What Happens if Rabbit Eats Plastic?
Some animals like rabbits have an innate instinct to chew on things, and plastic is a convenient outlet for this behavior. They will chew on just about anything they find to satisfy their cravings.
If you’re feeling anxious because your pet chewed or gulped some plastic, don’t worry. Inhale deeply, and let’s learn how to solve such a problem.
What Will Happen If Your Rabbits Chews on Plastic?
First of all, do not panic if you find out your rabbit has consumed plastic. Plastic can easily pass out in the feces, so there is no potential danger to your rabbit’s health.
If your rabbit consumes plastic, you have to take immediate action to help your pet excrete it out. For this purpose, you should feed them plenty of hay and water.
You will have to keep checking the litter box to ensure that the plastic is passed out in the feces. Helping your rabbit excrete whatever plastic it may have consumed is the best line of action.
Please provide them with plenty of food and drink. Keep an eye on their litter box to ensure the plastic makes it out of the rabbit’s digestive tract. Just be there for them and make them comfortable however you can.
Why Did My Rabbit Chew On Plastic?
Like the hair on our heads, rabbits’ incisor teeth (the two front teeth) are also constantly growing out. There is currently no rock-solid explanation for why rabbits gnaw on things.
It’s not just rabbits that like to gnaw on things. Actually, this is typical behavior among mammals. Some have hypothesized that this is due to boredom, while others have suggested it’s a pastime.
For rabbits, it’s evident that there’s a huge upside to chewing. Rabbits can prevent their incisors from becoming overly long by regularly munching on rough meals.
That’s why your rabbit may always be gnawing on something. As a result of their evolutionary history, rabbits have an innate need to chew.
With its firm texture, hay is fantastic for rabbits to chew on in most circumstances. Rabbits keep their front teeth short by grinding away at grass with their incisors. However, rabbits will not limit their gnawing habits to hay alone.
Much like other pets such as dogs, rabbits will gnaw on practically anything stiff and rigid that they can get their hands (or teeth) on. And in your situation, they’ll inevitably ingest the plastic they gnaw on.
A rabbit can chew on almost anything made of plastic. Toys made of plastic are commonplace in households with children.
Plastic is used for everything down to food, water dishes, and litter bins. This is why pet rabbits ingesting plastic is actually a common occurrence.
If a rabbit does not have anything to chew or munch on, it will experience tremendous agony. This is because the incisors continue to grow, and without the constant chewing, they may either pierce the gums or cause a particularly big fracture.
What To Do When Your Rabbit Swallows Plastic?
There isn’t much that can be done once the plastic has already been ingested. To ensure that your rabbit passes out the plastic in feces, you can feed it a diet high in fiber.
Such a diet should be acceptable because rabbits’ digestive systems evolved to process such foods.
However, keep an eye out for any indications of discomfort. These can be anything such as:
- Low social interest
- Lack of appetite
- Curling into a ball hiding the abdomen
- Grinding teeth loudly
Never induce vomiting or feed your rabbit laxatives, as the situation could get much worse if you did that.
Grass hay in large amounts and high-fiber treats are both good options to help them pass stool rather than giving them laxatives.
Your best bet is to keep a strict check on them and make sure they are getting enough to eat and drink at all times.
If your rabbit is having trouble passing stool, a gentle belly rub may do the trick. This aids in relaxing the intestines and easing digestive issues.
Never go too deep, and stop quickly if they become hostile or show signs of suffering.
If your rabbit is well hydrated, it should have little trouble passing any plastic it may have ingested. Both the food they eat and their own tissues will benefit from being adequately hydrated, as both will be resilient.
Just be sure to provide fresh water for your rabbit on a regular basis.
How to Stop Your Rabbit from Chewing On Plastic?
Your rabbit acts on its typical instinct to chew on anything it can get its hands on. Chewing on hard items is a great way to keep your rabbit’s teeth in good shape and prevent future dental problems.
However, we strongly advise you to restrict your rabbit’s access to all plastics in your home as that is not good for your rabbit’s health.
Gather up any plastic food containers, plastic toys, or anything else your rabbit could chew on. We realize this will be challenging, but the health of your rabbit is more important right now.
You need to make up your mind about whether or not to get suitable rabbit chew toys for your pet. A trip to the pet store will get you dozens of interesting toys at low prices.
Toys like these will surely divert your rabbit’s attention from undesirable chewing materials and keep it healthy.
Certain types of plastic are used in the construction of rabbit chew toys because they are more elastic and difficult to break apart.
Getting such toys will prevent any accidental consumption by your rabbit that could harm it.
Tips to Rabbit-proof Your House
We, rabbit owners, want as much space as possible for our pets to run and play.
However, with all the clutter and the toys around, you can’t help but be anxious about what your rabbit may unintentionally start chewing on and consuming.
That’s why we need to think ahead and rabbit-proof your house. Here are some pointers to get you started.
- Pick up any wires that are dangling low to the ground or are lying on the floor.
- Put away the kids’ toys and get them some rough rabbit toys that they can play with instead.
- Stow your footwear out of the way.
- Because rabbits can be allergic to a variety of flowers and plants, it’s best to keep your potted plants out of their reach.
- Consider getting a pet fence that can be moved around your house and expanded so that your rabbit can run free inside a contained area. Your rabbit will have more fun in a larger play area.
Some Safety Precautions – What’s Safe for Rabbits and What’s Not?
Safe Items for Rabbits to Chew On
It’s not uncommon for rabbits to accidentally ingest foreign objects, such as plastic. Providing them with a wide variety of safe, appealing chewing options can help avoid this from happening.
It’s possible to keep a rabbit entertained in a variety of settings, including a cage or in the wild.
Examples of foods that are safe to chew on are:
- Apple twigs
- Birch twigs
- Cardboard pieces or toys
- Old, dried-out pine wood
- Toys made of natural fibers
- Cotton towels or clothing items
- Wicker baskets
You might need to experiment with several chewing products before finding the right one for you.
Please don’t be alarmed if your rabbit doesn’t instantly take a shine to something; their tastes vary. Don’t give up on finding something they’ll like.
When rabbits are provided with plenty of safe, appealing alternatives to chew on, they are less likely to chew on the bars of their enclosures.
This also helps preserve the integrity of the cage and lessens the amount of noise produced by the rabbits.
Only hay and other rabbit-safe chewing material should be allowed in your pet rabbit’s cage.
Items Not Safe for Rabbits
Make sure you do your homework before giving your rabbit a new chew toy – rabbits may be tempted to chew on something that is actually toxic, such as certain types of wood or plants.
Most wood is too strong for them to chew, and even if they did manage to eat enough to be dangerous, it would be better to be safe than sorry.
Materials that should be avoided include:
- Wood that has been painted or treated
- Shiny or foil-printed cardboard
- Cherry wood
- Apricot wood
- MDF Board or other plywood
Make sure the wood you give your rabbit is dry, non-toxic, and has not been tampered with or treated.
Don’t just go grabbing some random branches from the yard without knowing what kind of wood you’re working with.
Final Wrap Up
Unless your rabbit is in pain or is showing strange symptoms after ingesting plastic, it is best to let them pass stool first and keep them under observation.
However, please seek emergency veterinary attention if you suspect your rabbit is acting strangely after nibbling plastic. Good luck!