Why Your Rabbit Bites His Cage? (And Fixes)

You can see many cute rabbits with typical long front teeth. But this is dangerous for the rabbits. These overgrown teeth are the primary reason why your rabbit chews on its pen.

Rabbits chew on the pen because they need to keep their teeth at a proper and short length. The rabbits have constantly growing teeth that grow as they get old. If you do not file down their teeth, the rabbits might suffer from severe disease, which is malocclusion. You should give your furry pet alternatives like hay or wooden toys so that they can chew on them.

There are many reasons why rabbits will stop themselves from having long teeth. You can use plenty of easy solutions to prevent them from chewing on their pen.

Why The Pet Rabbit Bites Its Cage

Do you remember the last time you trim your nails? One week? Two weeks? As you know, our nails have a steady growth. If you did not cut them from time to time, they might result in many health problems. Human nails and rabbit teeth are similar because they grow throughout life.

Rabbits belong to a different species of animals, which is lagomorphs. For all the creatures in the lagomorph group, their teeth grow constantly and are unrooted. Source

Rabbits are part of the lagomorphs family and have connections with the rodent community of animals, like mice and squirrels. There is a crucial difference between the above two groups. Rodents, being omnivores, can eat plants and meat, but rabbits, being herbivores, eat only plants.

The familiar aspect between lagomorphs and rabbits is their constantly growing teeth. So it is crucial to trim and secure their teeth as humans do to their nails. Chewing is essential for rabbits. While the rabbits chew, their teeth will grind against one other, and this process will file down their teeth. Source

Rabbits have a natural method to maintain their teeth at a short length by grinding their teeth.

But the trouble that rabbit owners face is that rabbits tend to chew and grind about 24/7. As per the PETA website, even half-day without giving food to the rabbits can be harmful. Source

It clarifies that the crucial food in rabbits is not only vital for getting nutrients. Allowing the rabbits to eat is a decent method because they can chew without causing any destruction.

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Rabbits chew and grind their pen because they are trying to file down their teeth. If you do not give any chew toy to gnaw, they will bite the nearby pen.

What Will Happen If The Rabbits Do Not Chew Enough?


As you know, rabbits have to face plenty of vague issues if they do not chew enough. Due to this, there are a few harmful problems that your rabbits will suffer from if they are not chewing enough. They also face particular issues if they have overgrown teeth.

If you do not maintain the rabbit teeth, malocclusion happens. Here is brief information about the causes, symptoms, and treatments of this harmful problem.

Malocclusion Causes:

  • Inherited ailment
  • Sometimes occurs because of unexpected broken teeth

Malocclusion Symptoms:

  • Prolonged lower or upper teeth
  • May prevent your pet from chewing

Malocclusion Treatment:

  • Clipping the rabbit teeth is a momentary solution
  • Gathering the affected rabbits

Sometimes, it also occurs in humans. But this is a common and severe problem for rabbits. If you did not take care of it, this issue causes many severe problems.

As the rabbit owner, you need to be cautious about two primary problems of the rabbit mouth. In rabbits, the molars and front teeth tend to overgrow, so you have to check them from time to time.

According to the veterinarians about the dental infection in rabbits, You can see the incisors (front teeth) and molars at the back of the rabbit mouth. They use it for gnawing and grinding. Source

If their front or back teeth become too horrible, the veterinarian will have to clip the teeth.

Worst Condition Scenario

The rabbits will suffer from several health risks due to their overgrown teeth. They vary from mild to extreme cases.

Starting with extreme, If you do not keep necessary attention, the overgrown teeth of the rabbit will result in severe trauma and anorexia (absence of appetite). Sometimes, the rabbit will die because it can not gnaw and swallow. Source

If you do not maintain or trim their teeth, the rabbits can die. It is drastic, and there are high chances for it to happen in the future.

If the rabbit has overgrown teeth and malocclusion, it will suffer from severe discomfort and pain. The rabbit will do extreme things to resist this intense pain and injury. Because of this, sometimes it will be difficult for you to detect the problem.

Veterinarians and rabbit specialists agree that rabbits attempt to suppress pain and distress. If they show any indication of weakness while living in the wild, predators will target them. Source

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When the rabbits feel pain because of their overgrown teeth, they will stop consuming and chewing. It causes drastic weight loss in the rabbits and might result in death.

Rabbit needs to review and keep its mouth busy. If the rabbit is not gnawing enough, it is dangerous. There is no way to detect this if you are not putting enough attention to the pet.

What To Be Aware Of

In extreme cases, if the rabbit has overgrown teeth and did not receive the necessary help, it will die. If you want to avoid this situation, you have to be aware of the signs or symptoms. Besides that, every rabbit owner needs to know if their furry pet is staying healthy or needs help.

The People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals explains many tell-tale clues of dental or teeth infection in rabbits. Here are a few signs:

  • Sudden weight loss
  • Dirty bottom (grooming might be dangerous and painful)
  • Little to no appetite
  • Diarrhea or soft droppings
  • Teeth grinding
  • Salivating
  • Teary or watery eyes
  • A rough and uneven jawline
  • Long, impaired, or broken teeth. Source

You always need to check for the above symptoms in the rabbits. If you see any of these signs, take immediate action and bring the rabbit to the veterinarian. All the above symptoms imply that the rabbit is not chewing often. During these times, they require medical help and proper treatment.

Useful Solutions

Now, you know that chewing is essential for the rabbit. But some owners do not want the rabbit to bite on their pen and other harmful objects.

There are plenty of easy and natural solutions to prevent the rabbit from chewing on its cage. As the rabbit owner, you can make sure that your rabbit will stop its behavior of chewing on particular elements.

First of all, it is better to buy a bitter or sour spray. It is one of the simplest methods to the above problem. Besides that, this solution only takes a few minutes. After getting the bitter spray, sprinkle it on the objects, which you do not want the rabbit to bite. This spray will leave a sour smell and flavor on the items. Due to this, your rabbit would stop gnawing on it and will never come near it.

Here comes the second solution. Buy a few alternative toys for the rabbits so that they can chew on them! As per the information by the nonprofit rabbit website, hay is a decent enough option. Other alternatives include woods, cotton towels, pine firewood, fresh pine timber, or alfalfa cubes. Source

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Third, give the rabbits some food. Offering them food is an excellent idea, and it is like killing two birds with a single stone. With food, they will get essential nutrients to live, and it is a temporary solution for the chewing issue.

Let us get into the fourth solution, which is to keep their rabbits busy. There are many ways you can use to make them occupied. One method is to offer the rabbits toys so they will play with them. As the rabbit will be busy chewing on the toys, it would not have enough time to bite the pen!

Keeping them with their rabbit friends is the fifth solution. Rabbits are social creatures, and they depend on others to maintain their healthy personality. By bringing other rabbits, your furry pet tends to spend more time with them instead of chewing on the pen.

We are at the sixth and final solution, which is to play with the rabbits. It is an impressive solution and also makes your rabbit happy. When you spend more time with your rabbit by playing and interacting with it, your pet develops good behavior. This good attitude also reduces the chewing and biting habits in the rabbit.

What Should I Do Now?

If you are here to know why the rabbit is chewing or grinding its cage, there are high chances that you are experiencing it right now.

You do not have to worry because it is a good indication. When a rabbit is chewing its cage, it is taking care of its teeth by itself. But, you might not want the rabbit to chew on particular things in the cell. It is better not to let them chew on dangerous items in your home.

You can try the above methods to encourage the rabbit to stop gnawing on the pen.

First of all, ensure that your rabbits are active, happy, and healthy. After checking this, follow the things to prevent the rabbit from biting its cage.

If you see any problem with the teeth of your rabbit or found above signs, go to the veterinarian. By doing this, you can help your furry pet to stay happy, healthy, and comfortable.

It is better to execute these methods as soon as possible. After that, there are high chances that you would not find new teeth marks on the cage.