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The Fence Post

A Cage for Your Rabbit

March 27, 2020 | by Joe Morrell

Cage Ideas to Keep Your Bunny Healthy3 bunnies in welded wire cage

Creating a Space with Wire Mesh

Your bunny's health depends on sturdy galvanized wire mesh. The right gauge and openings are critical for airflow, hygiene, and the safety of bunny's paws and more. To begin, the cage should be at least 4 times the size of your bunny. Two feet by three feet for a bunny that weighs up to eight pounds; for larger bunnies, cages should be two and a half feet by three feet at least.  The height of the cage should be ample enough so that your pet can stand up on its hind legs and stretch out. 

Recommended for sides and top of cage: 14 gauge, 2" x 1" galvanized wire mesh

An Unappealing Truth

A big drawback for your pet's health is the flooring materials. Waste and urine contamination of flooring materials, particularly a pen using straw, is a poisonous combination for your bunny. Prolonged interaction with pellets and urine can bring difficulties such as parasites and the resulting ammonia and contact with puddling urine is toxic. 

Flooring: A Good Option

It seems that a mix of flooring is the best option, though studies show that bunnies seem to prefer clean and dry wire, spending most of their time on the wire mesh part of the cage. Therefore, a section of the cage's floor should be plexiglas (or another surface that can't be chewed) and the other half wire mesh so waste pellets can drop through. Do not be misled to think that these docile creatures are easy to keep and can simply stay in their cages. Your rabbit needs out-of-cage time or its muscles will atrophy. The best times to target outside or house play is when bunny is most naturally active--in the early morning and at dusk.  

Bunnies that stay in their cages too long suffer from:
  • their feet becoming inflamed
  • thinning of bones which means they are broken more easily
  • a weakened heart, and as a result, poor muscle tone
  • difficulties with urination and difficulty defecating
  • troubling behaviors--chewing the cage, lethargy, chewing its own fur, becoming aggressive

Recommended for flooring: 14 gauge (or 16 gauge for smaller breeds), 1/2" x 1" galvanized wire mesh

A Very Practical Concern

It is very important to consider the wider needs of your pet rabbit. In a natural habitat, much of a bunny's day is spent in retreat in a burrow underground. Hence, for a domesticated rabbit, security is a priority and quite rightly, this is something that is up to you to provide consistently. During out-of-cage time, if you let your bunny roam in an enclosed space outside, make sure that there is protection from predators as just the approach of a strange animal can overwhelm a bunny that has no means of escape, with the ensuing panic possibly causing a heart attack. 

Rabbits on grass with wire cage surround 

 

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Topics: welded wire mesh, galvanized after, rabbit wire

Denmark is Building a Fence

February 28, 2020 | by Joe Morrell

A New Invader: African Swine Fever

Pig snout through fence boards

Denmark has recently completed a 43 mile-long fence in hopes to block the spread of African Swine Fever by wild boar traveling from Germany into Denmark. Though not reportedly in Germany, the disease (commonly known as ASF) is present in neighboring Poland and that is reason enough to for Denmark to protect its lucrative pork exports by building a five foot high fence to keep feral pigs at bay. 

Swine Only

ASF is a contagious and deadly virus affecting domestic & feral pigs. This is primarily for farmers to worry about, not the general human population. This is a virus that is a threat to pigs only, yet internationally.

  • It is not considered a public health threat.
  • It is not able to be passed from a pig or from pork products to a human--only hog to hog.
  • It is not a food safety concern.
  • It is not a concern to livestock or other non-swine pets. 

An International Concern

America and Canada can breathe a sigh for now. It is not found in these two countries--yet. Countries where it is found: Sub-Saharan Africa, China, Mongolia, Vietnam and some countries in Europe including Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Belgium, Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary. Czech Republic is free of the virus; however, it is found in nearby Slovakia. Other countries, such as Spain and France have had it in the past but have currently eradicated it.

black wild boar on grass field  

How much of a threat?

Among pigs, deadly. In virulent strains, pigs may get a high fever, then suffer appetite loss and appear lethargic. They may huddle together, shiver, cough, breathing abnormally. They can appear unsteady on their legs and after a few days fall into a coma and die. Scientists have predicted that it may affect a quarter of the world's population of pigs.   

And the prognosis for a cure? 

Presently, there is no vaccine available to combat the virus. There has been a concerted effort to fight the spread in a multi-tiered effort among veterinarians, researchers, university agricultural programs as well as from very motivated pork producers. 

Containment and Critique

The U.S., the pork industry supports over 500,000 jobs and represents a 20 billion dollar a year industry. For Canada, the pork industry provides 100,000 jobs and a 4 billion dollar industry. There are are stringent agreements with the U.S. and Canada to relay information, to zone and contain an outbreak should it occur. Restraining this virus is a priority; feral hogs are a problem in 39 states and in four Canadian provinces.  

Denmark's fence has come under criticism by some skeptical of its effectiveness and some are worried about blocking migratory routes of animals and birds, such as golden jackals, cranes, deer, foxes, otters, and wolves. Roads and railroad crossings have been left open offering a means by which the boars can pass.  

Black Pig at Fence

 

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Topics: wire mesh, galvanized after

Should I Build or Buy a Pre-Built Rabbit Cage?

December 5, 2019 | by Debbie Page

Rabbit behind mesh cage

Safe Enclosures for your Rabbits

Safety is the most important priority when building and buying rabbit cages. We specifically sell and recommend materials that keep rabbits safe. This article includes information on ready-made rabbit cages shipped from Pennsylvania. It also includes two materials that are safe for building your own rabbit cages from scratch: 1. Baby Saver and 2. Welded Wire Mesh.

DIY Rabbit Cage Materials for Customizing Rabbit Cages

The Baby Saver or Protecting Your Kit

Baby Saver wire is designed specifically for protecting kits (baby rabbits) in rabbit cages. Unlike standard welded wire mesh which has a 1” x 2” mesh for the entire width, this wire mesh has a ½” x 1” mesh for the bottom 4” which prevents kits from falling or being pulled through the cage.

Even though baby saver wire is more expensive than the standard wire used for rabbit cages, the cost is more than worth it to prevent the loss of kits. After all, what good is a rabbit cage if it does not protect the kits?

Baby saver is welded from 14 gauge wire and is available in both GAW (Galvanized After Weld) and GBW (Galvanized Before Weld) finish. The GAW wire will last far longer than the GBW. After the welding process the mesh is drawn through a bath of molten zinc. The weld spots and wires are thoroughly protected from rust and corrosion. Although more expensive initially, you will save the expense and hassle of replacement.

Dimensions and Planning

Rolls are 18” x 100’. The bottom 4” has a mesh opening of ½” x 1” and the top 14” has a mesh opening of 1” x 2”. It is made of 14 gauge galvanized steel wire for strength and security.

Protect your kits from untimely death by choosing baby saver wire so you and your rabbits can enjoy peace of mind! Your Mama rabbits will thank you!

Welded Wire Mesh in All Sizes

Although Baby Saver is specified for rabbit cages, there are other options. You can get creative and use what is generally known as welded wire mesh. Welded wire mesh can be used to make rabbit cages and hutches in all shapes in sizes. In other words, you can customize your cages in any way you want. Welded wire mesh in the 16 gauge, 1/2" x 1" is the ideal mesh size to use for flooring. Widths available - 12", 15", 18", 24", 30", 36", 48", 60" and 72". Galvanized After Weld finish is recommended due to its ability to stand up to the corrosive effects of rabbit urine. The 14 gauge, 1" x 2" mesh is the perfect size for the sides and top. Galvanized Before Weld wire can be used for these panels to save money, if needed. These products will keep your rabbits (and other small animals) safe and secure.

Remember that domesticated rabbits have lost some of their ability to cope with life outside and it is preferable that they are kept indoors. A hutch left outside is vulnerable to attack by predators; for example, a raccoon can reach in and do damage. It also must be noted that simply the approach of a predator can cause a heart attack as a rabbit has no capacity to run or hide.  

If you have other animals, other meshes are also available that can be used to make cages and pens for larger animals such as:

  • apron fence for beagle training pens
  • woven diamond mesh and 2" x 4" mesh for horses
  • woven deer and wildlife fence

Be sure to Check the Louis Page website for sourcing a huge variety of animal enclosures.

Rabbit Wire

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Topics: welded wire mesh, cages, baby saver, galvanized after, GAW

Gabions...More Design Ideas

August 20, 2019 | by Joe Morrell

If you've got the creative notions, we've got the mesh.

Standard or Custom Orders

Welded from heavy 11 gauge wire, typical gabion mesh has 3" x 3" openings, with Galvanized After Weld mesh as the standard--protecting against rust while offering a long life. In coastal or saline environments, a tough coating of PVC is recommended to offset corrosion and this, together with the galvanization, offers double protection. Also available: panels for assembling gabion baskets, with a standard set of dimensions being 3' x 3' x 6' or a larger set can be ordered in lengths of 9' and 12'.

It's very possible that your project may require a different set of specifications--gabion mesh can be customized and special ordered.

At Louis Page, we love the ingenuity applied to the design of gabions and the endless variety of uses for them, whether it's for walls, casual seating, embankments or planters, the list goes on. The sturdiness and style make these small or great feats of engineering an enhancement to whatever surroundings they inhabit. 

Use Gabions also for:

  • erosion control
  • bank stabilization
  • channel linings
  • weirs 

Shop Gabions

gabion drawing filled with rocks

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Topics: vinyl coated wire, gabion, galvanized after, GAW, wire gauges

T Post Installation

May 8, 2019 | by Joe Morrell

Using T Posts

First, a lesson in T post installation

 

T Post Efficiency 

No digging holes for wooden posts--a huge benefit of T posts is their installation. Pounded right into the ground, most easily done with a post hole driver. Straight and strong, knock em in, and revel in their ability to hold.  And happily, they can be moved, too. Permanent or temporary, you choose. 

 

 

T Post Strength

These American made posts are made of 100% recycled rail steel. Think about what freight trains pull. This is that steel. Very tough, durable, and able to bear a generous load. They're a fine choice for hard or rocky ground and can even stand up to livestock.

T Post Economy

Wood or vinyl posts carry a hefty price tag. T posts are a bargain in comparison. Add their ease of installation and longevity, you end up saving considerable time and money. And you can cover a lot of ground. Louis Page also includes five wire fasteners with each post.

Three surface treatments:

  • coated with baked enamel
  • hot-dipped galvanization
  • untreated

Consider purchasing T posts that are galvanized for longer life. Particularly in coastal climates where there is more risk of increased corrosion of steel which is vulnerable to rust. Yet even unfinished T posts are very weather resistant due to the high quality of rail steel.  

Are you thinking that wood might be more appealing? Aesthetics are important; however, T posts are seen mostly in winter whereas in summer the posts are covered in leafy vines. Even treated wood posts are vulnerable to rot, breakage, and taking a beating from the weather. However, if a T post is for some reason damaged, it is easily replaced.

Use them for silt fencing, snow fencing and safety fencing.

Here's an example of T posts holding up grapevines.
Vineyard T Posts

 You can also these beauties for sign posts, pens, guide stakes, home gardens, and more.

Shop T Posts

 

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Topics: galvanized after, posts, steel fence posts, steel fence posts and driver

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