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Pet Squirrels require

a very sturdy cage

to reside in.

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Determining which is the Best Cage for your Pet Squirrel

With a Southern Flying Squirrel, the native environment is
temperate woodlands. Flying squirrels, like all other
squirrels and most other rodents, are quite active. And like
other squirrels, they feel safe and happy when they are high
above the ground.

The best way to keep any animal happy and healthy in
captivity is to try to approximate its wild environment as
much as possible, while providing the best diet and safety.

In the wild, flying squirrels build nests of leaves,
shredded bark, feathers, and moss and lichens in tree
cavities and woodpecker holes, and occasionally in house
attics and birdhouses. When the nest becomes dirty or flea-
ridden, they move to a new nesting spot.

With those needs in mind, you will want to provide your pet
flying squirrel with the largest and tallest cage you can.
An absolute minimum cage size would be three cubic feet (one
cubic meter) per squirrel, with the majority of the space
vertical. A wire mesh cage with small mesh and a removable
and so easily cleaned tray in the bottom is recommended.
Place the cage on a table or stand well above floor level so
that your squirrel will feel safer. You will also want to
let your squirrel out of its cage for exercise and
interaction with you for a number of hours per day.

Buy or build a nesting box around five by five inches square
(thirteen by thirteen centimeters) with a removable or
hinged top, and attach it high on the outside of the cage
with an opening into the box from the inside. Put a good
collection of dry leaves, grass, bark and twigs onto the
bottom of the cage so your flying squirrel can choose from a
variety of items to use in its nest building. You can also
find commercial "bedding fluff" that you can offer it for
its nest.

Just be sure to never give your squirrel nesting materials
that are made from man-made fibers such as rayon or
polyester, the fibers are too strong and can cause injury to
your pet. Don't use anything plastic in the cage, including
food and water dishes. Gnawed plastic can cause intestinal
damage and death.

Next, find some sturdy branches from nontoxic trees. (Never
use pine or cedar branches or bedding, the fumes from them
cause respiratory illness in small animals.) Fruit tree
branches are excellent providing the trees haven't been
sprayed recently. Arrange the branches throughout the cage
and secure them well so they won't fall when your squirrel
jumps or "flies" from one to another. Try to arrange them so
there will be a natural progression from the bottom of the
cage to the top, and be sure to provide a nice horizontal
branch in front of the nest box for a "front porch" of
sorts. Attach a few wooden shelves to the inside walls for
easy resting.

Flying Squirrels will usually chose one or two spots in
their cage to use for a toilet, so keeping the cage clean
isn't a big chore, but it is recommended that you clean the
cage with hot water once a week for good sanitation.

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