The Best Rabbit Litter
There are many different types of litters for rabbits, some are great and some are not so great. The most important factor when choosing a litter is safety. The most dangerous types of rabbit litter a clumping litters. If your rabbit happens to accidentally eat some of this litter it will or may cause serious digestive problems resulting in death.
I use Mr. Bunny’s cage as his litter box, he is a house rabbit that roams freely and is litter trained. He spends very little time in his cage/litter pan. I use a layered approach to his litter box as shown in this diagram.
If you are wondering what I use for bedding this post about the best bedding for rabbits will be helpful. I do not recommend my set up for every rabbit or pet rabbit owner. Here are a couple options of what I would do.
- Your rabbits is in his cage most of the day – I would not use a litter in this case. Use only bedding and change frequently.
- Your rabbit is a house rabbit and runs free almost all of the time – I would use the layered approach.
- Your rabbit digs all of the time – I would not use a litter in this case, only bedding. Digging causes a lot of dust which is not good for your rabbits respiratory system.
- 1 List of the best litter for rabbits
- 2 Best litter tray for rabbits
- 3 Types of rabbit litter
- 4 Rabbit litter vs Bedding
- 5 How to litter train a rabbit
- 6 Is cedar or pine safe for rabbits?
- 7 What kind of litter is best for rabbits?
- 8 What is the most rabbit safe litter?
- 9 How often you should clean out your rabbit’s litter box or cage
- 10 About the Author
List of the best litter for rabbits
1) Purina Yesterday’s News Unscented Paper Litter
This is a great litter that can be used under a nice bedding or alone if your rabbit does not eat tons of it. It is a safe bedding but the ink from newspaper is still in these litter pellets. I would not want my rabbit eating a ton of these but if he or she were to accidentally consume one or two every now and then I would not worry about it.
Yes, it says it is for cats, but it works well for bunnies and is priced lower than most “rabbit litters.” This is by far the best litter for rabbits’ hands down.
Why I and my bunny love this “rabbit litter.”
- Safe – This is a very safe litter for bunnies; I would rate it at a 9 out of 10 with ten being the best.
- Dust Free – While nothing is completely dust free this rabbit litter is close to it. This is great news for those of you that have buns that love to dig in their litter pans or cages. Dust can cause rabbits to have respiratory issues like snuffles which can kill rabbits quickly.
- Unscented – You never want to use a scented litter for rabbits since they have a delicate respiratory system.
- Economical – This litter is priced right and comes in a huge 40-pound bag.
- Odor Control – Surprisingly, this litter does well at controlling odors from within your rabbit’s cage or litter tray. I also have a post about the best bedding for odor control if you need more options or information.
- Absorbance – Highly absorbent when compared to most types of rabbit litter. This stuff really soaks of urine and holds it in.
- Size – Available in small 5-pound bags or large 30-pound bags.
- Easy Clean Up – If your rabbit kicks out some of this litter it can vacuumed up easily. I also like the fact that unlike clay-based litters it does not stick to everything when wet.
This is the best paper based litter available. It is 100% safe, absorbent and soft. The only downside is it’s a bit more messy than then paper pellets listed above. Sometimes a few bits of paper will stick to your rabbits foot or whatever whenever they hop out of their cage or litter-box.
This is what I love about this litter.
- Safe – Your rabbit can literally eat the entire bag and nothing will happen. Natural paper is mostly cellulose, most vegetables that rabbits eat are mostly cellulose. This paper has never been printed on and unbleached.
- Absorbent – This litter absorbs well but not as good as my first pick, I would give it an 8 out of 10 with 10 being the best.
- Odor Control – Holds odors in well reducing the chance of your rabbit having respiratory problems.
- Country of Origin – Not made in China, Made In The USA!
- Comfort – This litter is extremely comfortable for your rabbit. You may find yourself sleeping on it.
3) Small Pet Select; Aspen Litter
Aspen is a safe option to use for your rabbits litter. Never use pine, cedar or any other softwood as a litter since it contains a chemical that can harm your rabbits liver. The exception is that if the softwood is kiln dried, the drying process removes almost all of the harmful chemical.
I am not a huge fan of using wood shavings but these are the ones I would use if I had to pick one. There is nothing wrong with wood shavings but I do not think the absorb as well as other materials and make more of a mess.
Best litter tray for rabbits
There are so many options and different types of litter trays that could be considered “the best litter tray.” What is more important is what litter tray, box or set up works for your rabbit the best. After having pet rabbits for over 20 years I have found that different things work for different rabbits. They all have their own personality.
Your litter tray needs will differ if your rabbit is caged most of the day, has a large play area or is a true house rabbit that has total freedom to have the run of your house.
I have a separate post about the best litter tray for rabbit here since this is a broad, in depth question.
Types of rabbit litter
There are many different types of rabbit litter for sale online and in pet stores. A good percentage if not most are overpriced, not needed and sometimes dangerous for your bunny.
- Wood Shavings – Wood shavings are a quite common litter for rabbits. Softwoods like pine and cedar should be avoided unless they are kiln dried since the phenol‘s contained in the wood are toxic to rabbits.
- Paper Pellets – An extremely popular and safe litter for rabbits. Paper pellets are made by taking scrap paper and compressing it into a hard pellet. They are absorbent and work well for rabbits.
- Paper – Natural paper is often used for bedding. It looks like ripped up, soft paper. A great choice for litter and the safest of all options.
- Clay Based – Non-clumping natural, unscented clay can be used as a litter for rabbits. It is not the safest choice, but I have used it in the past for many years and never had an issue with any of my bunnies.
- Hay – An edible bedding but not very absorbent. Not the best choice since you do not want your bun eating contaminated hay.
- Straw – Not a great choice for litter.
- Coconut Husk – Safe but not a great option.
- Corn Cob – This is a safe option but is not as absorbent as the paper-based products.
- Corn Husk – Not a great option. Sometimes rabbits will get stringy foods like corn husks or celery stuck in their teeth and it can cause medical problems.
Rabbit litter vs Bedding
There is not much difference between the two. Rabbit litter tends to be for functional and absorbent than comfortable. The important thing is to keep your rabbit’s urine soaked up, so they are not wet and to also keep the odor down. Rabbits have extremely sensitive respiratory system and are prone to upper respiratory infections.
How to litter train a rabbit
Oh wow, big topic here. It is not that difficult to litter train a rabbit if you are armed with the correct information. Here is an article dedicated to litter training your rabbit or bunny.
Is cat litter safe for rabbits?
Clumping and scented cat litter is out of the question. It is dangerous and can kill your rabbit quickly if he or she eats some of it. The only cat litter that is safe is some paper based litters. In the past I have used non clumping clay litter, but most people consider that outdated and dangerous. I never had a problem with it though.
Is cedar or pine safe for rabbits?
Pine, cedar, and other soft woods contain a volatile and toxic chemical called phenol and should never be used as litter for your rabbit. There are also other dangers of using soft wood shaving for your pet bunny. Most hardwoods are safe to use, Aspen is the most common. Therefore, I listed it as one of the best litter options for rabbits in the above list.
What kind of litter is best for rabbits?
Any of the choices I listed in the beginning of the article are the best.
What is the most rabbit safe litter?
Natural, unprinted, unbleached paper is probably the most neutral and safe litter there is for rabbits. This type of paper is mostly cellulose, same with cardboard and most vegetables that your rabbit eats or should be eating.
How often you should clean out your rabbit’s litter box or cage
It is particularly important that you keep your rabbits cage or litter box clean and free of odors. Rabbits urine contains high amounts of ammonia which smells bad and can cause respiratory problems for your rabbit.
At a minimum you should be cleaning out your rabbits bedding once a week if not twice. My rabbits are house rabbits, meaning then run free all the time in my house and use their cage as a litter pan basically. The point is that if you have a house rabbit, they spend extraordinarily little time in their cage as opposed to a rabbit that stays in a cage most of the time. If your rabbit is locked up a lot, it is especially important to change their bedding often to prevent respiratory damage from urine build up.
About the Author
My name is Vanessa and I love my buns. My current house rabbit is Mr. Bunny, he is a black and white Dutch that just turned 9 years old.
I believe that rabbits are a magnificent animal that make great pets for SOME people. My mission is to share what I have learned about rabbits over the past 20 years to improve the relationship between our pets and us. Please contact me or comment if you have any questions or comments.