How to give your rabbit a bath?
March 6, 2018
Do you need to give your rabbit a bath? But are you concerned about the health issues your rabbit might get after a bath?
In this article, you will know how to give your rabbit a bath the correct way and the safety measure you must consider to avoid rabbit bath shock.
After reading this article you can shower your rabbit with lukewarm water and avoid any health issues in order to keep your rabbit both clean and happy.
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How to give your rabbit a bath?
First, I want to explain a little about bunny or rabbit bath. Rabbits are naturally wild animals later domesticated in Europe.
Although they are domesticated today, they are not very different from the ones in the woods. So, rabbits don’t need a shower. Like cats, they self-groom to keep themselves clean.
Rabbits are a naturally very clean animal. They always groom themselves and stay tidy. AND they hate water.
The reason, why do they hate water?
Because they have a dense fur and their skin is thin. So once they get soaked in water it is not easy for them to dry up quickly due to the dense fur.
And the light skin beneath the fur makes them feel cold all day. And will result in hypothermia. That’s why rabbits don’t like water so much.
It is best to avoid giving your rabbit a bath unless it is really necessary. I usually don’t bathe my rabbit, because my rabbits are mostly indoors and hardly gets dirty.
I gave her a bath when she had a bad bowel movement and she was having soft stools. Soft stools stuck in her anus region as well as in her feet.
There was no other option to clean her except rinsing with water. Yet I could clean her booty using cornstarch baby powder instead I just gave her a full bath.
To give your rabbit a bath properly first get some lukewarm water. The water must not be cold. Do not use cold water because it can be deadly for your rabbit.
Test it yourself whether water is too hot or not. If you can’t put your hands in the water without a shock then it’s going to be very unexpected for your rabbit too. Water must be comfortable for your hands meaning it’s right for your rabbit too.
Put an inch of lukewarm water in a tub. Then use a towel to carpet the tub/sink so that your rabbit can have grips while having a bath.
Use a rabbit safe shampoo which is odorless in the water. I normally use a tablespoon of shampoo. Do not expose your rabbits directly to the shampoo.
After doing so let your rabbit sit in the tub/sink. Hold your rabbit gently and firmly so that she can’t jump. Rinse your rabbit slowly with the water in the tub. Rub very smoothly to not hurt your rabbit.
That’s not all:
You have to now turn your rabbit into trance position or you can hold your rabbit gently in a standing position. The standing position is fine if your rabbit can support using their rear legs.
Now it is time for you to clean her genital area using your hand. Slowly rub and clean any stool and urine present in the region.
Don’t soak wet your rabbit’s nose. Your rabbit will have a hard time if you do so.
Gently rub your rabbit with your hands. Don’t be too harsh because rabbit’s skin is really soft and it might tear. You don’t want that to happen.
Once you are done cleaning then change the water in the tub with clean lukewarm water, to rinse your rabbit off all the shampoo.
Slowly rub and rinse off all the soap off your rabbit, and bring your rabbit out of the water. Don’t let any soapy water stay on your rabbit.
Wrap your rabbit with a dry towel and gently wipe her fur dry using the towel. Once you are satisfied that the fur is dry, you can now use an animal blow dryer to dry your rabbits. (Blow dryer is optional but better to use one for your rabbit’s care)
Set your blow dryer on the lowest setting and blow-dry your rabbit’s fur so that your rabbit is completely dry and doesn’t catch a cold.
While blow-drying, keep your hand between the blow dryer and your rabbit’s skin to avoid burning your rabbit’s thin skin.
Remember this your rabbit’s skin is very sensitive.
If you have any other suggestions or questions on how to give your rabbit a bath please comment below. I will reply to you shortly.
How to clean a bunny poopy butt without water?
Your rabbits can have a poopy butt mostly because of irregular digestion. Too much soft stools can be stuck into the anus region of your rabbit.
In that case, I mostly like to clean it using water, however, if you really don’t want to use water or completely bathe your rabbit. the only thing you can do is dry cleaning using baby cornstarch powder for rabbits.
You may think it is fine to use regular baby powder or any talc for the purpose. But it’s not safe for your rabbits. Rabbit skin is very delicate and using anything harsh can cause irritation or rashes.
Now that you know which powder to use, discover how to clean your bunny without water:
When you are giving your rabbit a dry bath or trying to clean the poop off your rabbit’s bum, hold her gently in a standing posture resting on their rear legs so that you don’t stress her spine.
Rabbit has soft bones and you might easily hurt her backbone if you don’t let her rest on her legs.
When your rabbit is standing, gently put some baby cornstarch powder for rabbits on areas where there are poops. After you use some powder the poops will be easier to brush off using a comb.
Once you have cleaned the poops, now it is time to clean any powder remained on your rabbit’s fur. Smoothly clean your rabbit’s fur off any baby cornstarch powder so that your rabbit doesn’t get any rashes.
Here’s a Bonus:
To clean stains off your rabbit’s feet use a towel soaked in vinegar and rub it on your rabbit’s feet to clean it. But never try to trim the fur in your rabbit’s feet to remove stains or dirt.
Doing so will be very harmful to your rabbits. The fur in your rabbit’s feet is like shoes for your rabbit to walk and run. Trimming the fur in their feet will make your rabbit uncomfortable.
Don’t rush this cleaning process too. Do it as gently as you are giving a shower to your rabbit.
Rabbits are naturally very clean animals, hence it is not required to give them wet cleaning or a dry bath unless it is really necessary or when your rabbit is sick to the point that they can’t self-groom anymore.
Due to the fact rabbit skin is extremely sensitive and soft, you can’t use any regular shampoo or baby shampoo to clean your rabbit.
Some may say using shampoo of other pets like dogs and cats are fine for the rabbit. But I say do not use anything other than a rabbit safe shampoo.
If you use a regular shampoo to bathe your rabbit, the ingredients might be to harsh for your rabbit’s soft skin and will dry out the soft and may cause irritation for your rabbit.
The irritation will lead to stress which may cause health damage to your cute house rabbit.
Best practice is to not give a bath to your rabbit unless it’s very urgent, and using any shampoo other than rabbit-safe shampoo will make the condition worse.
Also do not use any soap or shampoo that is highly fragrant, because rabbits are very sensitive to smell. So if you use a shampoo that has a floral aroma in it, the smell is going to be very annoying for your rabbit after the shower.
Rabbits are comfortable with their own smell. The fragrance will be upsetting for your rabbit if lasts for too long.
I have found this non-perfumed shampoo, to be better than most other products in the market.
Understanding rabbit bath shock to avoid hurting your rabbit.
Most rabbit guardians are worried whether to give their rabbit a bath or not. Now that you already know rabbits are self-grooming animals, they don’t require a bath unless it is really essential.
A rabbit only appreciates a bath if he/she is sick. You as a guardian must give them a bath only to clean when your rabbits are urine or poop dirty.
That’s why I have explained how to give your rabbit a bath in this article.
Rabbits don’t like water and getting them drenched in water can be traumatic for them. Water can cause stress for them and then lead to a shock.
Rabbits are small animals and very sensitive, so a shock might stop their heartbeats and can be deadly for them. The last thing you want is to hurt these cute small animals.
Yes, there are many rabbits out there that like the feel of water, but not all of them.
You will find it out easily once you take your rabbit close to water whether they like water or not. Whenever you prepare to bathe your rabbit, always be extra careful, and follow the instructions mentioned above.
To avoid irregular bowel movement your rabbit needs a balanced diet. If you want to know more about what food is best for your rabbit then Discover Best Rabbit Food Here.
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Then read my top indoor cages review here >>> Affordable Indoor Cages for Rabbits.