Friday, August 9, 2013

Do you need to give your bunny a bath? NO!

Cute picture?


Do I need to bathe my house bunny? NO - NO BATHS!

Why not? A bath can throw your bunny into shock, or the bunny may thrash around and injure himself, fracturing a bone or his spine.

Bunnies are meticulous little self-grooming machines. What you need to do is brush them once or twice a week. If you have certain breeds that have more hair, they will need daily grooming (like a lionhead or an angora).

They do need regular mani-pedis so their nails do not get too long such that they hurt themselves.

Baths? NO. Okay, in very limited special circumstances, a bath or partial bath may be needed. For example, if your rabbit has "poopy butt", you may need to wash their little hineys - but that's a special purpose need.

Here are some links for more reading on the subject (with a few excerpts):

Bathing a Bunny "Poopy" Butt - What to do if this is the situation (both a dry and a wet procedure are explained).

Bathing Bunnies - Rabbits also tend to panic when in water, and can easily fracture their spine or a limb if they thrash around whilst in water. On top of this, when wet rabbit hair clumps together, making getting them completely dry a very difficult task, and rabbits who are left damp are potentially prone to respiratory infections and hypothermia ...
Routine bathing - This is totally unnecessary and potentially very harmful to rabbits ...
Rabbits are clean animals and will groom and wash themselves. Companion rabbits will wash and groom each other too.

The Well Groomed Rabbit - We do not advise flea baths or baths of any sort for rabbits. Bathing a bunny can often cause her to become quite upset, sometimes causing her to go into shock; plus it is the nature of bunny fur to take a long time to get wet, and an even longer time to get dry.

[Now this is the general rule for bunnies and baths. I am sure there are exceptions out there where the bunny jumps in the shower with you or something like that, but just understand - that is an exception.]

UPDATE: Great article on this topic from The DoDo


  1. Please also remind people that bunnies DO NOT like to go swimming!!!!

  2. A real good way to get thoroughly disapproved of, too!

  3. One of my bunnies broke his back and we had to wash him. Every few days, I would lay a towel over him and hold him to my chest, so he could hear my heartbeat. Then I would sit in the bathroom, with the shower running, so he'd get used to the noise. After a while, he knew the noise and would snuggle in closer to me. Then I, fully clothed, and the bunny, wearing a towel, would step into a slightly warm shower, while my husband spotted us. Bunny would try to climb up my face to get away from the water, but he couldn't use his back legs. Or I would have had a rabbit hat. I would hold him and my husband would wash Bunny's bottom. Then stepped out and quick change into a dry towel for Bunny. And it was over. We had it down to just over 2 minutes.
    I guess my point is that if you have to wash your bunny, make it as quick and simple for the bunny as possible, even if you have to shower in your clothes and have claw scratches all over your neck.