How to Keep Rabbits from Digging Out of Pen: 5 Foolproof Techniques

To prevent rabbits from digging out of a pen, ensure the fencing is buried at least 1 foot underground and extends at least 2 feet above the ground, use wire mesh with small gaps, reinforce the bottom of the fence with rocks or concrete, and provide enrichment and stimulation within the pen to reduce their desire to escape. Rabbits are natural diggers, and by taking these preventive measures, you can effectively keep them from escaping their enclosure.


How to Keep Rabbits from Digging Out of Pen: 5 Foolproof Techniques

Exercising proper rabbit care includes providing a secure pen, protecting them from predators, and preventing damage to your property. Understanding the behaviors and needs of rabbits can help create a safe and happy environment for them.


Understanding Rabbit Behavior

Rabbits are naturally curious and energetic animals that love to explore their surroundings. They have a natural digging instinct that drives them to dig and burrow. In order to keep rabbits from digging out of their pen, it is important to understand why they exhibit such behavior in the first place. By addressing the root causes of their digging instincts, such as boredom and lack of exercise, you can effectively prevent them from escaping and ensure their safety.

Natural Digging Instincts

Rabbits have an innate desire to dig and burrow. In the wild, they use their digging skills to create burrows for shelter, protection, and breeding. This instinctive behavior is deeply rooted in their genetic makeup, and it’s important to acknowledge and respect it. While it’s not possible to completely eliminate this natural instinct, there are preventative measures you can take to redirect their digging behavior.

Boredom And Lack Of Exercise

Boredom and lack of exercise can greatly contribute to rabbits’ propensity for digging. When rabbits are confined to a small pen without mental stimulation or physical activity, they may resort to digging as a way to alleviate their boredom and release pent-up energy. To prevent this, it is crucial to provide them with a spacious and enriching living environment.

  • Ensure your rabbit has plenty of exercise opportunities. Set up a secure and spacious play area where they can hop, run, and explore freely. This will help fulfill their natural instincts and tire them out, reducing their inclination to dig.
  • Provide an assortment of rabbit-safe toys and tunnels to keep them mentally stimulated. Rabbits are intelligent animals that require mental challenges to stay engaged and content.
  • Consider adding different textures and materials to their pen, such as untreated wooden toys or digging boxes filled with hay or soil. This can serve as a designated digging spot, allowing them to satisfy their urge to dig without damaging the pen.

By addressing and fulfilling their need for mental stimulation and physical exercise, you can minimize their desire to dig their way out of the pen.

How to Keep Rabbits from Digging Out of Pen: 5 Foolproof Techniques




Creating A Secure Rabbit Enclosure

Rabbits are notorious escape artists, known for their impressive digging abilities. If you want to keep your rabbits safe and prevent them from digging out of their pen, it is crucial to create a secure enclosure that can withstand their determined efforts. In this article, we will explore two effective methods to achieve this: installing a buried wire fence and reinforcing the pen walls.

Installing A Buried Wire Fence

One of the most reliable ways to prevent rabbits from digging out of their enclosure is by installing a buried wire fence. This method creates an underground barrier that stymies their attempts to escape. Follow these steps to install your wire fence:

  1. Choose the right wire: Start by selecting a strong wire mesh specifically designed to keep rabbits in. Opt for a rust-resistant material such as galvanized steel for added durability.
  2. Measure and mark the perimeter: Calculate the area of your rabbit enclosure to determine the amount of wire mesh needed. Use stakes and string to mark the boundaries of the pen.
  3. Prepare the ground: Clear any vegetation or debris from the area where you plan to install the fence. Level the ground to ensure a smooth installation process.
  4. Bury the wire: Dig a trench around the perimeter of the pen, making it deep enough to bury the wire mesh completely. Ideally, the trench should be at least 6 inches deep to deter digging rabbits.
  5. Attach the wire mesh: Place the wire mesh into the trench, ensuring it extends aboveground as well. Use U-shaped wire staples or zip ties to secure the mesh to wooden or metal posts.
  6. Backfill the trench: Fill the trench back in, covering the buried wire mesh completely.

By following these installation steps, you can create a strong and effective underground barrier that will deter even the most determined diggers.

Reinforcing Pen Walls

In addition to a buried wire fence, reinforcing the walls of your rabbit pen can provide an extra layer of security. Here are some strategies to reinforce your pen walls:

  • Use hardware cloth: Consider attaching hardware cloth to the existing pen walls. This material has small mesh openings, making it impossible for rabbits to squeeze through.
  • Install a kickboard: Dig a shallow trench around the perimeter of the pen and insert a kickboard made of sturdy materials such as wood or metal. The kickboard should extend a few inches above the ground to prevent rabbits from burrowing underneath.
  • Add an apron: Extend the bottom section of the pen walls outward by attaching an apron made of wire mesh. Bury the apron a few inches into the ground to deter rabbits from digging near the walls.

By reinforcing your pen walls, you can effectively discourage rabbits from attempting to dig their way out.

Providing Enrichment And Distractions

Keeping rabbits from digging out of their pen can be challenging, but providing enrichment and distractions can help redirect their energy and keep them occupied. By offering a sufficient play area, using chew toys and treats, you can create a stimulating environment that will keep your rabbits entertained and deter them from attempting to dig their way out.

Offering Sufficient Play Area

One of the most effective ways to prevent rabbits from digging out of their pen is by providing them with a spacious and engaging play area. Ensure that the pen is large enough for the rabbits to move around comfortably, hop, and explore. A confined space can make rabbits feel bored and inclined to dig. Consider using a sturdy wire mesh or fencing with an underground barrier to prevent them from tunneling.

Additionally, you can place ramps, tunnels, and climbing structures inside the pen to encourage physical activity and exploration. Creating different levels and hiding spots will add complexity to their environment and keep them mentally stimulated.

Using Chew Toys And Treats

Rabbits have a natural instinct to chew, and providing them with appropriate chew toys and treats can divert their attention away from digging. Opt for sturdy, rabbit-safe toys made from natural materials such as wood or untreated seagrass. These toys will not only provide entertainment but also help keep their teeth healthy and prevent boredom.

You can also hide treats or small portions of their daily food ration within their play area to encourage foraging. This mimics their natural behavior in the wild, where they would spend time searching for food. Interactive food puzzles or treat balls can be used to make feeding time more engaging and challenging, further reducing the rabbits’ desire to dig or escape.

How to Keep Rabbits from Digging Out of Pen: 5 Foolproof Techniques




How to Keep Rabbits from Digging Out of Pen: 5 Foolproof Techniques




Frequently Asked Questions On How To Keep Rabbits From Digging Out Of Pen


Will Rabbits Dig Out Of A Pen?


Yes, rabbits have a tendency to dig out of their pens.


How Do You Keep Rabbits In A Pen?


To keep rabbits in a pen, make sure the pen has secure fencing and is large enough for them to move around comfortably. Provide plenty of fresh water, food, and shelter to keep them healthy. Regularly clean the pen to maintain a hygienic environment.


Monitor the rabbits for signs of illness or distress.


What Do You Put On The Bottom Of A Rabbit Pen?


Line the bottom of the rabbit pen with a soft layer of bedding to create comfort and absorb waste.


Can I Stop My Rabbit Digging?


Yes, you can prevent your rabbit from digging. Provide them with mental stimulation, like toys and games. Give them enough space to exercise and explore. Use deterrents like chicken wire or rocks to block off areas. Redirect their digging behavior to a designated spot by placing a digging box filled with dirt or sand.


Monitor and train your rabbit consistently.




Preventing rabbits from successfully digging out of their pen requires a comprehensive approach that addresses their innate behaviors and physical barriers. By providing ample mental and physical stimulation, using deterrents like chicken wire or hardware cloth along the pen’s bottom, and regularly inspecting and reinforcing the pen’s structure, you can ensure the safety and well-being of your furry friends.


Remember, a secure and enriching environment is key to happily coexisting with your rabbits while protecting them from escape!

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