View Full Version : What am I missing here...

07-18-05, 10:35 pm
I have looked at hundreds of pictures trying to get ideas for a new cage for my almost 2 guinea pigs (we are adopting #2 this week). I have to know about the fleece bedding. How is it that in virtually every picture there is not one "bean", if you will, on it? I kept thinking "well, they cleaned the cage and took the picture", but surely everyone isn't that great of a planner, right?

I have tried using towels and all that happens is they get poop, pee and carefresh stuck on them along with hay so that I don't want to even put it in my washing machine to get it clean. How do your guinea pigs know NOT to poop on the fleece?

My pig seems to pee in the same area that he hangs out in...under a grid I put at 1/2 level. He either does that or in the pigloo, like it's a portapotty... or each corner..that being said, I still don't know how you keep the fleece separate and clean from the rest of the cage.

I'm SO glad I got that off my chest. Please advise.

Question #2... a lot of you with 2 floors to the cage have no walls on the side. Do your pigs not attempt suicide and fall down? They don't ever get lazy and skip the ramp for the fear factor jump?

07-18-05, 11:41 pm
How do your guinea pigs know NOT to poop on the fleece?
They will poop on the fleece. I always take my pictures when the cage has just been changed out and there is no poo in it. I use fleece myself, I have a litterbox in the corner of my girls cage where they like to pee and most of my 4 sows are good at peeing in the litterbox, but you can't really train a pig to poo in one area. A piggie will only pee in a litterbox if it wants to.

If you want to try fleece, you put it over towels or mattress pads, or sheets, or puppy pads or newspaper or combinations of what I just listed. You put a litterpan in their favorite corner of the cage where they like to pee most, throw some poos in there and hope for the best. You have to spotclean the fleece daily picking up all the poos and change the fleece out every few days. Hay does stick to fleece some, but I use a 1x2 coroplast haybox and most of the hay stays in there. There really isn't a way to keep the fleece separate and clean from the rest of the cage.

Most pigs won't jump or fall off of a loft. There have been a few that might jump over a bottom level grid if they want out, but that rarely happens.

07-19-05, 05:10 am
A lot of us take pictures (well, I know I do!) when the cages are at their cleanest :P The pigs WILL poo on the fleece just like they did on the towels. Fleece is more absorbant though, so it will stay drier because it wicks away the urine.

07-19-05, 08:27 am
The secret is spot cleaning: Pickingg up every little nugget every single day.

07-19-05, 10:35 am
What I did was to put a 1x2 area of aspen bedding with some carefresh litter boxes, and put all the hay, pellets, and water over there. The remainder of the 2x4 is fleece. We've just had our two girls a week and a half, but already it seems like they are preferring to pee and poop on the aspen/care fresh rather than the fleece. I still do spot cleaning, and the newspaper layers underneath still do have pee stains, but its much less than the first couple of days. Also, I'm finding that during floor time, they tend to pee and poop "near" the litter box. Again, it's not totally, but I think they are learning.

To spot clean the fleece we just use a plastic fast-food fork to scoop up the poop. It seems to work well. And every third day we replace the soiled paper and wash the fleece, and so far no smell.

Percy's Mom
07-19-05, 04:33 pm
You might also try a hand broom or small shop vac for the spot cleaning. The beans are pretty dry, so they clean up easily. I bought a 1gallon Shop Vac for my cage area, but I've also seen small brooms with a dustpan attached at dollar stores for, well, $1. Since you have the 2 piggers (almost), that might be just as easy.

07-19-05, 04:36 pm
How good is that 1 gal. shop vac at picking up hay? I seen those the other day and am thinking of getting one.

Slap Maxwell
07-19-05, 04:39 pm
I block the top level off. Since I have a heard of five, and they get pushy with their pellets on the second level- I am worried there could be an accident. They have gotton very close before. My advice is to block it off unless it is only a 1/2 grid up.

07-19-05, 04:42 pm
For my gallery photos I took the railings off so people could see the lofts better. I have since replaced the tall rails with lower coroplast walls. I should add some updated photos to my gallery.

07-19-05, 06:52 pm
I have a 1 gallon shop vac and it has very strong suction. It not only picks up poo and hay, it will also pick up the fleece. In order to keep the fleece down, I hold it with one hand and vacumn with the other. It also has a very strong exhaust fan so will blow air out one side while you are vacumning from the other side.

07-19-05, 08:42 pm
I just use a hand Vac.

07-19-05, 10:10 pm
The secret is spot cleaning: Pickingg up every little nugget every single day.

Ew. This sounds like more work than just using carefresh... at least the "beans" are hidden a little... lol

07-19-05, 10:35 pm
True, but Carefresh can look more unsightly with wet spots, so you must pick those out daily too. I admit I took my pictures right after changing the cages, looks so pristine that way. :) I sometimes use the vac, and sometimes just use my hands to get out the bulk of poops and stray hay that comes out of their holders.

My top level has grids surrounding the top level as I'm too much of a paranoid Pigmom. The sides of my ramp don't have any protection though, they navigate it really well, I've never had any mishaps and they are very cautious pigs and it's pretty grippy, but not where they could get their nails stuck.

07-19-05, 10:38 pm
Also, I am not grossed out about picking up poop with my hands, I think some of us get totally immune to that kind of thing after awhile. Just wash up afterwards and it's no big deal. That's only piggy poop though, my dog and mice's poop, now that's ew!

07-20-05, 09:24 am
I just started using fleece for the first time a couple of days ago. It works GREAT! I love it. I have a 2x3 section that is Aspen shavings and a 2x4 section that is fleece. I lined a towel and newspaper under it. The pigs DO poo on the fleece. I find they like to pee on the Aspen side more then the fleece side. PLus, it is amazing watching them snuggle and lay all over the fleece. I can tell their little piggy minds are thinking, "this is soooo soft." I vaccum it up every day. Takes, like, 2 minutes. I think it works better then the Aspen. The pee is absorbed better, plus, it is cheaper (in my opinion) to wash fleece every few days then to buy bag, after bag, of bedding. :0)

07-20-05, 12:08 pm
I've found that a plastic fork (of picnic or fast-food variety) works quite well at picking the poo up. I do that instead of picking it up with my fingers. I find as I scoot the fork over the fleece I can pick up five or six pieces at once and then just dump them either in a bag or in the litter box if they need a little reminder.

07-21-05, 07:05 am
I have looked at hundreds of pictures trying to get ideas for a new cage for my almost 2 guinea pigs (we are adopting #2 this week).

We picked up Blazer yesterday afternoon! It was everything I could do not to adopt more than one, but I'm sure we'll be back. We drove 2 hours to Southern Indiana Guinea Pig Rescue and chose this little Rust/White 2 year old pig. He's adorable and so confidant. I'm amazed that we had just gotten him, stopped by my parents for dinner and he's out in the middle of the cage (not in the hidey house) waiting for more veggies. When I gave them to him he just ate them right there without dragging them back to his hidey house.

We're in love. I can't belive their personalities are so different. On another note, I had posted that our first pig, Beaners, never drinks water. This guy drank almost a quarter of a bottle within the first few hours we had him. Wow. Maybe he'll teach Beans a thing or two...

Percy's Mom
07-21-05, 07:43 am
How good is that 1 gal. shop vac at picking up hay? I seen those the other day and am thinking of getting one.
It's best for the little broken pieces of hay. The hose is sligthly smaller than a regular shop vac, so the long pieces tend to get stuck. For poops, kicked bedding, litter, spilled food, etc. it's been great though. And I put mine on a long extension cord, so I can get it from the piggy cage to the hamster cage to the food bags.

07-21-05, 09:40 am
Would someone please point me to a picture of fleece? I know a lot of different kinds of fleece, from polartec to sweatshirt jersey to synthetic sheepskin, and I'm not sure what sort of fleece is used for pig cages. Can it be bought from fabric stores or is at a pet-specific item?

07-21-05, 09:44 am
Nope, you can just go to your local fabric store and buy it off the roll. I *think* that polar fleece is good.

07-21-05, 12:05 pm
Sweatshirt fleece doesn't work too well. Polar fleece is good, but there are several types of fleece that you can use. Synthetic sheepskin would be good for cozies, cuddle cups, etc., but not good for lining the cage. You want any type of fleece that you could make blankets out of, or find some good cheap fleece blankets.

01-10-06, 09:04 am
This was very helpful!!!

01-10-06, 09:18 am
You can get fleece cheaper than off the roll if you just buy fleece blankets at Walmart or a drug store. Last week at Walgreens they were 3/$10.00. I think either Sav-on or Longs Drugs has them 3/$9.99 this week. You definitely get to pick from cuter fabrics at the fabric store though! I love the way fleece looks when it's just been changed-the piggies love it too! They start popcorning all around, which is something they never did with aspen! I don't like how it looks with piggie poop everywhere, though, so I spot clean in the am and the pm with a little broom and pan. It only takes a couple of minutes each time to get the worst of it. So worth it to have happier piggies!

01-10-06, 11:54 am
I got a Dirt Devil hand vacuum, which does the job great. A quick whizz around with it while the pigs are on the floor, and all the poops are gone in seconds!

01-10-06, 12:43 pm
Yes, we only take pigtures just after a cleaning too. We've all seen piggie-poo, I want to see cages!

We clean ours with a tiny dustpan & hand-broom each morning. It takes about 5 minutes, for a 3x5. Not too much work, and it makes all the difference in keeping things neat.

01-10-06, 01:23 pm
I believe I will opt for the vacuum due to the cage set up and size. I am planning a corner style cage, L shaped that measures about 4 x 2 for each cage (the middle will have STURDILY placed dividers to keep the boys and the girls separated). I also plan to have a loft on each side, and feel that it would be easier to reach up under that with one hand than two!