Tuesday, August 24, 2010

How do i stop my rabbit from doing this?

He always ';does his business'; in his food tray. It's totally disgusting when I have to clean it out. Is there anything that I can do to stop this? He is in a cage and he's supposed to just use the tray, so I can easily change it. Also, I saw shavings at the pet store. Am I supposed to put the shavings at the bottom of the tray or at the bottom of his cage? What are the shavings used for?How do i stop my rabbit from doing this?
Hmm shavings? The stuff they sell at our pet store is little pellet balls that you stick in their tray. Our ferrets have the same problem, our bunnies just poop where they want. To get them to stop pooping in their food bowl I would suggest you either keep taking the poop out so they know not to do it there, or get the bird bowls that attach to the metal cages that way they're suspended in the air and they can't poop in them or knock them down. We use those bowls for all of our animals. And we got a lot of animals. (Chinchilla, three sugar gliders, two ferrets, 7 bunnies (4 babies), 2 rats, a hedgehog, and a snake) The snake doesn't use a food bowl though, heh.How do i stop my rabbit from doing this?
Poor confused bunny. Shavings are definately a good thing, and will probably discourage the little fluffy one from doing his business in the food dish. Its fairly cheap for a large bag of shavings and for one bunny a big bag will last a while. If this doesn't help try changing the bunnies food. Also, supplimenting his diet with hay (which you can purchase at wal mart) cilantro and carrots might also be helpful. Maybe the bunny just doesn't like his dinner.
have you tried to move it to a different place? bunnies only do thier business in the place where the smell they have done it before. so try to move it or just get another food tray and let the old one be his toilet.
Some rabbits poop/pee in their food dish because

1. They are treating it like a littler box.. try putting a small cat litter box in the place where the food normally is and put the food on the opposite side of the cage...

2. They have sensetive feet and are trying to get off the wire... Put in a wooden board or they sell special plastic ones that grip the bottom of the wire cage.

3. I think some are just slobs....

Rabbits can sit directly on shavings OR they can go at the bottom of the tray. They are to absorb the pee and reduce the smell. Some people prefer to just use newspaper but I thought it smelled too gross inside with just newspaper....
Rabbits like to do their business in the same place - usually. I would put a litter box where he seems to like to go. You can use a cat litter box and DO NOT USE pine or cedar shavings - they can make your bunny sick.

Just line the box with newspaper and then top with hay. Rabbits need an unlimited access to fresh hay all the time. Here is a link with tips on litterbox training:


Move the food dish to another part of the cage and there are food dishes that you can attach to the cage and get it a little bit off the ground.

Our rabbits don't live in a cage anymore, but when they did, we put newspaper on the bottom, and put in a soft t-shirt. Be sure the cage has enough space for the litter box, food and water bowls, a hiding box and still have space to move around and stand up without touching his ears.

Finally, if he is not neutered, this could be a reason that he doesn't use his litter box.
Rabbits are coprophagic - they eat their poo (food needs to pass through their digestive system twice to get all the nutrients). They pass soft poo first, eat that, and then pass the pellets.

So I think it's quite fitting for him to poo into his food bowl!

Bunnies are very clean animals naturally. They pick a place in their cage and that's the bathroom. Yours has chosen his food dish, gross, i know. You need to get a litterbox! Your bunny is begging to be litterbox trained and it's really easy to do. The reason your bunny is going potty in the food dish is because it's contained there and doesn't make a mess in his house. He's keeping the house clean.

Bunnies don't comprehend the whole tray thing. That was designed by some idiot who didn't own a rabbit, obviously. Litterboxes can be bought at any pet store, and so can the litter. I strongly recommend a paper based litter, like Yesterday's News or Carefresh. Litterboxes are just as easily changed as the bottom tray and your bunny will stop using the food dish as a bathroom!

As far as shavings, please please please don't put pine shavings in your bunnies cage. It can have very bad respiratory effects on them since their little noses and lungs are very sensitive. If you're looking for something in the bottom of the cage, carefresh bedding is great. For a cheaper subsitute, I personally use the paper shreds from my shredder. My bills, junk mail and pay stubs make for great bedding and digging material in the bottom of my bunny's cage!
  • alvinarf
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