Providing your rabbits with a safe and clean home is one of the most important things you can do for him. The cleanliness of his house also greatly affects his health, as it does with any living thing, and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that all kinds of disease and parasitic problems thrive in filthy conditions. When you add to this the facts that ammonia build-up from urine causes respiratory problems, unclean cages is an open invitation to problems. Cleaning the cage or hutch will depend on what type of cage or hutch it is.
Cleaning Wire Cages
If the pen is primarily wire, with liter-trays, your job is relatively easy. Dump and out disinfect the liter pans no less than once per week, adding to that, monthly or as needed – scrape out the cage floors, and remove any loose fur which has became stuck to the surfaces. Then on the average of twice per year, remove the rabbit(s), pull the cages outside, scrape off any fecal matter and fur, and some people also opt to use a torch to lightly burn the wires, but otherwise thoroughly spray the entire cage down with bleach solution, rinse with clean water, and let it dry in the sun. While it is drying, this is a good time to really scrub down all feed dishes and toys. After everything is dry, replace the rabbit and her feed crocks, etc., and you’re all set.
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Cleaning Wooden Hutches
If your cage is made partially or entirely of wood, the method of cleaning will be slightly different, although it should be done on the same basic schedule of weekly, monthly, and bi-yearly. Weekly, at a minimum, you will need to remove all bedding, fecal matter, and fur. Replace with fresh, clean bedding and you’re good to go. Monthly, you would want to repeat the above steps, and spray the inside of the hutch with an iodine solution and allow that to completely dry before replacing fresh bedding and other items. This is also a good time to inspect the hutch for any points of escape. Rabbits are naturally going to chew on wood, and doing so could loosen the wires, or even create a hole in the hutch. While it may not look too bad, go ahead and take the time to repair any issues as soon as you see them; doing so can save your pals’ life. Then, of course, on a bi-yearly basis you should do all of the above, plus thoroughly spray the inside of the hutch with a 10% bleach/water solution, let that dry, re-spray with iodine solution, and then replace bedding, and clean feeding dishes and toys.