Posted on March 26, 2021 by Monique Hanford
C&C cages are modular indoor guinea pig cages where you buy the separate components and fit them together to build your guinea pig cage. This enables you to make a cage the size that suits the number of guinea pigs you have and in a configuration that fits your space.
This type of DIY cage is very popular in the guinea pig community as it allows for a huge variety of customizations for creative guinea pig owners.
“C&C” stands for Cubes and Coroplast. Cubes are the grids (or panels) that fit together with special four-way connectors. Although sold as a set of storage cubes, these cubes are multi-functional and this is what many guinea pig owners use to easily build their cage. Coroplast, also known as correx, is the plastic sheeting required that makes a base for your cage.
To make a C&C cage you’ll need grids, connectors and coroplast. Zip ties are also really useful to make the structure more secure and are necessary for more complex cages that include lofts or lids.
It is important that you buy grids that are safe for your guinea pigs. The C&C grids you need for your guinea pig cage are the 9×9 square panels which measure about 14 inches or 35.5cm with a 1.4 inch or 3.5cm gap in each square. Grids with a smaller gap are also safe.
These grids will form the main structure of your cage.
Grids that have less squares across the grid and larger gaps can be dangerous for guinea pigs because they can get their heads stuck in the holes. Baby guinea pigs may also be able to escape from these unsafe grids too. Even with the safe grids, you should ensure, if you have baby guinea pigs, that there is no risk of them getting stuck or escaping.
To join the grids together, you’ll need the four-way C&C connectors. You’ll get a number of these with the grid cubes but you may need more depending on your cage design. These are easy to connect and simply push and click into place. However, some people bypass the connectors and just use zip ties to join their grids. Using both connectors and zip ties gives a much stronger structure.
The grids we recommend come with a number of connectors but, depending on the cage size you require, you may need additional packs of connectors.
Guinea pigs need a smooth base in their cage and should never be on a wire cage floor. Correx is a smooth plastic sheeting which is easy to cut to size and will form the base of your C&C cage.
When people talk about C&C cage sizes, they will be referred to by number of grids rather than the length and width of the cage in centimeters or inches.
The table below will help you work out the minimum cage size you need for the number of guinea pigs you have. The more guinea pigs you have, the bigger your cage will need to be and we recommend going up a cage size to ensure your pets have plenty of room. This is because too little cage space can result in guinea pigs fighting and a larger cage will give them a much better quality of life. You can find out more about the minimum and preferred cage sizes here…
|No. Guinea Pigs||Cage in ft2||Cage Size |
(width x length)
|1-2||7.5ft2||27″ x 41″||2 x 3|
|2-3||10.8ft2||27″ x 56″||2 x 4|
|3-4||13ft2||27″ x 70″||2 x 5|
|4-5||16ft2||27″ x 85″||2 x 6|
You can buy all the C&C cage components online and we’ve linked to the ones that are both safe and good value below. The cage plans are optional but will help assist you with the cage build and they also include measurements on how to cut the coroplast to make the base.
You can alternatively buy the full kits which come with everything you need. These C&C kits are more expensive than buying the separate materials but they are easier to put together.
For a 2×3 grid C&C cage, you’ll need 10 grids and 20 connectors plus a piece of coroplast measuring 40″ x 54″.
For a 2×4 grid C&C cage, you’ll need 12 grids and 24 connectors plus a piece of coroplast measuring 40″ x 68″.
For a 2×5 grid C&C cage, you’ll need 14 grids and 28 connectors plus a piece of coroplast measuring 40″ x 83″.
For a 2×6 grid C&C cage, you’ll need 16 grids and 32 connectors plus a piece of coroplast measuring 40″ x 96″.
Here are some step by step instructions on how to build a C&C cage for your guinea pigs.
Making a lid for a one-level C&C cage is really easy. All you need is grids, connectors and lots of zip ties.
A hinged lid is ideal as it allows easy access to your guinea pigs but you want to make sure it’s made safe and secure so there is no chance of it collapsing into the cage and on to your piggies.
Watch the video below on how to make a safe hinged lid for a 2×4 C&C cage. It’s easy to adapt for a 2×3, 2×5 or 2×6 cage simply by using more or less grids.
Creating a loft in your C&C cage will provide your guinea pigs with additional space which could be made into an eating or sleeping area to allow more room on the lower level for them to exercise.
We’ve put together a step by step video on how to make a 2×1 loft for any cage that is 2 grids deep and at least 4 grids long. This follows on from our previous video on how to build a 2×4 cage which you’ll need to watch first.
It’s important the cage ramp is secure and solid because you don’t want it to collapse when your guinea pig is using it. Another important factor to bear in mind is how to make the ramp so it’s easy to clean.
We recommend building the cage ramp with C&C grids and coroplast for super strength.
A guinea pig won’t be able to use a coroplast ramp unless it has some kind of covering that their feet can grip on to.
We’ve seen carpet glued to coroplast ramps in an effort to make them more usable for the guinea pigs. But this isn’t very hygienic as they will pee and poop on the ramp. The ramp cover needs to be washable.
You could make a fleece cover but it would need some thickness to it because the ramp will still be too slippery to use, unless it is extremely shallow.
A folded up towel cut into the right dimensions works really well and is easy to remove and wash too. Covering the sides of the ramp will also protect the coroplast from getting chewed as well.
It’s important that you use a large piece of towel that you can fold about 4 times. This is what gives it plenty of grip and makes it a lot easier for your guinea pigs to use.
You’ll need to make sure the towel is tucked under the fleece liner in the loft space to keep it in place. If you’re not using fleece liner you may be able to clip it to the sides of the ramp with strong bulldog clips.
There are several reasons a stand is useful:
In our video below, we show you how you can add a base and a stand which also acts as storage for all your guinea pig supplies. Our video shows a 2×4 cage but the same method works for any sized cage.
Once you’ve made your C&C cage, you’ll need to add some bedding.
Many C&C guinea pig cages are lined with fleece liners and you can buy them ready made to the exact size you need in many different designs and colors. Here are some of our favorites:
If you prefer a more traditional disposable bedding, you could use any of the following:
Most C&C cages don’t have tops. This is really good as it allows for plenty of interaction with your guinea pigs than with a traditional cage which will usually have a built in lid.
However if you have other pets you’ll need to make a top to keep them safe.
If you are planning on adopting baby guinea pigs or you have a pregnant guinea pig you need to be very careful to ensure they can’t get their heads stuck between the bars as baby guinea pigs are very small.
You could make your coroplast base with much higher sides to get around this problem until they are a bit older. Once your guinea pigs are a bit bigger you could cut the sides down a bit shorter.
Sometimes guinea pigs will chew on the coroplast. To prevent them from doing this you can cut some pieces of fleece to put over the edges. This also helps brighten up the coroplast and can look really funky if you use different patterns and colors!
Alternatively you can get some slide binders to cover the tops of the coroplast.
Space is really important for guinea pigs. The more space you can offer them the happier they will be.
Making a C&C modular cage means you can build a much bigger cage than those you’ll find for sale in the pet shops. This also allows more scope for you to have more guinea pigs, which can be more work, but great fun too!
We’ve designed some helpful care sheets including checklists and record sheets that will help you keep organised and up to date with the care of your guinea pigs…Find out more...