Butterscotch and Goose's Bunny Blog

Discussion in 'Bunny Blogs' started by Butterscotch, Jun 30, 2019.

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  1. Jul 4, 2019 #21

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

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    You guys!! I got bunny love from Goose today! I think. I was deep cleaning his cage and he hopped up to me and kinda hung out for a little bit so I took my gloves off and started to pet him from his head to his tail, slow and gentle. He put his head down but he didn't close his eyes. For maybe 5 full glorious minutes he let me stroke his back, rub his ears, caress his cheeks and forehead and he let me kiss him!! I smooched him all over and just breathed in his sweet bunny scent. Do you think he liked it since he put his head down or did I just assault my rabbit??
     
  2. Jul 5, 2019 #22

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

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    Since I'm home from work today for the holiday - yay!! - I set up every play pen that I have into two long side by side chutes coming off of each cage and Butterscotch and Goose have been running tandem laps for a while now. When Goose gets tired, he retires to his litter box to munch and poo while Butterscotch makes every attempt to escape her play pen. She doesn't climb anymore, I bought play pens designed for ferrets and rabbits so they don't have a horizontal bar until half way up. She can't get a foothold to climb. This little girl is so smart though that she knows where the pens are hooked together and she doesn't bother harassing any other area of the pen. She reminds me of the big velociraptor in the original Jurassic Park movie when the game warden says something like "She's testing the fence but she's smart. She never tests the same spot twice". Yeah, that's my girl. What have I gotten myself into with her? She's going to be my problem child, I can tell. But then I started thinking about how her personality might change after she is spayed in October and I felt sad! She is who she is, who am I to surgically alter her to try to change her nature? I have to remind myself that it's to save her life! To spare her from cancer. And also to enable her to share a meaningful bond with Goose (all 10 fingers crossed! Makes it awkward to type....) and to enrich her life through companionship. This is as much for her benefit as it is for mine. Goose goes through his surgery first, his is scheduled for August 30th when he'll be just shy of 6 months old. I took the whole day off of work, on a Friday, so I can fuss over him all weekend and make sure he's ok. I'm anxious about Butterscotch's surgery, females have it pretty rough in the desexing department. When my dog was spayed I put her in preemie onesies and paid my niece to skip school for a few days to watch her. I remember telling my niece she was being paid to watch her constantly: "You go to the bathroom, she goes to the bathroom with you. You watch a movie, she's in your lap. You hear her making noises at night, you get up to check. In fact, try not to sleep at all." (Slight exaggeration) I am the crazy aunt and I don't care! Not surprisingly, my niece couldn't be convinced to do the same when Butterscotch gets spayed so I'm going to have to figure this one out on my own. I don't have anybody to watch her when I have to go back to work. Will she be ok all alone after her surgery? What has worked for you guys when your girls have gotten spayed?
     
  3. Jul 9, 2019 #23

    Anna R.

    Anna R.

    Anna R.

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    Butterscotch...you sound just like me. I thought I was the only one who constantly worried about my babies and always wondering "what if". Glad to know I am not the only one! As for your male putting his head down, he was "presenting himself" to you. When a rabbit lungs forward and puts their head down they are asking for pets. So, you he was not angry with you for petting him, it's exactly what he wanted. The more you pet them the more they will do this. When I walk into my rabbit's area they all run over and put their heads down as they know they are going to get some love from Mom.

    Your little girl sounds a lot like my youngest girl. She is a little stinker. I came home one day to find her on top of her cage, how she got their I have no idea. I have two pens kind of side by side with a walkway down the middle. They have the entire room, one side for one pair and the other for another pair. Two bonded sets. Lily, my little stinker is constantly trying to escape to go see the other rabbits. She is convinced they have better treats on their side of the room. I have had to put up all kinds of odd barriers to keep her in her own area. I just make sure she has lots of toys and space to run to keep her occupied and avoid escaping. It's been a while since she's gotten out, so I think I finally got it taken care of. They are so smart and always seem to find the one place you didn't think of.

    My second youngest was eating her bedding too when I first got her. She has quit doing that as she found out that hay was much better than bedding.

    Only 1 of my 4 girls is spayed. I don't think your babies will change that much after they are spayed and neutered. Their personalities are their own, no matter what. It won't change who they are completely, just merely calm them down a bit (sometimes not at all as I have found). So, I don't think they will lose who they are. They will just become calmer less aggressive versions of themselves. :)

    As for adding the third rabbit.... I have four wonderful angels... I would love more; but, just don't have the time with the work thing always getting in the way. I think your thinking of the third is a great idea. I started with two and one died suddenly (very sad). Then I got another to fill the void for my single female. After a botched bonding I separated them and ended up with four. So, having three might be the best plan. Besides who can resist another little face and soft little body? :)
     
  4. Jul 9, 2019 #24

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

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    I'm sorry to hear you lost a bun suddenly! That must have been heart breaking. May I ask how the bonding attempt was botched? I think that's one of my biggest fears, that my two won't bond when they're ready to live together. I heard female/female bonds are not always easy, it's good to hear that you have two sets of girls! You succeeded twice.

    You have got me really thinking about getting one of those little sable point babies and attempting a trio. I just feel like I'd be signing up for disaster and a lifetime of separated buns. I don't have a spare room in my house. But my house can very easily be divided perfectly in half with equal living space for each set of buns. Then again, it was already a mistake to get two babies, my smarts tell me not to try three but my feels tell me I need to go for it because it just might work. This is when I need a husband to be the voice of reason and set some boundaries. Then again that's why I don't have (want) a husband...because I hate reason and boundaries. What a mess I am. o_O
     
  5. Jul 10, 2019 #25

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

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    Goose's vet appointment was today and he passed his health check with flying colors! He is officially scheduled for his neuter on August 30th. I really liked this vet we saw. I almost asked him to marry me when I watched how expertly he handled Goose. He trimmed his nails in like 5 seconds, it was very impressive. Very impressive. I got answers to all of my questions and I was told I'm doing things right and that's good to hear when you feel like you're kayaking without a paddle sometimes. I didn't just ease into bunny parenting, I dove right in with two babies of a high strung breed. But it has officially and professionally been confirmed that I am on the right track and I'm doing great so far. That's fantastic for my bunnies because they are my hostages and they have no choice but to live with my best efforts. I was glad to hear I'm making the right efforts. Our housing situation leaves a lot to be desired at the moment but we will get there. Right now I'm getting up at 3am so my bunnies have 2 full hours of time in their play pens before I have to leave for work. It will be nice when they are free roam and they can get all the exercise that they desire. We will get there!!

    I have to explain this photo of Goose. It's not the best photo of him so please don't tell him I posted it. It was 73 and humid and pouring rain today and my air conditioning does not work in my Jeep. I also have my grandpa's beautiful old Cadillac which has arctic cold air conditioning so naturally that was the car I was going to use to transport Goose to the vet. I was having trouble getting it to start last week so I dropped it off at the mechanic on Saturday where they determined it needed a new starter. This mechanic is open all weekend and putting a starter in a 30 year old Cadillac is pretty straight forward so I figured it would be done by Monday. Nope. Of course this happens right when I desperately need the air conditioning. We had to improvise with a bottle of frozen water wrapped in a paper towel. He sat right on it the whole way home, as you can see. Poor boy. Maybe I should have removed the paper towel so he could have frozen his balls off and saved me $189 on his neuter surgery.
     
  6. Jul 10, 2019 #26

    Anna R.

    Anna R.

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    It was horribly heart breaking losing my bunny. I was devastated and so concerned for little girl. She was heart broken when she lost her mate. They had been together since they were 6 weeks old. I rushed to get another mate for her without really doing any research on bonding or anything. I took her to meet the new rabbit and they got along perfectly. They rode home together in the carrier and were cleaning each other by the time I got them home. I thought all was going great. Then I made the mistake of putting the new rabbit right in the same pen with my "old" rabbit. Let's just say I figured out very quickly that was a mistake. I separated them fast; but, was un-prepared. I had to make shift a pen for the new bunny but had no room and they were too close to each other. The next day I got another x-pen and got them away from each other. I waited a couple of weeks and tried doing some "dates" in a neutral area. All they did was fight. They ended up hating each other and still do to this day. I have a sheet hanging between the two areas they are in or they go crazy trying to escape to get at the other. Big mistake on my part, and very stupid. I learned my lesson and did a ton of reading and research on bonding etc. About 6 months later I got another and tried my bonding technique I wrote earlier about. Worked like a charm.

    Your bunnies are both young, so that is a plus actually. When they are younger and not set in their ways I think it is easier to bond them. They haven't staked out their territories yet and are more open to making new friends. When I brought my first two home I put them together right away and had no problems at all. I think everything was new to them so they looked to each other for support and built the bond right away. That's the way to do it. They say taking your bunnies to a friends house for couple of days and putting them together works well as they are both in new area too.

    Sorry I got you thinking about getting another bun. Well, maybe not really. ;) I just love those little fur babies so much, I just can't help myself! :)
     
  7. Jul 10, 2019 #27

    Anna R.

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    Butterscotch... I love your posts. You make me laugh out loud. :)
    Keep posting I am eager to see how things turn out with Grey Goose and Butterscotch. Also, if you decide to get the third fur baby.
    Cheers to your bunny life. ;)
     
  8. Jul 10, 2019 #28

    Alyssa and Bugs♡

    Alyssa and Bugs♡

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    Butterscotch and Goose make me really want a Netherland! They're so cute!
     
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  9. Jul 10, 2019 #29

    Butterscotch

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    Oh my goodness it would break my heart to see my bunny have a broken heart. I don't understand how they can be such social creatures yet be so territorial even when they are lonely. I suppose in their natural habitat that serves some purpose for them but it sure makes it hard for those of us who are willing to take in multiple rabbits. I'm glad it more or less worked out for you with both of your pairs. I like your bonding technique, I hope it works for us if I have to actually bond my bunnies!
     
  10. Jul 10, 2019 #30

    Butterscotch

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    If they tense up but don't hop away should I keep going? Goose is much more receptive to this than the cheek rubbing but I think he still tenses up sometimes. Butterscotch doesn't have time for any affection at all, she's too busy. That's the best way to describe her.
     
  11. Jul 10, 2019 #31

    Butterscotch

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    They are so cute! But so is Bugs with his little lop ears and I'll bet Evie has the softest fur to go with her stunning black otter coloring. I wanted a black otter so bad but I couldn't find one anywhere. Your buns really do make the cutest couple! I hope they continue to get along for you! And for them.
     
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  12. Jul 11, 2019 #32

    JBun

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    I would so he can get used to it, and realize he's ok and you're just 'grooming' him. Usually if they don't want you doing it they will hop away or nudge your hand away.

    For busy rabbits, the best time to give them head rubs is when they've worn themselves out and have settled down for their nap.
     
  13. Jul 13, 2019 #33

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

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    So apparently putting a starter in a 30 year old Cadillac is not pretty straight forward. The dang starter is wrapped up in the exhaust so the exhaust has to be dropped in order to get to the starter. The mechanic said he didn't want to do the repairs. He was worried something would go wrong and he wouldn't be be able to find replacement parts for such an old car. I was able to get it started and took it to my dad's house where he had garage space to store it until we could figure out what to do with it. My dad is a super hero! He was able to find a mechanic who would be willing to fix it. Not only that, but this mechanic took my disabled 1999 Sebring convertible, which has been sitting in my dad's back yard for the last two years while we "figured out what to do with it", as partial payment for the repairs on my Cadillac. He picked up both cars. My dad knows this guy through church and he says he's very trustworthy. I believe him. I can't wait to have a car with air conditioning!! The weather has been downright swampy lately and I'm sick and tired of arriving at work with a damp bra and humidititties every morning.

    Butterscotch is a little devil. This child will test my patience to no end, I know it already. Yesterday was a long day because I went to liver olympics after work with my friends at this amazing Irish pub. I did go home first to let my dogs out, feed them, and refresh Goose and Butterscotch's hay but I still felt guilty about my bunnies spending such a long day in their cages. I let them out as soon as I got home from the pub and I settled on the couch with my tablet to check out updates here on RO. I fell asleep. I think I woke up in Kansas by the looks of Butterscotch's play pen. It looked like a tornado went through her play pen. She completely annihilated her cardboard box, destroyed her hay carrot toy (which I had stuffed with alfalfa), tossed hay all over the pen, pulled the fleece blanket through the play pen bars in several locations, and chewed a rabbit sized hole in the blanket. She didn't injest the blanket, the hole can be completely restructured. Goose's play pen was, for the most part, clean. He also ripped into his alfalfa stuffed hay carrot but he politely ate most of the hay instead of just tossing it everywhere. He's just a neat and clean bunny. He is my favorite. (Shooting rude looks at Butterscotch right now).

    I don't know when to start free roaming these bunnies. I estimated that it would most likely take the rest of the year for them to establish consistent potty habits, heal from their surgeries, heal from their hormones, and hopefully bond. I have purposely restricted their access from my kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom so that I have three choices of neutral territory in the event that bonding does not go as easily as I hope. The best part of my house for my bunnies is a long hallway that runs the entire length of my whole house and ends in my wide open living room. They can take off at full speed with more than enough room for safe turn arounds, laps, and binkies! I can't wait until we get there. I want my clean living room back and I want to get rid of these cages and play pens.
     
  14. Jul 13, 2019 #34

    Butterscotch

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    I pulled out my phone so many times this week to text the breeder about those sable point babies. I just can't do it. I hardly know what I'm doing now! But from what I understand, and from what you've said, it's much easier to attempt a trio with young bunnies than it is to plop a third bunny into a bonded pair. Again, I really don't know if that's true or not. I did go as far as discussing it with my sister, who says she will take one of my bunnies if all three don't bond. I guess at this point it is a financial decision for me because I'll end up paying for the bunny and spaying her if only to eventually have to give her to my sister (or one of my other bunnies) in a worst case scenario. These bunnies need homes anyway, I'd like to try to make the trio work but if it doesn't one of my bunnies will go to another very good home but still stay in the family. I don't want to risk Goose or Butterscotch being the odd bunny out, they're my babies! But I'll feel that way about the sable point baby too. What a conundrum! I want to try, I really do, but I don't want to have to give up one of my bunnies and I don't want to maintain separate living spaces for bunnies that won't get along. I can, I have the space, but I don't want to. Is it worth trying? Is it horrible to take in a new pet knowing you may have to rehome it even if it is to a wonderful new home?

    Sorry...I'm mostly thinking out loud. It's hard to talk yourself out of something you really want, isnt it?
     
  15. Jul 14, 2019 #35

    Butterscotch

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    Rant warning! Please scroll on by if you're not up for a major vent session.

    I am at my wits end with Butterscotch this morning! She has been so inconsistent with potty training pretty much since I brought her home. She'll do great for a while so I'll give her more space, then she starts to pee in corners again. I move/add litter boxes and reduce her space and she does great for a while. Then she starts peeing next to the litter boxes. Around and around we go. Today I gave her a fresh sheet of cardboard to shred and she just pees on it then hops through the pee and tracks it all over the clean fleece blanket I just laid down this morning. In the time it took me to type this paragraph she chewed several small holes in the fleece blanket along the perimeter of her play pen. It was a brand new blanket. I put it down for them for the first time this morning. Now it's full of holes. How effing rude.

    Which brings me to frustration point two: She's also an insatiable chewer. She has wood blocks, apple sticks, hay carrots, hay twists, a grass mat, willow balls, a wood hidey house, paper towel rolls stuffed with hay, and a variety of cardboard. What does she want to chew? Not her toys. No, that wouldn't be any fun, would it? The cardboard? Nope. She only wants to chew the blanket. The ONE thing in her whole entire habitat that I don't want her to chew. THE ONE THING! Everything else is chewable. EVERYTHING! I had to put her back in her cage because I'm feeling a little hormonal and I just couldn't deal with it this morning. I got furious with her. Completely furious. Goose doesn't do this naughty stuff. Not at all! He uses his litter box religiously, plays with his toys as intended, chews on his cardboard without peeing on it, runs laps and binkies, and just generally behaves. He is the perfect little bunny! Butterscotch is horrible!

    I realize what I'm saying here. Butterscotch is just being a baby rabbit. She is behaving in a completely normal baby rabbit manner. This is why I shouldn't have gotten baby rabbits. If anyone reading this is considering getting a baby rabbit consider yourself warned! They can be awful little brats. If you're a pre-menopausal woman (speaking to myself here), you can also be an awful little brat and you need to recognize when you need a time out from your awful little brat bunny. I needed a time out. I got so angry because I had spent an hour cleaning their cages, pulling up the fleece blanket from last week to give them a fresh one, laying down waterproof mattress sheets under Butterscotch's play pen, made up some fresh paper towel roll toys for them and just sat down with my coffee and tablet to enjoy my Sunday morning when Butterscotch starts tracking pee through her play pen and shredding her blanket. I snapped. NO BUNNIES WERE HARMED IN MY MINI MELT DOWN! I put some alfalfa hay in Butterscotch's cage and when she went in for it I also put her toys in there and gently closed the door. Episode over. Now I'm ranting on RO while aggressively sipping my cold coffee and brainstorming how I can keep Bratterscotch from ruining every freaking blanket I give them.

    I knew I was signing up for challenges like this when I decided to get rabbits. I did my homework. But I didn't discover this forum until after I made the mistake of getting two baby rabbits and I didn't come across any advice about not getting baby rabbits during my time of research. I accept this challenge, however, and I will conquer my frustration and I will not be defeated by a little mini Satan hiding in the 2nd cutest little bunny body the world has ever seen. I am committed to spoiling the ever living crap out of these bunnies. I will figure out what it will take beyond spaying/neutering/generally maturing to keep these bunnies stimulated, enriched, and happy without losing my sanity or my furniture. But I do need help from you guys. You are the experts and today I'm feeling very overwhelmed with my special child. I have to get through this, there is no alternative and there will be no rehoming of rabbits. I know it's possibly going to get worse before it gets better but I'm very hopeful that it will get much better. Any suggestions to get us through this? I guess I just need a flooring solution for Butterscotch. The fleece blankets keep her from chewing the waterproof sheets, which have rubber in them. She chews those too if she can get through the fleece. She clearly has a vast selection of toys to distract her from the fleece but it obviously isn't enough. I'm thinking I'll go to Home Depot today and get untreated wood to line the perimeter of her play pen with. Maybe it will keep her away from the fleece? Maybe? Fingers crossed.

    Note: her cage door is now open and I have released the kraken. Thankfully she has settled in for her afternoon snooze.....
     
  16. Jul 14, 2019 #36

    Alyssa and Bugs♡

    Alyssa and Bugs♡

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    Butterscotch and Goose remind me of mini versions of Bugs and Evie. When Bugs was younger, he was crazy. He ate everything and nipped at everyone, humped my dog and I daily, chewed the cage bars endlessly, sprayed pee on me for no reason whatsoever, chewed massive holes in the carpet, etc. I considered giving him away because I wasn't in a great spot mentally and I felt that it wasn't fair to him that I didn't have a job at the time and was using my $15 weekly allowance to buy him veggies, hay (this was before I started buying hay in bulk and used petstore hay), and trying to save up for his neuter which left me with no money for toys. He got neutered in December at 8 months old and his personality has changed completely. He is calmer, quieter, and overall, a good boy. I can't speak for females though. My point is that it may stop after her spay and to just hang in there. If she gets to be too much, just go take a bath and try to not think of the satin in the other room.

    I don't have much advice to share about the inconsistent litter training though. Does she have access to her cage when having playtime? One thing that worked with me was giving multiple litter boxes.

    "Bratterscotch" made me laugh a bit harder than it should have lol

    I find that when Bugs is being crazy, putting a handful of fresh hay in the pen (not in the litter box, just on the floor) keeps them entertained. Maybe a treat ball would work. You'd put her pellets in that and she could burn some energy that way. You could also try not using blankets at all, but that's probably easier said than done.

    Can you post a picture of her pen?
     
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  17. Jul 14, 2019 #37

    Butterscotch

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    Her pen is quite small at the moment for litter box training. She does have access to her cage during play time. She also has 2 additional litter boxes in her play pen in the areas where she most frequently pees. I put the flat cardboard box in there to encourage her to chew that instead of the blanket. It's hit or miss, she'll get bored of it and start on the blanket. I would love to get rid of the blankets but they are there to keep Butterscotch away from the waterproof sheets because they have rubber in them. As soon as she gets better about peeing in her boxes I can do away with the waterproof sheets and maybe the blankets however I have a 10'x12' area rug under their cages which is much more expensive to clean or replace than the blankets and I want to protect that too. I'm glad to hear you struggled too and overcame it. I was expecting a whirlwind of criticism for losing my patience with Butterscotch this morning but I think we've all been there a time or two. Today was my turn I guess. I hope she'll calm down after getting spayed but that's not for several more months. I just have to be creative so we survive until then!
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2019
  18. Jul 14, 2019 #38

    Butterscotch

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    I'm not catching what her triggers are for not using the litter box. She will do great for several days and then all of a sudden she'll start going next to the boxes instead of in them. Or along the perimeter of her pen or in the corners. I add fresh hay to them several times a day, completely clean them as needed, I wash and replace the blanket frequently to remove any potty smells, she has a choice of boxes to use. Is this just how some baby bunnies are? Goose was so easy. From day one he figured it out. He has not had one single urine accident since then the day after he came home.
     
  19. Jul 14, 2019 #39

    Butterscotch

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    My bunnies are thoroughly enjoying the air conditioning on this muggy, steamy Sunday afternoon. The chihuahuas, not so much.
     
  20. Jul 15, 2019 #40

    JBun

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    Butterscotch actually sounds like a typical rabbit. They are full blown destruction machines, particularly if they are still hormonal(not spayed/neutered), if they are female, and if they are still young. So she's just being a normal rabbit. Now it's your other rabbit that's not as typical.

    So the key is learning how to direct and manage this tendency for full blown destruction. There are tricks that us long term rabbit owners have learned over years of having rabbits as pets. First, getting her spayed when it's time. Though this won't always calm destructive behavior, most often it at least decreases it some.

    If she is picking other places to pee, add a litter box there, even if you have to have several litter boxes around. If she's peeing next to the litter box, make sure that it's not just her butt hanging over the edge of the litter box and the pee ending up on the floor. If the sides are high enough and she is purposely peeing just outside the litter box and along the perimeter, this is normal marking behavior, especially for hormonal rabbits and when there are other rabbits around as it can increase this type of territorial behavior. Spaying often will fix this. The other reason she is peeing outside the litter box is that she has a nice soft blanket to pee on. Most rabbits love to pee on soft things. My rabbits would pee everywhere if I had a fleece blanket covering their enclosure.

    If she is peeing on the cardboard, don't give her cardboard or keep it in a plastic tub to confine the mess so you can just dump it in the garbage. Or make her a dig box instead, made from a tall plastic bin with entrance and exit holes cut in high up on the box to contain the mess but low enough to hop in, and fill with crumpled newspaper. I've found dig boxes to actually be the best thing for channeling this normal destructive rabbit behavior of digging and chewing things up.

    As for the blanket chewing, some rabbits love to dig, rearrange, and chew blankets. It's a normal thing for them as it simulates the normal rabbit behavior of building a burrow and a nest. So if you want her to have a blanket then it's just something you have to expect to happen. Or don't give her a blanket.

    For myself, I don't give my rabbits blankets for the most part. Just too difficult to manage. I like to have a smooth flooring surface that I can sweep up easily. I do have a fleece pet bed for them, which they pee in and I just rotate it out and wash. My other better behaved rabbits get a small soft microfiber rug, but even then there are the occasional pee accidents. The other group doesn't get a rug as I know they would just pee all over it. So you really have to tailor your rabbits habitat to their particular behavior, but also with a set up that you are able to manage well without it driving you nuts. If her set up is making too much work for you then I strongly suggest making some changes. She's a hormonal female being driven by nature to want to dig, burrow, nest, and reproduce, so she is just expressing these natural behaviors in an environment that is far from natural, with the only things she has available to her. Channel these behaviors to things like a dig box, play box, no blanket, extra litter boxes, etc, so that she can still express her normal behaviors but in a way that you can feel is more manageable.

    For flooring I would suggest a cut of textured linoleum. I use foam puzzle mats that are taped at the seams with mat tape. But this may not work for you at this point as she could very well want to chew these. Textured lino is one of the best options for a waterproof barrier that is mostly resistant to chewing, provided the edges are outside her pen area so she can't chew them. Rabbits are also less inclined to have pee accidents on hard surfaces(no guarantee though). Ditch the fleece and if you want her to have something soft to sit on, do a cheap fleece pet bed, small soft rug, etc, that you can expect to be destroyed and peed on, that you can easily wash and replace, but is also a safe material if it is chewed.
     
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