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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-10-2004, 11:31 PM
XxXDr4g0nXxX
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Lightbulb Outside Cage Idea? Would it work?

I have been trying to think of a way to allow my prairie dogs to play and dig outside as they would somewhat in the wild, but without taking a chance of them getting out of their caging.

So far, the best thing I could think of was to dig a huge hole. I'm thinking somewhere around 36 feet in length, 12 feet in width, and 6-8 feet in depth. Then, I'm thinking of getting half inch wire mesh with a protective cover on it to nail to the sides and bottom of the hole. I'd then re-fill this hole with dirt. This would hopefully allow them to burrow, but not escape. It would also allow for any rain water to drain normally and not flood their tunnels. I'd like to plant some kind of grass that they would like in there.

As for the above ground caging, I'm not really sure. The half inch wire mesh could possibly be used if it was strong enough to hold shape. If it isn't strong enough, a frame could be bulit. I'm thinking it would only need to be tall enough for me to crawl or walk into. A few perches and they should be fairly happy with the height.

Does this even sound remotely possible? Can anyone think of any problems that could come with a setup like this one?

On a side note, my three had their visit to the vet today and they seem to be healthy. Chubby has one black tooth which worried me, but the vet says he thinks that it's simply pigment as the tooth appears to be healthy. He said it's the first time he has ever seen such a thing, so he took pitures.
 
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2004, 12:23 AM
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It sounds like a good idea in theory. I don't think you would have to dig the hole 6-8 foot deep though. They would probably be happy with 1-2 feet of dirt to dig in. As far as height....you wouldn't need to make it tall. Maybe you could make a little hatch opening on top so you could still get to them. PD's have no sense of height or depth perception so making it tall with perches could be dangerous. Just a thought. Are you planning on keeping them outside all day? If so, that might not be too safe. I would be worried about dogs getting in the pen somehow, the weather getting too hot, rain, whatever. Please keep that in mind. Good luck and I would love to see the finished product!

As far as the black tooth, I honestly haven't heard of that either. I would be paranoid that it's a dead tooth and would cause problems, but I'm obviously not a vet! I would like to see a pic of that too!


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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2004, 12:48 AM
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Hehe, my father works in construction, so we have a backhoe here at home in which to use for large holes if we do decide it may be safe enough to try. Not sure that we would go so deep, but having a digging machine certainly would help if we do go with such a depth.

Was thinking of making it so tall so that I would be able to take them in with a portable kennel type thing and set in there with them while they were out. Would have to keep a close eye on 'em, they love to climb. Hmmm, I'll have to keep thinking on that aspect of it...

I couldn't keep them out all day, or if I did, I'd be out with them. We currently have 3 outside dogs who have never been introduced to the PDs. We just had a littler of puppies not too long ago, and the PDs and puppies love to play around with each other, but I just do not trust the larger dogs.

Heat could very well be a problem here in NC. I may be able to battle the heat by placing a tarp or something of the sort over the top part?

Very good points and things to consider, thanks so much for you thoughts!
 
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2004, 01:19 AM
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Here are a two pictures of his teeth. One picture is too bright, the other is blurry, but you may still be able to see it enough.

http://img28.photobucket.com/albums/...s/HPIM0262.jpg

http://img28.photobucket.com/albums/...s/HPIM0263.jpg

The black is only on the top layer of that one tooth. The vet's picture would have turned out much better. He had this one sedated and also better lighting.

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2004, 01:28 AM
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Hmmm, interesting. Did he mention maybe doing an x-ray on it to make sure? Thanks for sharing the pics.


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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2004, 01:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XxXDr4g0nXxX
I'm thinking somewhere around 36 feet in length, 12 feet in width, and 6-8 feet in depth.
My goodness thats bigger then most inground pools!
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2004, 01:54 AM
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My goodness thats bigger then most inground pools!
That's actually the size of our inground pool and how I got a basic idea of how much room I would like 'em to have.
 
post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2004, 02:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Scarlette
Hmmm, interesting. Did he mention maybe doing an x-ray on it to make sure? Thanks for sharing the pics.
Nope, he sure didn't. When I first e-mailed him about the problem he wanted to do x-rays, but after he got a look at the tooth and rubbed on them he changed his mind. He meantioned that the teeth were smooth and it was a good sign as when the teeth are not healthy they have a washboard type texture. He was actually using Chubby as an bit of a learning experiance for some college students they had there learning from them. This was great for me because I learned some things too. Sadly though, a bird came in that couldn't breathe, so our visit was cut a bit short. He had finished examining all three, but it kinda cut our talking time short. I'll most likely be taking them back for nutering and I'll get more information from him then. I actually may send another e-mail to ask some questions.
 
post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-12-2004, 12:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Chubby has one black tooth which worried me, but the vet says he thinks that it's simply pigment as the tooth appears to be healthy.
Stuff like this happens although I have no idea if it does with prairie dogs but his explanation sounds feasable enough

Quote:
He said it's the first time he has ever seen such a thing, so he took pitures.
When you say he took pictures, do you mean xrays? If not, this is what needs to be done since your Vet only 'thinks' it's not a bad thing and he's never seen such a thing before... on this basis, I'd look into it further.

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-12-2004, 12:09 PM
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Any updates on the cage and on the tooth?


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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-18-2004, 10:25 AM
 
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Exclamation Cubby tooth

Hi I'm a new sign in.
I just wanted you too know that PD'S needs a pc of sting to floss
their teeth just like we do.
I use the cord of a mini blind that works great and my two girls
love it.
I hang it from the top of their cage.
Also their teeth can be cleaned by the vet if you ask.
My older PD had some black in the crack of her two front teeth
and the vet clean it out for her.
Maybe they can do the same for Cubby? Good Luck,
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