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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BEHAVIOR > My bunnies are misbehaving?? Is this normal?
Last Post by Tate at 4/15/2011 9:00 AM (10 Replies)
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User is Offline Coco and Louis
12 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 5:36 AM

Ok at first I had just one bunny, Coco, she would use one corner of her cage as a toilet area, ate her hay and her food, drank her water, etc. She did have a problem with knocking stuff over though. She knocks her food over and we have a hay rack and she throws the hay around, hay basket was an even worse idea that stuff got everywhere. We got another bunny named Louis and he is just a baby so it did not bother me that he "did his business" anywhere because I think he was sold to us way too young. But now Coco and Louis BOTH do it anywhere EVEN on top of their hay! And Louis keeps sitting in his food and I am afraid he might be urinating on it. Plus they used to eat the sandwood (i think that is what it is called) bedding, so the people at the pet store recommended this other bedding that I actually like alot because it eliminates urine odor and absorbs very well, but they are eating that one as well!! They have plenty of food and plenty of hay! Their cage and our bedroom is full of their feces and they keep knocking their food on the floor and throwing the hay around then defecating on it. Plus they keep biting on the wires of their cage and Coco climbs on top of this play house she has and bites the top wires too. They both get over 4 hours of play time outside of the cage so its not like we are trapping them in there. Thats the maximum we can give them because we also have a dog roaming around the house.

How do you discourage bad behavior in a bunny??


User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
Forum Leader
17961 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 5:39 AM
This is not bad behavior, this is very typical rabbit behavior at this age.

I would suggest that you reconfigure the cage and also you do not need bedding - try to get them used to using a litter box by putting a litter box in the cage without the bedding.

I suspect as well that the cage is way too small for 2 rabbits even if they are babies - are you thinking of constructing a larger cage for them.

User is Offline Coco and Louis
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4/14/2011 5:44 AM

yeah we are gonna either buy or build a bunny condo, and seperate them both too eventually. but i just dont like how she keeps eating the bedding they ate a large amount of it already and I do not know if it is safe, and they defecate on their food which seems abnormal


User is Offline peppypoo
Texas
Forum Leader
1953 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 5:51 AM

What kind of bedding are you using? Also, it's normal for bunnies to confuse hay with their litter box - many people actually just put a handful of hay in the litterbox anyways. If you look in the habitats section, there are plenty of suggestions on how to dispense hay that may prevent them doing their business in it. It looks from your pictures that you are using bedding all over the bottom of the cage - this may just confuse them further regarding where their litter box is. Try just putting litter in the litter box.

Also, bunnies can indeed learn bad habits from one another - my Peppy was perfect with her habits until I adopted another (adult) bunny recently, who isn't quite there yet with his litter rabbits.  Now Peppy's getting a little messy too.  Are they living together still?  Besides the fact that they should be separated because they are still not fixed yet, it also might help Coco regain her habits.

Tammo (RIP), Milo (RIP), Peppy, Remi

User is Offline Beka27
Cleveland, Ohio (USA)
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4/14/2011 5:54 AM
Have you seen them pooping in the food dish, or is it possible loose poops are just getting kicked into the dish?
Meadow..... Photobucket ...... Max, my angel bunny

User is Offline Coco and Louis
12 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 6:02 AM

yeah my husband wanted to put it all over the cage so that when we clean the cage its easier because the bedding absorbs the urine, the bedding is "Kaytee Soft Granule Blend" . and yeah louis is getting a little bigger but back when he could easily fit in the bowl (he was SO tiny when we first got him) I caught him doing that.

 

We have been searching for big enough cages that we can afford but did not find one yet, but we are looking, so no they are still together for now.


User is Offline peppypoo
Texas
Forum Leader
1953 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 6:11 AM

Even if it makes cleaning somewhat easier now, litter all over the cage is only confusing the bunnies - it'll make cleaning a lot easier in the long run if you help along their litter habits by putting litter only in the litter box.  I saw Beka27 post this on another thread earlier, which I thought was amusing and pretty relevant:

I liken it to this... imagine you are in a room full of toilets, but there is only one *right* one that you are supposed to be using. How confusing would that be? It's the same thing with bunnies, if you use litter in the litterbox AND in the bottom of the cage, the bun won't understand where she's supposed to go.

Some popular litter brands are Carefresh (kind of pricey), Yesterday's News (use the non-clumping cat kind), and Feline Pine.  Different brands may have different versions of these litters...just make sure there's no clumping chemicals or baking soda and generic brands will be fine.  Try to stay away from wood shavings in general; many types of wood shavings can be harmful to a bunny's liver.  Also, if you can find horse stall bedding or wood stove pellets (without accelerant), these are great for their value.

Maybe you can look into housing one of your bunnies in an doggy exercise pen for now, placed next to the cage?  You can find them for various prices online, and a lot of people use them for permanent housing for their adult bunnies - once both your bunnies are spayed and neutered and ready to transition into a bigger area, you could use the pen for both of them.  Try looking on Craigslist too; maybe you can find some used ones that you can wipe down and sanitize. 

Tammo (RIP), Milo (RIP), Peppy, Remi

User is Offline Emmie
462 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 6:44 AM

I originally had litter all over Zelda's cage and she would poop everywhere, but only in  her cage. She has free roam of my living room though.

I took the advice of these guys and set up an area in her cage with litter, hay, a urine soaked piece of kitchen roll and her food dish in the area. Now she only goes in that area. There are some random poops about her cage, but for the most part she only goes in that corner.


User is Offline Eepster
712 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 9:05 AM

If they are eating the litter, maybe you should skip it. We line Porky's "litter" box with cloth diapers (left over from when our human son was a baby) and a few scrunched up hand towels. Then we put a little hay on top. It means that there is nothing loose and food sized in Porky's condo that isn't actually food. When I clean the litter box out, I always put one slightly soiled towel back in with the clean diapers and towels, so that the box smells like the place to pee and poop. It saves money too, since we just wash the towels and diapers and reuse them.

One of the main things that really improved Porky's litter habits was letting Porky decide where the litter box should be. When I first set up Porky's condo, I  thought the right place for it was the first level. Porky use it a bit, but also went in many other places. I noticed though, that the place he went most often was up on the third level. I moved the litter box up to the third level, and gave the rest of his condo a very good cleaning. he now has pretty good litter habits. 90% pee in box, 50% poop in box, 40% poop directly next to box, 100% inside condo or little cage (he goes into the little cage during major cleanings of the den and to go outside.)

It is very hard to find decent sized bunny cages at affordable prices, but condos are really easy to make. Just google bunny condo and tons of directions come up. Also, if you look through the toys and habitats forum on the board, many of us have shared pictures and descriptions of our own home built bunny condos.


User is Offline KatnipCrzy
Holland, MI
Forum Leader
2982 posts Send Private Message
4/14/2011 6:05 PM
Even though they are young they are likely to also display territorial claiming behavior along with young bunny poor litterbox habits. Since you don't know their exact age- you should separate them but have them side by side. Each of them having their own cage and thus more space will help with the litter training until they can be spayed and neutered.
Cotton and Schroeder- Mini Lops Griffin- English Lop

User is Offline Tate
733 posts Send Private Message
4/15/2011 9:00 AM
Kind of off topic, but on the housing situation.. You NEED an Xpen! They are wonderful. They generally come in 4x4ft as a square but you an reconfigure into different shapes. Once your buns are neutered they can be housed in here together. You can always expand it by buying more links as well. You can buy bigger cat litter boxes as well for it too! Xpens in stores are going to cost about $60-80 BUT, look on eBay. I got a really good quality one for $50 and they shipped quickly and cheaply (I think the shipping I paid was like 5 bucks).
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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BEHAVIOR > My bunnies are misbehaving?? Is this normal?

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