One of the important places that a rabbit visits frequently is its litter box. Rabbits poop a lot, and therefore, they need a place where they can do their business comfortably. Having said that, it is necessary that you learn how to set up a proper litter box for your little bunny.
You can set up a good litter box by following 10 simple steps. In these steps, you will learn which litter box to get, which bedding is correct to be put inside the box, and some other things that can make your rabbit feel comfortable and happy while using the litter box.
- Step 1: Picking A Perfect-Sized Litter Box
- Step 2: Get A Liner
- Step 3: Time To Get The Litter/Bedding
- Step 4: Go And Purchase The Materials
- Step 5: Setup The Liner Inside The Litter Box
- Step 6: Adding A Layer of Litter/Bedding
- Step 7: Adding A Good Amount Of Hay
- Step 8: Setting A Mat Under The Litter Box
- Step 9: Put The Lid On The Box
- Step 10: Allow Your Rabbit To Do Its Business
Step 1: Picking A Perfect-Sized Litter Box
For the utmost comfort of rabbits, the litter box’s right size and shape are essential. Just like we humans, rabbits also want to do their business in peace, at a nice place, and for that, an ideally-sized litter box is necessary.
A correctly-sized litter box will be the one in which the rabbit can easily take 360-degree turns. So, for optimal size, you should choose a large or extra-large box. In addition to this, keep the walls of the box short. It will allow your rabbit to easily take a view of what is going on inside its room. Also, it will not feel trapped inside the box. For convenience in entrance and exit, you should keep a low entrance.
Even rabbits would like to have some privacy while doing their business. Keeping this in mind, you should get a lid for the box. There will also be the requirement of a mat. You can place it under the litter box to contain the mess.
One of the issues in keeping the sidewalls low is that there will be a mess around the box. We will talk about the redressal of this problem later on in this article.
We recommend avoiding a litter box with a wire base. Wire base can be rough on the feet of the rabbit and can even cause infection. So, if you are thinking of having a wire base for the litter box, then a big no for that.
Step 2: Get A Liner
Now that you have selected a perfectly sized litter box for your bunny, it’s time to pick a liner that you can place inside it.
If you are thinking, what is the need for a liner? Then let me tell you that it actually worth the time and effort for you as well as your rabbit. The main benefit of it is that it makes the cleaning work much easier and simpler when you change the inside material of the cage.
Another advantage of placing a liner is that your rabbit’s urine can clearly be seen on it. By looking at its color, you can make sure that your rabbit’s health is good or not. Also, you can set the litter box with ease on a liner as it will work as a good base for the box.
The liners which rabbit owners usually use are brown shopping bags, newspaper, and puppy pads. Out of all these three, the best option is puppy pads. They are easiest to clean, offer utmost cushioning and comfort, and also provide clear visibility of the rabbit’s urine. Remember never to put a full-sized puppy pad under the litter box because a rabbit can chew it. To prevent your little bunny from doing so, cut the pad to the size of the litter box and then place it.
Step 3: Time To Get The Litter/Bedding
When you pick a litter and bedding for the box, then the main thing you should check is its absorbing capacity. Along with this, it should also feel comforting on the rabbit’s feet.
The most popular litter that maximum rabbit owners prefer to get are the shavings of Aspen, Pine, Or Cider and paper-based beddings. The shavings do not cost much and work well. But the only issue with them is that they are not that efficient in blocking urine odor. So, the next best option you have got is paper-based bedding. It works as an excellent absorbent, is safe for the rabbit, and is efficient enough to mask the urine odor. But, it is high-priced.
For an economically viable option, you can use a combination of both shavings as well as paper-based bedding. You can use shaving as the first layer and paper-based bedding as the next one. This is how you can get the benefits of both.
Step 4: Go And Purchase The Materials
Once you have done thorough research on steps 1 to3 before going to a pet shop, purchasing the material will become an easy task for you. Always keep a backup plan ready in case there is an unavailability of the materials you want.
Always go for the best quality materials. It can be a bit pricey, but that’s worth it. When you see your little bunny happy, safe, and comfortable on the material, you will also feel delighted. Most pet stores keep the material that you need for the litter box. Just find a nearby store and pick the best material for your rabbit.
Step 5: Setup The Liner Inside The Litter Box
Now that you have done the purchasing and came back home let’s start setting up the litter box. Keep all the material you need in front of you lined up. This way, you will not have to get up and fetch each material now and then. Keeping all the material in front will make them easily accessible.
The things that you will need in the beginning are the box and the liner. When you have both of these things, you will have to ensure that the liner perfectly fits inside the litter box. Just place it inside the box and see whether it needs to be cut or not. If the liner’s edges are sticking too high on the sidewalls of the box, then take scissors and cut it down accordingly. It will prevent your little friend from nibbling on the liner.
As a reminder, a puppy pad is the best option for a liner because it is a good absorbent and easy to clean up.
Step 6: Adding A Layer of Litter/Bedding
Once you are done laying down the liner, you can start adding a layer of litter/bedding. For doing this task, you can use a regular-sized cup through which you can conveniently scoop the litter/bedding into the litter box.
While adding the layer, keep in mind that you cover at least 3/4th of the total surface area of the box. The correct way to set the layer is to start from the entrance and then move backward. Fill in as many scoops of litter/bedding as possible to ensure that your rabbit has sufficient area to satisfy nature’s call.
Adding a thin layer will not work. You will have to make a compact and thick layer to provide maximum comfort to the bunny. For making it possible, create a layer as high as the entrance and remember to cover the 3/4th area of the litter box. A nice thick layer will aid in controlling the odor and also ensure that you don’t have to clean the box more than required.
Step 7: Adding A Good Amount Of Hay
As we have covered 3/4th of the litter box surface area, what about the remaining 1/4th? You should cover the remaining part with a lot of hay, filled from the bottom to the top. Rabbits are one of those animals who go to the bathroom very often. So, the litter box needs to be as much comfortable for them as possible. Having a ton of hay in the box will give them something to chew while doing their business. Laying down grass will provide them with a safe and comforting feeling. They will feel secure at a place where they can satisfying nature’s call along with having their favorite snack.
Step 8: Setting A Mat Under The Litter Box
Rabbits can be really messy. Those who do not want to run around the house cleaning the little guy’s mess should set down a mat under the litter box. Setting down a mat will save your time. It will also save you from the trouble of keeping the house neat and clean without any litter box material lying around.
The primary purpose of laying down a mat is to contain the litter mess that your rabbit will make. When the rabbit goes inside the litter box, it will most likely kick some of the litter material out of the box. A mat will prevent the litter material from going too far away from the box and make your house dirty.
A mat same as the size of the litter box, will not work. Lay a mat with a bigger surface area than the box so that all the mess will be there on the mat and not outside it. Also, make sure to pat the mat from time to time to remove too much dirt build-up on the mat.
Step 9: Put The Lid On The Box
Now, most of the work is complete. Only the last piece of the puzzle is left to be set, i.e., the lid. The lid is also an essential part of the box. It prevents the hay and bedding from coming out of the box. Without a lid, there will be more mess than usual, and your cleaning work will also increase. Additionally, one of the most important reasons for putting the lid is to give your rabbit some privacy.
Put yourself in the place of a rabbit and imagine how you would feel when you want to do your business, and your human friends just won’t let your leave. They just want to play some more with you or give you some nice petting. So, it is also necessary to keep in mind the feeling of your pet rabbit.
So, out of respect and to give your rabbit much-needed privacy, always put a lid on the litter box.
Step 10: Allow Your Rabbit To Do Its Business
With the last piece of the puzzle set at the right place, the litter box is good to go. It’s time for your rabbit to enjoy some peaceful, quiet, and private time that it deserves. But, do not put the litter box out in the open where any predators or unwanted humans can easily access it. Doing so can put your little bunny’s life in danger.
Putting the litter box in a quiet and private place will make your rabbit feel more comfortable and secure, and it will do its business in peace.