Your sugar glider’s permanent home (their enclosure) is just as important as their diet! This is where they’ll spend all their time sleeping, eating, and playing whenever they aren't with you, so it's important that the cage provides adequate space and stimulating toys to keep your gliders healthy! The number of sugar gliders you have in each colony will determine the appropriate cage size to suite their needs. The minimum cage requirements will be just fine for 2-3 gliders of any age. In the long run, bigger is always better! And each additional glider will require a bit more space for comfortable living.
When deciding on a cage for your gliders, you may be facing the choice between common commercial cages and a homemade cage. Commercial cages are those which are available for purchase on the web or in store. These are the most popular choice for sugar glider owners! If you go with a commercial cage for your suggies, be sure to check the dimensions and bar spacing for glider safety requirements. The alternative - homemade cages - are made by some owners using materials such as PVC pipes and plastic netting. There are many tutorials online that give tips for how to make your own cages if you would like to learn more. The Pet Glider does not promote any particular homemade cage design. All homemade cages will come with their own potential perks as well as risks. You can click here to check out a few commercial cages that The Pet Glider recommends for new owners!
- The minimum recommended cage dimensions are 3 feet in height, and 2ft in width and length. The cage needs to be spacious enough for them to jump from one end to another with plenty of room. A tall cage is always better than a long cage, since these animals are climbers and jumpers! Bar spacing can be no wider than ½ inch or your gliders may slip their heads through the bars. We provide a great selection of safe cages and bundles on our website which are perfect for starting colonies of 2 or expanding colonies with more!
- The ideal temperature range for a sugar glider is between 70 and 76 degrees, with about 45-50% relative humidity. The colder it is, the more they’ll sleep to try and conserve energy and the less they’ll eat. Sugar gliders DO NOT EVER need a heating pad, heat rock, or heat lamp! These items can be very dangerous, allowing your glider to overheat, become dehydrated, and suffer severe burns or even death. If your gliders' room is colder than the recommended temperature conditions, you can place a space heater about 2ft away from your gliders' cage to warm the surrounding air. Double lined sleeping pouches are also helpful in colder weather. If you live in a very humid region, you may need a dehumidifier in your glider's room to prevent illness caused by moisture.
- Wheels are an essential item for Sugar Gliders. They are hyperactive animals that need lots of stimulation, and the wheel is kind of like their favorite "toy"! It's important to get a wheel that meets proper Sugar Glider safety standards to prevent serious injuries to your babies! We sell the Raptor Wheel on our website which are designed specifically for the way that Sugar Gliders run. The Pet Glider does not recommend using any other brand of wheel with your sugar gliders, due to crucial safety features.
- Bedding is what you put on the bottom of your cage or in the tray pan to collect waste. You can use reusable fleece liners, puppy pads, newspaper, or the durable paper liners that we sell on our website. DO NOT use any soft woods shaving such as Cedar or Pine (the oils released from the wood are toxic) or any scented bedding. If you choose to use any shredded bedding, remember that gliders are grabby and they will try to pull what they can from the bottom of the cage, often resulting in a huge scattered mess.
- Another essential item for your suggies' home is a water bottle!! At TPG we prefer glass for a few reasons. The biggest reason is that plastic bottles will over time leak chemical compositions into the water source that your gliders are drinking - which is something that we want to avoid! Beyond that, some gliders will chew the plastic so it's better to be safe with a bottle that they cannot chew through. The Pet Glider does not recommend using a water bowl since gliders will play in the water/get it dirty, and there is always the risk of drowning.
- We use fleece sleeping pouches with our gliders and we recommend this for our suggie owners also! Sugar Gliders prefer to sleep in soft, hidden places in high areas. They’ll sleep in pouches, fleece cubes, or even the gourd toys if you provide blankets for them to snuggle in there! It’s best to provide a few sleeping options for your gliders, especially if you have a large colony. We recommend having "hideout toys" always available for your gliders (and multiple pouches if you have several gliders in one cage) so they can have their own space if they want to separate. We offer a variety of pouches to choose from on our site!
- And lastly.. You can't forget toys!! This is where you - as their parents - can get creative and decorate their cage any way you want. The Pet Glider makes several all-natural, glider-safe toys from organic materials such as coconut, gourd, cork bark, and eucalyptus! Browse our website to see the many toys that we have available. Be sure to always include some of these items for your gliders to climb on, chew on, and have fun investigating different materials! Checkout all of our Sugar Glide Safe toys here!
Don't forget that their wheel is crucial for regular stimulation (gliders need to have the option to run) so make sure they always have that wheel available for enrichment! If you have a fairly large cage with many toys, you might notice your gliders playing with other things and spending less time in their wheel! This is a GREAT sign! You want your gliders to be exploring their toys and having a fun time bouncing around their cage every night! If it seems like they lose interest in some toys, cycle them out so you always keep things interesting! Also try hiding a few treats inside their toys to encourage your suggies to "hunt" for their food using their senses!
If you want to learn more about glider cage setup, check out this informative video on setting up your new gliders' cage!!