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Thread: 'Ham House' - a walk in run in the making

  1. #1
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    Default 'Ham House' - a walk in run in the making

    Good morning everyone

    I mentioned on my bunny rescue thread that my boyfriend and I are in the process of making a 8ftx10ft walk in run to attach to the new hutch. When we knew we were taking on Ham and Beatrice we wanted to find an affordable solution that would mean they had plenty of space to run around in and that we would be able to access too, so we can sit with them and get to know them better. We've just moved to a new house with a very large garden which is fantastic.

    So our solution to an affordable and aesthetically pleasing walk in rabbit run is converting a second hand greenhouse. We bought this 'Alton' 8x10 greenhouse off of eBay for only 10:

    s-l1600 by Rachel Brown, on Flickr

    I know it looks a bit beaten up in the pictures, but they retail at over 4000 and the timber is actually in very sound condition, it just needs re-treating! So we've removed all of the glass and are in the process of sanding the timber at the minute to be freshly painted (with Cuprinol Garden Shades, which is recommended as bunny safe). We're then going to dig a concrete foundation which will support a couple of layers of bricks for the frame to sit on.

    As you can see, some of the glass panels are missing, which is ideal - it would be way too hot for them if it was all glass and wouldn't be breathable. So we're going to do a patchwork, keeping the roof glass for shelter but having mostly galvanised wire on the sides so they get fresh air and can look out around the garden. The run will have new turf laid down, and before that goes down we'll be putting 16 gauge wire securely across the floor so that they can't dig our and nothing else can dig in.

    The hutch will be on the outside of the run with 24 hour access to it. We're either going to have the hutch facing in with the door always open or cut a hole in the back and have a tube entering the run so they can travel to it that way. We'll see which is the most practical and best for the bunnies once it's up.

    Any suggestions appreciated and I'll post photo updates of the construction here

  2. #2
    Forum Buddy Zoobec's Avatar
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    What a great idea I look forward to the updates

    Binky free at the bridge Boots, you will never be forgotten xxxx
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  3. #3
    Young Bun Noctis's Avatar
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    wow this sounds amazing cant wait to see the update
    A dutch bunny named Noctis Lucis Caelum, or Noct for short 😁 .
    Estimated birthday🐰♂ - (7/2/2017)

    For more cute pics -
    www.instagram.com/king_noctis_the_dutch/

  4. #4

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    I've thought about the possibility of using a greenhouse frame to create a run before, so I'll be interested to see how it turns out x

    **created by my DD Lionheadlop**

  5. #5

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    ooo it's lovely. Are you going to have to dismantle it yourself? I would go with the tunnel from hutch to run. Our rabbits love theirs. This is such a great idea!

  6. #6
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    10 Wow! The greenhouse is exactly the same as mine, which is used for plants I love it

    I would advise that you do some research about the timber. I think it is heavily impregnated with Cedar oil treatment. It would, therefore, not be sufficient just to sand it down to prevent issues with nibbling and toxicity as the whole timber would be impacted. I discussed this with my OH, who said he would also be afraid that the rabbits would very quickly bite through the struts. He said that he would retreat it with the appropriate Cedar treatment, but cover the inside with mesh, both to prevent damage to the wood and also any harm to the rabbits.

    I would love to see updates on your progress. What a bargain you have got!

  7. #7
    Wise Old Thumper MightyMax's Avatar
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    A big and adventurous project.

    Lots of good luck with making it into a wonderful bunny home

  8. #8
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    Thank you everyone for the well wishes! I'll post updates on here as soon as I have progress to show The greenhouse was dismantled for us by the lovely previous owner so all we had to do was pick it up. We're currently sanding and re-treating the timber frame. Omi, is it cedar oil which is harmful to rabbits or the cedar wood itself?

    The greenhouse is an older model of the Alton brand going by the design/they don't make this exact model anymore, and just looking at the wood itself (although it looks quite red in the photos) most of it has completely lost the stain and is a grey colour from being too exposed to the elements. The last thing I want is the bunnies getting ill from it though! D: We are planning on using 16 gauge galvanised mesh to cover the sides, so maybe if we leave no parts exposed then that will make it difficult to nibble?

  9. #9
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    I looked online and definitely Cedar wood is said to be toxic. Couldn't find anything I would trust regarding Cedar Oil, but I don't think I would be happy with rabbits eating it. There's also the issue that I don't think it would take a determined rabbit very long to chew right through the struts

    If you could find a way to cover the inside with mesh I think it would be safer.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omi View Post
    I looked online and definitely Cedar wood is said to be toxic. Couldn't find anything I would trust regarding Cedar Oil, but I don't think I would be happy with rabbits eating it. There's also the issue that I don't think it would take a determined rabbit very long to chew right through the struts

    If you could find a way to cover the inside with mesh I think it would be safer.
    Thanks for the advice Omi! I think the plan is to completely cover the wood on the inside with mesh so there's no way they can chew it, because even if the wood wasn't toxic it would weaken the structure of the greenhouse. We're going to use thick 16 gauge wire and make sure the corners are chew proof so both bunnies and run are safe from harm! Will share progress pictures soon

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