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Why the dwarf rabbit pees on the sofa?

Many people find themselves in this situation: a once well-behaved rabbit who was litter trained becomes a household terror by peeing on the couch. But why does this happen? And what to do in these situations?


Let’s discover together how to prevent your dwarf rabbit from peeing on the couch and how to restore order to your home.

What to do

The first and most instinctive move in this situation is certainly to move your rabbit away from the couch and lock them in their enclosure. But is this the right strategy to prevent your dwarf rabbit from peeing on the couch again in the future? In itself, the move, which serves to give you time and the possibility to clean up, is not wrong.


One of the reasons, in fact, why your rabbit might start peeing on the couch is to mark territory that actually belongs to you. If you have the habit of sitting on the couch, it won’t be a coincidence if your rabbit pees right where you usually sit.


But what can you do to break this habit? You need to restore order and make it clear who’s in charge in a gentle way.

Restore order in the house

The first advice is to behave in the same way every time the rabbit pees on the sofa. You should limit its freedom for a couple of hours and keep it away from the sofa area. Over time, the message should come across loud and clear. Its action will always correspond to your reaction.


Another effective but not recommended tactic is to remove the rabbit from the area and place small traps. However, these traps will cause it harm, so if you can avoid it, in my opinion, it’s better.

The problem remains

If the problem should persist over time or not be limited to the couch, you will need to understand its origin, which at that point will no longer be psychological but physiological.


Two pieces of advice:

  1. First, make sure your rabbit hasn’t simply lost its good habits and try to follow the instructions for getting your rabbit used to the litter box.
  2. Second, make sure the problem isn’t related to lack of sterilization or neutering. An unsterilized rabbit that reaches sexual maturity could develop this unpleasant habit. To learn more about sterilization, take a look at the article “Sterilizing a Dwarf Rabbit.”

Finally, to ensure that your couch doesn’t get ruined, an effective solution may be to purchase a waterproof couch cover suitable for these situations. It will preserve the couch and help you clean quickly and effortlessly.

How to make the rabbit understand who's boss

None of us should tolerate the aggressiveness of an excessively dominant rabbit that treats humans as inferior. To play the game of “who’s in charge at home” with your overly dominant rabbit, you must use a specific technique called pinning. In fact, this is the same behavior that rabbits use to reprimand subordinate rabbits. Using their “language,” the rabbit will quickly learn that they must let you be the boss and not drive you crazy.


Here’s how to take charge:

  1. When you open the fence or the door to their room, quickly move your hand from above and firmly pin down the rabbit’s head or shoulders onto the floor so that they cannot use their teeth or claws.
  2. At the same time, hold down the rabbit’s hindquarters or shoulders firmly on the floor with your other hand. The feeling of weight will reinforce your dominant position.
  3. Speak in a gentle but firm tone of voice.
  4. Hold the bunny in place until they stop the aggressive behavior, including growling and struggling.


Use this technique every time your furry friend shows signs of aggressive behavior when you approach them, until they finally stop. I hope your dwarf rabbit understands their relationship with you and learns to be polite soon. There is nothing coercive about this training, so even though I understand how you feel, don’t feel guilty. You’re not hurting them. These are behaviors that rabbits use among themselves as they work out their interpersonal relationships. Once roles are established, everything will be fine. You should also know that in nature, rabbits that do not learn good manners are even killed by the dominant rabbit.