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McGuyver fixes the chinchillas up!

My brother is known to be somewhat of a MacGuyver (the character of an 80’s TV series, known to be a jack of all trades and someone who could jury rig anything). No matter the request, he always steps up to the plate without complaints ….. from  fixing our computer, our ice machine, remodeling our house, etc and to my current request …. chinchilla chew toys and cages.

This was the first cage condo he built for my chinchillas.


He is currently working on a second cage for me and some basic chew toys with replacement pieces.

  nero-and-bianca-001     strawberry basic21

They are all chinchilla tested and approved. 🙂 More can be seen here


About nonnymoose2014

I have recently retired from the healthcare field, nursing. As I try to figure out what I want to be when I grow up, this seemed like the perfect time to try my hand at blogging again. In the past, my success (or lack thereof) I believe hinged on my fear of revealing too much about myself. I have a desire to “put it all out there” BUT I want to do it on my own terms … anonymously! Thus came Nonny Moose.

15 responses »

  1. wow that cage is beautiful! if you have any tips or directions on how to make it, i would love to hear it :]


  2. Hello and good morning! I was just browsing the internet for homemade chinchilla cages and saw yours, I love it!!! My husband and I will be purchasing a chin for our daughter’s 13th birthday in July. I was curious as to whether you would have the building instructions and supply list. My husband is familiar with woodworking and has built projects in the past. If you wouldn’t mind sharing them I would greatly appreciate it!

    I look forward to hearing from you.


  3. Hi Jodi,
    Thank you! This is a great cage – both for owner and chinnie! They have lots of room to roam, it is easy to clean and the shavings and poo do not end up on the floor! I would love to take credit for designing it, but I didn’t. I purchased the cage plans from Spoiled Chins. You can find them at this link -
    They are very reasonably priced at $5 and are e-mailed to you (I am not in any way associated with Spoiled Chins and do not get any kick backs – just loved the cage plans myself!)
    We bought the cage pan for the bottom online. I cannot remember if it was a place suggested in the plans from Spoiled Chins or if I found it some other way but I cannot remember the name of the company either.
    I am not a woodworker myself, but my brother said it was very easy to build. He made a few modifications, like the hardware and ledge placement.
    Good luck to you in finding everything you need. Do feel free to e-mail me back if you have any problems or other questions.
    I bet your daughter will be thrilled this July! What a great birthday gift!


  4. I just went to and they are not running the site due to health problems except for one plan they have on the site. Can you tell me if those were the ones your brother used? Yours looks so much nicer! Would your brother be interested in making another one? I would totally purchase it! Thanks.


  5. Yes, those are the plans that he used. He just put on a little nicer hardware and placed the shelves differently. I will ask him tonight when he gets off work if he is willing to make another one. I will let you know something by e-mail later tonight.


  6. Thanks so much! He did an amazing job!


  7. Did you get a chance to ask your brother about if he was interested in making another chin condo? Thanks so much.


  8. I sent you an e-mail but I guess you didn’t get it. I wanted to make sure that you lived somewhere close to us because shipping this cage would be an enormous cost. He originally said that he would make one for you but when he went to check out the prices of the supplies to get you a current quote, he found out we can no longer get the melamine. It will not look as nice without it and would not have the easy cleanup. Sorry!


  9. oh bummer. Well thank you for getting back to me and no I never got your email. Let me know if you ever fine it again. Thanks.


  10. Fantastic site:D Hope to definitely visit soon..


  11. Informative and entertaining. I’ve added your blog to my “reading material.” Keep me updated!


  12. Hello! I just purchased the plans from spoiledchins today. I saw you said your brother could not buy the melamine but do you remember what the cage cost you in total to make??


    • I e-mailed you a reply but I also wanted to post one here just in case you do not get my e-mail. Sorry it took me so long to reply. We paid approximately $300 for the supplies for the cage. However, we did purchase an extra set of hardware to make our second cage at the same time so that they would match. Good luck in your building! Your chinnies will thank you!!


  13. Ummm for starters chinchilla cages should never be made with melmaline it is very harmful to them if digested and im pretty sure it shouldnt cost 300$ to make one just go online and look at old wall units that u can sand down make it look nice add some doors and shelves and your set thats how i did mine cost me only 80$ this sounds like a big set up to me to try and hussle money out of peoples pockets its simple and takes a day or so to do it. Good luck to all and make sure that its not MELMALINE in the wood it could kill your chinchilla if injested!!!!


    • Yes, melamine (not melmaline) can be harmful to chinchillas. The key to this cage is that none of the parts that the chinchilla will chew are made out of the melamine. And, the parts with melamine, they cannot chew. AND, evidently, you have not priced building supplies in a long time. This cage cost every bit of $300 for the cage and drawer. Supply costs will vary by the area you purchase them in. This post showing my chin cage is not a scam or a way to hussle money as you stated. AND, quite frankly, I do not appreciate the accusation!! I was not trying to sell it to anyone. I simply was bragging on my brother and the cage! I was approached and asked if I would have my brother make it for them. By the way, the cage plans are not mine. They were found on the link in the post AND I receive NO kickbacks for putting the link there. I did it because I LOVED the cage and knew others would, too. As I stated, it was the best cage I have had! My chinnies lived in it and one just like it for many, many years!! I did not say this was the ONLY way to make a cage AND have often also suggested people buy an old cabinet and redesign it into a cage. I always stress being creative. But, those can be harmful, too, if the cabinet is made out of a wood that is toxic to chinnies or if it is painted or stained. Do your research! Be informed! And, to Sam … be a little nicer … after all, it is the holiday season!



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