A double rabbit hutch is a great way to keep rabbits out of the weather while still providing them room to roam. A double hutch can allow plenty of space for one or two small to medium sized rabbits and the dimensions can be increased slightly to accommodate larger breeds. It's best to use wood that holds up well in the outdoors, such as cedar or cypress, but avoid pressure treated lumber because the chemicals could make rabbits ill.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Things you need
- Cedar, 2 by 2
- Cedar, 1 by 2
- Cedar, 1 by 6
- Exterior-grade plywood
- Coated wire mesh with 1-inch by 1-inch squares
- Table or circular saw
- Heavy-duty wire snips
- Tape measure
- Fence staples
Use the tape measure and pencil to measure and mark 8 pieces of 2-by-2 cedar--make 4 pieces 36 inches long and 4 pieces 20 inches long. Cut with a table or circular saw. Make 2 rectangular frames--36 by 24 inches--with the cedar by placing the 20-inch sections on the inside. Nail the corners to secure the rectangles. These 2 frames will create the upper and lower frames for the top half of the hutch.
Cut 4 more 2-by-2 pieces of cedar to make the support legs. The 2 front legs should be about 72 inches long and the 2 back legs about 68 inches. This will create a slant to allow water to un off the roof.
Nail the 2 rectangular frames to the support legs, parallel to each other and parallel to the ground, spaced about 18 inches apart. Mount legs on the outside of the frames.
Cut 1-by-1 cedar into 4 strips--2 should be 32 inches long, and 2 should be 18 inches. Nail strips all along the inside of the lower rectangular frame to act as a nailer for a wire mesh floor.
Cut a piece of wire mesh to make a floor for the upper half of the hutch--about 32 by 20 inches (but check the actual dimensions of your hutch to ensure proper fit). Use heavy-duty wire snips to cut through the material and make a notch in one corner that is large enough for a rabbit to pass through to access the lower level. Be sure to file off any sharp edges. Attach the mesh to the 1-by-1 cedar nailer using fence staples.
Build a door frame and jamb from 2-by-2 cedar; use 1-by-6 cedar for the door itself. The door and door jamb will need to cover the right half of the upper level. Since the upper and lower frames and the right leg form 3/4 of the door jamb, a 32-inch piece of 2-by-2 cedar is all that will need to be cut and installed about 16 inches from the right leg. Nails toenailed in on an angle through the piece and into the upper and lower frames should work well.
Cut 2-by-2 cedar into 2 18-inch pieces and 2 30-inch pieces to make a door frame; nail framing pieces together at the corners. On what will be the back side of the door, nail on a sufficient number of 31-inch-long cedar 1-by-6s to cover the entire opening. The 1-by-6s should be 1 inch short of the full door frame all the way around. Attach the door to one of the legs with 2 hinges mounted about 2 inches from the top and bottom of the door frame.
Make a door latch from a short piece of 1-by-1 cedar. Screw the latch onto the 32-inch frame piece mounted opposite the right leg. Be sure not to over-tighten--this latch should turn by hand with minimal force.
Cut a section of wire mesh about 36 by 18 inches to cover the other half of the upper front part of the hutch and nail it in place with fence staples.
Enclose the back and both sides of the upper level with 1-by-6 cedar or with exterior-grade plywood. It's best to measure the actual dimensions, but the opening in back should be about 32 by 32 inches and the open sides about 32 by 20 inches. Enclose the top with another piece of exterior-grade plywood nailed to the upper frame. The plywood dimensions should be about 44 by 32 inches to account for the roof opening and a 4-inch roof overhang all the way around.
Build a ramp from 1-by-6 cedar just long enough so it forms a 45-degree or smaller angle for rabbits to descend and ascend levels. The ramp should be about 48 inches long. Use nails to attach the ramp to the lower frame at the notch you cut into the mesh floor.
Cut wire mesh panels to enclose the front, sides and back of the lower level and attach theses panels to the legs and to the lower frame with fence staples. For the front and back, these panels should measure about 37 by 37 inches and for the sides, about 27 by 37 inches.
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