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Rat playpen demo (IMG and video)

4296 Views 7 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  breyer08
Since we have quite a few new members lately, I wanted to take a few updated photos of my boys' playpen, and I also decided to make a video demo. This has been the best thing I've ever done for my rats: it allows them to have plenty of room to run and play 24/7, and its versatility allows me to change the size/shape and even open it up however I want.

Here is a link to the video demo:

And here are a few photos, too:

It is made entirely out of foam board and binder clips, found at the local dollar store. As you can see, I open it up a couple of times each day so I can let them run around the apartment for fully supervised play. When I am not able to watch them, I keep the playpen closed. Since they have gotten older, I now allow them to have 24/7 access to their playpen. It is easier on their joints, but it also gives them the freedom to sleep in their favorite spots in their cage, too. I hope this gives you all some inspiration and ideas for your own playpens! My boys have absolutely LOVED theirs. :D
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Great photos Breyer! I am getting ready to watch the video clip right now. I have always been a big fan of that nice for your boys to have all the freedom they want while still being safe. And so much fun for them too. I never noticed you had photos of Russ and Stan clipped onto the top of the playpen walls, that is great! I remember those photos too. Class Act all the way. :D
Thanks, Vlad! Those photos look like they are attached to the playpen, but actually they are sitting on the tv stand right in front of the monitor! :D I have such a small apartment that things tend to get all crammed in together! hahaha!
from experience with my rats the area where you have the "rat barn" looks like an easy escape route. Do they ever just jump on that and then jump over? My little girl, Lyla, was only 5 1/2 weeks old when she cleared a 2 foot high hardboard. My husband and I were SHOCKED! Lyla will also use things to prop her up! UH-OH!

How do you keep 'em in?
Well son of a gun, those pictures DID look like they were clipped to the walls of the playpen but it was an optical illusion! :)

I saw Pseudo's question about the concern for rats jumping over low walls, etc.

Maybe some rats are into that, such as jumping over things or escape but I remember that my two boys never had the urge to jump over walls or escape or things like that. They were very pudgy and lazy and they also learned when they were babies about not doing things like going down the side of the bed when I had them out during playtime. They always just waddled around on the bed or wherever I had them during playtime and had no interest in being too far away from Mommy (me!). But not all rats!
When my boys were younger, I had much higher walls. (I actually clipped the boards vertically, instead of horizontally the way they are now.) Because yes, Stanley was easily able to jump over the walls back when he was a crazy baby! :lol: Now there is no problem with it--they are nearly two years old and do not ever jump anywhere, so I can trust them with that setup.

If you are making a playpen for young, agile rats, do what I did in the beginning: only allow them to have access to it when you are present to supervise. That way, you can be sure to see what the problematic spots might be (i.e. chewing, escape, etc.). As they age, particularly the males, they will calm down a lot and you will be able to leave them unsupervised. :)
This is perfect for unathletic or older rats. :) Younger rats or jumpers would need much higher walls. I bet they love being let out into their Pen these days :D
Yes, they absolutely love it! :) :) That's why I switched from just day access to 24/7 access, now that they are older and less energetic/mobile. When Stanley was a baby, he could easily have jumped over these walls, so I had them much higher back then. Now it's perfect, and they never try to escape because they think of it as their home. :):)
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