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C & C DIY Guinea Pig Cages

What is a C&C Cage?

C&C stands for “Cubes and Coroplast”. Cubes being the metal grid system you put on the outside of the plastic “coroplast” base. C&C cages are excellent habitats for your piggies. You can custom build them to whatever shape and size you desire.

Coroplast is known as various other names also. I have often seen it referred to as “Corotherm” and also “Correx” which is the most popular term for this material in the UK. Correx/Coroplast/Corotherm is basically the same thing. It is a sheet of plastic which is corrugated to give it strength. It comes in a variety of colours and thicknesses. I always recommend 4-6mm thickness. Anything below this can be quite flimsy. When you see a house for sale, the plastic which the “for sale” sign is made from is nearly always Correx. This is the material you will need for your C&C cage.

Where can you buy the materials?

I live in the UK and will tell you now that it is difficult to find the materials here. The internet and local sign shops are your best bet. Shops such as Wilkinson’s and B&Q used to stock these storage systems but unfortunately most UK shops have stopped selling them.

If you are in the USA, I have heard shops such as Walmart, Bed Bath and Beyond and Home Depot sell these systems.

The cube systems are more commonly used as home storage solutions. If you type into Google something along the lines of “cube system,” “cube storage system” or “grid system” you will more than likely come across something you can use. The grids usually come in a 14 inch square size. You would usually receive around 20 grids in a pack and most come with the connectors.

For Correx I would always suggest to head down to your local sign shop. Grab the yellow pages and have a look through – I managed to get some huge 8 foot by 4 foot sheets of 6mm thickness for around £12 a sheet. If you ask them for Correx or explain to them it is a sheet corrugated plastic they should understand what you are after J

Attaching the cubes together is easy – if you buy a complete system they usually come with connectors. I always advise to use cable ties also to give added strength to your cage. The sturdier the better.

If you cannot find cubes or correx you could use other wire racking used in retail displays and you could use linoleum flooring for the base. Please ensure if you use wire racking that the pigs cannot squeeze through the gaps. Linoleum is a good waterproof material but if you have pigs that chew you may want to keep checking it as it’s quite a soft material and easy to eat.

What size C&C cage do I need for my pigs?

I cannot stress this enough – build the biggest size you possibly can! Pigs like a LOT of room to run around and play. I really am not a fan at all of store bought cages. I have not seen one yet that is big enough to house guinea pigs. Pet shops will market them for guinea pigs but most of them are completely unsuitable. I adore C&C cages and will always promote them to everyone J

As a guide, for 2 pigs a size of 2x4 grids is recommended. If you have a single pig you could get away with a 2x3 but pigs should not be housed by themselves. They are very social creatures and crave company of their own kind. Please keep them in pairs or larger groups J

3 pigs would require a minimum of 2x5 grids, and 4 pigs would require a minimum of 2x6. If you have the space, please build the biggest cage possible. These recommendations are the minimum size. Please do not build smaller than this as it just won’t be big enough for your pets to live a comfortable and fulfilled life.

What are the benefits of a C&C cage?

 

A few things to bear in mind...

If you have baby piggies you need to ensure they cannot fit through the gaps in the cubes. Most gaps are 1.5 inches square. Small or baby piggies can sometimes squeeze through these holes or even become stuck. It’s a good idea to have the sides or your coroplast at least 4-5 inches tall. If your cubes have gaps in which pigs can squeeze through, you could either raise the sides of your coroplast so it is too tall for your pigs to climb over or cover your grids in a smaller mesh – something like chicken wire/mesh would work well but be careful of the sharp ends when cutting down to size.

Do you have cats or dogs? If the answer is yes and they have access to the guinea pig cage you really need to think about pet-proofing it to keep your guineas safe. I would always recommend putting some grids on top to act as a roof to keep other animals out. Guinea pigs are prey animals and can easily be spooked by cats and dogs. I would always recommend keeping other pets out of the room where your piggies are housed. Please NEVER leave your piggies unsupervised when another animal is around. Your cat/dog may seem fine with you watching over but I have heard of cases where animals have attacked pigs in their owners absense so please be vigilant.

C&C cages are not suitable for outdoor use! Piggies should not be kept outdoors. I know a lot of people do but they really are an indoor pet.

Don’t build your cages too high – I’d only recommend one upper level with a ramp no higher than the 14 inch grid. The ramp needs to be at a nice gradient – not too steep as you don’t want your piggies falling off it. The Bottom level is the most important level so make sure this is the biggest area you give your piggies.

Do not use bins for the bottom of the cage. Bin cages are fine for hamsters but not guinea pigs. They are way too small. They don’t give enough ventilation either.

Frequently asked questions

1. Where can I buy materials for a C&C Cage?

This is hard to answer as it all depends on where you live. It seems the best place for materials is the USA. The internet is a good resource for grid systems. Correx is best to buy from sign shops. You will need to research your local area and visit DIY shops and sign shops to see if they stock any of the supplies.

2. How do I prevent leaks from my cage base?

I use clear heavy duty tape to line the joins of my cage to prevent leaks. I tape the outsides so the pigs cannot eat the tape. If you put enough towels and fleece down or bedding this will usually soak up any excess fluids. I would recommend tape as it is there as a back up just in case of any accidents.

3. How expensive are C&C cages?

This all depends how much you pay for your materials. The internet seems to be the cheapest place to find grid systems. They will always be cheaper to build than store bought cages. As a rough guide, look to pay around £20-£25 for a cube system (around 20 grids usually) and anything from £8-£10 for sheets or Correx for a length of 8 foot by 4 foot wide. If you find them for cheaper, then grab them while you can!

4. What alternative materials can I use?

Instead of grids you could use metal racking (the sort used in shop displays). I’ve seen cages build from wood with chicken wire attached also. These cages look like outdoor guinea pig runs but work in the same way as C&C. It’s best to raise your correx sides so the pigs do not have access to the wood as they WILL nibble it. Depending on what type of wood it is and what treatment is on it this can be bad for pigs so if you are using wood make sure the pigs cannot reach it!

5. How often should Correx be replaced?

You shouldn’t have to replace your correx at all if you maintain it well. It should last a number of years if cleaned and not nibbled. Pigs can nibble correx but they will not usually cause too much damage.

6. What is better? Cubes and Coroplast or just Coroplast?

This is really personal preference. I have used both. My personal preference is just to use Coroplast/Correx. I currently use 6mm thick white correx sheeting with the sides quite tall so the pigs cannot climb out. I think it looks a lot cleaner and less cluttered. If you are going to opt out of using grids you will need to buy 6-10mm thick correx for the added stability and you will also need to raise the sides of your cage high enough so your pigs cannot escape. My pigs have never escaped, and pigs are not good climbers so if the sides are tall enough you should not have a problem.

Related Videos:

Here is an example video below of how i made my current piggie cage base:

My C&C Photo's

My Original C&C Cage

My updated & Bigger Cages

New Storage units!

New white base (Current Cage)