1

I live in a small two rooms apartment (living room + bedroom) with my girlfriend. We adopted a two-years-old rabbit in September and, after the first two weeks, he is a very easy-going rabbit: he doesn't chew things he is not supposed to, poops in his litter, has good appetite and he is friendly (not playful, but definitively not scared) even with guests. The only problem that we did not manage to solve, as you can guess, is that he often pees on the bed during night.

He is allowed to wander in the apartment during night, because his favourite place to sleep is under the bed, but he often jumps on the bed to sleep with us. Unfortunately, when this happens, one out three times he pees.

What we tried to teach him not to do that are these approaches:

  • In the moment in which he does that, we strongly (not shouting) say "No + his name!", and we take him and put it down from the bed. Sometimes, we close him in the living room (so, free to wander everywhere but the bedroom). Unfortunately, sometimes when he does that we don't wake up, so we cannot do that immediately.

  • When he pees in the litter, we give him a treat.

It's months now, but we don't see any improvement. Is this the right approach and, if not, what is an effective approach?

Although similar to this, in my case this happens at night when we sleep, so two problems arise: sometimes we cannot wake up and so cannot be constant, and second of all we cannot make loud noises.

1

We have several existing questions with answers about litter box use and rabbits the two most related are How should I discipline my rabbit for inappropriate toileting? & What is required to house break a rabbit? neither of them really address the issue you are seeing. The following is based on 10 years of rabbits living in our house, with one in the bedroom for most of that time.

I am going to assume that you have a litter box in both the livingroom and bedroom, if not you should consider it. Also if not present put in a nightlight, jumping off the bed at night in the dark can be challenging so he might be just doing this at night to lighten the load before jumping down. These two things might solve the issue, if not...

The solution is to keep him out of the bedroom at night for a few months. You can use a baby gate like in this answer to limit access during night time. He might pout about it but should accept the change well.

Baby Gate

I suspect he is not really sleeping on the bed but coming to visit you in the night. Beds are kind of soft and squishy and for the most part bunnies prefer to have a semi solid place to sleep so the can sprint away if they wake started. Our bedroom rabbit (Ruby) was up and down on the bed up to several times per night (getting older now, so not so much). Normally the nighttime visits are for pets, when they are lonely are have had a bad dream. Unlike cats the don't do well if accidently pushed off the bed in the middle of the night, so the tend not to stay unless you are actively petting them.

The best rabbit litter box habits are made when the rabbit is restricted to a small area with the litter box for the first couple of days. Then as the space is expanded they tend to come back to the original location more reliably. This is mistake we made with our first rabbit and it took years to fully overcome.

If there is a litter box he is using in the bedroom during the day, and if he is not allowed in the room at night, in few months the old habit should be broken. When you let him back in all should be good.

Related Rabbit making the bed, how cute is that?

Last option is to make him not want to be on the bed. A very fluffy comforter might be a good deterrent, alternately make it slipper (bunnies don't like slippery) but not sure how you would do that safely for him, and comfortably for you.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.