Expedit guineipig

Published on November 15th, 2012 | by Jules IKEAHacker

16

Expedit Turned Guinea Pig Condo





Materials: Expedit 2×4, Besta Casters, Cage Grids, Zip Ties, Cable Clamps, Window Bolts, Screws, 4″ PVC Pipe Connector, Coroplast

Description: I wanted a larger cage for my guinea pig, that also would fit into our modern mid century home. I also wanted something that I could clean easily clean and maneuver around when needed. Inspired by an Ikea Hack for a hamster cage, I went to work converting a 2 x 4 Expedit into a guinea pig condo!

First, I put the Expedit together with a slight modification. The center column stayed, but the two side columns were turned on their side. This made four large areas for my little man to run around. I decided that I needed at least one area for storage, so in the lower left area I added a divider from the Expedit unit and made two “cubby holes” for guinea pig supplies.

I already had some metal cage grids from an older cage and I attached them together with zip ties. To adhere them to the Expedit, I used cable claps. These were VERY cheap and worked like a charm. They even allowed for the front grids to fold down easily for cleaning! The back grids were one solid piece. But for the front, I made three separate sections, for each of the three areas I wanted to be able to have access to. For these three areas, I attached window bolts. This allowed me to be able to lock the panels in place, if I didn’t need to get into the cage, or have them unlocked for cleaning. (Or if I wanted to pet my little man.)

For the inside of the cage, I bought some Coroplast from a plastic supply shop online (only $20) and made them into plastic trays. These are easily removed for cleaning and make great guards to assure the litter doesn’t get all over the floor!

The final touches were the hardest. To get my guinea pig from one area to the area, I had to come up with a solution that was both easy to do (as I am not THAT handy) and relatively inexpensive. For the top section I used a circle cutter for a drill and drilled a 4 inch circle from the left to right section. So my little guy wouldn’t chew the exposed wood, I inserted a 4″ PVC pipe connector I got at the hardware store for the low price of $1.50! I used the remaining Coroplast I had, from making the litter trays, to construct a ramp to go from the top section to the bottom section. I cut a square hole and attached the ramp with screws to the top level. The last touch was adding Besta casters to the bottom of the cage so we could easily move it around when needed.

We also plan on adding Expedit doors to the two cubby holes to hide the food and other accessories we are going to store there.

New loves his new cage and has been squealing with delight ever since we put him in there! And we love the fact that for less than $150 we have a brand new guinea pig condo!

See more photos of the guinea pig condo.

~ Erika Nutter, Decatur, GA

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The Author

Jules IKEAHacker

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

16 Responses to Expedit Turned Guinea Pig Condo

  1. Anonymous says:

    It’s a nice design, but way too small for guinea pigs. Guinea pigs need continuos space to run laps.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Looks really nice, and I think for 1-2 guineas the space is enough. However, you might want to stock up on the coroplast and prepare yourself to renew it frequently, because guineas pee like cows and their urine is pretty corrosive.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Its a nice hack but this really isn’t enough room for a guinea pig, let alone multiples.

    http://www.guineapigcages.com/

  4. Anonymous says:

    First of all, guinea pigs are extremely social animals, so get your pet a pet-of the same sex, and please opt to adopt. Second, the first post is correct, pigs need large, flat areas to run. Their backs aren’t made for climbing (yes, some do but it is not really a natural behavior). Coroplast holds up pretty well, I had a coroplast cage bottom that lasted 5 years. Find more info @ guineaapigcages.com. It is a nice looking hack, but probably more suited to ratties.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I don’t have little critters but this is very clever Erika !
    thank you for posting.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I agree with others that this cage is not really suited for guinea pigs. Simply put it’s just not wide enough for even one pig. I also agree that you need to adopt him a same sex friend. Guinea pigs are highly social animals and do not do as well when they are alone. Yes I know you will probably say “but we play with him all the time” well can you be in the cage with him 24/7, can you popcorn or rumblestrutt with him?? Luckily if you are in Southern California there are several really good guinea pig rescues. Orange County Cavy Haven and Los Angeles Guinea Pig Rescue.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Wow, this is so cool! Great job! I love when people make awesome cages for their pets. Way to go! I bet your pig loves it :)

  8. Anonymous says:

    GPs also have very touchy respiratory systems and are prone to lung issues. I would be concerned about off-gassing from the materials used in the furniture (paint, glue, etc.)

  9. Anonymous says:

    its nice and all but REALLY too small. a simple edit may be to just get rid of the divider in the middle to get more room. i know that pigs like tubes but a longer continuous area to run laps would be much better than 2 little rooms up top

  10. Anonymous says:

    To answer some comments/concerns: The cage is a good size for one guinea pig, according to the vet. In addition, he is let out daily into a large play pen, which he runs around quite happily in. He doesn’t “climb” anything. He has a large coroplast ramp which he freely goes up and down. The cage is fitted with three coroplast “trays” to prevent urine soaking and New coming into contact with the furniture. NO GLUE was used in the construction of this cage, so no harmful guinea pig chemicals to worry about. As far as guinea pigs being social animals, I agree 100%. New had a sweet cage mate named Papua, who he loved dearly, unfortunately she lost her battle with cancer two months ago. New seems to have recovered much faster than I. New’s vet, who is a guinea pig specialist btw, says he is quite healthy and happy. I believe I am a very good parent, who cares for and adores her guinea more so than some. I thank you for your concerns. Erika

    • Anonymous says:

      Yea, keep telling yourself that. Cavys need another cavy to be happy. And a big cage. Even if you let him out from the cage for 8 hours a day, it still means another 16 hours to spend in a cage that is too small. And he is there alone.

    • Anonymous says:

      She said she lost New’s mate only a few months ago, seriously, how about you give her a break.

      Everyone jumping all over this girl needs to step back a bit. So many animals are abandoned and abused every single day, here we have someone who went above the norm to make a nice home for their pet and most people have done nothing but attack her. I wonder what will happen when people decide it’s too much hassle to share their ideas? All you arm chair experts will have to go back to looking at your boring lives.

    • I think this is a fabulous idea and as an owner of many guinea pigs myself I think you are a very responsible, caring owner who clearly adores her pet piggy … Well done you .. You have inspired me :)

  11. Petra says:

    Great use of the cable clips to attach the grids! I bought some of the clips a year ago to make a platform in a C&C cage but they weren’t quite strong enough for that. I also love how you attached little strips of coroplast to the ramp as “steps” – how did you attach them? The tube solution for the hole is ingenious – did you put anything in to make the tube less slippery or is he okay with it? I think people were referring to the glue and off-gassing from the Expedit itself, but I wouldn’t worry about it since you have grids on both back and front and that should provide plenty of ventilation – much more than the plexiglass fronts or backs I’ve seen on some cage hacks. Why not use more grids for the storage doors, maybe with enlarged photos of New and Papua attached behind them to hide the stuff? Would look more uniform with the other grids and probably be cheaper than the Expedit doors! Sorry to hear that New lost his partner to cancer. Thanks for sharing so many good ideas!

  12. Anonymous says:

    I love how you had named the guinea pigs! :) :)

  13. Susan Khaury says:

    Guinea pigs must never come into contact with the edge of coroplast because it is sharp and it can cut them.

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