Recommendations for flooring that reduces clean-up, and is more comfortable for bunnies?

Discussion in 'Housing and Environment' started by Bunny_Mommy, Sep 5, 2019.

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  1. Sep 5, 2019 #1

    Bunny_Mommy

    Bunny_Mommy

    Bunny_Mommy

    Gary The Bunny Supporting Member

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    Hello,

    I posted in another thread to avoid repeat topics, but no one responded, which is fine. I just wanted to know how to change my flooring situation for the playpen and cages, to reduce the mess. A breeder acquaintance recommended using "waterproof blankets" and I have no idea what that is. He said I do not need to use bedding, and I do dislike the mess bunnies make with that and newspaper or puppy pads. More importantly, I want the bunnies to be comfortable. Pretty much all of my bunnies are litter box trained, so even when they are out, they rarely urinate on the floor/tile. Poop, however...More than I would like.

    I currently have a 5.5 ft long playpen for 3 bunnies (soon to be Panda once I bond him with Gary, as they are both neutered), and two combined dog crates for Panda and Oreo. I keep a large tarp underneath both, line the bottom with newspaper or pads and bedding. The bedding really reduces the smell. Clean up time involves hosing down everything, letting it dry and replacing the bedding + paper every 5 - 7 days.

    I see a lot of people using blankets and such, but not sure what is best and the cleanest. I am very, very particular about having a clean house, haha.

    Any help would be much appreciated :)

    Edit: @Blue eyes Oh no! I forgot to upload photos of the playpen, I apologize. Good thing you remembered it from the other thread LOL. Please forgive my silliness.
     

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    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
  2. Sep 5, 2019 #2

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

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    Is the round tub the litter box?

    I assume the pens have plastic trays on the bottom?

    I'm not understanding why there is anything on the trays (if there are trays). Why put pads or bedding there if they are pottying in the litter box? Why not just put a pet bed in there so they can choose to lay on the pet bed or on the cool plastic floor? A folded fleece blanket can also serve as a "pet bed."

    I'm also not seeing why there is a tarp under the crates. Is it to protect the crates from scratching the tile? I don't understand their purpose.
     
  3. Sep 5, 2019 #3

    Bunny_Mommy

    Bunny_Mommy

    Bunny_Mommy

    Gary The Bunny Supporting Member

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    Hello,

    The pen does not have a plastic tray, but the crates do. I use the pads or news paper & bedding to catch random poops or in case they do not go inside of the little box. Perhaps I need to litter train them better, my apologies. The tarp is to catch debris, random poops (no litter box in the crates, because they are too low) as some like to dig and destroy the paper (usually males, even if they are neutered). That pet bed idea is really useful-- I think I will use a blanket, as they totally destroyed the last two, haha. Maybe I should let Oreo be free roam and keep the other 4 in the pen. Baby and Storm are not spayed, so they like to attack and chase Oreo. Strangely, Baby and her Mom have never fought.

    Thank you.
     
  4. Sep 5, 2019 #4

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

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    Oops. I meant the crates, not pen, have trays.

    So if I'm understanding right, there are times when the rabbits are in the crates without a litter box? That is not a good idea. They must have 24/7 access to a litter box. There is plenty of height in the crates for a litter box. They can hop over the box edge. They need to have a litter box in there or you are training them to not use a box.

    Skip the tarp. It is only making more work for yourself. If you are concerned about stuff spilling out of the crates, then get some coroplast or wood to make a border inside the crates a few inches tall.

    Poos are dry and odorless. All rabbits will have the occasional scattered poos (most especially if you have multiple rabbits that are not all bonded). Don't fret over them. They are easy enough to sweep up. You can get a mini-dustpan at the dollar tree if you desire. (they have some that are just 3 or 4 " across)

    So, to clarify, the crates should have zero bedding and zero pads in them. They should be just the plastic trays, a litter box, and whatever folded fleece you may like. I'd also suggest you get a bowl that twists or clips onto a clamp that is attached to the inside of the crate. They should always have access to water. (They should also have access to hay, but that should be in the litter box that is put in the crate.) The tarp is unnecessary and actually increases your workload. Easier to border the crate (and sweep up any stray poos from the tile).

    The exercise pen you have (which I saw on the 2019 cages thread) should be set up in the same way as the crates. It should have no bedding. The tarp is ok to use, but I would consider it temporary. Better would be to get a piece of rolled linoleum (or possibly even a cheap area rug if they are potty trained). Put the rolled lino down and the pen on top of that. Then have their litter boxes, any folded fleece or hideys, bowls, etc. Tarps wrinkle and fold and get chewed and generally make more work. If your rabbits aren't carpet chewers, then a cheap rug on top of the tarp could work. The tarp would protect the tile from potential urine accidents that might go through the carpet.

    These suggestions for flooring will not only be more comfortable for your rabbits but should decrease maintenance significantly. It may not seem like it would do much, but it will. The pen and the crates will also look neater and you won't have to deal with the nuisance of the paper bedding.
     
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  5. Sep 5, 2019 #5

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

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    On a somewhat separate note... I was just looking again at the pen setup you have. It appears to be set up near the corner of a room. You could double their space without taking up barely any more room space. All you would need to do is make use of the corner walls. The two walls 'become' part of the pen. Then the remaining pen sections can make a larger area. It wouldn't even have to be that large. You could fold in one of the pen sections so there are 2 sections on the right (I show 3) and the 3 at the front.

    I did a quick sketch of your current set up (based on photo) and the proposed. Those sections of the pen wall are the same size in both.

    I bring this up now since you may be considering various flooring options. You will need the right size for that.

    upload_2019-9-5_13-7-40.png

    Here's another option not quite so big...
    upload_2019-9-5_13-13-43.png
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2019
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  6. Sep 5, 2019 #6

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

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    I bought a 6 x 9 roll of vinyl flooring from Menards for $25 or so. I like it and I don't like it. It's very easy to clean and is waterproof but it doesn't offer as much traction as I had hoped it would. I picked out a wood looking piece because it had lots of "grains" in the wood for traction but it doesn't really work, my buns slide around on it. I did lay down a fleece blanket over the vinyl which helps with traction but Butterscotch still chews it and just doesn't get the potty training thing, so it's still a mess and the blanket slides around on the vinyl. If you can find a sheet of linoleum or vinyl that has some good texture and isn't slippery it would solve a lot of your problems. I'm not giving up, I'll eventually get a sheet with better texture someday because I can see how great that could work!
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2019
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  7. Sep 6, 2019 #7

    Bunny_Mommy

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    Bunny_Mommy

    Gary The Bunny Supporting Member

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    @Blue eyes thank you so very much for your help-- you are the best. I am sorry that my first post did not include pictures of the playpen. So yes, that round container is for food, not a litter box, my apologies. I have several litter boxes, though, and added one to Oreo & Panda's cage.

    These are very good suggestions, and I went to Goodwill and Dollar Tree for supplies, as advised. Still a work in progress, but Gary, Storm and Baby seem very happy with the extra space. The only bad thing is they can jump out until I can put together a bigger cover for the top, or purchase a taller (4 ft or higher) playpen. The only other bad thing is, it is plastic, so kind of flimsy. About 5 - 7 lbs total. Storm ate some of the wall, haha.

    Oreo and Panda's cage is about 5ft - 5.5 ft, but I let them out for several hours a day.

    Here is what I currently set up last night :)
     

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    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
  8. Sep 7, 2019 #8

    Linda123

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  9. Sep 21, 2019 #9

    Dagwood

    Dagwood

    Dagwood

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    Haha! I think I bought that exact piece of vinyl! I love it though. Except when Dagwood feels the need to run it is a bit slippery. But its all I could find within my budget at the time. And its not like he's constantly running. I have a piece of fleece in there, he loves to dig in it and move it around but he does't chew it, he prefers canvas type fabric to chew. Hey if you find one that has more traction and is still easy to clean will you post please? :)
     
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  10. Sep 22, 2019 #10

    Shasta Smith

    Shasta Smith

    Shasta Smith

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    We replaced the carpet in our bunny room with laminate wood flooring and then bought a couple of play rugs from Tuesday mornings which were cheap and are soft and have memory foam. Our bunnies have the whole room to themselves and are super happy.
     
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  11. Sep 22, 2019 #11

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

    Butterscotch

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    Of course I'll post! This vinyl has been a life saver. I finally removed the fleece because my doe just poops and pees all over it and I got too frustrated with it. They have actually gotten good at maneuvering on the vinyl but like you said, it's a bit slippery when they try to binky or run around but it doesn't seem to slow them down at all. And it's SO MUCH easier to clean than the blankets. I think after my doe is spayed next month I might try to offer blankets again but only if she finally litter trains. This bun has tested my patience at every turn.
     
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  12. Sep 22, 2019 #12

    Dagwood

    Dagwood

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    I guess I'm lucky. Dagwood potty trained almost instantly and he's not neutered yet. Maybe he was already trained by his breeder. He's getting neutered in about a week. Hey since we're talking about flooring, any ideas for something just inside his playpen that's non-slip and safe if chewed? I'm looking on Amazon right now for small rugs/mats and haven't found anything relatively cheap that would be worry free.
     
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  13. Sep 22, 2019 #13

    Linda123

    Linda123

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    Thumper is 6 months old an has been using liter box. The flooring in his fenced area I use a large fleese blanket an old tee shirts in his open cage area. I read somewhere that their feet should not be on slippery floor I'm lucky he doesn't chew any of his bedding so it works well as long as he continues to use the litter box I don't have to worry about my floor
     
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  14. Sep 22, 2019 #14

    Dagwood

    Dagwood

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    I like the t-shirt idea, I have lots of those. I've tried fleece but it doesn't stay put and he likes to pull it all into the cage and bunch it up. Hmm, maybe a heavier fleece blanket could work. I would think that t-shirts would move around too. They might work though, at least for something he can play with and chew up. Those are good ideas thanks!
     
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  15. Sep 23, 2019 #15

    Alyssa and Bugs♡

    Alyssa and Bugs♡

    Alyssa and Bugs♡

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    In my pens now one has a rug and blankets and the other has blankets covering the wood. I don't have the proper vaccum/cleaning supplies for the rug so I put a blanket over it and I switch out the blanket as needed. I plan on getting a shop-vac soon and switching to rugs in both pens and getting rid of blankets because they're too much of a hassle. If my room had carpet, I would go with the tile option. I really like the idea of foam tiles but my two are diggers/chewers.
     
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  16. Sep 24, 2019 #16

    Zelda&Linky

    Zelda&Linky

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    We got a gurgle sheet of lino, which was matt and didn’t cause our buns to skip. It was amazing for cleaning and hard enough to prevent being eaten. We used those kid/yoga mats that you can arrange like a jigsaw and it would end up being shredded within a week. Now that the buns are post their teenage age, the lino is gone and they can be exposed to bare floor pannelling without any risks :cool:. There’s a couple different baby mats and other linen floor mats on the floor, which I love, cos I can wash tape them to the floor and give them a wash every now and then. We actually keep an old roomba hoover in the room and it does a great job in the floor and the floor mats which are taped down. :) No idea how to attach a photo, but would love to show you their room :)
     
  17. Sep 24, 2019 #17

    Dagwood

    Dagwood

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    I think you attach a photo with the "upload a file" button that is at the bottom right hand corner of the reply box. Did you try that? Would love to see a photo :)
     

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