Cage advice?

Help Support RabbitsOnline:

Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
19
Reaction score
5
Location
Uk
Hi! I'm new to the forum and I am adopting a black mini rex called buttercup soon! I just wanted some advice on good cages that don't take up too much room! She would have lots of exercise throughout the day!
Thank you ❤
 

SirLawrence

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
517
Reaction score
845
Location
South Carolina, USA
How much room are we talking? Ideally, it would be as big as you can fit in your space. But, if she's like mine, and free-roamed during the day, and their cages are their "houses", there's a lot of conflicting opinions, but she should be able hop around freely, stand on her hind legs without touching the top, and have plenty of room for hay, toys, water bowl, food bowl, etc...

My Lucas has a house that's made out of three large dog crates. I like them because the sides can be taken off and they can be put together with simple clips, and the bottoms have trays, so he's not walking on wires. He also has several rugs and towels, as flooring, and only has an exposed bit for flops!

He house may be too big for a free-roam-able rabbit, because he often opts to stay in it rather than coming out to play!

 

John Wick

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
504
Reaction score
611
Location
United States
Personally, I think the ideal is a cage that stays open with an exercise pen around it, that way the "non-exercise" time, when perhaps you cannot supervise, is confined to a space that still has plenty of room (i.e. the x-pen area). I also understand that takes up a lot of floor space, but if it's something you're willing to do, it really ensures your rabbit has plenty of room when you're not around.

I can't readily think of a cage to purchase that would be roomy enough. I know some people use extra large dog crates, but again, they can be quite small for a rabbit to be in for long periods of time. You also need space for a litter box, toys, and a water bowl, so sometimes things can be a bit "cramped", rather than spacious. I personally am an advocate of taking the time to invest and build nice 2-3 story cages out of NIC grids. You can then sort of optimize based on your room's furniture layout and dedicate as much floor space as possible in the upper floors as is structurally sound, rather than being restricted to how a store-bought cage is designed.

This is a particularly big one I had built in the past. Each grid is 14"x14", so floorspace-wise it was an approx. 3.5ft by 4.5ft of my living room:

cage.png
 
Last edited:
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
19
Reaction score
5
Location
Uk
How much room are we talking? Ideally, it would be as big as you can fit in your space. But, if she's like mine, and free-roamed during the day, and their cages are their "houses", there's a lot of conflicting opinions, but she should be able hop around freely, stand on her hind legs without touching the top, and have plenty of room for hay, toys, water bowl, food bowl, etc...

My Lucas has a house that's made out of three large dog crates. I like them because the sides can be taken off and they can be put together with simple clips, and the bottoms have trays, so he's not walking on wires. He also has several rugs and towels, as flooring, and only has an exposed bit for flops!

He house may be too big for a free-roam-able rabbit, because he often opts to stay in it rather than coming out to play!

I have guinea pigs in the same room so I've got about 8ft by 4-5ft of space for a cage , I'm moving soon so I don't think free roaming would work in a 3 story house .
 

John Wick

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
504
Reaction score
611
Location
United States
I have guinea pigs in the same room so I've got about 8ft by 4-5ft of space for a cage , I'm moving soon so I don't think free roaming would work in a 3 story house .
If free-roaming is not an option, then it's definitely important for the rabbit's designated space to be as a large as possible.
 
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
19
Reaction score
5
Location
Uk
Okay! The guinea pigs take up half of the room 😂. I have a dog pen , would a c+c cage with a dog pen attached work? Or free roamed in one room? I'd just be a little worried she might jump in the guinea pig cage! 😂
 

John Wick

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
504
Reaction score
611
Location
United States
An x-pen can work temporarily until you figure out a larger space, yes. Free roam in a full room is ideal yes, and my opinion is if there is little to no free-roam time, the space should be larger than a single x-pen because that space ends up getting cramped with the stuff you fill it with.
 

NYAngela

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2020
Messages
126
Reaction score
216
Location
Queens, NY
I had originally purchased a cage but what worked so much better for us was a pen, they are cheaper and they have more room to hop around. Mine is 4x4 and we close it at night. What was also nice was baking able to sit in there with him when we first got him and bond.
 
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
19
Reaction score
5
Location
Uk
An x-pen can work temporarily until you figure out a larger space, yes. Free roam in a full room is ideal yes, and my opinion is if there is little to no free-roam time, the space should be larger than a single x-pen because that space ends up getting cramped with the stuff you fill it with.
I have an extra large ex pen , it's about 8ft by 4ft
 

John Wick

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
504
Reaction score
611
Location
United States
I have an extra large ex pen , it's about 8ft by 4ft
If, when set-up, it is an 8ft by 4ft space (i.e. 32 sq. ft), that's a nice, spacious x-pen, in my opinion. Things to keep in mind is how much floor space is actually left when you add in litterboxes and other items. Rabbits can expend a lot of energy doing zoomies and binkies that will lap entire rooms, so you want to give as much open space for that, in addition to things to make the environment engaging. Also, keep in mind you want to re-arrange things occasionally so the pen environment doesn't get boring.
 
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
19
Reaction score
5
Location
Uk
If, when set-up, it is an 8ft by 4ft space (i.e. 32 sq. ft), that's a nice, spacious x-pen, in my opinion. Things to keep in mind is how much floor space is actually left when you add in litterboxes and other items. Rabbits can expend a lot of energy doing zoomies and binkies that will lap entire rooms, so you want to give as much open space for that, in addition to things to make the environment engaging. Also, keep in mind you want to re-arrange things occasionally so the pen environment doesn't get boring.
Oh yeah it's 8x4ft when set up. She has water bowls , food bowls , a XL cat litter box , hideys , a tunnel and a lot of toys . She also has a harness because they said she likes walks and going outside . She will get about 2 hours of exercise a day , sometimes my brother used to let my last bunny out all night in a bunny proofed room , like leave the cage open all night because there's no one walking around and my last bunny loved it so he might do that .
 

Blue eyes

Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Mar 19, 2012
Messages
8,423
Reaction score
5,650
Location
Arizona, USA
I'd have to ask my mum about it 😂
I'm picking her up very soon! Would an xpen work temporarily? I'm hopefully getting her tommorow, she's £180
Regardless of whether or not you decide (or are allowed) to free roam, it is best to start bunny off in a cage or pen of some sort. Allowing too much roaming at the start is overwhelming and terrifying for a rabbit. They need time to get used to all the new sights, sounds and smells of a new home. That is best done in a place they feel safe.

If you create a C&C cage (don't use coroplast -- too slippery for rabbits), then you don't need the ex-pen for the first couple weeks. The idea is to keep the space limited these first couple weeks so bunny has time to get settled.

Is the rabbit already fixed? Once bun is settled and is consistent with potty habits, then you can use that ex-pen for some additional space. This would be advised even if you plan to free roam. Free roaming doesn't have to mean that bunny gets access to the entire home and all the rooms. It can limited to just one room, or a room and a hallway. It's up to you. But whatever that space will be, bunny should be only gradually given that space. Start small (with the ex-pen) and then gradually increase over the course of weeks.

If bunny is not yet fixed, then wait on free-roaming until after he/she is fixed and healed. You can use the ex-pen in the interim.

Here is a page from my website that explains how to free-roam:
 

Blue eyes

Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Mar 19, 2012
Messages
8,423
Reaction score
5,650
Location
Arizona, USA
Before all of that, however, you may want to take a peek at the page on how to bring your rabbit home.
 
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
19
Reaction score
5
Location
Uk
I don't think she's fixed because she's only 12 weeks , and I've decided to use a c+c cage and give her run time , and a playpen In a few weeks.
 
Top