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Thread: Digging!

  1. #1

    Default Digging!

    Hi,
    I am currently on holiday and my rabbit is being looked after at my house. He has a hutch with a run attached from the front and I have been told that he is trying to dig out under the run. He has never tried to do this before he's only ever taken bits of grass up but I have been told it is a big hole and once they've covered it he's started doing it the other side.

    Is there any reason why he could be doing this, maybe because he's frustrated that I haven't been there to socialise with him? Is there any solution as I don't want him to have to stay in his hutch until I get back.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Mama Doe MiniC's Avatar
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    Does he have any bunny friends? Might be boredom if he doesn't have any company - rabbits are very social creatures that don't like spending too much time alone.

    Maybe he needs some toys for now to keep him entertained, and a tray of soil to dig at instead.

    I'd look into getting him a friend when you get back, if he doesn't already have one.

  3. #3
    Warren Veteran
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    Rabbits like to dig and once they've discovered what their front paws are for, that's it I'm afraid! The only way to stop them digging when in the run is to either move the run onto concrete, or put something under the run which he can't dig. Some folk dig a couple of inches of turf up, lay down small holed mesh and then re-lay the turf - this stops bunny digging out, or anything else digging in, like a fox.

    Our girls didn't dig either, for ages, but then as I say, discovered what their front paws were for and nearly escaped into the garden. Their run is now on groundsheet to stop moisture, topped with hardwood sheets, topped with newspaper, topped with hay. They have toys in the hay, but they also of course play with the hay, sleep in it and eat it. I have hung toys from the side of the run as well, which they also play with. In very bad weather a couple of the inside edges of the paper and some hay get wet and have to be replaced, but they can't get out and just as importantly nothing can get in. The top and 3 sides at night are covered by tarpaulin (in the day in summer the one side is lifted so they can see out and it lets air in too). During the winter the 3 sides remain covered for extra warmth and weather protection. Also in winter we close off the tunnel at night too so they can't even get into the run anyway.

    Provide a diggy box in the shed as MiniC has already said, but you must put something solid on the floor of the run now otherwise he'll escape - but this will also stop a predator getting in.

    My girls Coco and Thumper (respectively)

  4. #4
    Warren Scout Preitler's Avatar
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    I let mine dig as much as they want. They created an Indiana Jones style pit trap advanture park in the backyard of my last apartment, with tunnels several meters long, and just deep enough that my leg would vanish up to the knee after rainy days. Now they turn over my future vegetable garden.

    They never dig to get out of the fence, well, it happend sometimes by accident, but not on purpose. But they somewhat like to start a tunnel under something or close to an obstacle, like the legs of my hutches or maybe a fence.
    Bucks and does dig very differently, does have digging fits and tunnel with awesome dedication for some days or weeks, sometimes several does at one hole, then they stop and don't dig for many months.

    My bucks don't dig that way, only short bursts, less than a minute, then going to another spot. Kind of marking the territory, I suspect, and they gnaw the grass roots. That's actually a pretty sure way to identify a male, that saved me from at least 2 oops-litters when one of the growout "does" did that digging bursts.

    Well, as I said, I let them act out that urge, and it goes away for most of the year. It definitly has something to do with hormones, so I can't tell how neutered rabbits do that.

  5. #5

    Default

    A groundsheet sounds like the best option as I do move the run around so couldn't have something permanent. I will get creative once I'm home and create some more enrichment and hang some more toys to keep him entertained! I have just bought a new run extension to attach when I get home which should give him a very large space and hopefully keep him from becoming bored.
    Thanks for the suggestions☺️

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