Sunday, September 4, 2011

Rabbit Litter Pan

One thing I figured out very quickly was that rabbits are little bit messy... even if they don't mean to be. Rabbits are like cats in the sense that they like to have clean surroundings. If you provide them with a litter pan-they would rather use the litter pan than mess up their cage or hutch.
Some people try litter training their rabbits by watching the cage and correcting the rabbits right away if they went out of the litter pan. That might work well for some people, but I don't have time to sit in front of a cage all day!
My mom, having house trained countless dogs and cats, is an expert animal trainer! She helped
me a lot when I was having trouble with Tuscany and London.
My hutch is half closed in with a plywood floor and half enclosed with rabbit wire-so any business done out there just goes through to the ground which is not a problem to me! The trouble I was having was in the closed in part, where the business couldn't go through wire and was causing a lot of problems.
Most of my predicament was my litter pan, as I found out later. I had been using just a regular litter pan-rectangular, normal kitty litter pan. The bunnies would hop in the litter pan, go, and
then hop out. I was using the recycled paper bedding then... so it would stick in their fur and just go EVERYWHERE. The other result of using the plain old litter pan was that the bunnies would miss.
My rabbits like to back their butts up to a corner when they go to the bathroom, I am not sure why they do this but when my mom an
d I saw this rabbit litter pan's design-it made perfect sense!!

Not only is the messy bedding problem solved with the grate, but there is a corner for them to back up to! After all the trouble we had, it was such a relief to see this.
But we still had some work to do. We moved the bunnies to our garage and housed them in a medium sized dog kennel. They needed to be in a confined space to "get" the whole litter pan thing! There were a few setbacks, but keeping their surroundings VERY clean and the litter pan clean as well helps a lot and eventually, they get the idea. So, after a few days of being in the smaller cage, I moved them back out tho their hutch!
And then another problem presented itself. (Of course.) There were two corners that they liked to go in, one didn't have a litter pan and I didn't have the space or money to keep adding litter pans. Whats a girl to do?
Once again, my mom came to the rescue. (I am sensing a pattern here.) Why not fill up the other corner so they can't get to it?
A couple of bricks and a section of a two-by-four later, home sweet home.
Eventually, the buns decided to try peeing in the outside corners of the litter pan, of which there are no guards to keep the little bunny buns from going over. Solution? Well, the left corner (the one touching the two-by-four and bricks in the picture) was solved by putting another brick on top of all the others and pushing it to the right just over the white line on the litter pan. That formed a wall for the rears to "schooch" up to. The opposite corner of the litter pan is still being solved. Once in a great while I will go out to do morning chores and there will be a little puddle under the right corner. Don't ask me how it got there, but I am noticing that it is happening less and less.

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