Dog Crate to Rabbit cage

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Hello there, I have been looking at caging options for my Californian does. I have looked into building my own wire ones but due to my location I will have to keep them free standing in my garage with dropping trays and it just didn’t seem economical to build my own. I have been watching classifieds but can’t seem to find any used rabbit cages with wire bottoms but I always seem to find dog crates for dirt cheap. Is there a way to add a wire bottom to a dog crate? Any other wallet friendly cage ideas are greatly appreciated!
 

Mini Lop Mama

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You could use tractors too!

I didn't build it, but I do have a dog kennel with welded wire on the bottom and around it. I use it for chicks and kits. I can grab some pictures of it later for you! I bought the kennel with a quail a little while ago. It has been quite useful!
 

hotzcatz

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If it's a big enough clamshell type kennel, it may be possible to put wire through the middle where they come apart? We've done that to fit more rabbits or adult rabbits of different genders into on shipping kennel. Still, it'd be a PITA to clean.

If you have access to your local dump, used refrigerator racks are pretty good for rabbit hutch walls. Not good for floors, though, bunny feet go through the cracks when they run and then there can be a broken leg. For the floors, you want those to be replaceable anyway since that's the part that will rot out first.

I wonder if you'd be able to get the big shipping kennels, split them into a top and bottom half and then put them on a wire floor? Hmm, make a slanted waterproof tabletop of some sort which slants back to a collection trough for the bunny berries and liquids, probably a three in twelve slant would be enough to make it more or less self cleaning. (three inch drop for every horizontal twelve inches, it's how they calculate roof slopes). Then make a wedge shaped walls to put under the clamshell halves to bring them to level. Put 1/2 x 1" wire across the top of those walls for the floor. It will probably need a support across the center. If it were me making it, I'd use wooden 2x2s to build the wedge frames that the clamshells would sit on. Those floor units would be replaced when the floors rotted out.
 
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The extra large dog crates initially purchased for the Collies have become wonderful cages for the Satin Angoras. I installed 1/2 x1” wire in the bottom. It allows them stand up and have room above for a ledge. My bucks really like this setup.
 

Scooter1A

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Hello there, I have been looking at caging options for my Californian does. I have looked into building my own wire ones but due to my location I will have to keep them free standing in my garage with dropping trays and it just didn’t seem economical to build my own. I have been watching classifieds but can’t seem to find any used rabbit cages with wire bottoms but I always seem to find dog crates for dirt cheap. Is there a way to add a wire bottom to a dog crate? Any other wallet friendly cage ideas are greatly appreciated!
sometimes the top of the crate wire is smaller, flip it over? when I brought my first rabbits home unexpectedly I used a dog crate for the buck with a tray and put the doe in my portable chicken coop in the garage. OK that worked until I built one but the mess was too much to continue forever. I don't think you will like the smell in your garage. Try to get something slapped together for outside.
 

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I guess it will depend on how much you want to clean, predator load, space requirements etc... I have our rabbits in stackable dog kennels. They are heavy duty that a predator will have a very hard time ripping open the metal, there is a pan & 2 removable floor grates. I have litter boxes in with all mine. Some have a 2nd floor that is a metal grate for an outdoor BBQ pit with folding legs. Some of my rabbits love & others not so much. For the cons- since I put hay in about 2x daily there is "waste" hay & it will get stuck between floor grates & pan. The pan is not deep so if you do not use litter box then you need to clean ever 1-2 days. I have the 37" but I am going to buy some 42" for more space & 2nd floors. I like having hidey holes beneath the grates. I have 3 kits in the top & a Buck in the bottom with his 2nd floor. All love boxes to rip & I have a "bird" perch in some for the rabbits to chew on. The setup depends on the rabbits personality. The photo of the White dog kennel has a solid floor, a 2nd floor, litter box. I use this for my doe & kits. She had 3 kits & had to move them when I saw her kindling a 2nd time. She has 7 kits in a great nest in all the bottom hay, in the back.
 

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BuffBrahmaBantam

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I guess it will depend on how much you want to clean, predator load, space requirements etc..
If your rabbits are in a sealed garage, you shouldn’t have to worry about predators but if you ever want to move your rabbits outside I agree with Keag that you have to think of predators. Dog kennel sized openings would not prevent weasels from getting to rabbits. Raccoons could possibly take a swipe through the cage bars with a paw. In our location, we have to use 1/2 inch or 1/4 mesh openings due to rattlesnakes, which are apparently very much attracted to our rabbits. We found out the hard way.
 

Keag

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BuffBrahmaBantam. I totally agree that one should wrap the kennels in a strong hardware cloth with a tighter mesh opening. 2 way defense. Racoons, opossum, dogs can easily rip any type of wire mesh which is why I don't use it solely & like the strength of dog crates from Homey Pets. The "folding" wire crates can be very flimsy but can be used in an enclosed shed/barn. My next step is to wrap the kennels.
 
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Thank you for all the replies! We ended up building them a large hutch in our garage. (I will attach a picture) I was wondering how long they will be able to live together? They are 3 doe sisters that have lived together their whole life. They are around 4 months old. I have been watching them and checking the pretty much daily for wounds or signs of fighting such as fur clumps laying around but have not noticed any. I caught one of them humping the others once but that was it. I have multiple food dishes with one large water dispenser and litter boxes in the little house thing. They have been in this cage for a week. It is 5’ by 3’. Thanks!44B75AF2-8EDC-4C86-9503-F7681F8F39D8.jpeg
 
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Thank you for all the replies! We ended up building them a large hutch in our garage. (I will attach a picture) I was wondering how long they will be able to live together? They are 3 doe sisters that have lived together their whole life. They are around 4 months old. I have been watching them and checking the pretty much daily for wounds or signs of fighting such as fur clumps laying around but have not noticed any. I caught one of them humping the others once but that was it. I have multiple food dishes with one large water dispenser and litter boxes in the little house thing. They have been in this cage for a week. It is 5’ by 3’. Thanks!View attachment 31808
That’s really nice! Your rabbits will be totally safe from predators.
Was just wondering the very same thing about when to separate. Have always kept rabbits separately until now but I would like to be able to keep three junior does together. None are related but they have been together for several months already and sleep in a pile.
 
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That’s really nice! Your rabbits will be totally safe from predators.
Was just wondering the very same thing about when to separate. Have always kept rabbits separately until now but I would like to be able to keep three junior does together. None are related but they have been together for several months already and sleep in a pile.
That’s exactly how my girls are!
 

ladysown

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a 3 x 5 cage will NOT be sufficient for three does upon maturity. I would be keeping a close eye on them from now on and expect things to not go well, but you might be surprised as well. Just don't expect it so you won't be horribly disappointed. :)
 

Scooter1A

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Thank you for all the replies! We ended up building them a large hutch in our garage. (I will attach a picture) I was wondering how long they will be able to live together? They are 3 doe sisters that have lived together their whole life. They are around 4 months old. I have been watching them and checking the pretty much daily for wounds or signs of fighting such as fur clumps laying around but have not noticed any. I caught one of them humping the others once but that was it. I have multiple food dishes with one large water dispenser and litter boxes in the little house thing. They have been in this cage for a week. It is 5’ by 3’. Thanks!View attachment 31808
That looks super! Love the ramp and house. I'm going to do that!! They are very pretty girls. I have a buck like that I love him. I think they can live together until they can't. I don't really know but wanted to tell you good job!
 
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Thank you! I’m 16 and I designed and built it on my own. I wanted to use materials we already had so it was budget friendly. My dad and I build stuff often so the only thing we ended but buying was 9 2x2s. It was really fun seeing something I designed myself (although simple) come together. When they need to be separated I intend on reusing the materials to make their new cages!
 
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Thank you! I’m 16 and I designed and built it on my own. I wanted to use materials we already had so it was budget friendly. My dad and I build stuff often so the only thing we ended but buying was 9 2x2s. It was really fun seeing something I designed myself (although simple) come together. When they need to be separated I intend on reusing the materials to make their new cages!
I got them from a friend who could no longer keep them so I didn’t have a cage or anything really.
 

88Dani

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If your rabbits are in a sealed garage, you shouldn’t have to worry about predators but if you ever want to move your rabbits outside I agree with Keag that you have to think of predators. Dog kennel sized openings would not prevent weasels from getting to rabbits. Raccoons could possibly take a swipe through the cage bars with a paw. In our location, we have to use 1/2 inch or 1/4 mesh openings due to rattlesnakes, which are apparently very much attracted to our rabbits. We found out the hard way.
I just started raising rabbits again. There are rattlesnakes in my new area. Scary! Is the 1/2 x 1 inch wire safe? But not the 1x2 inch?
 

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