Why does she-----?

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by Terry W, Apr 15, 2006.

  1. Terry W

    Terry W Duchess of Cynicism

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    Crystal, a Californian doe I bought at TSC in early March is making me pull my hair!!! She is using her feed dish as a potty! It was hard enough getting used to the fact she stretches out like roadkill to sleep. Her bedding, under the wire, gets changed every two days (the rabbits are in my bedroom--) to keep odors down to a minimum. If I keep the dish at least half full of food, she does not potty in it, but lately, I miss the halfway point--either she is pregnant ( :happy: ) and eating for production purposes, or I am just way stressed out from end of semester/approaching graduation requirements. I moved all the cages yesterday so that I cannot help but see the levels of water, food, etc.
    I have over 500 dollars invested in the mini Rex ( he came to me with a nasty abcess) continued care and concern about a mini Dutch and a generic bunny. These will be "bunnies", not food rabbits! They will be used for pet and pelt offspring. The Dutch is deformed--I am thinking it is nutritional issues-- as the legs do seem to be the proper length. I plan on doing some progeny testing once I get out to the country and have room for a rabbit building. He and the generic bunny had very poor diets when I got them. (all three boys are from Freecycle postings)The generic guy is neutered. Thank heavens for that-- he is intended for educational purposes.

    In the meantime, I altered some building plans to allow for tornado weather. Disaster planning came up on a raptor rehab list I belong to, and as I was explaining the differences between the way a hurricane and a tornado destroy things, I realized I needed some pressure equalization vents. Housing will be under trees, so I am not all too concerned about actual wind damage, other than blowdowns of really old trees. but the wooded area is young, so the trees are light and flexible.

    hmm, Maybe if I put a small litterbox in the cage? :shrug: add another food dish? She has toys...
     
  2. Pat Lamar

    Pat Lamar Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Instead of a food dish or crock, why not use a feed "hopper?" It is installed into the side of the cage and can be filled from outside the cage. You would have to cut a piece out of the cage for the bottom portion of the hopper to fit through, but it sits high enough off the floor that the rabbit would not be able to potty in it. Available in different sizes at most feed and farm supply stores.

    Pat Lamar
    President
    Professional Rabbit Meat Association
    http://www.prma.org/
    Chairperson, ARBA Commercial Department Committee
     

  3. khowellrn

    khowellrn Well-Known Member

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    We use those and didn't even cut the hole in the cage- they can clip onto the wire from the inside.
    They will fix your problem, just put it above patootie level!
     
  4. MaggieJ

    MaggieJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yes, a food hopper would be good. As a stop-gap, try a soup bowl with a handle if you have one. Raise it up on a block of wood and wire it to the cage through the handle.

    A litter box really helps when the bunnies are indoors. I wintered mine in the front porch and gave each cage a dollar store rectangular plastic dishpan with a couple inches of shavings in it. If you put it in the favoured potty corner and peg it to the wire (because I'll bet Crystal will try to tip it!) with those long metal clips for closing packages and put a pinch or two of soiled litter to give her the idea, I think you will be pleased with how readily she takes to using it. All four of my does took to using the boxes regularly, but my buck was resistant.
     
  5. Terry W

    Terry W Duchess of Cynicism

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    Ah yes-- I have a hopper in mind, but was hoping to wait a bit-- Bass has one that combines an area for pellets and hay. And I am rather tired of throwing out both! I watched Crystal do the thing in her dish-- it is firmly anchored to the side of the cage--I disliked her throwing it about-- gave her toys instead for that purpose-- Anyway, she gets up to the edge of the cage--has to step UP into it. The bottom of the dish is about 1 inch from the cage floor. Then she stands up on her back legs in the dish, front paws looped over a horizontal wire, ventral area totally up against the wire, and she lets loose with the waste products!!!

    My animals are crazier than I am. Gonna see if I can finsd a plastic shoe box thing around here somewhere, and cut out a side. I sure hope that solves the problem for now. It is so warm today, I have bottles of water freezing for the bunnies--and a fan running, and two water bottles on each cage.

    Thanks everyone.
     
  6. MaggieJ

    MaggieJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Obviously, Terry, there is no help for it... Crystal wants her own flush toilet!
     
  7. Terry W

    Terry W Duchess of Cynicism

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    That is carrying the pampered pet thing just a bit TOO far!!!! :bouncy:
     
  8. rickd203

    rickd203 Well-Known Member

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    :cowboy:


    I use the feed hoppers and I find poo in them too. Still can't figure out how they do it! :nana:

    .
     
  9. Terry W

    Terry W Duchess of Cynicism

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    Well, I couldn't find the plastic shoebox thing, so I took a large terra cotta flower pot "saucer" and put some litter in it, added a few of her personal pellets, and stuck it in the cage. What is she doing? Eating her poo! :bash: I sure hope she is NOT preggers, cuz if she is--there may be NO TELLING what she will do in a nestbox! :flame:
     
  10. Maggiemoo

    Maggiemoo BunnySlave

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    Was she eating her poo or was it her cecals? The ones that look like little clusters of grapes and are sticky, they are supposed to eat. I am using the corn cob litter for my house rabbits and it lasts about 3 days before it starts to stink. The one female by herself gets a cat litter box. The bonded pair (male neutered) has a box I got at the dollar store. It is one of those that look like a bin and you can get more than one and they stack, with one side open. Scooby used to take his litter box, when he was caged alone, and turn it upside down over himself and play under it. Silly Rabbit!!

    What kind of bedding do you use? I just give mine old towels. They have cardboard box playhouses. Muliple levels, with the towels and stuffed animals in to snuggle and play with.

    As far as her stretching out like roadkill to sleep, Scooby is a Californian/New Zealand, and that's how he sleeps.
     
  11. MaggieJ

    MaggieJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Terry, try putting a few urine-soaked shavings in the box instead of bunny berries. Bunnies use their pellets throughout there territory, but let's face it... it is the urine that stinks. If you can encourage her to use the box for urination, that will eliminate most of your problem.