vertical hay rack to the second floor several months ago. I wanted to encourage Cannoli to use the upper levels. Besides, the rack was easier to fill and I can easily reach any hay that falls out behind the cage. But as Pinniped is feeling poorly, I didn't want to force her to go up to the second level to graze.
I had been using toilet paper tubes stuffed with hay on the first floor. This was messy, because Pinni would snip the cardboard tube and then spread hay all over the place. Ew - wet hay. I wanted a rack to keep the hay off the ground, but not so high that Pinni and Cannoli needed to stand up to reach most of the hay. I didn't want to make another coroplast hay rack like Bertie's rack. Pinni has a tendency to munch on coroplast when she's not feeling well. With all this in mind, I created this odd-looking fleece hay rack.
To fill it, I thread a handful or two of hay through the loops. At first I attached it to the grids just above the coroplast. However the bottom was so low that the hay wicked moisture from the bedding. I moved it up a notch, which seems to work best. The girls can easily pull hay from underneath or the sides. I've seen them look for choice strands of hay on the top, too. Pinni's new favorite spot hang out is underneath the rack. If she can't sprawl out on her hay, she's content to tuck under it.
The hay tends to catch on the fleece so the bulk of the hay stays put when they're pulling out the strand they want to eat. I liked this - so I made a few smaller, single loops to replace the toilet paper tubes. Pinni's not happy I removed her cardboard supply to chew on, but I feel better she's not eating so much cardboard. She had been going through toilet paper tubes in an alarming rate. Pinni now fans out the hay from one end of the fleece tube and lays on that. She may not be able to spread it all around, but she's still going to sit on it!