Moving Across Country

hazel_rain13

Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2014
Messages
11
So my boyfriend just accepted a job in Maryland and we currently live in California. We leave for a five day trek across the country on March 2 and I am absolutely terrified about how to get my baby safely there without too much stress. I also don't know what type of carrier/cage to use for the move. We will be stuffed in the cab of a 16 ft Penske with our Australian cattle dog as well. Any advice is very appreciated!
 

keala

Active member
Joined
Jan 19, 2019
Messages
25
Location
Iowa
I just use bass equipment rabbit carriers or any wire rabbit carrier if there is a local seller. I think my 3 hole one we had custom made locally 10-12 years ago but with the center designed to hold a 15lb rabbit it's a bit big to move chinchillas in a packed car. You can get any size and number of compartments if custom or there are lots of premade options for the smaller netherland dwarf to mini rex size rabbits that should work. Rabbit shows around here frequently do have cage/carrier suppliers that will make whatever you want. Far better than fighting with soft sided carriers that have zippers, solid sides have less risk of injury, and it's easier to get them out of top open rabbit carriers than cat carriers with less risk of someone bolting forward past your arm. Also tend to save space over even small cat carriers.

We lay folded up fleece down in the bottom and sometimes wrap the whole thing in a single layer of thinner weight fleece. It breathes plenty to allow air while helping maintain temperature against car doors opening or having to turn it off to refill gas. If it's a hot day I will stick a frozen bottle of ice in an empty compartment of a multiple section carrier with solid dividers or outside the wire with a barrier to prevent chewing. The fleece around the outside makes an instant a/c carrier. You can also pile hay on the wire floors with bedding underneath for more absorbency or get guinea pig carriers without wire floors. Guinea pig carriers tend to be limited for size options unless you find someone to do a custom one.
 

keala

Active member
Joined
Jan 19, 2019
Messages
25
Location
Iowa
I really don't know why chinchilla specific carriers and basic small wire cages are so expensive. The wire spacing? The gauge is often the same. Unweaned babies do fit out standard rabbit wire spacing but I've had no issues with anything older. The floor could be a concern if you want a wire floor but can often just be removed by cutting the rings or covered. Since I have chronic bronchitis that reacts to bedding but not chin dust we end up throwing fleece down in every cage or carrier and if anything it's less mess and work while traveling/transporting. Quality cage company may have some reinforcement to the cage and base connection that is useful but not entirely necessary for a limited use item. My rabbit equipment has held up to plenty of abuse hauling them around in vehicles and being left in the stable. The wire rabbit items have less damage than the CN cages sitting mostly in one spot indoors.

An equivalent rabbit carrier of the same design would be about $20 and a 24x18x18" kwik clip cage that has metal clips you can attach or remove by hand is around $30. Rabbit cages unlike the carriers have a slide in bottom tray but any carrier manufacturer or a minor modification yourself can make one fit inside a tray. You can also remove the dividers of most larger carriers by cutting the rings. Kwik clips or similar in place of J clips or C rings make any wire rectangle fold up quickly so any light wire cage or carrier of the desired dimensions could be collapsible by replacing at least a few clips. All you need is the outer dimensions you want and these types of items can usually be altered. Throw in a couple small wood shelves or perches that you may already have in your existing cage (watch for weight on bars) and you can pretty much create the travel package for less than $100 and a few minutes time.

I guess it's my background of growing up on a farm being creative with what you have. Most rabbit supplies online used to be a lot more DIY instead of the finished products they are now and the individual parts are still available in standard sizes from the same companies. For a larger permanent cage the chin specific extras and for some the wire floor might be worth it but otherwise anything around 18-24" dimensions and some 30-36" is sold for half as much for rabbits while usually being suitable for the purpose.
 

Idgie

Chin Geek
Joined
Jan 30, 2009
Messages
287
Location
Chicago burbs
We just went to California from Chicago and back. Three days in the car, each way. We used a small carrier for dogs/cats made of plastic that had enough room for her, pellets, hay, and some bedding to pee. I offered her water every few hours. She seemed fine and slept most of the time.
For the hotels, I have a small collapsible metal cage that is probably for bunnies. It has a full plastic tray that slides under or inside the cage. I put it inside the cage so that she doesn’t walk on the metal grid. It’s a bit of a pain to build it and collapse it every day, but it works well enough for the night.
 

Nezhka

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 1, 2009
Messages
66
Location
Twin Cities, MN
When I moved from MN to Oregon and back, I had my chins in their carrier during the drive, then at night I set them up in one of those animal playpen octagon things (with a tarp and some fleece on the floor of the hotel). It worked pretty well.
 

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