How often should I clean my rabbit's cage

How Often Should I Clean My Rabbit's Cage? A Quick Guide

 Are you wondering, "How often should I clean my rabbit's cage?

Well, bunnies tend to poop and pee a lot, so you need to clean the cage weekly and change the bedding to keep your home smell-free.

But there's more to cleaning your bunny's enclosure than meets the eye, so I'm here to provide you with a handy guide. 

Just keep reading. 

Key Takeaways 

  • Regular cage cleaning keeps your rabbit healthy and your house smell-free.
  • You should spot clean the enclosure daily and deep clean it at least weekly.
  • Litter-training your bunny and switching to absorbent bedding make it easy to keep the cage clean.¬†

Why Should You Clean Your Rabbit Hutch? 

Before revealing how often you should clean rabbit hutches, let's find out why maintaining hygiene is important for your bunny's health. 

A dirty environment promotes the growth of bacteria and mold. It also weakens your pet's immune system and makes it easy for nasty diseases to spread among your animals.

Moreover, bunnies have sensitive feet, so lying on damp bedding increases their risk of developing sore hocks. It's also bad for their respiratory system and stomachs. 

Dirty cages attract flies, which can lay eggs on your bunny and cause a fly strike. This deadly disease can kill your pet in a very short time, according to the Rabbit Welfare Organization. (1) 

A dirty litter box and soiled bedding can also pose a risk to your health, as they are breeding grounds for bacteria and parasites. 

But how often should you clean your bunny's cage? The answer will surprise you! 

How Often Should I Clean My Rabbit Cage?

Experts from Mulberry Vets say, "For the ideal rabbit environment, the hutch should be cleaned at least once a day." You should: (2)

  • Remove leftover food. I prefer to do it once in the morning and once in the evening to prevent it from stinking up the cage overnight.
  • Spot clean water spills, urine clumps, droppings, etc.
  • If your bunny is not litter-trained, replace the soiled bedding with a fresh one. If your rabbit uses a litter tray, change any soiled litter.¬†
  • Pour fresh water into the water dish and fresh food into the food bowls.¬†

    Daily spot cleaning makes maintaining good hygiene and preventing health issues easy. But it's also vital to do regular deep cleaning. How often do you ask? Let's find out! 

    How Often Should I Deep Clean My Rabbit's Cage?

    I deep clean every week because I have multiple rabbits, and the house stinks quickly. However, it's OK to deep clean the enclosure bi-weekly.

    In general, how often you should deep clean depends on how many bunnies you have, whether your pet is in good health, and its age.

    A baby bunny inside a clean cage.

    If your pet is sick, clean as often as possible to keep bacteria and viruses at bay. And baby and senior rabbits may poop and pee more because of weak bladder/bower control.

    Of course, multiple bunnies in the enclosure, the quicker it gets dirty and smelly. So, more rabbits equals deep cleaning at least weekly. Here are a few guidelines on how to do it: 

    • Remove toys, accessories, and fabric bedding. Wash them with warm water and soap/detergent.¬†
    • Sweep the cage to remove leftover hay, droppings, and litter.
    • Wipe the cage and the soiled spots with hot water and a vinegar solution to remove nasty smells and urine stains.¬†
    • Use pet-safe disinfectant to disinfect the cage. Don't use harsh chemicals because they can be toxic to your bunny.
    • If possible, take the indoor rabbit cage apart and wipe it thoroughly with soapy water and vinegar solution.¬†
    • Wash the water/food bowl and put clean bedding inside the enclosure.¬†

    But what about your rabbit's litter box? How often should you clean it? 

    How Often Should I Clean My Rabbit Litter Box? 

    You should spot clean the litter box daily to remove urine clumps and droppings. I usually check the litter tray at least once in the morning and once in the evening. 

    Once a week, I wash the box with hot water and white vinegar to remove stains/smells and put in fresh litter. 

    Of course, depending on the type of litter you use and the number of bunnies, you may need to clean the litter box more often. 

    And now, I've got some tips to make it easy for you to clean your rabbit's enclosure.

    3 Tips for Rabbit Cage Cleaning

    Keeping the cage clean can be a chore, especially for novice pet owners. But these handy tips can shorten your scrubbing time. 

    #1 Litter Training

    Pet rabbits are relatively clean creatures because they do their business in an area away from their food and water bowl. That's why they're perfect for litter training. 

    Litter training your bunny is worth it because you don't have to clean urine and droppings from all over the rabbit cage base. You just have to change the litter tray daily. 

    Watch this video for more information about litter-training rabbits.

     

    #2 Pick the Right Cage

    Wooden hutches are more difficult to deep clean than other enclosures. I used to clean the hard-to-reach areas weekly with a spray bottle filled with a water/vinegar solution, and it took hours of scrubbing.

    Standard rabbit cages are easier to maintain, but you still need to take them apart every week or so for deep cleaning. That's why I switched to playpens.

    They're the best enclosure for indoor rabbits because they're roomy and easy to move around for cleaning. 

    #3 Switch Litter/ Bedding 

    An absorbent bedding keeps your bunny's cage dry for days, so you don't have to clean it as often. And it's also better for controlling. 

    I use Luftpets' cage liners because they're super absorbent and waterproof, so they don't leak everywhere. But fleece and paper also do an excellent job. 

    As for a clean litter box, I recommend wood shavings (aspen, not cedar shavings! ) or recycled paper. Clay cat litter is not a suitable litter option for rabbits because it can cause intestinal problems.

    FAQs

    1. How often should I change a rabbit's bedding?

    You should spot-clean the bedding daily and change it at least once a week. Depending on the type of bedding, you may have to replace it every few days. 

    2. Do bunnies like dirty cages?

    Bunnies don't like dirty cages, and avoiding regular rabbit cage cleaning can negatively affect your bunny's mental and physical health. 

    3. Should you cover rabbits at night?

    You can cover the cage at night to limit your bunny's exposure with blankets or paper towels to noise and other triggers. And do rabbits like blankets over their cages? Some do, others don't. 

    Conclusion

    How often should I clean my rabbit cage? It's vital to remove leftover food, clean small messes, and refill the water dish daily to keep your bunny comfortable and healthy.

    Weekly or bi-weekly deep cleaning will keep unpleasant odors at bay and reduce the growth of bacteria, mold, and parasites. 

    What do you think about this topic? How often do you clean your rabbit's cage? Share your experience in the comment section. 

    Resources:

    1. Rabbit Welfare Association and Fund. [Internet] Flystrike in Rabbits. [Cited April 2024] Available from: https://rabbitwelfare.co.uk/flystrike-in-rabbits/
    2. Mulberry Vets. [Internet] Rabbit Care | Information on Caring for your Rabbit from Vets in Suffolk [Cited April 2024] Available from: https://www.mulberryvets.co.uk/pet-advice/rabbit-care
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