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Fleece The Fleece Project: The Study

John4216

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I have used fleece for quite awhile now for my then 8 and now 7 pigs. But the way I use it is a little different than what I have read and may not be how others may want to use it but I am going to try to describe it here just in case.

My 7 pigs have an entire bedroom to themselves. They have cages but the cages have openings in the sides so they can free roam the entire room anytime they want. So I have 2 cages that have fleece and then other setups for another cage and a box.

For the main cage where the food, water, part of the hay and some pigloo's are kept is setup like this. The bottom layer I use newspaper on the coroplast floor. Then I lay down a bag of Aspen for the next layer. Then on top of the Aspen I lay another layer of newspaper. Then I lay the fleece on top of the newspaper.

The fleece and newspaper get changed every night when they get fed. The Aspen gets changed at least once a month along with the bottom layer of paper and the entire caged then gets scrubbed. This works well for me as I just take the fleece outside and shake it out before washing it and the newspaper I get free from the recycling center who gives it to me.

In the secondary cage I use fleece and newspapers and that also gets changed every night when they get fed. They do not use this cage as much so the newspaper is enough to absorb what little comes through.

Now I have 2 other areas that they frequent. A partial coroplast cage and a hay box that the 50lb of hay comes in. The partial coroplast cage is where I put more hay (usually oat hay as they just love this stuff) and I line this with just papers as they do not seem to dirty this much if any. It gets changed anyway every day or every other day.

The box I cut 2 openings in it so they could come in and out. I then cut a small piece of coroplast to fit the bottom of the box and I place it in the bottom of the box and layer newspaper on it and then place more hay (usually the timothy) in it and close the top. This also gets changed about every other day.

What I find interesting is that not one of them has ever gone anywhere but on the fleece or newspaper. They have the whole carpeted room they could go but they don't. They just seem to know all on their own where to go and where not to go. The only problems is that they occasionally will kick some of their poo's out of the cage onto the floor.

I will try to get some new pictures on here soon.
 

Turtle

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If you are going to use the plywood, you will need to cover it with a shower curtain or plastic (like the stuff painters use for drop cloths) before you lay your towels and fleece down. Urine will make it all the way to the base layer.

I was thinking about using a shower curtain. What about a tarp?
 

envisionary333

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I have used both vinyl shower curtains and tarps, they both work really well. I prefer a tarp because it is more durable and comes in many different sizes. I have a huge tarp that is 16ft by 20ft, and I used it to cover a whole room during floortime. It works great! (I cover it with mattress pads and fleece as well)
 

kristinlove

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So if you had a tarp to put down, could you use cardboard? And put the tarp over it, then towels or whatever and fleece?
 

Pablosmummy

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I was thinking of using a shower curtain with those stick on floor tiles on top. The vinyl ones? that way they would all be pretty secure on the shower curtain as they are quite stiff. Also if you cut them in half, I was thinking they could go up the sides a bit but still be quite secure. If you understand me.

Either that or I was thinking about sticking the tiles to wood. But I think the shower curtain would be cheaper and easier.
Then with the towel and fleece on top, it should be pretty easy to manage. Thats what I'm hoping anyway.
 

envisionary333

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I'm not sure what the point of the cardboard would be under a tarp? Do you mean for floortime or in the cage? Nothing will leak through the tarp so the cardboard doesn't seem to have a purpose.

As for the sticky floor tiles- I have thought about doing that as well, but my only concern is that the liquid would get through the cracks between each tile. Even if they are pressed up right next to one another, liquid would probably eventually seep through.
 

Pablosmummy

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But if theres a shower curtain underneath the tiles to catch any drips then it might be ok?
I use two layers of towels at the moment and nothing gets through to the bottom of my current cage so in theory it should be fine.
 

kristinlove

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Well, the only point of the cardboard is that I'm going to put it in the cage like coroplast, have it up on the edges for the fleece to drape over. Then I'm going to put a shower curtain over top of that. I was just making sure that would work.
 

envisionary333

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Oh, I see. That makes sense. I think that would work with the cardboard as long as your piggies aren't chewers and don't try to get to it!

About the tiles- yes, the shower curtain would catch the drip, but I would be worried it would be hard to clean under there and might start to smell? But I've never tried it so I really can't say.
 

Pablosmummy

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I think I'm going to go for just the shower curtain for now and cable tie it up the edges a bit.
Eventually I'll get some correx from somewhere. We got our cubes today.The cage is huge! I'm going to need more fleece.
 

kristinlove

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My piggy loves her new cage! She adores the fleece, and is so used to using the bathroom in the bedding, thats where she goes now. I have a tray of bedding for her hay and food and water bottle to go. I'm very impressed with the fleece. Even in the washer it really doesn't absorb the water. I'll be using this for a while.
 

piggiesinpa

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This sticky has provided me with a lot of answers to my 'should I switch to fleece' questions. I am pretty much convinced this is the way to go. I'm going shopping for some fleece tomorrow as well as a litter box to place under a hay rack I will construct.

I, however, do have one question. Does the fleece get 'soggy' and maintain wet spots? Rather, does most of the urine sink below to the underbedding allowing the fleece to dry up so the piggies don't have to run around on wet fleece all day? I'm concerned that the fleece will retain urine for a few hours or so making them walk around in smushy bedding.

Encountered problems like this?
 

cavy-cool-crazy

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As long as it's washed without fabric conditioner, and it's washed a couple times before the first use, the pee will sink right through. The longest I have ever known pee to remain on top of the fleece is no more than 30 seconds. Even after a few days and the fleece is dirty (from food and poops), it isn't at all wet.
 

kristinlove

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The urine does not soak into the fleece. Towels are good to put underneath, because the fleece wicks away the urine and the towels soak it up. That is the best part about fleece. The piggers aren't wakling around on something wet all day. You spot clean at least evry day and wash the fleece and towels about once a week.
 

piggiesinpa

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Excellent and thank you. I will be heading to the store in a few hours.
 

envisionary333

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In my experience, mattress pads are more absorbent and easier to arrange than towels. I have used both before and definitely prefer a mattress pad.
 

Hershey's Mom

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can't wait to try this out with Hershey! I am supposed to get some fleece and a mattress pad from someone on freecycle! :cool: yep, free bedding :cool:
 

Sandy_Acres

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I'm new here, so forgive me if this is the wrong spot for this. But I have made a bedding "pad" from the fleece that is similar to cloth diapers. I use fleece as the top layer, then two layers of hemp terry in the middle, and one layer of PUL (waterproof fabric) on the bottom. I folded the fleece over the layers to the bottom, so it makes a frame on the bottom, about 1 inch on all sides. Then I just sewed all around the edge, and sewed a few stitches in the middle, as if I were quilting it, so it would hold its shape in the wash. I made two of these pads so I can swap them out. I vacuum the "beans" every day and have had no leakage through the pad, and no unpleasant smell.

EdisonMom,
that's exactly what I was planning to do! I am a stay-at-home mom and cloth diaper my baby and thought that the diaper supplies would be even more perfect than towels, etc.

Thanks for sharing your resources. :)

On that note here's another diaper tip. I am not sure if it has been mentioned before: If you wash your pads (or diapers) and an odor still remains the problem could be your water. Vinegar works well for soft water but if you have hard water in can leave deposits and your best bet is to get a box of water softener like Calgon (not the same as fabric softener) and voila ... no more stinky diapers/pads.
 

Hershey's Mom

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ok got my fleece! enough for four pads yippee! what is the best way to wash them, any certain detergent that is the best besides one without fabric softener? Wondering if my little piggy will jump around like he does for floor time.
 

moonfire

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After reading this article, I think I'm ready to join the fleece-using community! However, I'm concerned about my piggie chewing/eating the edges (especially if I sew all of the layers together). Do other people have this problem with fleece, or is most of the 'chewing impulse' taken away with hay and toys?
 

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