Rabbits are traditionally kept in cages, called hutches. Though in some areas, such as some countries in Europe, hutches are legally required to be all wood, wire is much more hygienic, does not retain odour, and is easier to clean. Many hutches end up being a combination of the two. Although they are commercially available, they are often expensive, and many people find it more cost-efficient to build their own rabbit hutches. Instead of the tractor supply store, however, many rabbit owners are visiting office supply stores for their wire needs and constructing their cages from wire shelf panels.
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Things you need
- Wire panels
- Zip ties
- Dowel rods
- Spring clamps
- Self-adhesive shelf liner paper
Purchase at least two or three boxes of modular wire shelf panels, but buy more if you plan on making a larger hutch with many levels.
Lay out as many panels as you will need for the floor of your hutch. Making sure they are all facing the same side up, use your zip ties to secure them together.
Lay out as many panels as you need for the wall of your hutch. Zip tie them together. Repeat four times, but leave a space for the door.
Secure three of the walls to the floor with zip ties. If you wish to build a hutch with multiple levels, use extra wire panels to place your floors in the appropriate locations. Be sure to include in your design a way for your rabbit to travel from one level to the next.
Cover your cardboard with self-adhesive contact paper and place on the levels. This will provide relief for your rabbit's feet so that they do not sit directly upon the wire. It is also waterproof and disposable.
Add the fourth wall to your rabbit hutch. Slide one pair of dowel rods through the gaps in the wire at each of the levels to provide added support for these floors.
Create your door by fastening the last wire panel into the space reserved for it with spring clamps.
Tips and warnings
- If you need a ceiling for your rabbit hutch, make a sixth panel the same size as your floor, and attach it on top of your walls.
- If you need more access to your cage than the door permits, cut the zip ties away, remove a wall, and do your work. Use additional zip ties to replace the wall when you are finished.
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