Bunnies chew their enclosures for a number of reasons and if your bunny is a repeat offender this behavior can be come frustrating.
In this article we look at the various reasons for this unwanted behavior and show you what other bunny owners do to stop it.
Bunnies are sociable creatures?
If your bunny is aware that you are at home and feels that it is not allowed to join you and might be missing out on fun or food, then chewing a the door to an enclosure is typical. Remember rabbis need a few hours a day of socialization as a minimum so you will need to find the time for this.
It's important not to reward bad behavior. Attention seeking chewing can be made worse if you get into the habit of giving your bunny a treat or two to make it stop. This will re-enforce this behavior and you could be making it worse.
Chewing is heathy behaviour for bunnies
Bunnies are constantly chewing, their teeth grow continuously throughout their lives so they are always looking for tough materials to help ware them down. If your bunny cannot satisfy this need it may be chewing on the tough materials of its enclosure for this reason, in which case you will need to enrich its environment with some more suitable alternatives. First and foremost, lots of fresh hay is very important, you bunny should be eating a stack of hay almost the same size as itself each day. Any wicker or willow chews purchased from a pet store will provide an excellent alternative however there are lots of freely available alternative such as cardboard box and old toilet roll tubes that work just as well.
Bunnies are constantly looking for roughage to eat as its vital for their digestion to work well and they will happily chew on wood or other soft materials we consider indigestible for the fibre it contains. If you bunny appears to be eating the wood of its enclosure then make sure you supplying plenty of hay as an alternative as well as wicker or willow toys from a pet store or cardboard things they can chew on that will satisfy this need and keep them out of trouble. if you do give them a cardboard box make sure all the staples and any plastic tape is removed first.
Bunnies like you and me if left with nothing to do will get bored and become restless. It's important for your bunnies health and happiness to have lots toys and things to do in their enclosure to keep them keep out of trouble. You don’t have to spend a fortune in a pet store as some simple free toys you can provide yourself such as toilet roll tubes or cardboard boxes are just as good. Make sure when you put them in the enclosure your bunny still has enough room to spring about.
Using bitter strays
A common defence for unwanted chewing behavior if to use a bitter spray however it’s unlikely this will work as a single solution as the taste does not seem to put all bunnies off so you are best to use this alongside more positive things that you can do to help. If you do find it works for you remember to apply it on a regular basis as it will wear out. A good way of applying it without spraying it everywhere is to first stray some onto a cloth and then wipe it directly on to the areas you want. Always by a product suitable for bunnies and be wary of homemade alternatives that may be suggested to you such as perfume or chilly oil as these can be harmful.