At what age do baby rabbits start to urinate/defecate?

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by Elizabeth, Mar 2, 2005.

  1. Elizabeth

    Elizabeth Well-Known Member Supporter

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    At what age do baby rabbits start to urinate/defecate?
    anyone know? the bottom of the nestbox was wet tonight- the first time we have noticed this, but we haven't seen anything that looks like feces yet. We want to be sure that we keep the box clean enough, but hope to delay fooling around with it as long as possible so as not to bother the mother.

    We originally just put hay in the box but that seems not to be absorbent enough, so tonight we added some wood shavings.
     
  2. MaineFarmMom

    MaineFarmMom Columnist, Feature Writer

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    At birth. What goes in must also come out.
     

  3. Tiffann4k

    Tiffann4k Well-Known Member

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    Maybe she means on their own....if not I am curious to know when they start to go on their own without the mother helping them.
     
  4. rabbitgal

    rabbitgal Ex-homesteader

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    LOL, I've had baby bunnies pee on me at a VERY young age, only a few days old, so apparently they can control their bodily functions pretty early. Make sure your nest box can drain, or better yet make sure you have absorbent material in the bottom. My very first litter was born in a plastic pet carrier filled with hay and it did not take long at all for urine to pool in the bottom and make a very "unwelcoming" environment for the kits. Stupid me didn't realize what was happening until some of the babies started showing up with ammonia burns. Was not pretty. :( Anyway, now I use nest boxes constructed of 1/2" by 1" floorwire lined with cardboard, with a couple inches of wood shavings in the bottom and crammed full of hay. Once the kits are done with the nestbox, everything comes out and I can sanitize the wire nestbox 'til the cows come home. The kits are a lot healthier and happier, the nestboxes are cheap and easy to build, and it's a whole lot easier to keep them clean.
    --rabbitgal
     
  5. Rosarybeads

    Rosarybeads Well-Known Member

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    Are these drop boxes or regular boxes? It would be just as easy to install drop, although you can't take them out. Harder to sanitize. :) But saves bunnies.
     
  6. rabbitgal

    rabbitgal Ex-homesteader

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    Regular, but I definitely want to try drop boxes. Seems more new doe friendly. I'm thinking that a drop box that slides into place like a refrigerator drawer might work--just have to cut a piece of wire to cover the opening when the nestbox is removed....still doing a lot of experimenting in the ol' rabbit shed.

    rabbitgal
     
  7. Rosarybeads

    Rosarybeads Well-Known Member

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    That's a neat idea. You could have a "flap" wire that comes up and gets latched onto the side while you are using the box.

    Our dropboxes were made of wire, same size as cage bottom, and it had a little "lip" around the inside top. We would get liners for them, cardboard, and slide them in, and put the edges up under the lip so the doe couldn't massacre the cardboard; at least not before the kits were ready to come out. :)