Saturday, January 22, 2011

Bunny Blog : House Training - Week 2 : Don't Bite the Rug!

VIDEO : Whistle Noises
Week 2: Letting our new house bunny Roxanne explore and trying to teach her not to bite the floor rug or carpet!, a loud clap and an 'uh-uh' usually does the trick lol but she seems to like to lick everything! .. She loves bolting up the hallway and do little kicks and flips when she gets excited and goes nuts... first time I tried whistling to see what she would do :) it definately gets her attention lol

This video will show rabbit care and how to bunny proof your home. Similar to the requirements parents might face in child proofing their home, the same can be said for bunny proofing one's home. Toys and appropriate deviations from your furniture or belongings are suggested. These tips help to protect your rabbit from other possible dangers (such as electric shock or physical injury) that might occur if your home is not properly prepared for your pet. We explore some of the options to allow you to still operate in your home while making some modifications to make the room bunny accessible.

Watch More Rabbit Training Videos :

FAQ: Chewing

Article Shared : The House Rabbit Society


Why does your rabbit chew things other than her meals? Chewing is a normal, natural, necessary (and highly enjoyable) activity for rabbits. Here is an outline of some considerations to help you understand the why of chewing, as well as the how of preventing destruction of your favorite wicker furniture.

What are the psychological factors of chewing?

Sex. Females often have a stronger urge to burrow than males, although this is not the only reason rabbits chew. The hormone/age factors below also apply to males. Both males and females can and should be spayed or neutered as soon as they are sexually mature (3 1/2 to 6 mos. old).Hormone/age. Is she spayed?

  • If young (under 2 yr..) & unspayed, spay her.
  • If young & spayed, her chewing will lessen with time.
  • If mature (over 2 yrs.) & unspayed, spay her but get a checkup first.
  • If mature & spayed, her behavior isn't governed by hormones.
Remember, a spayed rabbit will chew less and less as she matures. It may be just a matter of riding out a high energy stage of your bunny's life.Personality. Chewers are often intelligent, outgoing, affectionate individuals who like to be in charge and get lots of attention. Does she chew to get attention? Would a companion alleviate boredom? Anything that would entertain her/make her happier might lessen her chewing.

What are the environmental factors of chewing?

Diversions: keep trying to find something harmless she enjoys doing. What kind of "burrow" (such as a cardboard box stuffed with hay), can you provide for her?Protecting the environment: A box or wire basket can go over a group of wires. Browse a large hardware store for products to use for bunnyproofing.
Confinement (to a cage or room). This simply buys you time, while you bunny-proof, get her spayed, or wait for her to mature.

Should I give the rabbit items to chew?

Yes. You can give rabbits pieces of the thing they want to chew: their own small towel, for example, providing they aren't ingesting it. This is especially useful when the attraction is the particular consistency.Here are some items that are OK for rabbits to chew on:

  • apple, willow, aspen branches;
  • pine firewood;
  • cotton towels
  • untreated fresh pine lumber attached to cage so it doesn't move--piece of molding, 1"x2"s, or 2"x4"s;
  • basket with hay in it--let the bun chew the basket as well as the hay;
  • compressed alfalfa cubes

Aren't some woods toxic?

Fruit tree branches, such as, apricot and peach are toxic while attached to the tree but not after they're cut and dried (a month or more). Lisa McSherry and Rusty Fayter, who package The Busy Bunny baskets, share this research. Another tip they offer for your bunny's safety is to keep your purchases of imported baskets limited to willow, the only basket material not sprayed with pesticide.

Does chewing carpet hurt the rabbit?

Yes, if then ingest the fiber. Since swallowing indigestible such as carpet presents a health hazard to your bunny, follow up excessive chewing incidents with a petroleum laxative such as Petromalt or Laxatone (sold at pet- supply stores).

Should I give the rabbit items to dig?

Yes. For digging, build a "tunnel" (top isn't needed, just bottom, high sides, and end. Cover the bottom with a bit of carpet or something similar. Bunnies LOVE to dig at the end of tunnels. (Same thing can be accomplished by putting a board with carpet tacked on between two pieces of heavy furniture against the wall...just be sure the board can't move or the bun will be digging the carpet beneath where the board was meant to be.

Can I discipline my rabbit not to chew?

Discipline (clapping hands, saying "no") has a small role in stopping chewing behavior. Most people report that it's easy to make their bunnies understand them, but difficult to make them stop the behavior through the use of discipline only, especially if the bunnies are left alone for periods of time. Section 7 of this FAQ covers general companion rabbit training techniques.

We don't have many things out except for the furniture for Roxanne to chew on & don't leave anything lying around. She is prevented from going into the bedrooms and the computer section is blocked off too so there are no electrical cords to access. Our main problem we will try to prevent is her nibbling the floor rug and carpet which I've only caught her doing a couple of times so far lol.

Bunny Chew Toys

Currently Roxanne is only allowed out when we are home so none of this chewing of carpet behaviour can take place when we are out or asleep as she will be confined to the tiled laundry / cage area. She stops with us clapping and saying -uh-uh. We have wood chew toys and her rope carrot but she doesn't seem to interested in those as yet so I am going to get her some nice apple braches and a grass mat (see pic) to scratch and chew on:)

VIDEO: Cucumber Treat

We are slowly introducing greens to Roxanne so a little bit here and there works well as a treat and to aid training :) Her diet consists mostly of oaten hay and rabbit pellet with a chaff mix :) She goes nuts for the cucumber and if she wants more she will climb all over me for it if I'm sitting on the floor, so I can encourage and train her with it :)... little Roxanne is really surprising us. You will be suprised how smart your bunny actally is when house training.. But it really helps having a bunny of young age and good temperament to begin with. :)



Bunny Blog : House Training - Our First Few Days with Roxanne

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