|Yo! Mama! (about to take a chomp)|
She does this to get my attention. Pinni will wheek and chortle while running around the cage, but if I don't acknowledge her at some point, she'll come to the wall that is closest to where I am, stand there for a moment, then chomp on the coroplast. It's guaranteed to get an immediate reaction from me: Bad rodent! Stop that! Pinni hopes that veggies will be forthcoming, but often the only attention she gets is an unwanted wuzzing.
|Top: Scalloped edges from Pinni's hard work|
Bottom: Binder spine for protection
I've had a number of pigs that have taken the occasional taste-test of coroplast. The old cage had plenty of small chew marks here and there. I suspect there is something about the texture of coroplast that numerous guinea pigs find irresistible. It's also fairly easy to chew through (unlike metal bars or wooden houses), so it doesn't take long to make some serious progress. I have seen photos of cages with intricately scalloped edges carefully crafted by an artistic guinea pig (often to their owner's dismay).
|Report covers and binder spine|
They fit perfectly over the edge of the coroplast. It just slides on and stays put with tension. Installing the spines requires a bit of a gentle touch: stretch one too far open and it will split right down the middle. But they are rugged once they're in place. Wherever I have put them, the chewing has stopped. The spines can even hide any shallow, ragged, gnawed-on edges. I've used binder spines for years, covering a few of the most chewed edges in their cage.
What makes Pinni so bad is that she's purposely going for the exposed sections right next to the protectors. I have no more spines. Even if I did, they won't fit over the double width (folded over) coroplast in the corners of the cage.
|A combo of fleece and report spines|
So I'm trying out a new solution: I've draped a bit of fleece over the raw edges of the coroplast and binder clipped it into place. It might not slow down the most determined chewer, but I am hoping it will dampen Pinni's interest. I guess it depends how closely she's following in Bertie footsteps. I could be facing another uphill battle. Time will tell!