Rabbit Litter Box Training
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Hay is highly recommended as the most foolproof method for litter box training. Simply put a layer of litter in the bottom of a large kitty litter box and a nice bunch of hay on top of that. The rabbits will sit in the box and eat the hay in the front and go to the bathroom in the back (it is very natural for them to graze and go at the same time and they usually take to it immediately). If this method is used, do not put hay in any other place! This will only confuse your rabbit as to where he/she is supposed to go.
The safest litters are Yesterday’s News™ and Carefresh™. Not only they are better for your rabbit, but they are odor-free and highly absorbable. DO NOT USE CLAY LITTERS – some rabbits like to eat litter, and clay can be harmful. NEVER use a clumping litter made for cats – it will clump in the bunny’s digestive tract if eaten.
Whichever material you choose, make sure to change the litter box regularly to keep it clean. During training, you may want a slightly ‘dirty’ litter box to help teach the rabbit where he/she is supposed to go. If you are constantly cleaning it, they will think that it’s supposed to stay clean and won’t use it. Also, the scent in the box is another attraction for them to continue to use it.
- Confine rabbit to a small area (without carpeting is preferred) with the litter box. Do not give the rabbit access to any other room until he/she is always urinating in the litter box.
- Stay in the training room for as long as possible to observe your rabbit’s behavior. If the rabbit has an accident outside of the box, wipe it up immediately with a paper towel and then place the rabbit in the litter box. This will teach the rabbit that the urine belongs in the box.
- If the rabbit deposits any droppings on the floor, immediately pick both the rabbit and the droppings up and put them into the litter box.
- Pet your bunny while he/she is sitting in the box and say “good bunny.”
- When you have to leave, put the rabbit back into its cage or enclosure with the litter box.
- When the rabbit is using the litter box all of the time, you can then let him/her out into other rooms. Young bunnies and un-spayed/un-neutered bunnies may be more difficult to train.