Today we will review a cage we actually tried and tested, the Ferplast Favola Cage which is often advertised as one of the best cages for small rodents such as hamsters, mice, rats, and gerbils.
On Amazon and other pet sites, it’s one of the highest-rated cages and it’s specifically advertised for hamsters. So I decided to give it a go when I got my first hamster Cooper.
So does it really tick all the boxes, and is it a good hamster cage? You will soon find out in my unbiased review of the Ferplast Favola Cage.
- Ferplast Favola Cage – Overall Features
- Ferplast Favola Cage Review: The Pros
- Ferplast Favola Cage Review: The Cons
- Do I Agree With What Other Users Say (On Amazon)?
- How Has My Own Experience Been Overall?
- What Are The Alternatives To The Ferplast Favola Cage ?
- Ferplast Favola Review – Wrapping Up
Ferplast Favola Cage – Overall Features
When I unboxed the Ferplast Favola cage, I noticed it was quite sturdy overall. The cage is split into two levels. The bottom part of the cage is made of a thick transparent white-blueish plastic. That bottom part is about 5 inches high which is high enough to put 4 inches of bedding if you want to.
Now, keep in mind that there is a wheel in that very bottom part, which means that it is impossible to fill the whole plastic bottom with bedding and use the wheel at the same time. So you’ll have to choose between having a running wheel or a lot of bedding.
The top part is a classic wired cage and is roughly 6.5 inches high. The bars are 0.25 inches apart (about 65 mm) so this is ok for even small hamsters. The bars themselves are very resistant and do not bend easily, so there is no way even a heavy biter will chew through the cage bars (my hamster was trying at the beginning, the bars did not budge)
Between the two floors, there is a plastic tray that is pretty opaque and does not let the light through easily. This is quite good if you have a burrower that just wants peace during the daytime. To go from one level to the other, there is a small anti-slip plastic ramp at a good angle.
You will notice that there is a small window on one of the sides; this is actually a connecting port if you want to connect two Ferplast cages together. They don’t provide the connecting port so you will have to do that if you want to connect two cages.
There are two ways to access the cage if you want to clean it or take your critter for a walk. There is a small opening at the very top of the cage. The opening is not that big to be honest which makes it difficult to access anything – more on that below.
The easiest way to have full access to all parts of the cage if you want to clean it or change the bedding is to undo the latches on each side and remove the whole upper part of the cage. The latches are sturdy too and retain the whole cage together when lowered properly.
Dimensions of the Ferplast Favola Cage
The cage dimensions are as follow:
- Length = 23.6 inches (60 cm)
- Width: 14.4 inches (36.5 cm)
- Height: 11.8 inches (30 cm)
The surface area per floor is about 325 square inches (2100 square centimeters) although probably a little bit less at the bottom taking the space of the wheel into consideration. That’s over 600 square inches in total, but is that enough space for a hamster? We’ll answer this question in a bit.
Here are the measurements of the rectangle cutout in the middle of the tray that acts as a separator between the bottom and first floor: 28 cm x 18 cm (18” x 7”). This is handy to know if you are thinking of changing the wheel to a bigger one.
The Ferplast Favola cage comes with 4 items so that you can start using it straight away.
- One food tray (about 6 in / 15 cm long), made of durable, chew-proof plastic
- A wheel: The wheel is 5.5 inches in diameter (14 cm) and it attaches to the bottom part of the tray that separates the two levels. It means that you can’t really move it anywhere else inside the cage. And if you decide to remove that middle tray to give more headroom to your critter, there is nowhere to fix your wheel, so you will have to use your imagination. It’s possible though, but you have to use your imagination (I used some cable ties and attached it to the side and it worked fine).
- One water bottle: it’s quite a small water bottle but rodents do not drink too much water so it does the job. You can fix it on one of the bars with a small plastic clip. It’s holding properly, even though the bottle tends to slip away so I had to surround it with tape to prevent it from slipping. It’s holding perfectly now. Important detail, it does not leak, which seems to be a big issue for many water bottles on the market, so that was a big plus too.
- One hidey house: It’s quite a good little house for a small rodent such as a mouse or hamster. I have a Syrian hamster and he loves it. I thought I would have to change it when he reached adulthood but he keeps using it anyway.
Setting Up the Ferplast Favola Cage: Easy or Hard?
The setup was pretty easy overall, but I struggled a little setting up the wheel – there is a way to fix it to the mount but it’s not that obvious in my opinion. But after watching a video on Youtube (in Russian!) I finally figured it out. The rest was super easy.
Ferplast Favola Cage Review: The Pros
- A sturdy cage: one of its strong points is that you can tell it was made to last. Both the plastic and the metal parts are very good quality and will keep your critter safe. It’s all chew proof and smooth overall.
- The bar spacing is good: that’s another strong point, the bar spacing is quite tight which is excellent even for small rodents such as mice and dwarf hamsters.
- Two levels can be handy for some animals, especially for mouse since they have more space to rove about. The ramp is critter-friendly which means that it’s non-slippery and not made of mesh (which creates bumblefoot on many rodents’ feet)
- Easy to clean: The fact that you can dismantle the cage easily is good if you want to clean the cage on a regular basis.
Ferplast Favola Cage Review: The Cons
1. It’s not easy to access
That small opening at the very top is not great for two reasons:
- It’s too small (4.3 in x 5.5 in or 11cm x 14cm) so you can’t take out most of the items that are provided with the cage (especially the food tray and the hut)
- It’s at the wrong place. Most rodents have an instinct of hiding when something comes from above, so when they see your big hand trying to catch them you can be sure that they will go run to the lower part of the cage, where you can’t catch them without removing the top part. The opening should have been placed on the side, not the top.
2. It’s too small for many rodents
That’s where the main problem lies. I’ve created this comprehensive guide for the ideal cage size for small pets in case you are wondering if it The Ferplast Favola cage has a surface of about 325 square inches per floor and it is often advertised as a hamster cage, but is it really spacious enough?
Hamsters need a minimum of continuous space to thrive. If their space requirements are not met, they may get depressed or even develop conditions such as cage rage, which makes them miserable and untamable.
Continuous space means that it is on one level only and not broken down in several spaces. It needs to be a square, rectangle, circle, etc. which they can pace around without any obstacles. I’ve listed below the minimum cage size requirements for small pets that are advertised to fit inside the Ferplast cage:
- Dwarf hamsters: 450 square inches
- Syrian Hamsters: 620 square inches
- Mice: 216 sq in for 1 mouse, 288 sq in for 2 mice, 360 sq in for 3 mice
- Rats: 288 sq in for 1 rat, 432 sq in for 2 rats
- Gerbils: 360 sq in for 1 or 2 gerbils
Even if the Ferplast Favola cage has two levels (about 650 square inches in total) the area is not continuous and is not big enough for them to thrive.
My Conclusion in Terms of Size
- The Ferplast Favola cage is quite cramped for a dwarf hamster and definitely not good for a Syrian hamster since they need a minimum of 600 sq in of continuous space
- It’s OK for 2 mice that get on well
- It’s OK for 1 small rat
- It’s slightly too tight for a pair of gerbils
3. The wheel is too small for hamsters
The wheel provided has a diameter of 5.5 inches, which is quite small for most rodents. As a reminder, here are the minimum wheel size if you want your critter to be comfortable:
- Dwarf hamsters: 8 inches (but Roborovski hamsters can use a 6.5” wheel)
- Syrian Hamsters: 11 inches
- Mice: 6.5 inches
- Rats: 11-15 inches (depending on rat size)
- Gerbils: 7-8 inches
So the wheel provided here is too small for all rodents, which means you will have to find a way to get a bigger wheel for your critter, which is not really easy for a cage that size.
Do I Agree With What Other Users Say (On Amazon)?
Generally speaking, the Ferplast Favola has positive reviews on Amazon. People find it sturdy, easy to clean and they like the fact that it comes with plenty of accessories.
The main issues that are reported are:
- The size: several owners report that it is too small for their hamster
- Wheel: the wheel is too small and quite noisy (the noise can be fixed though)
- Water bottle: some find it difficult to fix on the cage and that it slips out of its holder (it’s true but with a bit of tape you can fix that too)
I would agree with most complaints here, the bigger one being that it is indeed too small for most hamster breeds, especially Syrian hamsters. But apart from the size, it’s a great cage indeed.
How Has My Own Experience Been Overall?
This was the first cage I bought for my Syrian hamster and in the beginning, I was quite happy with my purchase. The Ferplast Favola cage is a good cage overall – well-made, sturdy with plenty of accessories – a great “turnkey cage” so to speak, with everything you need to make a small rodent happy from day one.
However, it appeared quickly that this cage was too small for my Syrian hamster. Cooper was gnawing at the bars constantly, monkey barring all the time, and seemed much happier outside. It was not so much of a problem at the beginning since he was just a pup, but as he was growing I could tell he was feeling cramped.
Even if he enjoyed using the wheel pretty much every night, his back was really arched and he seemed uncomfortable using it for too long. I tried to change the wheel for one that is big enough for Syrians (11 inches) but it would simply not fit in, even after removing the middle tray.
So in the end, I had to buy a much larger cage for Cooper – one that was at least 620 sq in where I could fit all his toys, wheels, and accessories and still leave him a lot of space to roam and explore.
I’ve kept the cage though, as a temporary substitute if I need to change his cage bedding or transport him from A to B (I moved recently and the Ferplast Favola cage was good to have handy)
What Are The Alternatives To The Ferplast Favola Cage ?
If you are after a hamster cage that has the same characteristics but is big enough for hamsters, here are my top 2 recommendations (I went for the first one):
- Savic Metro Hamster cage. The dimensions (in inches) are 31.5 x 20 x 20 which means a floor space of 630 sq in – perfect for all hamster breeds. The bar spacing is a minimum of 0.5 inches (even less on the sides) so even the smallest breeds won’t escape. It comes with several accessories such as tubes, a wheel, hidey huts, a penthouse and a water bottle, to name a few. It’s basically twice the size of the Ferplast Favola cage and the price is more than reasonable. The reviews are overwhelmingly positive.
- Prevue Pet Products 528: It’s a very large cage too with pretty similar dimensions: 32.5 x 19 x 17.5 inches which is good for both dwarf and Syrian Hamsters. The bar spacing is ideal too (⅜”) and there are two doors for access (one on the side and the other one on the top). The only downside for this cage is that it does not come with any accessories, so you will have to buy them separately if you don’t have them already from a previous cage.
Ferplast Favola Review – Wrapping Up
The Ferplast Favola Cage is a good cage overall, but the problem is that it is too small for hamsters. It will be OK for one or two mice, for a single rat, and just about for a pair of gerbils – even though they fare better in a tank.
But the main issue here is that it is advertised as a hamster cage but it’s really not fitting for any hamster breed – especially Syrian hamsters. Dwarf hamsters also need a larger cage with plenty of roaming space and a bigger wheel to expend their energy. However, some dwarf hamster owners have found that their critter is quite happy with that cage. Personally, I would not recommend it, but it’s your call.
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