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Bunny Beds | The Best Bedding For Rabbits

Updated on October 19, 2010
Cameron Diaz and her hammock bunnies.
Cameron Diaz and her hammock bunnies.

A reader asked the following excellent question about bunny beds:

What do you use for a bunny bed in the cage? My daughter brought home a bunny 8 weeks old with a cage that has the pull out drawer at the bottom. But it doesn't seem very comfortable to lay on for the bunny. I put a towel in it, but the bunny immediately started eating it, so I took it out. What can we use?

First of all, if your cage is one of the small ones (which the ones with pull out draws usually are), then please make sure the rabbit gets time to stretch its legs outside the cage on a regular basis. Rabbits are just as active physically and mentally as dogs and cats and keeping them cooped up in a tiny box until they die can make them go quite mad.

But that wasn't your question, was it? Your question had to do with bedding. The best bedding for rabbits I've found is usually hay layered over newspaper - or alternatively if the cage allows for it, hay layered over a clay kitty litter. It has to be clay litter because clay is non toxic if the bunny has a bit of a nibble. Some people use newspaper, but rabbits often tear newspaper up. It is okay if they rip it up, but if they start eating it, they can get into trouble. For this reason, I recommend hay over a clay kitty litter base - or just plain hay.

Why do I say hay is the best bedding? For several reasons:

Hay is everything for a rabbit. It is an essential food. Your rabbit should always have a supply of hay to eat, a rabbit's digestive system needs to be moving pretty much constantly, and hay ensures that it does. If your rabbit stops eating or is deprived of hay for any length of time, its digestive system can seize up and it can die.

Hay is also obviously very comfortable and natural and provides an excellent soft surface for the bunny to rest on.

It is tempting to buy a bunny a proper 'bed', but most rabbits have quite a powerful nesting instinct and will spend time rearranging their home to suit their needs. Bunny DIY usually involves destroying things by chewing them or tearing them up.

If your rabbit seems overly destructive, it is possible that your rabbit is bored, rabbits do need to play and as I mentioned before, they need space to run and jump and stretch their legs. The sight of a happy rabbit 'binkying' (running about, suddenly jumping in the air and tossing their heads and bodies about) is a real reward, and one you'll never see if your bunny is caged up like Hannibal Lecter.

I've written several articles on toys for rabbits and playing with rabbits, so please do have a look at them, they'll make your new rabbit's life much more interesting and they'll make your bunny a much better pet too.


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    • profile image

      janette 

      6 years ago

      I use straw over newspaper for her bed compartment and hay over newspaper for the rest of her run which she seems very happy with.

    • profile image

      Lissa 

      6 years ago

      This information I shall use when i am taking care of my new bunny

    • profile image

      sara 

      6 years ago

      your

    • profile image

      bunny lover 

      7 years ago

      i cant train my bunny how do u do it??

    • profile image

      Rabbit Breeders 

      7 years ago

      @kat

      I have not had any trouble in my years of using cat litter... of course you will always have the rabbit that is the exception to the rule.

    • girlsbedding profile image

      girlsbedding 

      7 years ago

      best bedding sets

      www.globargains.com

    • profile image

      kat 

      7 years ago

      Ive read that its very dangerous to give a rabbit clay cat litter. Vets say it sits in their stomachs and clumps up and can make them very very sick if they eat it. Hay is the best thing or wood chips that ARE NOT pine or cedar as some small animals are allergic to the smell and that can also make them sick. I use recycled, shredded cardboard over newspaper in a litterbox. Bunnies can also be litter trained and pick it up very quickly. Put a box in the corner where your bunny likes to pee (keep it in the same corner don't move it). Over the first year, it may be tricky, but as they mature bunnies will start to pee in the same area. It sounds funny but my bun will poop as he eats so his box sits under his raised food dish and that's where he does his business. It took a couple months but that's his corner. Never hit a bunny, they are fragile. But if you catch them pee-ing, put pressure on his wee tail, pick him up carefully and put him in his box. After doing this twice, my bunny caught on. I also would pick up stray poops in front of him and put them in his box so he got the idea. Sounds like a lot of work, but if you do it, then the clean up is much easier and now my bunny has the run of the house :). And it makes me feel better cause he gets his exercise and playtime! works both ways.

    • profile image

      bea 

      7 years ago

      i want to have those bunnies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • taty96 profile image

      taty96 

      8 years ago from Ecuador

      Super cute article. Nice pic too

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