Creating a Sugar Glider Habitat at Home

You can’t just shove a sugar glider in a cage intended for hamsters or gerbils. Learn the right way to create a sugar glider habitat.

Sugar glider!

Here at Pets Adviser we’ve talked about keeping sugar gliders as a pet. But the controversy of whether sugar gliders should be kept as pets has been going on for years and years.

Part of the problem is that many are illegally taken from their natural habitats in Australia, New Guinea and Indonesia and sold on the black market for pet trade. Animals that have been snatched out of the wild and sold to unsuspecting people as pets are almost always problematic.

Sugar gliders need a habitat that will be healthy and interesting to them, especially if they were once out in the wild. The wise owner will take great care in creating the perfect environment for his or her new pet.

Size Really Does Matter

Many people think that just because a sugar glider is a tiny creature that they can keep it in a cage that people use for hamsters or gerbils. However, a sugar glider must have room to keep itself busy and move around freely.

The smallest size habitat for one of these little guys should be at least 2 feet wide, 2 feet deep and 3 feet high. Keep in mind that these are the minimal measurements. A sugar glider will be happier and much less troublesome in a larger area — so if your home permits, a bigger habitat would be better.

The bars on a sugar glider habitat must be no wider than 1/2 inch apart. These critters can squeeze their ways out of small places, so be sure that the measurements are accurate or your precious baby could be wandering loose in your home. Never use an uncoated wire mesh on a sugar glider cage. Their claws can get stuck in the mesh and cause serious injury.

In the video below, Dr. David Brust, DVM, explains more:

Where Oh Where Should the Habitat Go?

Sugar gliders are nocturnal animals. So the habitat should be out of the sunlight. Furthermore, the habitat should be placed in an area that is very quiet, and it should be up high on a shelf or a tall table. This will help to make your pet happy.

Set Up a Sleeping Area

Sugar gliders make their beds in hollow logs when they live in the wild. It’s best if you can give your baby a similar place to sleep. You can easily and inexpensively pick up a bird’s nesting box at your local pet shop. This will do the trick.

Might As Well Jump

It is important for the health and happiness of your sugar gliders that they have the ability to jump and climb around their habitat. They have an incessant need to jump from tree limbs and climb all over the place. You will need to go to your pet store to buy some pieces to add to the habitat that will encourage them to exercise. By adding a variety of ledges and other bars, you will ensure that your pets have loads of things to keep them happy and busy.

Bring in the Toys

Sugar gliders need to be active. They will require lots of toys to keep them occupied. Although toys that are specifically made for gliders are hard to come across, toys that have been designed for large hook bill birds will keep them busy. The gliders will enjoy swings and even heavy-duty rope toys.

Set Up Several Stations

Incorporate numerous feeding stations when you build a habitat for your sugar gliders. These animals are very competitive when it comes to their food, so having a lot of feeding stations will eliminate potential problems.

Additional Resources

Photo: Merfam/Flickr

Roseann Lahey

View posts by Roseann Lahey
Roseann Lahey has been researching and writing about pet care and behaviors for many years.

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