffed and quite overwhelmed. It's got to be said that when you work for a charity that sees so much animal cruelty it can effect your faith in people. Well my faith has been well and truly restored!

I've told Mouse and she seemed quite happy. She's been wheeking today and I even saw a popcorn (see last blog post if you have no idea what I'm on about). Here she is having a fuss whilst I cleaned her cage. I'm off to enjoy a clean house, well while it lasts anyway.

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