*How do I wash your products?
All items are machine washable. I recommend washing at 30-40 degrees and using an antibacterial detergent; I personally use standard non bio and Dettol laundry cleaner (now available in PoundLand.) Please do NOT use a '2in 1' with fabric softener, or separate fabric softener, as this will prevent cage liners from absorbing urine and repel it. All cage liner orders include a care sheet and washing instructions.
*What are the advantages of using fleece rather than substrate and how do cage liners work?
Personally the biggest advantage to using fleece over wood shavings, is that it's much less messy. Ever wondered how wood shaving manage to get in the bathroom? Me too! Using fleece is not only more tidy but also saves a substantial amount of time during clean out: Use a dustpan and brush (I have friends who use mini vacuum cleaners for this job) to pick up droppings/ stray pieces of hay/debris, and when it's time to change your cage liner, simply shake out and chuck into the washing machine. If you can, I recommend purchasing two cage liners so that you always have one clean. Convenience aside, my vet (who uses fleece with her own piggies) advises that using fleece is better for delicate piggy feet, lungs and can help limit (but not cure) impaction in boys.
Some cage liners on sale are simply decorative and although they look beautiful, they are filled with batting rather than anything absorbent so you will still need to use puppy pads or equivelent underneath these. ALL the cage liners I make are absorbent so there is no need to use anything else with these; just place directly into the bottom of your enclosure.
All ZPs cage liners are made using two layers of high quality fleece sandwiching a cotton antibacterial and absorbent layer, which draws in urine leaving top and bottom fleece layers dry. The changeover time varies according to how many piggies you have and the size of your enclosure plus, and I don't know why, some piggies seem to wee more than others!
*What about rabbits, chinchillas, rats and hamsters, do you make items for them too?
Rats and rabbits are a mixed topic when it comes to fleece. I will just mention that I am not a rat or rabbit mummy (sadly) so please consider this information a secondary source. I have sold many cage liners to Ratty parents with varying results - like rabbits, some will chew them to oblivion, some will chew a few holes and leave it at that and other's won't. If you suspect that your rat will chew it then I would advise against using fleece liners as I wouldn't want anybody to waste their money on something that will be destroyed pretty quickly. What I suggest to many rabbit owners who are unsure, and this may work as an experiment for rats also, is to purchase a bottle pad from the webstore (£2.50 each including UK delivery) and see how it goes. This way, if it does get chewed up, you won't have wasted too much money. For rats and chinchillas, hanging clips can be added to cubes, tunnels etc. For a small additional charge and hammocks (square or triangle) are available in your choice of design/ colour.
In my experience of hamsters, I wouldn't recommend any of the items as all my hamsters have chewed through cage liners, piddle pads, snuggle sacks and cuddle cups, so I stick to wooden toys and housing!
*I have a two storey enclosure and the top layer has a cut out to allow for the ramp, is it possible to have a cage liner to fit?
Yes! If you could draw and photograph a plan of the top level (with dimensions) and email it to me, I will give you a price. Please don't forget to tell me your location (for delivery.)
*When telling you my enclosure measurements, should I add on an extra few cm in case of shrinkage?
I make cage liners slightly larger than the provided dimensions in case of any shrinkage. Some people prefer to have cage liners which curl a fair way up the sides to make cleaning easier, especially in shop bought enclosures; if this is something you would like, please mention it in your enquiry and I will give you a price.
*How often do I need to changeover cage liners?
Again, this is a very mixed topic and mostly depends on your enclosure size and number of residents! Please use this information as a guide but remember that piggies can vary: I have 2x4 C&C enclosures (measuring approximately 72cm x 144cm) with two piggies in each. Most I change over once a week but one pair need switching over twice a week. If you want to get more 'days' out of your cage liner, you can consider purchasing 'piddle pads' to sit in the heavier used areas eg. In houses, and wash these more frequently rather than the main cage liner. I also occasionally make extra absorbent cage liners - please email me with your enclosure size if you're interested.
*Can I use cage liners straight away? And is the fleece ready wicked?
You can use cage liners as soon as you receive them. However, the more you wash them the better they get, so the first few times you use them they won't be absorbent as they could be so you'll need to change them more frequently. Regarding the wicking of fleece, I use 150 - 200 metres of fleece per week so unfortunately it would be impossible to wash and dry that amount, especially within the turnaround time, so this will happen when you wash them. Some people prefer to give the cage liners a few washes before using - it's down to personal preference.
*What's the largest cage liner you make?
There isn't really a limit on length as I purchase fleece in 50 metre rolls but the maximum width is 145cm. However, the larger consideration of size is what you can fit in a standard washing machine. The upper limit is a 3x5 C&C (approximately 110cm x 190cm) anything larger I recommend having two half size pieces laying side by side, which also makes them more managable.
*Can I have a different design or colour on each side of my cage liner?
Standard (quoted) price is for a cage liner the same on both sides (plain or design; whichever you choose.) You can choose to have something different on each side for an additional cost - this varies by size so please ask if you're interested.
*I have two guinea pigs, should I buy a double or two single snuggle sacks?
It's pretty much an even split between piggies who share and piggies that don't: A general rule is, if your piggies sleep next to each other, they're likely to share, if they don't, purchase two singles instead. If your piggies have just arrived home, perhaps leave it a few weeks before making the decision, and get to know their sleeping habits.
*If I'm using cage liners and pigloos etc. Does this mean I don't need hay?
If you have enough hides, you will not need to provide hay as bedding, but guinea pigs still need 24/7 access to hay for eating; to keep things tidy. I recommend using a tray, cleaned out regularly as piggies tend to urinate where they eat(!) A hay bag (see 'all products',) or another dispensing device - forums are great for providing options for this, or check what's in your local pet store for ideas.
*I've been using fleece and puppy pads for a while and my piggies try to get underneath the fleece, will this be the case if I use cage liners?
I've heard many a tale of piggies climbing under blankets in seek of shelter! Please ensure you have enough 'hides' in your enclosure; this can be in the form of houses, pigloos, snuggle sacks or even cardboard boxes (great for chewing, easy to replace and very cost effective!) If not, guinea pigs will try to seek coverage wherever they can. ZP's cage liners do have weight to them and are fairly substantial; not flimsy like a blanket but be sure to provide hiding places.
*I've bought a hay bag but my piggies keep climbing inside, help!
Hay bags seem to be a huge adventure centre for piggies! Adorable to watch but if they decide to use it as a loo, it's not so great! If they're climbing inside then the bag is hung too low; hang it well off the floor with the provided clips so that your guinea pigs 'reach up' for the hay
*When will I receive my order?
As soon as you place your order it will be added to the queue (average number of orders in the queue at any one time is 35-40) and are made in the order in which they were placed. There is a significant change (from October 2020) in that now I'm working alone, I'll only be able to make a small percentage of the orders I was previously taking on per week, so please bear in mind the turnaround will be much slower than before: I don't want to compromise on quality or value so unfortunately speed will be sacrificed as I'm only be able to work 2 afternoons a week, which works out around 30 items weekly. I will provide you with an approximate time slot when placing your order but please allow a degree of flexibility as it's something of a juggle with current restrictions! As soon as your order has been completed, the courier will be booked for the following day and orders are then delivered within 3 days (please be aware in some areas delivery is delayed due to COVID-19) . Your tracking information will be emailed to you directly from the courier. If possible, please avoid asking for updates on your order before your estimated time slot as you will most likely just be in the queue. If you would like to be notified when your order has been dispatched, please let me know.
*I've seen something I like on another sellers website, can you make it for me?
Please check my 'all products' page to see if it's something I make. If not, the answer is most likely no; I don't feel comfortable copying other sellers' products as I know the time and effort that goes into designing and creating (it's happened to me on many occasions unfortunately) but also, due to the high number of orders I make each week, it's not possible to prototype and give the item the necessary testing spec. Such as the required number of washing cycles and tests prior to sending. Each product I sell has been through a rigorous testing procedure to ensure it is fit for purpose and sturdy enough to withstand boisterous play!
*My order is urgent, can I pay extra to fast track it?
Depending on how many orders are in the queue, occasionally I am able to move you up the queue and make an order faster - I don't charge for this. You can opt to have your order sent via a faster method and pay the additional fee but please discuss this with me when you place your order.
*Do you have any 'ready made' items I can buy?
All our time is spent making items which have been ordered so unfortunately there is none leftover to make any additional items for sale. However, mistakes do occasionally occur and an ordered item may accidentally be made in the wrong design/ lining colour eg. A cage liner made in pink heart rather than pink star, and not sent. So if you're not too fussy over designs - it's worth asking. Also and again occasionally, there may be items leftover from a trade order or something I have made for photographic purposes. Sometimes I will advertise made items on my Facebook page for next day dispatch.
*How and when do I pay for my order?
I accept bank transfer, credit/ debit cards or PayPal. Payment is required before an order can be started although you can save yourself a place in the queue with promised payment a couple of days later although if this is not received as planned, the order will drop to the bottom of the queue unfortunately. All payments are taken via a secure system - I don't handle personal details.
*I have my own fleece at home in a design I really like, can you make it into a cage liner?
Generally yes, although this will need to be the suitable type of fleece - please message me to discuss.
*I've just placed my order and changed my mind on design, is it too late to switch?
Probably not - please message me as soon as you have second thoughts and I can most likely alter your order, providing it hasn't been started already. Please, please double check your dimensions prior to ordering as once an item has been made, the size cannot be altered.