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Do Rabbits Eat Their Poop? (Simple Facts About Rabbit Diet)

Gary Brooks
Written by Gary Brooks Last Updated: December 24, 2023

Ever watch a rabbit for long and wonder about their eating habits? I have. As an owner of these fluffy creatures, I’ve seen some strange things. One that really gets people talking is when rabbits eat what seems to be their own poop.

Is it gross or just part of being a bunny? It’s easy to jump to conclusions but let’s slow down and take a closer look at this behavior. With my personal experience as guidance, we’ll explore why our furry friends might do something so odd.

Why Do Rabbits Eat Their Faeces?

Rabbits do eat their own poop. It might sound strange, but it’s a normal part of their diet. This process is called coprophagy. Coprophagy helps rabbits get the most out of what they eat.

They have a unique digestive system that doesn’t always break down food fully on the first pass.

So, when they produce soft droppings known as cecotropes, these are actually full of nutrients left over from their meals. Cecotropes look different than regular rabbit feces and often stick together in clusters.

Eating these nutrient-rich droppings allows them to absorb more vitamins and minerals from their food intake during digestion round two.

While this may seem gross to us humans, for rabbits it’s just another day at dinner time – an essential part of staying healthy and happy.

What if Your Rabbit Isn’t Eating Its Poop?

If your rabbit isn’t eating its poop, there could be a problem. Rabbits have a special kind of poop called cecotropes. They eat these to get extra nutrients they missed the first time around.

Not seeing your bunny do this? Don’t panic right away. Most rabbits prefer privacy for their second meal and often do it late at night when you’re asleep.

However, if you notice uneaten cecotropes lying around during the day, that’s not normal. It might mean your pet is overfed or sick with something like dental disease or arthritis which makes bending painful.

So what should you do? Keep an eye on them and check in with a vet if needed. Always remember – understanding our furry friends’ habits helps us keep them healthy.

How Your Rabbits Digest Their Food

Rabbits have a unique way of digesting their food. They eat twice. This may sound strange, but it’s true.

The first time they eat, the food goes through their system as normal. It passes into the stomach and then to the intestines where nutrients are absorbed.

But not all nutrients get taken in during this first pass. Some go on to form special droppings called cecotropes or “night feces”. These aren’t your regular rabbit pellets that you see in their cage.

Cecotropes are softer and richer in protein and vitamins than ordinary poop because they contain undigested hay fibers from earlier meals which still hold valuable nutrition for rabbits.

Here comes the surprising part – rabbits eat these cecotropes directly from their anus. By doing so, they take another shot at extracting those missed out nutrients before finally excreting waste.

Fecal Pellets and Cecotropes – Understanding the Difference

Rabbits produce two types of droppings. The first type is fecal pellets, which are small and round like peas. These are made up mostly of undigested hay fibers.

The second type is cecotropes, also known as night feces or soft cecal pellets. They’re often mistaken for diarrhea due to their moist and clumpy nature but they serve a vital role in the rabbit’s diet.

You see, rabbits have a unique digestive system that requires them to re-digest certain foods to extract all the nutrients properly. Cecotropes contain these essential nutrients from partially digested food passed through once already.

So yes, rabbits do eat their poop – specifically the cecotropes kind – right from their anus. This might seem gross but it’s completely normal behavior called coprophagy.

the Rabbit Is Producing Too Many Cecotropes

Rabbits do something that may seem odd to us. They eat their own poop, but not all of it. The specific type they consume is called cecotropes.

Cecotropes are different from regular rabbit droppings. These special poops contain nutrients the rabbit needs and usually eats directly from its body.

But what if your bunny produces too many cecotropes? This could mean a few things about your pet’s health or diet.

It might be eating more food than necessary. Try reducing portion sizes slightly and see if this helps with overproduction of cecotropes.

Also, rabbits need lots of fiber in their diets for healthy digestion. If there’s an excess of softer stools, try increasing hay intake while decreasing high-fiber pellets or greens until balance returns.

Lastly, keep an eye on exercise levels as lack of movement can also lead to extra soft fecal matter production due to slower digestive processes.

How to Help Your Rabbit Produce More ‘Good Poo’ and Maintain a Clean Bottom

Rabbits eat their own poop. It may sound odd, but it’s a natural and vital part of their diet. They produce two types of droppings: hard pellets and soft cecotropes.

The latter is the ‘good poo’. Rabbits consume these directly from their bottom for nutrients they missed during digestion. To ensure your rabbit produces enough cecotropes, you need to feed them a balanced diet.

This includes fresh hay, vegetables, water and limited amounts of pellets daily. Hay should be the main food as it aids in producing more ‘good poo’.

A clean bottom means less risk of flystrike – a deadly condition caused by flies laying eggs on soiled fur around rabbits’ rear ends. Regular grooming helps maintain cleanliness too.

So remember: feeding right equals good health for your furry friend.

It’s Healthy for Rabbits to Eat Their Own Poop

Rabbits do eat their own poop. It may sound gross to us, but it’s a normal and healthy behavior for them. They produce two types of droppings – fecal pellets and cecotropes.

Fecal pellets are what we usually think of as rabbit poop. These hard, round balls don’t have much nutritional value left in them so rabbits typically won’t eat these again.

Cecotropes are different. They’re soft, clumpy droppings that come out at night or early morning when the rabbit is resting. Cecotropes contain nutrients like proteins and vitamins that weren’t absorbed by the body on the first pass through the digestive system.

When a rabbit eats its cecotrope directly from its anus, this process is called coprophagy. This might seem strange to us humans but it’s vital for your pet bunny’s health because they get more nutrition this way.

What if Rabbits Aren’t Eating Their Cecotropes?

Rabbits have a unique eating habit. They eat their poop, but not just any kind of poop. It’s called cecotropes and it’s full of nutrients they need.

If your rabbit isn’t eating its cecotropes, you might notice them lying around the cage. This could be a sign that something is wrong with your pet’s diet or health.

Maybe there are too many treats in their food bowl? Or perhaps they’re getting older and having trouble reaching to eat these nutrient-rich droppings?

It can also mean illness. A sick bunny may stop eating its cecotropes because it doesn’t feel well enough to do so.

Whatever the reason, if you see this happening often, consult with a vet right away.

the Rabbit Cannot Reach to Eat Their Cecotropes

Rabbits do eat their poop. But not all of it. They consume something called cecotropes, which are a special kind of fecal matter.

Cecotropes look different from regular rabbit droppings. These have a soft and shiny texture and often stick together in clusters. Cecotropes contain nutrients that rabbits need to stay healthy.

Sometimes, though, a rabbit can’t reach its cecotropes due to health issues like obesity or arthritis. This is bad for the bunny’s diet as they miss out on important nutrition found in these droppings.

In such cases, you might notice more uneaten cecotropes around your pet’s living area than usual. If this happens regularly with your furry friend, consider taking them to see a vet.

What Kind of Poop Do Rabbits Eat?

Rabbits eat a certain type of their own poop. It’s called cecotropes. These are not the usual hard, round droppings you often see in your rabbit’s cage.

Cecotropes look different from regular rabbit poop. They’re soft and have a cluster-like shape similar to grapes. You might not even notice them because rabbits usually eat these directly from their bottom.

Why do they do this? Cecotropes contain essential nutrients that weren’t absorbed by the body during digestion process first time around – like vitamin B and fiber for example.

So yes, it may seem strange but eating cecotropes is actually good for your bunny’s health. Remember though, if you spot too many uneaten ones lying around, it could be a sign of overfeeding or illness so keep an eye out.

Different Kinds of Rabbit Poop

Rabbits produce two types of droppings. The first type is hard, dry pellets you often see in a rabbit’s cage. These are waste products and rabbits do not eat them.

The second type is called cecotropes or “night feces”. They look different from the regular poop because they’re soft and have a cluster-like shape. Rabbits usually eat these directly from their body during early morning or late night hours when we humans aren’t watching.

Why would rabbits do this? It may sound gross to us but it’s crucial for their health. Cecotropes contain nutrients that weren’t absorbed by the rabbit’s system on the first pass through, like vitamin B and fiber which help with digestion.

So yes, rabbits do eat some of their own poop but only one specific kind – cecotropes.

Should You Prevent Your Rabbit From Eating Its Poop?

Rabbits eating their poop may seem gross to us. But it’s normal for them and actually very important. This behavior is called coprophagy.

What they’re really eating are cecotropes, not regular fecal pellets. Cecotropes are soft, nutrient-rich droppings that rabbits produce usually at night. They eat these directly from their body.

Cecotropes contain beneficial bacteria which help with digestion and absorption of nutrients in the gut when eaten again by the rabbit. It also provides necessary vitamins like B12 that can’t be produced by rabbits on their own.

So if you see your bunny doing this, don’t worry or try to stop it. Eating its cecotropes is a crucial part of a rabbit’s diet plan.

Signs Your Rabbit Is Eating Its Poop

It’s normal for rabbits to eat their poop. It might seem odd, but it’s a part of their diet called cecotropes. These are not the regular droppings you see in your rabbit’s cage.

Cecotropes are soft and dark pellets that come from a special area in the rabbit’s digestive system. They’re rich in nutrients like protein and fiber which help keep your bunny healthy.

If you spot these around, chances are your pet is eating them directly from its body before they hit the ground. You may also notice some on its mouth or chin as evidence of this behavior.

Remember, this isn’t bad at all – it shows that your furry friend is taking care of itself just fine.


Gary Brooks
Gary Brooks

Gary Brooks is an avid rabbit lover and has been taking care of them ever since he was a kid. He's written many books on the subject and frequently gives advice on diet, care and much more.

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