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#373517 - 08/29/07 10:54 PM CAUTION WITH BALL PITS

I don't know if the ball pits were originally designed as an out of cage toy or in cage, but I was under the impression they were okay for either, and I put one in all of my cages with 26 balls in each. They were the old fashioned candy jar container with the opening in the front made out of plastic.

Today I happen to come home early to pick up a glider to take to the vet and I kept hearing a funny noise coming from another cage. It was 4:00 pm and my guys just aren't up at that time of day. I finally found my little Noel in the bottom of the ball pit FLAT ON HER BACK with her legs flailing everywhere. She could not get turned over to get out!

Everytime she would try to roll or turn, the balls would roll with her and she couldn't get any footing to turn herself over. At first I thought she was playing, but it only took a second to realize she was not and that she was terrified. She was trying to grip the balls to help herself and of course that didn't work.

I don't have any idea how long she was in there, but I'm guessing it was a pretty long time, if not overnight. As a general rule my gliders are not up in the day and I didn't see her this morning as they are usually all in bed when I leave for work.

I feel very lucky she was not injured or dehydrated, but just scared out of her wits, and also very lucky I found her when I did. I think the ball pits are a great toy idea, however, I have removed them from the cages and will only use them as a supervised toy for out of cage time.

I'm not putting down the ball pits, just wanted to give everyone a heads up on what could possibly happen if the suggies aren't supervised while playing in them. At least this way I can watch them having fun in them and not miss out while I'm sleeping! thumb

#373524 - 08/29/07 11:01 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
GliderLove Offline
Glider Addict

Registered: 06/08/06
Posts: 4801
Loc: SE Minnesota..
No, I think it's important that you report it, it takes incidents like these to help us decide if this should be a supervised toy only or not! I'm sure glad your baby was ok!!
Mom to
Jae, Ashton, Briannah, Nevaeh & Addy

& all my fuzzies!
Breeder of Leu's, Mosaics, wfb, and standard grey's.
Owner of

:rtmo: :leu:

#373525 - 08/29/07 11:02 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
Xglider Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 11157
Loc: Tampa, FL
Joy .. omg .. hug2 that is so terrifying .. and thank you for posting
* ~ * John * ~ * Sorry store is closed at this time.. <br>
Link -> ~~ XtremeGlider ~~ Home of the original Re~set Toys! ~~ <br>
Oct 2012 update.. miss my gliders and my
glider family and think of my friends often!!!

#373526 - 08/29/07 11:03 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: Xglider]

I haven't tried them yet, but thank you so much for giving us all a heads up !

#373549 - 08/29/07 11:27 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]

Poor girl. it's a good thing you were there for her. Thanks for the heads up!

#373560 - 08/29/07 11:42 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
SugarBlossoms Offline
Serious Glideritis

Registered: 02/23/06
Posts: 5830
Loc: USA
I've seen quite a few of them in pics of people's cages lately. I made one with a very large plastic salad bowl for the tent and only when I'm right there. I didn't think about what happened with your baby, I was worried about hands, nails feet getting caught up in one of the holes! So glad you posted! Thank you!!

Thank God your baby is fine!! smile
Keeper of Handprints on my Heart, You left your Footprints on my soul.
My precious loves that left to quickly, Peanut, Katie
Isabella, Kiwi, Bonnie and Monroe.

Spread your wings and glide free of pain,
Until the day I see you again.

God speed my precious angels. I love you. Mama.

#373599 - 08/30/07 06:23 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: SugarBlossoms]
Mel2mdl Offline
Glider Addict

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 4212
Loc: Garland, TX
Wow - how scary!

How deep was your ball pit? Did you have fleece in it? How many balls?

Just wondering how to make them safer! Only one of mine played with it, but I haven't used it with the new guys and wanted to. But now...I'll know to be extra careful! Thanks for posting!
Molly, son & husband:

Chairman Meow
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Teaching teenagers-part joy, part guerilla warfare! :rbridge:

#373605 - 08/30/07 06:48 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: Mel2mdl]

Correct me if I'm reading this wrong, but 26 balls in each pit, sounds a bit much. We bought a set of 12 practice golf balls from the Dollar Tree, and are going to use 6 each in a shallow container.

#373612 - 08/30/07 07:27 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
jannee66 Offline
Glider Addict

Registered: 02/15/07
Posts: 3346
Loc: Mobile,Alabama
I made my shallow with fleece, lots of fun and no problems. I didn't put a lot of balls because I remember when I got STUCK in the big ball pit at "Discovery Zone". agree
wave Jannie

I heart my Sweet Spellbinding Sugar :glider:s

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Pouches and Cage Sets

#373641 - 08/30/07 08:52 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: jannee66]

Correct me if I'm reading this wrong, but 26 balls in each pit, sounds a bit much.

Actually 26 balls was 10 less than what I heard goes in and it didn't really seem like that many for the size of the container. I believe the container is a gallon, not certain. The idea I think was to have them burrow through the balls for mealies.

Noel's problem was somehow getting on her back and not being able to get turned over. This could happen in almost any kind of container with fewer balls as well. Plastic is slick. That's where the problem comes in. When there is no place to get a grip.

Like Sugarblossoms, I was concerned about other safety issues, one being to make sure they had a way to safely get out of the container. I went to great pains to put it in the corner of the cage so they could reach the sides and top and pull themselves up if necessary and I also put a tree branch within reach of the opening. I remember thinking to myself there was no way now they could get trapped in there. I never even thought about one getting stuck on their back.

Of course my sweet little Noel is so tiny, she only weighs 74g but has the guts and courage of a gorilla. She should have taken her big sister in with her (avatar)who could have given her a push upright!

Noel was very shaken by her experience and didn't come out for dinner last night. I was worried so I took her out and hand fed her myself and cuddled with her and gave her extra mealies. She's doing much better now! grin

#373651 - 08/30/07 09:07 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]

what if you lined the bottom and sides with landware cloth. This way it will make the bottom and sides easier to grip and no matter which way they turn, theres something to hold on to..

Just a thought..

I'm glad your baby is doing better.

#373654 - 08/30/07 09:11 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
BlndGrl8 Offline
Glider Slave

Registered: 12/16/06
Posts: 2262
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona!!
Oh I'm so sorry that happened to Noel! I can imagine how worried you were when you saw her and how scared she must have been too! hug2 Thank you for letting us know! I'm glad everything turned out ok now.
heart Kristin
:glider: Sparkles &

mlove Loving Husband Christopher
angel Proverbs 3:5,6

#373661 - 08/30/07 09:21 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: BlndGrl8]
hushpuppy Offline
Glider Slave

Registered: 01/31/01
Posts: 1640
Loc: Mims, Florida, USA
OMGosh Joy, that is so freaky. I used to sell these about 3 years ago and tht is somehting that I never thought of. I am glad you found her. Give Noel an extra mealie from auntie 'nita. Big hug girly!
Anita Rae
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#373663 - 08/30/07 09:22 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: BlndGrl8]
BeckiT Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 09/29/06
Posts: 16083
Loc: Manitowoc, WI
Joy, sorry to hear Noel had such a rough time in her ball pit worried I'm glad you shared this with us! I made an open top box with plastic canvas that I use for my ball pit, but I also only use it in the tent
~Becki & Crew~
Glidin' High Sugar Gliders
So You Want to Own a Sugar Glider? Read and Share wink

#373716 - 08/30/07 10:39 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: BeckiT]
ScootersPet Offline
Glider Slave

Registered: 10/09/05
Posts: 2092
Loc: Baltimore, MD
Poor Noel! Glad she is feeling better hug2

I have a ball pit, and what I did was drill a hole in the top and the side the opening is in and strung a piece of fleece through it kinda like a "rope ladder" type thing.

Scooter uses his all the time.

(How are Bonnie and Boomer doing?, hope all is well :hug2)

#373766 - 08/30/07 11:39 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ScootersPet]
USMom Offline
Serious Glideritis

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 7356
Loc: Austin, TX
Joy!!!! ((((HUGS)))) how terrifying! I hope (bet) she got a good snuggle with momma! I am so glad you found her!
Who are you networked with? Networking could save your gliders life. Create one now.

#373772 - 08/30/07 11:47 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: USMom]
pappy1264 Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 08/31/06
Posts: 11015
Loc: MA
I am glad she is ok!! How scary! I have only used mine in the tent, not in their cages. Now I am glad I didn't put any in!!
Timmy, Gidget(RIP), Bandit, Petey(RIP), Phoebe, Jake (RIP) Piper(RIP), Pru(RIP), Paige, Cole, Molly(RIP), Oliver, Wyatt, Roo(RIP), Romeo, Pennie, Mandy(RIP), Madison, Garth, Kikipoo, Stasia, Bella, Petunia(RIP), Helen, Sydney, Kizzy and Sweet Pea's mom,

#373781 - 08/30/07 12:10 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: pappy1264]

Sorry to hear about what your baby went through hug2
I stopped using balls in the pit awhile ago only because I hated cleaning the balls. Instead I just cut up a bunch of scraps of fleece and put it in the container.
I bought one of those washing bags that are made to wash small things and I just put all the fleece in there and toss it in the wash. Its also a good way to use scraps.

On a side note I had something simular happen the other day. We were cleaning cages adn my son went to the cabinet to get clean stuff to put in the cages. I did not see he put a small hamster ball in there. When I went back later that night the two gliders in there where in the ball but the ball was upside down OVER them and they could not get out. They were only in there a short time but it sacry to think what could have happened.

#373975 - 08/30/07 05:24 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
melek007 Offline
Glider Addict

Registered: 01/03/07
Posts: 3874
Loc: Eastern NC
Thanks for the warning!
~ I miss my Alev, Nese & Levent ~

#373981 - 08/30/07 05:33 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: melek007]

by ball pit do you mean hamster balls?

#373996 - 08/30/07 05:53 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
sugarlope Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 03/28/02
Posts: 19735
Loc: in my happy place
I was just getting ready to set one up. I am so glad to know this so I can watch out for any problems when they are out for play time! I'm glad she's ok!
Maia & Squish
If we never loved, then maybe we would never feel pain. Love anyway. It's worth it.

#374001 - 08/30/07 05:56 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]

no not a hamster ball more like a hollow plastic golf ball for children. they have them at like dollar stores or wallmart and some even have holes in them (great to fit mealies inside)

#374003 - 08/30/07 06:00 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]

can u send me a picture of one so i dont buy it and put it in it

#374008 - 08/30/07 06:02 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
princessmegi Offline
Serious Glideritis

Registered: 11/21/03
Posts: 6894
Loc: NW Missouri
A ball pit is a container (like a chin dust house) that you put ping pong or practice golf balls in. Similar to the ball pits at parks for kids.

"My doctrine is this: that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and we do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt." ~ Anna Sewell, English Novelist

#374009 - 08/30/07 06:02 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: ]
minkasmom Offline
Serious Glideritis

Registered: 11/08/04
Posts: 5965
Loc: Northeast Indiana
WOW, that must've been SCARY...for both you AND Noel!!

I only have a small rectangular container (about 1" deep) and put maybe 6-8 balls in there, some plastic jacks, and a few strips of fleece. I love to watch the babies go digging for the Yogies I randomly drop in the midst for them to go after.

Yes, it's a MESSY toy and I usually find the balls & jacks all over the bottom of the cage...but they're worth it!

Minkasmom (Papillon Kisses)
Slave to:
28 gliders,
5 cats,
and ONE husband (can't handle two, lol!)
gangel Remembering all my lost loves cry

#374014 - 08/30/07 06:08 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: minkasmom]
mommawannabe Offline
Glider Slave

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 2443
Loc: Roanoke, Virginia
I haven't tried them yet either but I really appreciate the heads up. Definitely a supervised play time.

Hubby Tommie
son Logan - 11
Pugs-Duncan and Raven,
Hedgies-Sweet Pea,Dobby,Bambi,DarthVader,Lexy,Shadow, Willow & Thatch.
suggies-Izzy, Miley~Toff, Jasper~Twinkie, Nix~Ash, Nash~Riley, Barney~Spryte~Pixie, Apollo~Athena.
Turtles - Shelly~Petunia

#374018 - 08/30/07 06:13 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: mommawannabe]
morksmom Offline
Glider Slave

Registered: 08/30/06
Posts: 1906
Loc: Texas
Thank you so much for posting this. Now I know to only use when I am there with them. Glad your little one was ok and you found out in time. smile

#374029 - 08/30/07 06:30 PM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: morksmom]
KarenE Offline

Registered: 03/25/00
Posts: 41527
Loc: LittleRock, AR USA
Thanks so much for posting this, Joy.

Out of cage toy only it seems is the best. Wonder if the type/size of the container would make a difference? Probably not.

Actually, I like the idea of cutting up fleece and using the zippered bag for washing them. I'm sure that's just as much fun for them and definitely not dangerous.
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#374347 - 08/31/07 12:36 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: KarenE]

Would it be possible to have larger opening's in the bottom (more then 1/2 inch so they can get out) encase that happens?

or do the balls themselves need to be relatively small?

#374349 - 08/31/07 12:39 AM Re: CAUTION WITH BALL PITS [Re: KarenE]
LSardou Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 03/01/06
Posts: 21060
Loc: Kansas
Talk about ESP! YOu knew all along that something was going to happen...I am so happy to hear that you were there and that she is alright. hug2

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