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The subject of intentional breeding or meat rabbits is prohibited. The answers provided on this board are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet.  It is your responsibility to assess the information being given and seek professional advice/second opinion from your veterinarian and/or qualified behaviorist.

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Forum BEHAVIOR Holding urine and poop?

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    • LunaLove33
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      Hello, I am a new member. We have a female bunny that was born 6/12/2021. We got her when she was 10 weeks old. She was potty trained for a few weeks. Last week she appeared to start puberty. Out of nowhere she got very aggressive with her cage. She started circling my husbands feet, nipping, and honking. Once this started she suddenly stopped using her litter box completely. We were letting her out of her house often for supervised play. We started back over, just letting her in her cage and pen. Now she will hold her pee and poop all day, until she is in her pen and pee and poop everywhere.  She will not go in the hutch, just the play pen area.

      We have scheduled her for spay on 10/12 once she is 4 months old.

      Can anyone help, what do we do for litter encouragement. Her pellets, water and hay are in the litter box.

      Thank you!!


    • DanaNM
      Moderator
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      This all sounds like normal hormonal behavior, so my main advice is just to hang on until she gets spayed!

      Maybe you could add a litter box in the play pen area?

      How large is her cage? Is it possible to give her 24/7 access to the play pen? Most cages are too small, so her behavior could have gotten worse because she doesn’t have enough space.

      In the meantime, puppy pee pads can be really useful for times like this, so you could put them down in the play pen to at least make clean-up easier.

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • LunaLove33
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      Hello. Thank you for the quick reply.

      We were thinking the same, about a second litter box. I ordered another from Amazon on Saturday, but it doesn’t arrive until tomorrow. We have a huge whelping mat under the cage and play pen. She is peeing so much in the pen and her urine is so potent since this started. I was trying to not release her in the pen, hoping she would start using the litter box. I really think she is holding until I finally let her out. We do NOT want to keep her in the hutch at all, but it’s gotten so out of hand. It’s so hard to believe that she has regressed so quickly. It’s like a light switch was flipped with her.

      Overall dimension: 40.4″L x 23.6″ W x 28.3″H   This is for the hutch. I tried to attach a picture but I couldn’t.

       


    • LunaLove33
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      So, I just let her out into the pen. She ran out peed everywhere and then ran into her hutch and bunny flopped. UGH


    • DanaNM
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      6061 posts Send Private Message

      Hormones will do that! It can be very alarming and frustrating! Can you move her current litter box in to the play pen?

      Carefresh litter can be really helpful for encouraging a bun to use the litter box, something about the texture and smell helps a lot.

      Also how big is her litter box? Sometimes buns will revolt if it’s too small or too hard to jump into. So a larger box with lower sides can help a lot.

       

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • LunaLove33
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      It’s  larger, we had a smaller one and realized she didn’t like it.

      She was successfully going it for two weeks. The size is 16.2 in*11.8 in*6.3 in. We have her water bowl and food bowl in their. We have a hanging hay feeder above it.


    • DanaNM
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      6061 posts Send Private Message

      Hmm, maybe having the water bowel and pellet bowl in the box is confusing to her (i know sometimes it helps, but figure it’s worth experimenting)? 6.3 inches high is also a bit tall, but not too bad.

      You might try putting some carefresh litter, with a nice fluffy hay layer on top right in the box (you can keep the hanging feeder as well). Usually that combo entices a bun to jump in and do their business. It prob wont be perfect, but hopefully more pee and poop will make it in the box vs. on the floor!

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • LunaLove33
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      The litter box we have has a plastic grate over, so she doesn’t actually sit in the litter. We are using paper pellets. Will run over and get the carefresh. Willing to try anything. I am learning, bunnies can be very fickle. Will give those suggestions a go. Thank you so much, will keep you posted =)


    • DanaNM
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      Ah hah! I would remove the grate. Some bunnies really don’t like to sit on the grates, or recognize it as a litter box, so that alone might help (even though I know it was weird that she was using it no problem before)! You can also add the hay layer on top of the paper pellets.

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • Wick & Fable
      Moderator
      4963 posts Send Private Message

      Agreed with all of Dana’s suggestions. Whatever you do try, make sure to give it at least a day or two to see how your rabbit reacts (unless she’s not eating hay as a result). Rabbits can definitely be finnicky and figuring out a system for the bun can be a labor of love…. having poops on hand to sprinkle in the box, as well as soiled litter can be helpful to convey the message across too.

      The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.


    • LunaLove33
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      Thank you, yes, we have been placing each poop and soaking up the urine with a paper towel and placing it in the litter box. She was really great for potty training for 2 weeks. Pretty sure it’s hormonal. Praying things get easier once she is spayed. We’ve had the ramp down to the pen all afternoon. Still pooping and peeing, but we aren’t giving up 😉


    • LunaLove33
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      We moved her litter box with the grate to the outside of the pen. Removed the water and food bowls. Just laid hay on the grate, back to eating tons of hay and pooping in there. Unreal, but I will take the progress.


    • LunaLove33
      Participant
      9 posts Send Private Message

      Good morning, we have official progress. We left the hutch open last night, first time we have done this. There were about 10 scattered poops, but NO pee. This morning after I cleaned up the pen and added new hay / changed the litter. She hopped right in the litter box and peed. She’s eating her hay and seems so much happier. Thank you for all of your advice, not back to where we started, but so much better.


    • DanaNM
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      6061 posts Send Private Message

      That’s wonderful news!! Bunnies certainly can be very particular about their potty spots!

       

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • LunaLove33
      Participant
      9 posts Send Private Message

      Just wanted to update everyone, she is back to potty trained and all of us are VERY happy. Thank you so much, love all of the GREAT advice on this board.


    • Bam
      Moderator
      15218 posts Send Private Message

      Yay!! Thanks for the update! Such happy news! 🐇🐰🐇

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Forum BEHAVIOR Holding urine and poop?