Finishing wood for diy cages?

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Finishing wood for diy cages?

Post by masonbee on Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:50 am

Hello!
I'm looking into building an enclosure for my mice, and was wondering if anyone had any experience or recommendations for finishing the wood in a pet safe way, to prevent both chewing on the wood and soaking in any urine.
I'm building a cage topper for their current aquarium as well, and was planning on using some wooden dowels to give it structure. Any advice on keeping them from chewing?
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Re: Finishing wood for diy cages?

Post by River on Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:19 pm

I'm not sure, but I think it was said in a previous topic that finishing wood for a cage is more suited to hamsters. Mice urinate a lot more than hamsters do, so the finish will eventually wear down, and the cages need to be cleaned too frequently.

EDIT: Have you looked into making a bin cage? They're great homes for mice, if done correctly.
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Re: Finishing wood for diy cages?

Post by stephlisa on Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:38 am

Are you using the wood as a surface for the mice to live on, or just for supporting other materials? I have wooden levels in my mouse cage at the moment and I coated them with Plastikote (fast dry enamel, brush on version). However, it does mean that the urine isn't absorbed so I have to put something absorbent on it otherwise it just smells so bad. I use normal beeding on each level, but previously I've just used sheets of paper.
The coating I used is safe for mice, but its not always easy to find so you have to make sure whatever you use is mouse friendly - normally that means child-safe and non-toxic.
Although I use it, I personally wouldn't recommend wooden floors for mice cages/tanks. When these levels are unusable for whatever reason I plan to diy some from other materials (e.g. hard plastic).

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Re: Finishing wood for diy cages?

Post by masonbee on Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:50 pm

Thank you for the advice!
I think I will probably stick with glass or hard plastic, then.
I'm thinking of some wood structures for their enclosure though, I'll probably just play it by ear of how fast they need to be changed when enameled vs not.

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