How to: DIY Three Story Gerbil Cage Also Good For Hamsters

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DIY 3 Story Gerbil House

For those that don't I graduated highschool this year and will be attending OSU OKC for their Vet tech program. So I just recently bought two gerbils. Their names are Snickers and Lord Fluffington The 3rd (my brother named him lol). I'm a big animal lover so I decided to do some research on my gerbils. I found out that the cages the pet stores sell are way too small for any small animals. So I went online and found a cool DIY Three Story Gerbil Cage with storage containers you can buy at the store. Here is how I made them.


  • Storage bins
  • box knife/exacto knife
  • candle (fire source)
  • screws/washers or zipties
  • drill
  • ruler
  • sharpie
  • wire mesh or parts from old cage

Here are the steps:

Step 1: Wash storage bins with pet friendly non toxic cleaner. I used thieves cleaner that I got from Young Living Essential Oils because I know it's pure and safe for pets.

Step 2: Measure out and trace where you want your tunnels and wire mesh/wire cage wall from your old cage onto the storage bins.

Critter Trail Tunnels

Step 3: Cut the holes for the tunnels and wire mesh/wire cage parts. Use a box cutter or an exacto knife to do so. I used both of them. Also to make it easier heat your blade up with the flame from a candle. This makes it easier to cut and helps prevents the plastic from cracking. This step requires a lot of patience. It took me almost 2 hours to cut all the holes.

Gerbil Water Bottles

Step 4: Cut the mesh or the wire cage to fit the holes. This also allows for good ventilation. I also made ones on the side for their water bottles.

Gerbil wire mesh

Step 5: Measure out where you want to drill your holes for your screws and drill the holes. You can use zipties if you like just make smaller holes.

Step 6: Put everything together. This includes the parts you used for the holes you cut and the tunnels you will use for your gerbil/hamster to get from floor to floor.

Step 7: Fill your bins with bedding and setup your cage how you like it.

Step 8: Place your critters into their new home!

Lord Fluffington the Third

Snickers the Gerbil

Gerbils make great pets. They are social animals unlike hamsters. They also like to live in pairs so they can get some more social interaction. Now you can have only one gerbil but I recommend getting a second one especially if you won't be home all the time. They are very easy to take care of. Now if you have never owned a gerbil, here are a few things you will need.

  • A cage, preferably one like the one I built
  • Food of your choice. I recommend the Oxbow brand. I work at Petsmart and that is what we feed our small animals. It may not be the cheapest but it's really good food.
  • A bowl and water bottle.
  • A hut of some sort for them to hide in
  • Bedding. I used Carefresh complete bedding. It has oder control in it.
  • Lots of chew toys! These gerbils love to chew, they chew on everything!
  • Some tunnels for them to crawl through or you can use them as a way for them to get to different levels in your cage.
  • A playpen. Only if you wish to let them run around. This is an easy way for them to get out and have some freedom without actually being free lol. I prefer the Kaytee brand.
  • I also got a puzzle playground for them to play around in in their playpen
  • An exercise ball.
  • An exercise wheel. I bought the Kaytee Silent Spinner.
  • A brick or stone. The brick and stone help with their long claws. As they run across it it files them down some. It saves you the trouble of trying to trim them yourselves.
  • A bath bowl and critter bath sand or blue dust. Small animals take sand/dust baths instead of water baths like cats and dogs do. The water can strip away their natural oils.

Now I got some of these supplies from amazon which made it a lot cheaper! If you have any questions just leave a comment below and I will try and answer them as best I can. I am not a Vet so I cannot answer any health questions.

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  1. Thanks very much for Sharing. I’ve been looking for a good creative “cheap” way to build a bigger better cage for my sons hamster Buddy. His first pet. And you shared some stuff about care and maintainance i didn’t know. Thanks again and good luck at school. Keep up the useful posts!

  2. This certainly is a very creative way to build a home for your small pet. You have enough ventilation, which worried me for a second there and if you provide enough chew toys, like you said to, they surely won’t chew through the plastic. Well thought through solution for gerbils :-)!

    The only thing I would like to add: The wheels are too small… You may have heard this, but their spines need to be straight while running to prevent back aches and problems. The perfect size for a grown gerbil is about 11 inches. I know it sounds like a lot, especially if you are trying to fit everything into a small space, but it really is in the best interest of your pets health.

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