How to Set Up a Rabbit Litter Box in 10 Steps

Your rabbit’s litter box is one of the most important places for your rabbit. Rabbits do their business quite a lot, and they need to have a place where they feel comfortable whenever they go. This being said, it is important that you know how to set up a proper litter box for your rabbit.

This litter box setup will have a simple, easy 10 step set up process. Here you’ll learn what litter box to get, the right bedding to put in it, and how to make your rabbit as happy and comfortable as possible in the litter box that you set up.

Step 1: Pick Out the Litter Box

The correct litter box and size of the litter box are essential for a rabbit’s comfort. Like us humans, rabbits want to be able to have a nice place to do their business, and a correctly-sized litter box lets them do that.

The optimal size litter box will allow the rabbit to make 360 degree turns while inside. This means that you will be getting a large or extra-large-sized box. Make sure that the walls on the sides are short and that your rabbit can see what is going on in the room. A low entrance to the litter box is also recommended, to make sure that your rabbit has an easy entrance into it.

You will also want to get a lid for the litter box, to make sure that your rabbit has privacy. You should also get a mat to put under the litter box to help contain the mess.

One drawback to the short sidewalls is that they will cause a mess around the area of the litter box. This issue will be addressed later in this article.

Also, a wire base is absolutely not recommended to use for your rabbit’s litter box. They can cause infections and will hurt your rabbit’s feet. So, don’t even think about having a wire base for your litter box.

Step 2: Pick Out the Liner

Now that you have the litter box that you want to get, we need to look to see what liners would be able to work in it.

The benefits of a liner make them well worth the time and effort for you and your rabbit. They will make clean up of the cage much simpler and quicker, whenever you change the materials inside.

A liner will help you see the urine of your rabbit to make sure that it is looking good and healthy. It will also make setting up the litter box easier by giving the materials a good base to be on.

Some possible liners include newspapers, puppy pads, and brown shopping bags. The best one of the three would be the puppy pads, but only use them if they can be completely out of reach of your rabbit. For example, if your puppy pad can sit beneath a grate where you are sure your rabbit can’t chew on it. Puppy pads can be dangerous to rabbits if consumed.

However, if you can safely use them, they will allow the easiest cleanup and visibility of the rabbit urine. When you get the puppy pads, you made need to cut them down to size to prevent your rabbit from being able to chew on them. It may not be possible to get the pad out of reach with many litterboxes. If that’s the case, consider using newspaper instead.

TIP: Are Puppy Pads Safe for Rabbits? is an article detailing the dangers of using puppy pads for your rabbit. On the other hand, Ask the Vet: Is Newspaper Safe for a Rabbit Cage? is my article explaining how to choose a non-toxic newspaper for your pet rabbit. Vet bills can certainly add up if you don’t have the right materials in your rabbit’s space!

Step 3: Pick Out The Litter/Bedding

When picking out the litter and bedding you want to make sure that it is absorbent and easy on your rabbit’s feet.

The best kind of litter to get is either Pine, Aspen, or Cedar Shavings or paper-based bedding. The shavings will do well but have a difficult time blocking the odor of the urine. The paper-based bedding will work very well. It masks the odor, is very absorbent, and is safe for your rabbit. It’s just very expensive. Here is a more detailed article that outlines different types of litter available to eliminate bad odors: Bye-Bye Bad Smells: 13 Best Litters for Rabbits.

The best thing that you should do, is to have paper-based bedding as the next layer in your litter box. You can add the shavings if you want, but the paper-based bedding on its own will do the job for you.

Step 4: Go Buy The Materials

The materials will be easy to purchase. Do research on steps 1-3 before going to a pet store to purchase the materials. Make sure that you have a backup plan just in case the store does not have the exact materials that you are looking for and go for it.

It will be a little bit pricey, but it will be worth it. Making sure that your rabbit is comfortable and has the best materials available, will make both of you happier. Any pet store will have the materials that you need. Just make sure that there is one close to you.

Step 5: Line The Litter Box

Once you have gotten your materials and arrived home, it’s time to get started setting up the litter box. Have the materials in front of you and easily accessible so that setting up takes up less time.

The first thing that you will need is the liner and box that you’ve picked out. When you have those two things with you, you will need to make sure that the liner fits perfectly on the inside of the box. To do this, place the liner inside of the box and see how well it fits. If there are edges of the liner that are sticking up too high, you can trim them down with scissors so that your rabbit won’t be able to nibble on the liner.

Again, the best liner to use would be a puppy pad. It is the most absorbent liner and the one that will help you the most with cleaning.

Step 6: Add A Layer Of Litter/Bedding

When you have your liner laid down and fits appropriately, you can start putting in the litter/bedding. The easiest way to do this is by getting a regular-sized cup to scoop the litter/bedding into the litter box.

When laying down the bedding, make sure to cover about three-fourths of the surface area of the litter box. The best way to do this is from the entrance towards the back of the litter box. Do as many scoops as possible to make sure that your rabbit has enough space to do its business.

Having the litter/bedding compact and thick will make it more comfortable for your rabbit. To do this, fill the three-fourths area as high as the entrance goes. This will help with controlling the odor and making sure that you do not have to clean up more than you have to.

Step 7: Add A Lot Of Hay

With the remaining fourth of the area that you have in the litter box, lay down a ton of hay! You should fill this space of the litter box, from the bottom of it to the top. With rabbits having to go to the bathroom a lot, they need to feel as comfortable as possible. Laying down hay to snack on will help them do this. It will help them to relax knowing that they have a safe space, with their favorite snack, for them to do their business.

Step 8: Set A Mat Down

It is essential to set a mat down for those who do not like to clean up after a messy rabbit. The mat that you put under your litter box will save you so much time from cleaning up and help keep your house neat and without litter box materials.

The reason why a mat is so essential is that it contains the mess of the litter that your rabbit will create. Rabbits will likely kick materials inside the litter box out, and having that mat will block the materials from traveling too far outside of the litter box.

You should get a mat that has a greater surface area than the litter box to make sure that it helps to contain the mess that will be made by your rabbit. You should also pat-down or shake out the mat to make sure that there is not too much of a build-up of materials on the mat.

Step 9: Put The Lid On It

When you have the inside of the litter box set up and the mat laid down, the lid is the last piece of the puzzle. The lid is important because it will help with cleaning up and preventing hay or bedding from getting out of the litter box. Most importantly, it will also give your rabbit much-needed privacy.

Just imagine you’re a rabbit and you want to do your business, but you can’t peacefully because your humans won’t leave you alone. They want to keep playing with you or they come up to pet you. Keep your rabbit’s feelings in mind.

So, out of respect for your rabbit, make sure that you get a lid for the litter box. It will make things a lot easier for both of you.

Step 10: Let Your Rabbit Do Its Business

With the lid on, the litter box is ready to go! Give your rabbit the peace, quiet, and privacy that it deserves. Having the litter box in a safe and comfortable area for your rabbit is essential. If you have it in an area that’s out in the open and easily accessible for unwanted people or other animals, it will not be a good scenario.

Having the litter box in a private place and with the right materials will make your rabbit feel happy and safe.

Laura Pierce

I'm the owner of and I've loved rabbits since I got my first one as a pet at 8 years old. Today I spend much of my time researching rabbit habits, exotic varieties, and ideal living environments.

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