shed queries!

sunflowerpiggies

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my guinea pigs are currently living in a hutch inside a shed, and i am planning to open up the whole shed for them to use, however I have a few questions that I hope you wouldn't mind helping me with. :)
I am not sure how to attach a lock for a mesh door. How do you lock your mesh doors without it preventing the main door from closing?
how do I make the shed pest-proof? I am not aware of any mice or rats in my area, however after reading some horror stories about them, i have decided to make the shed as safe as I can!
Could a 6'x4' shed be too large for two piggies? I have read some websites which list maximum cage sizes and I worry that i will struggle to find/bond with them. (or them with each other) - or maybe this is a good reason to get another. ;)
Where do I buy wire mesh, and is there a type that is best?
would adding curtains over the windows stop it from heating up so much in the summer?
do I need to cover the entire floor with fleece or will they be okay with some areas on the lino, as long as I cover the high-traffic areas?

Thank you so much in advance, everyone on here seems so lovely and so helpful!
 

BossHogg

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My shed is 8x6 and only houses one elderly piggy, she used to have a hutch mate, but she died recently. ☹
 

Mother Hubbard

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I had a purpose built shed with stable doors, used fly screen over the top section to keep flies away. Food is in containers and not open bags, same with hay. Lino works well and easy to mop up. I actually have carpet tiles which helps with insulation and soon to have additional Lino on top of that.
 

Piggies&buns

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My current shed is an 8x6 for two piggies and they love having all that space! It has old carpet off cuts on the floor, plastic sheeting on top of that and then I use fleece as bedding in the shed (they also have a hutch in there which has hay). I have a metal barrier which I use to cover the door with so I can have the door open and know they are protected inside.
My new shed is going to be stable door with an internal mesh door. My new shed should be up by now but Covid happened and put all plans on hold 😞
 

Gemlou81

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Mine have free run of a shed, but we have also attached aviary panels to it to create a secure garden. The shed does have a mesh door (placed inside the shed and opening inwards so can be bolted shut without hindering the actual door), but in all honesty, I never use it as the inward opening means I have to leave that area of the shed clear to allow the door to open and shut and it's a pain. If you have the space, i would really recommend creating a secure garden attached to the shed so that when it's hot the piggies can choose to go out (mine is very shaded). My shed gets really warm and in the summer I don't feel a mesh door alone would be cool enough. I shut mine into the shed at night once it's cool. The aviary panels I used are roughly 6ft x 4ft and we have used 5, plus one as the roof. It is predator proof mesh and really sturdy. Half of it's floor is wooden decking that the shed also sits on (I didnt trust having the shed on bricks or earth in case of predators digging under), and the other half is earth, but with thick wooden blocks placed under the bottom of the panels, with heavy earth and stones compacted around so that it also can't be dug under.
We were given wood laminate flooring planks to put in top of the actual shed floor, and this works really well. It's very easy to clean. The pigs have a large nest box built at the far end of the shed which is kept filled with hay, and another smaller hutch that is also kept full of hay. The rest of the floor is kept bare in summer, except for 2 toilet areas that they pee on. I also have provided them with ceramic and marble tiles that they can lay on if they are really hot. Our Aby boar particularly loves those. There are also rough bricks and roof tiles placed for them to walk on and climb over. They will often to choose climb these rather than just walk on the smooth floor, and it keeps their nails lovely and trim! In the winter I cover the whole floor in Easi bed or Aubiose for added warmth, and spot clean daily. If the weather is fine I also put more hay out on the garden so that there are plenty of choices of where to eat. Some people might not agree with me not providing soft flooring throughout, but it works for my herd, they are happy, healthy and have no foot issues.
In terms of size, your guinea pigs will be very lucky to have such a great space! When we built our shed, it was for 4, and we now have ten thanks to a few rescues(!). They are a very stable herd, so the space works for them, but we are moving house very soon and I will be more than doubling the space they have now.
I hope the photo helps, excuse the mess, this was just prior to morning clean up! I tried to upload another of the garden but it won't load.
 

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