Do Rabbits Smell Bad?

Categorized as Bunny Facts Tagged ,

Last Updated on July 30, 2022 by Rei Garnet

Rabbits don’t have any foul odors because they are meticulous groomers.

Even their poop is not smelly, unlike other pets.

The only way rabbits would smell bad is likely due to their urine or if they’re having digestive problems.

You can reduce the odor of their urine by providing a proper litter box and cleaning it regularly.

You should also watch out for any digestive problems like soft uneaten cecotropes and diarrhea.

If your rabbits are suffering from any digestive problems, immediately bring them to a veterinarian.

Now that I’ve given you the gist of the article, read on as I explain in more detail why rabbits smell bad:

Reasons why rabbits smell bad.

Dirty rabbit.

In order to properly formulate a plan to reduce or remove the smell from your rabbits, it’s important to first identify what might be causing it.

Here are the reasons why your rabbits might be smelly:

You are not cleaning their urine/litter box.

As discussed earlier, rabbits’ urine is one of the major reasons why a rabbit would smell bad.

You need to regularly clean their litter box and provide your rabbits with the proper litter that is absorbent to combat any foul odors.

While their poop is not that smelly, leaving it for too long would make it smell.

Rabbit poop will eventually form molds that can cause foul odors.

You need to clean your rabbit’s litter box every other day at the minimum.

The reason is that rabbits produce up to 200–300 poop pellets per day and could urinate up to 120–130 ml/kg/day.

I would personally recommend cleaning your rabbit’s litter box every day if you’re sensitive to their urine or poop smell.

Your rabbit is not neutered or spayed.

Another possible reason why your rabbit smells bad is hormones.

Unneutered rabbits excrete a stronger urine smell due to ammonia.

Unneutered rabbits would also spray urine everywhere to “mark” their territory.

Hormonal-related instincts like spraying urine everywhere could be solved by having your rabbits neutered or spayed as early as four or six months.

Your rabbits are having digestive problems.

Rabbits that are having digestive problems would also produce foul odors.

As an example, rabbits that are suffering from uneaten cecotropes would smell bad.

Cecotropes are smellier than poop and will often stick to their fur when not eaten.

If you notice any changes in your rabbit’s digestive habits, like the size, smell, and amount of their poop, it’s best to bring them to a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis.

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Your rabbit’s diet is causing strong odors.

Your rabbit’s diet could also lead to smellier urine.

Certain pellets that contain too much protein could make their urine smell much worse than it normally would.

Make sure that your rabbit’s pellets are hay-based and check if the formula is right for your rabbit.

Here are the recommended nutritional facts for rabbit pellets according to the American Rabbit Breeders Association.

FiberFatCalciumProtein
•12% to
22%
•Not less
than 18%
•3% or less•Less than
1%
•14%-18%
Source: https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2973&context=extension_curall

How to stop your rabbit from smelling bad?

The only things you can do to keep your rabbits from stinking are to clean their litter boxes on a regular basis and monitor their diet.

Rabbits normally don’t smell bad because they’re excellent groomers.

What to do if your rabbit smells bad?

If your rabbits still smell bad after cleaning their litter box regularly and checking their diet, it’s time to take them to a veterinarian.

It’s not normal for a rabbit to smell bad.

A veterinarian is much better equipped to diagnose the situation.

WARNING: Never wash your rabbit if they smell bad. Rabbits don’t need baths because they are exceptional groomers.

Summary

Rabbits will only smell bad if they are fed low-quality pellets, suffer from digestive problems, or if their owners neglect cleaning their litter box regularly.

Rabbits’ urine would also smell stronger if they’re unneutered.

Other than that, rabbits don’t smell bad because they are excellent groomers and will often spend hours grooming themselves and each other.

So if your rabbits smell bad, it’s best to bring them to a veterinarian because it could be a sign that something is wrong with your rabbit.

Cite this article:

Bunny Horde (September 22, 2022) Do Rabbits Smell Bad?. Retrieved from https://bunnyhorde.com/do-rabbits-smell-bad/.
"Do Rabbits Smell Bad?." Bunny Horde - September 22, 2022, https://bunnyhorde.com/do-rabbits-smell-bad/

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By Rei Garnet

I’ve loved and cared for rabbits since I was 9 years old, and I’m here to share my passion for rabbits. My objective is to help rabbit owners give their rabbits the best life possible.