If you think that potty training a rabbit is impossible, think again! Rabbits are an animal known for being naturally clean and potty training them would not pose any problems! All you need is to get the right supplies and materials, and you can potty train your rabbit!
What supplies do I need?
Before potty training your rabbit, there are a few things that you need to prepare:
1. Litter tray for rabbits
Litter trays for rabbits are specially designed with an elevated back and lower front so the rabbit can easily hop in. However, if you can’t find a special rabbit tray, a cat litter tray or shallow box would do just fine.
2. Absorbent paper
If you have a stack of old paperwork you were planning to throw out, you can put them to some use as the lining for your rabbit’s litter tray.
Be aware that newspapers are not the best option for this. Aside from being potentially toxic to your pet, newspaper ink can rub off and discolor your rabbit’s coat with grey or black smudges. If you want to use old newspapers, check that the ink used is soy-based ink, which is non-toxic for rabbits.
3. Make sure you have the right litter
Choosing the right litter is important if you want to potty train a rabbit. You should make sure the litter you choose does not contain cedar or pine chips since these are considerably irritating to rabbits. Also, avoid cat litters that are clay-based as these can cause blockage in your rabbit’s bowels in case of consumption.
4. Get the right-sized cage
Your rabbit’s cage should be at least three times bigger than your rabbit, ideally six times larger, so they have plenty of space to move. Section off different areas of the cage by putting food and water in one area while putting the litter tray in another area of the cage, far away from their main eating and sleeping areas. This allows your rabbit to keep its living area clean.
5. Add good-tasting hay
Use the very best hay to encourage the rabbit to the litter box. Food is always a great treat to train your rabbit, and hay is perfect because rabbits especially love to eat grass and hay!
How to set up the litter box inside the cage
Once you already have all the materials you need, you are ready to set up your rabbit’s litter in your cage and start the potty training. Follow these steps to set up the litter box for the best results when you potty train a rabbit:
- Step 1: Put some pellets in your rabbit’s cage. You can drop your rabbit’s favorite pellets into the tray. This serves as bait to encourage your rabbit is getting into the cage.
- Step 2: Prepare your rabbit’s litter box. Put some old paper or non-toxic newspaper at the bottom of the litter box. You should leave at least an inch of space in the litter box above the top of the newspaper.
- Step 3: Put the litter box inside the rabbit’s cage. Place the litter box in a corner of your rabbit’s cage. When placing it, scatter some hay around the tray. Rabbits love eating while pooping, so the hay will invite your rabbit more into doing its business in the litter box.
- Step 4: Create a safe space for your rabbit in the cage. You can do this by creating a food and water station, bedding, and a small hiding area. All these will help create a safe and secure space for your rabbit.
- Step 5: Put more litter boxes in other parts of your home. If you have a spacious house, it is ideal that you put more litter boxes in some other areas, too. Try to notice where your rabbit spends more time. These are the perfect places for you to place the litter boxes.
How do you potty train a rabbit?
Ideally, you should begin potty training your rabbit right after you bring her home. Start by introducing the rabbit to the cage where the litter box is. Make sure there is enough food pellets, water, and hay to coax her in.
Teach your rabbit to do her “business” in her cage
Restricting your rabbit inside the cage with the litter box in her first few days at home does the trick. Within a few days of littering in the cage, the rabbit will start to understand and develop the habit of doing her business inside the cage. Once this is achieved, you may start letting her out for some fun time.
Reward your rabbit
Once your rabbit has practiced the habit of toileting in the litter box, remember to give some rewards so she would understand that she did a great job. This would encourage your rabbit to keep doing the behavior you want.
If you think rabbits are messy or untrainable animals, think again! They are naturally clean and don’t like to mess up their living areas, just like dogs and cats. They are also easy to train and respond well to positive reinforcement with tasty treats. With a bit of preparation you can definitely potty train a rabbit.