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When house training your rabbit goes bad, you probably move your rabbit out of the house, right? Here's a way to successfully house train your bunny. First only let your rabbit romp in one small room. Place a litter box in that room with some of the rabbit's poop in it. Block off electrical wires and small areas that your rabbit can squeeze through. Pick up books and toys and leave a completely clear path for your rabbit.
The best rabbit litter we've found in 20 years of keeping house rabbits is wood pellets. Some suppliers have a product called Woody Pet, but the wood pellets used to fuel wood pellet stoves are usually cheaper. The wood is not harmful to the rabbits even if they eat some of it and it soaks up the urine really well. The best part of all is that the used litter can be composted straight into your garden.
By rabbit10mom from Eastern WA
Pick an enclosed litterbox for a bit of privacy and add a handful of hay for the comfort factor. Bunnies love to chew and what's more luxurious than a little snack while you piddle?
As for what type of litter you should use, try to avoid clay based litters and litters with deodorant crystals. Both can cause health problems for your rabbit. Oat or alfalfa based litters are a safe choice, as are shredded newspaper and compressed sawdust pellets.
Training your rabbit to use the litterbox is as easy as finding his normal bathroom spot. A rabbit may poop in more than one location to mark his territory, but he will usually only piddle in one location. Place the box there at the piddle-spot, and see if he chooses to use it. If he picks a new bathroom spot, move the box there until your bunny gets the idea, or place a second litterbox in the new bathroom. Sooner or later, he'll get the idea. Adult bunnies are actually easier to train than young ones! Just remember to be patient. Rome wasn't built in a day, and your rabbit won't learn to use a litterbox in one day, either.
If you catch your rabbit urinating in an inappropriate spot, you can herd him towards the litterbox. Please don't force him, you don't want to teach him that using the litterbox is a punishment!
A word of warning: rabbit urine is QUITE odiferous. You should change the litter at least once a week (more often if your rabbit lives indoors, as the scent will seem much stronger!). However, it doesn't hurt to save a bit of last week's litter to mix in with the fresh litter. The familiar scent will put your rabbit at ease.
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Does anyone know how old a bunny is when they choose their 'bathroom' area. I have a 7 week old bunny who has yet to do this.
Raylene from Toronto, Canada
Your bunny is ready to be trained, take note of where he or she goes, put a litter pan there. Do not use scoopable litter, they have sensitive lungs. I use newspaper that I either tear into strips or put in the paper shredder. (clean it by dumping the paper daily, washing weekly). They are also allergic to the shavings that are sold for this purpose! It did not take my bunny more than a couple days to catch on, put paper around the inside of the cage, if he/she goes there, take up the paper and move the box there!
By B Davenport
It took my bunny a long time to find just one place to do her business. We ended up making her a big cage and she finally found her spot. Now when she is out she goes into her cage to her "spot" to do her thing. It has taken us 6 months though. (01/31/2007)
Bunnies need to be caged, unless they are very large. My Dutch smaller sized adult one loves his large cage with another square wire cage inside to jump upon.
He loves me to keep his litter box clean each day, so I have used a 2 inch deep thick cardboard box, the
giftbox size for a man's shirt. I take 7 grocery produce plastic bags and slide them one on the other
alternating ends, looping the handles towards the
middle of the end, until the week's supply of bags is in place. Mashing the inside air out of them all, it makes a softer area on which to hop. Then I use a few layers of folded newspaper to soak up any urine, and either shredded newspaper or junk mail paper, not thin cardboard, and slice/crush it to for a nice nesting area, simulating straw or coarse grass. I then place the whole box in one corner of the cage after I've lumped all the shreds into one end of the box.
On the outside of the box on one end I place his food because all bunnies like to eat while they use
the bathroom, I was told by bunny experts. He's three years old, is playful like a cat, and his main droppings fall through to newspaper in the metal drawer below, which is lined in several layers for
I do "not" allow him to exercise for more than fifteen minutes, but several times a day, because all bunnies urinate about that often, and bunnies "mark" their territory with pellets regardless of new or old areas, especially if the old pellets have been cleaned up from another time.
To save myself a lot of work picking/cleaning, I just limit him to the shorter time, place him back into the cage and he promptly jumps into his litter box/bedding and carries on with his business there. I believe it is too confusing for bunnies to be allowed to roam and use the bathroom wherever, which they will most certainly do, especially on linens and rugs, clothes, and magazines, although carpet in general is their favorite place, I believe.
And, by the way, watch out for black leaves on his fresh greens, which is fusarium wilt that can cause serious illness if he gets too much. Mine likes parsley, cilantro, a mini carrot, a small stick of celery, a slice of cauliflower or broccoli, and either four organic mini shredded biscuits, or a couple of plain white crackers, once or twice a day, with an occasional apple twig or slice tossed in, and "lots" of water from his hanging waterer. If a bunny is really active, it might be getting too many carrots, the best source for beta carotene, a known stimulant. I do not give my bunny salt or mineral ring licks. I brush him once a week, scratch around his face/ears daily, and give him 3/4 of timothy hay pellets for when I don't have anything else to feed him. He's so patient that he'll eat dandelions from the yard since my yard is organic. This really helps since I'm very low income, but very blessed, as well. Hope this helps. : )