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The ultimate step-by-step guide to building a C&C cage for your guinea pigs

As a guinea pig owner, you may have often come across the term C and C cages. And for good reason too! What makes this option such a popular cage choice? You may have already decided that a C and C cage is right for you and your piggies or, are still considering a C&C cage as an option.  C and C cages are becoming more widely available as well as the materials required to make them.

This comprehensive guide explores what the benefits are of a C and C cage, and more importantly, how to make them!

BUT FIRST...WHAT IS A C&C CAGE?

double C&C cage kavee black coroplast black grids uk

C&C stands for cubes and coroplast cages. The cubes refer to the grids needed to create the cage structure and the coroplast refers to the plastic used to create the base of the cage. You will often come across both terms correx and coroplast as they are brand names commonly used to source corrugated plastic. Coroplast is lightweight, waterproof, highly durable, chemically inert and free from additives such as ultraviolet inhibitors.

The numbers display the quantity of grids used to create the C&C cages. For instance, if you were to build a 6x2 C and C cage (sometimes called a 2x6 C&C cage), the cage will be made using two grids in width and six grids in length. Due to the many benefits of C&C cages, such as its spacious living area as well as flexibility, it is widely considered one of the best cages for guinea pigs.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF A C&C CAGE?

C and C cages are widely beloved because they offer plenty of benefits to both guinea pigs and guinea pig owners alike:

  • C&C cages are fully customisable
  • C&C cages offer larger living space
  • C&C cages make it easier to bond with your guinea pigs
  • Great for bonding and new guinea pig introductions
  • C&C cages fit for indoor and outdoor use
  • Good air flow in C&C cages
  • C&C cages are easy to clean and maintain
  • C&C cages are fun and trigger creativity
  • C&C cages are foldable and can be stored flat 
  • C&C cages are super easy to assemble

Check also this article for more details about all the wonderful benefits of C&C cages for guinea pigs and the video below if you would like to know all the secrets of a C&C cage before you dive in!

 

BUILDING YOUR C&C CAGE – A STEP BY STEP GUIDE

STEP 1: DECIDING HOW BIG YOUR C&C CAGE WILL BE

Now that you are convinced a C&C cage is a great idea for your guinea pigs, you might be wondering about the size you should build. Here are two steps to define it:

PART 1: Assess the maximum space you can dedicate to your guinea pigs’ cage

Providing your piggies with plenty of space can help prevent fighting, obesity, feet issues such as bumblefoot, and promote happiness in your piggies, just to name a few! Remember more space is always better. It is also worth mentioning that a big cage will require less frequent cleaning too! So try to dedicate a space that is as large as you can possibly afford it to be. 

The table below illustrates the cage size in both inches and centimetres, to help you determine the size you could select according to the space you have.

Number of C&C grids

Cage size in inches

Cage size in cm

3x2

41x28

105x70

4x2

55x28

140x70

5x2

69x28

175x70

6x2

55x28

210x70

 

PART 2: Think about the number of guinea pigs you (could) have and their needs

When it comes to size, it is important to understand the minimum size requirements depending on the sex and number of guinea pigs you have. There are four standard C&C cage sizes: 3x2, 4x2, 5x2, 6x2. Of course, you can create longer or wider C and C cages depending on your preference.

Provided below is a diagram indicating the right size to select, according to us at Kavee. You may find guidelines indicating smaller sizes elsewhere but we do not believe those to be sufficient for the well-being of your guinea pigs. We can't say it enough: always try to dedicate the biggest space possible for your guinea pigs!

Number of guinea pigs

Our Recommendation for floor space

2 sows

2x4 C&C = 10 ft2

3 sows

2x5 C&C = 12ft2

2 boars

2x5 C&C = 12ft2

1 neutered boar & 2 sows

2x5 C&C = 12ft2

4 sows

2x6 C&C = 14 ft2


size C&C cage number of guinea pigs kavee

If you have more than four guinea pigs, it is advised to add an additional 2ft2 per guinea pig: equivalent to adding an extra grid width to your C&C cage (approx 60x30cm). For this reason, C and C cages are great at accommodating new guinea pig additions to your herd! You can purchase more grids and coroplast base to easily extend the cage.

It’s important to recognise that these recommendations only apply to one floor cages. Lofts and multiple levels on C&C cages do not count towards the total floor space. This is advised as guinea pigs need a flat space to run around. As an example, a 5x2 C&C cage for 3 sow guinea pigs is considered the same floor space as a 5x2 C&C cage with a loft.

And again always remember this key fact: more space is better!

More general information about guinea pig cage size requirements here

STEP 2: DECIDING WHETHER YOU WANT A RAMP, LID OR STAND TO YOUR C&C CAGE

Now that you have settled on a size, you may be wondering about the following options: adding a ramp and a loft, a stand or a lid to your C&C cage. This video can help you through these questions. 

1. Adding a loft and a ramp to your C&C Cage

A loft and ramp can be a great way to add excitement in your guinea pigs’ environment. Remember that by adding a loft to your cage, it does not count to the total floor space required for your piggies! Ramps will need to be a gentle incline for the safety and comfort of your piggies.

Adding a loft and a ramp to your C and C cage can be easily done by buying a C&C loft kit from Kavee and setting it up as explained below. It has everything you would need and can be set up in minutes. 

If you wish to go for a DIY solution, you will need extra grids, connectors, cable ties, coroplast, a file and wire cutters. Be aware that building a ramp from scratch can be quite daunting! The Guinea Piggles YouTube channel has a great tutorial on how to create a loft and ramp addition here below.

2. Adding a lid to your C&C Cage

A lid or cover is recommended if there is any concern for safety for your guinea pigs. Your C&C cage should have a lid if you have other animals in your household or small children. Lids are also recommended if you have an outdoor C&C run or playpen. This is to help keep your piggies safe from birds or other predators that may frequent your garden.

All Kavee cages have the option to be purchased with a rotating lid. If you change your mind later on, a lid can also be easily added by purchasing a special type of hinged grids called door grids here at Kavee. They allow your lid to open very easily. 

We also provide an informative article on our blog on how to add hinged doors, lids and gates on C&C cages.

If you do not have access to door-grids, you can try to create a lid using cable-ties. 

3. Adding a stand to your C and C cage 

As mentioned above, adding a stand to your C&C cage can aid in the taming process between you and your guinea pigs. By adding a stand, you will help guinea pigs become more comfortable with your presence the closer they are to you. Adding a stand will make easier for you to clean the cage and store your guinea pig supplies.

You can purchase a C&C cage stand kit such as the ones provided by Kavee if you do not want to go the DIY route. If you do wish to add a stand to your cage, you will need additional grids connectors, depending on the size of your C and C cage. You can check the number of grids and connectors required for each size of C&C stand here

STEP 3: MAKING A LIST OF WHAT YOU NEED

Now is time to get started and gather your supplies!

If you decide to buy C&C cages kits from Kavee’s, you don’t need to worry about how many grids you would need or how big the correx sheets! Indeed they contain absolutely everything you would need: grids, coroplast sheet, cable ties, connectors etc..

If you cannot or don’t want to get the complete kits, you could go the DIY route. To create your own C&C cage, you will need a few supplies before you get started. The below table will help you gather supplies for the most common sizes of cages:

Material Quantities Breakdown

Cage size

# Connectors Needed

# Grids Needed

Correx Size Needed

3x2

20

10

119 cm x 84 cm

4x2

24

12

154 cm x 84 cm

5x2

28

14

189 cm x 84 cm

6x2

32

16

224 cm x 84 cm

3x3

24

12

119 cm x 119 cm

4x4

32

16

154 cm x 154 cm

 If you are going for the DIY route, also plan for duct tape, box cutter, cable ties, scissors, large ruler or measuring tape and a pencil. If you have decided to add a ramp, a lid or a stand, make sure to account for that too in your list! 

Tip: If you can't find coroplast sheets that are big enough, please know that you can always merge two coroplast sheets

STEP 4: PURCHASING THE MATERIALS FOR A C&C CAGE

Finding the right materials can sometimes be tricky. Also note that not all grids and correx are suitable to create a C&C cage! – more on that below.  Here are some suggestions on where to find some of the main materials when building a C and C cage:

  • Kavee provides complete C&C cages kits in white or black grids as well as all the supplies you need to build or improve your C&C cage. Worth noting as well than Kavee's coroplast sheets come with interlocking slots so no need to cut, score and tape it! 
  • Other suppliers:
    • Correx – if you can’t get Kavee’s correx, check your local home hardware shop, local signage shop, or online retailer/sellers such as ebay,  Be careful about which coroplast you select (see section below). If you cannot find correx near you, you may consider other plastic-based options like strong soft plastic liners or even a molded cage base.
    • Grids – we strongly recommend the use of grids specially designed for guinea pigs such as Kavee’s. Read the section below to understand the risks associated with using DIY grids. 

A WORD OF CAUTION ABOUT C&C GRIDS

C&C grids come in many different options when searching for the right fit for your C&C cage and are often not created equally. Depending on the size and age of your guinea pigs, it is important to do your research for what type of grids are best suited.

Grids that have squared meshing are not suitable for small piggies or baby guinea pigs. Thin rectangular bar meshing, also known as baby bars, are safer option and can be used with baby guinea pigs older than 8 weeks, such as Kavee's grids. Please make sure that you always run a test with your own pets first as guinea pigs come in various shapes and sizes.

If you select a grid that has squared meshing, ensure that the squares are 9x9 only! If you choose a grid any less than 9x9 square meshing, there is a risk of your guinea pig’s head getting stuck in the bars. Always make sure that your choice is in the best interest of your piggies’ safety. For this purpose, it is best to avoid grids that are intended for DIY wire shelving.

Not all grids are the same size too! So, if you decide to get your coroplast sheets from Kavee and your grids from another supplier, they may not fit together.

 safety C&C grids comparion 9x9 8x8 small mesh baby bars 7x7 5x5 kavee guinea pig cage

A WORD OF CAUTION ABOUT COROPLAST SHEETS

Wrongly, most people think that the quality of correx sheets is determined by the thickness of the sheet while it is actually its density that matters. This is also referred to as grammage. The best choice of grammage for a coroplast sheet use in a C&C cage is roughly 650 mm per square. This will allow your correx base to remain strong and lightweight. Using a coroplast sheet that is less dense than 650mm can result in a flimsy, unstable base, that is not suitable to support your guinea pigs. Something denser than that would be too rigid and complicated to cut. A 650 mm per square coroplast is usually 3-4 mm thick but again check the grammage, this is what matters!

Correx grammage for Coroplast Base for C&C cage guinea pig kavee

STEP 5:  BUILDING THE C&C CAGE

Now that you have found the materials required to create a C and C cage and have selected the best size for your piggies, it is time to start building! There are many great resources online in order to help you construct your very own cage. In fact, Kavee has a Youtube channel filled with a variety of cage building videos, for each cage size and model! Here is an example of video for our 5x2 cage with a loft and a lid. 

So, let’s get started!

1. CONNECTING YOUR GRIDS

Based on the shape and size that you have selected for your C and C cage, you can start to plan out the layout. You may find it helpful to draw a quick sketch of the cage to help you visualise it.

Place the connectors on the bottom of your grids first as you attach your grids together. When you are happy with the layout, you can begin attaching the top connectors together.

2. MARKING YOUR COROPLAST BASE

Kavee's correx sheets come already cut and scored so you can skip the next 3 steps. Simply check the below video on how to get your coroplast sheets ready. 

If you have decided to go DIY with your correx, please read below to know what you will have to do.

Look at the diagram below for how to mark your coroplast sheet. Provided below are blueprints created for the most common cage sizes: 3x2, 4x2, 5x2, and 6x2 cages.

You simply need to mark out your measurements directly on your correx sheet. We recommend drawing your lines by marking your sheet in 5 cm increments. This way when you draw your line out, you connect all the dots evenly for a straight line!

Start by drawing out the base measurements first, then, on each side of your drawing, draw out the height required to make the correx walls.

cutting and scoring correx coroplast kavee

 

PLEASE NOTE: At Kavee, we recommend making the coroplast walls 3 inches tall (7.5 cm) so that your guinea pigs can see the outside world but you can create bigger walls if you would like! Of course, you can make your coroplast walls any height you wish, just be sure not to make them too short as you will want some height to keep in hay or other materials.

The above blueprints have been created with the intent of using a grid size of 35cm x 35cm and coroplast walls that are 3 inches tall. If your grids or walls are bigger or smaller, these blueprints will need to be adapted.

If your desired cage size is not listed here, you can easily modify these plans to suit your requirements. If you choose to make a custom DIY cage that is not listed here, remember to measure out your correx sheet, based on the inner dimensions of the cage. You will need to ensure your measurement is taken from the edge of the connectors (if used) in order to ensure your base fits flat. Failing to measure from the edge of the connectors will result in a correx base that fits too tightly inside the grids or a base that does not sit flat.  

3. CUTTING YOUR CORREX SHEET FOR YOUR C&C BASE

Before you start cutting your sheet, you must know that there are two ways to cut correx: either fully or half-way. Scoring it half-way allow to bend the edges to create the walls.

Start by scoring your sheet as the image in the section above illustrates. You will want to ensure that you only score where the dotted line shows (use your box cutter to cut halfway through the sheet).

Next, use your scissors to create the flaps on your base by cutting along the solid line, as indicated by the illustration below.

Scotty, from Scotty’s Animals on YouTube, provides a great demonstration on how he cuts his coroplast sheet to create his C&C cage base.

4. ASSEMBLE YOUR COROPLAST BASE

Now that you have cut your coroplast base, you are now ready to start assembling. Fold along the scored edges to make the walls and then overlap the ends with the flaps that you have cut. Affix with tape to secure them in place. 

Again, if you have selected Kavee's correx sheets none of that is required and your coroplast would be ready to set up in a flash. 

5. ENJOY YOUR NEW C&C CAGE!

Place your base inside your C&C grid perimeter and add your preferred bedding! Add your guinea pigs and enjoy watching them popcorn and perform zoomies! Guinea pigs absolutely love C&C cages! 

Beautiful C&C Cage kavee white grids 4x2 2x4 guinea pig cage

CONCLUSION

C&C cages can provide many benefits to you and your guinea pigs regardless if you choose to make one or purchase a complete kit from Kavee. C and C cages will require a few considerations before you start assembling a cage yourself such as where to source materials, and what size you should select. Whatever your decision, we are sure you wont regret getting such a cage for your guinea pigs!

Other good resources on the topic:

The Guinea Piggles: C&C Cages for Guinea Pigs

Pet Helpful: How to build a C&C Guinea Pig Cage

My Crazy Brood: Build your own C&C Cage for Guinea Pigs

Wiki How: How to make a C and C Cage for a Guinea Pig

Pocket Sized Pets: 7 Alternatives to Use Instead of Coroplast for Guinea Pig Cages

Check out our other useful posts:

How to care for older guinea pigs?

Where to find the best sources of information about guinea pigs? 

10 things you should know before buying C&C cage for your guinea pigs

How to use coroplast in a C and C cage for guinea pigs?

What is the best bedding for a C&C cage? 

How big should your guinea pig cage be?

What are C&C cages for guinea pigs?

The ultimate guide to using fleece liners for guinea pigs

6 ways in which C and C cages got better

What does C&C cage stand for?

Which C&C cage is right for my guinea pigs?

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