Maddy has now sent over their ‘Wish list’ of what animal enrichment things they would like us to make. Depending on number of people attending we should be able to complete a few of them. The number in the brackets is how many they’d like but since we wont get everything completed on the day, it means members will be free to make anything from this list and get the cost of materials reimbursed by the Blue Cross at any time. So in no particular order of importance:
1. Cat scratching posts (8)
A simple post wrapped in rope with the option to add/replace dangle toys. The blue cross typically expect to pay between £10 - 20 on ones from amazon:
I’ve put together this relativly simple design for us to build on the day:
Cat scratching post 1.docx (371.1 KB)
2. Cat scratching towers (4)
More complex tower with platforms and hidey holes for the cats. The platforms should be at a decent height so a cat can get some distance from people if its wants. The hidey holes should have two points of access to help carers get nervous cats into carriers. The blue cross typically expect to pay between £30 - 70 for a tower from amazon.
In the Blue Cross’s experience both the towers and scratching posts are made with cardboard structures so they tend to have short lifespans. As we’d be building them out of wood instead these should last much longer for them and be much better value.
Similar to the scratching post above I’ve put together this design for us to build on the day:
Cat scratching tower 1.docx (676.4 KB)
3. Rat hammocks (4 of each)
Maddy has shared this massive guide on making several different type of hammocks for rats (can be used by other rodents too). The guide looks to be very detailed with a complete list of material requirements for each type of hammock.
Sewing and fabrics is not in my skill set so I’ll need someone to help with planning these for making on the day, as well as advising complexity level, approx. time to make and cost of materials. Additionally these might be a great item to use for running skill shares at the space.
4. Raised garden planters (8)
The Blue Cross are looking at getting some raised garden planters for strong smelling plants that will give dogs something interesting to sniff. They’d need to also have a stand so they can be raised so that any large dog peeing on them, won’t kill the plants. Ideal dimensions are 26 x 100 cm
5. Multichambered hides for rodents (6)
A maze like structure for small pets that have dead ends and obstacles for animals to navigate/make dens in. If it can be customisable this would be great for adapting to cages / the animals needs. The image Maddy shared below is one made with plywood which suggests we could make something on our laser cutter (would need to be poplar).
I’ve drawn a couple simple shapes that when combined can slot together in a grid like structure by alternating the orientation so that perpendicular panels slot together. The centre of the large panel can be customised with either openings or engravings to add interest to the maze.
Maze panels.pdf (6.2 KB)
6. Climbing frames for rodents (4)
Another wooden project for the small pets are climbing frames. If these can be made to be adjustable this would be a big benefit. The image below is as an example, which I think might have been a wine rack in a previous life so the construction method can be really simple.
For anything made of wood that will be in a cage with rodents we need to consider the wood used as they will gnaw on it. Safe Woods for Pets - Crittery
7. Rope ladders for rodents (8)
Simple ladders and nets for rodents to climb. A short tutorial for example: DIY rope ladder (YouTube)