Tag Archives: hamster cage

Build your own hamster cage – step by step guide

After posting the Build you own hamster cage – photo guide I’ve received many questions about it, so I’ve asked Ross if he can give some more information regarding measures, materiel, etc.
We hope that you find this step by step guide Ross came up with useful. Please do send us some pictures of your cage if you’ve managed to build it – We would love the see it!
Step by step guide:
This cage is made mostly from standard plywood, 3/4 inch for the base and rear with 1/2 inch thick plywood sides and upper floors. The window / mesh frames are made from 3/4 x 3/4 softwood battens with a small quarter round bead each side of the window/mesh to hold it in place.
Overall the cage measures 850mm wide x 400mm deep x 400mm high
I’ll try and write a rough step by step guide to making it!
Main Cage
1. Cut the back and bottom of the cage from 3/4 inch plywood then screw and glue together (Normal PVA only, butt joint, pre-drill the holes and countersink before driving screws in). Back is 826 x 400mm and base is 382 x 826mm.
2. Cut the sides from 1/2 inch plywood and fix to the base/bottom through the sides in the same method as before. Sides are 400 x 400mm
3. Take your 3/4 x 3/4 softwood batten and cut into pieces to form the frame for your top and window surround, two long and two shorter which fit together with ‘Half lap joints’ in each corner (you can butt joint them, glue and screw if you’re careful but I wanted a glue only joint as it looks neater).
4. Cut more 3/4 batten and fix around the inside of the top to support the top frame when closed.
5. Take your quarter round beads (about 6mm wide I think), cut and mitre them in the corners for a tight fit inside each frame. The bead goes to one side of the inside of the frame so the you can insert the perspex and then repeat the bead the other side and clamp the perspex in place. Beads are fixed with a little glue and tape while it dried (painters tape or masking tape).
6. Attach small hinges to your two frames and mount them in their respective places.
7. Screw a handle on to each one if you like.
8. You’ll need to find a small plastic moulding form a hardware store to make the channel for your perspex to sit in. I ended up using two ‘L’ section plastic trims fixed next to each other to leave a ‘U’ shaped groove to slide the small front perspex wall into. Make it a tiny bit bigger than the thickness of your perspex so it slides in and out ok.
Upper Floors
9. Decide how you want your upper floors to look, bear in mind that you’ll need to have a ladder between each floor so include somewhere for it to start and end with enough space. When you have a plan, cut it out of 1/2 inch plywood and screw fix into place in the cage from the outside.
10. Repeat for the second floor.
11. In our hardware store, they sell pre-formed softwood mouldings of various styles. I chose one which was about an inch by 3-4mm thick to form the little wall around each upper floor. Cut these to length and glue and pin to the sides of your floors to stop your hamster wandering off!
12. Get a load of twigs and cut them all the same length (whatever width of ladder you want). Drill a small hole about 1/4 inch from each end in the same direction of each piece. Once you have drilled all of them, get some rigid wire (like metal coathangers) and thread the twigs onto the wire. Repeat for the other end and you just need to bend the wire over at the end to keep them on there. It’s easier to pre-bend the wire into a squared off ‘U’ shape that’s longer than your ladder and thread both sides of the ‘U’ through the twigs at the same time. This leaves only the top two ends which can be bent into hooks which you can then use to support the ladder at the top with little eyelet screws screwed into the edge of your upper floor.
Windows / Mesh
13. When your cage is assembled, measure the hole sizes for your perspex / mesh. Allow a couple of millimeters clearance so that they fit in ok. Our cage had a 6 inch perspex wall in to keep the bedding in when the front window was open.
14. Install the perspex / mesh into the frames and then glue in the second quarter round bead to clamp it in place.
15. I used small cabinet magnets to keep the door closed which were mounted high up on the sides.
That’s it, you’re done!
A few tips:-
When screwing plywood together, always pre-drill the holes and countersink for the screw heads
Make sure everything is square as it gets a lot harder if it’s not
If you need to drill the perspex for any reason, pre-drill it very slowly with a small drill and then with a larger one and so on to stop it cracking
Make sure the ply you are using is nice and flat so it keeps square. If it gets wet, it may twist and the sides will go out of square
Don’t use MDF as it contains some nasty glues
When the cage is built, it’s quite heavy so be careful lifting / moving it
Check your panels after they are cut and adjust the measurements of the next pieces in case they are not quite perfect
 Cage 1
Cage 2
Cage 3

Build your own hamster cage – photo guide


Hazel’s cage. Can you find her in the picture?

EDIT: You find the detailed step by step guide for building this hamster cage here – Building your own hamster cage step by step guide

If you have seen Hazels big hamster cage in some of my posts and you have wondered how we have built it then have a look at the following pictures!

I can’t give any detailed step-by-step description as I my boyfriend has done most of the work :) But maybe some of you can find some inspiration to build your very own big cage for your furry little friend.

Here we go.

5 HAZEL 8 9 13 photo(3)

Let me know if you are interested in some more detailed information about how this cage has been built or what material we have used! I’m sure Ross is more than happy to help as he is really proud of his little project :)

Hazel’s Hamster Crib

Welcome to Hazel’s Crib!

To see the photos in original size, simply click on them!

So what do you think about Hazels crib? :)

Hazel – Small Hamster With Big Appetite

Today I would like to introduce you to my little hamster.

Yes, you hear me right. This is going to happen now. If you want it or not. Because my hamster is awesome!

Let’s start with the basic info.

Hazel is a 5 month old dwarf hamster princess (hybrid) that lives with me and my Ross since 3 months.


Everyone say hi to Hazel!

Since October 2012 she is living in her 3-floor villa, which I built myself.

In her villa, Hazel can live a great hamster life with all the things that make a little hamster heart beat faster – a big wheel, two sand baths, tubes, hiding places (including a super cool underground cave! Which she never uses. D’oh!), a big nest of hay with awesome burrows that she created, a big candy glass filled with sand, a bowl filled with leaves, a massive box filled with corn cob granules for digging, several stones and houses, and many more things. Oh – and food sprinkled everywhere! Because she is a very hungry little hamster.


The Hamster Villa. This does make you feel jealous of her, doesn’t it?

Ok, ok, you got me, I did NOT build it myself.  It was Ross, who tinkered this amazing cage – while I was giving most clever advice obviously. He loves that.

So while we provided Hazel with all possible cool, hidden places and sleeping areas to choose from, she decided to move right behind the wheel. And she hasn’t moved her quarter since.


The toilet that became the sand bath.

Hazel is a very….. special hamster. She chooses to squeeze behind the wheel for sleeping rather than going in to her house, she uses her toilet as a sand bath and she pisses in the wheel instead.

Also, when she runs in her wheel, she stops every few seconds to come out and check where she went to. She can play that game throughout the night and does not get tired of it. What a clever catch she is.

The good thing about living behind the wheel though is that you can always see her.


Hazel at her favorite place – behind the wheel.

During the day, you can watch the little, curled up ball of fluff snoozing. Sometimes she makes funny noises while sleeping. It’s like she is singing! She must be dreaming of food.

All together she sleeps about 18 hours per day (Don’t judge her! Every princess needs her beauty sleep once in a while!). Oh sweet hamster life.

During her sleeping hours she must not be disturbed, or you might die.

Her waking hours are currently from around midnight until 6 in the morning. Also does she briefly come out in the early evening, when it is time for – can you guess it?  Dinner!

When Hazel is not sleeping, her favorite occupation is eating, or doing anything food related. And she takes that business very seriously.


I like to sit in my food bowl.

She requires food. Good food. Lots of food. A bowl the size of herself with plenty of seeds dry food  and a second bowl full of salad like lettuce, tomato, cucumber, broccoli and carrot every day is not enough.

That’s why the hungry little princess has decided to collect a massive mountain of emergency food in the deepest corner of the cage. Just in case!

I’m sure that this mountain alone would get her going for another few weeks.

Because one can never have enough food, she still hyperventilates all the time over excitement from the little snacks that you give her from the hand. While her bowl is still full with food, she hoards the snatched nibbles like there is no tomorrow.

And when the hand is empty, she might discreetly remind you who the (hungry) boss is – by biting you in the finger, that little bitch.

So what do you think. Isn’t Hazel just awesome?