Can Rabbits Eat Newspaper? (7 Clear Health Facts)

It can be quite alarming to realize that your rabbits have been eating the newspaper that you use as bedding in their hutch. Upon making this realization, you will want to know whether eating newspaper is alright for rabbits. This article has the answer.

Can rabbits eat newspaper? No, eating newspaper is not good for rabbits. The paper itself may cause the rabbits to have constipation, possibly even intestinal blockages. And the ink used to print the newspaper may poison the rabbits.

Yet this phenomenon of rabbits eating newspaper is quite common. Indeed, if you line a rabbit’s hutch with newspaper, you are almost sure to find the rabbit eating paper at some point.

Sometimes, it gets to a point at which it can only be termed as a ‘habit’. That is how you find someone complaining, my bunny likes to eat newspaper. Or my rabbit is eating her newspaper bedding constantly.

Can rabbits eat newspaper
Can Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

On the other hand, for people who are new to rabbits, the whole idea of the rabbits eating newspaper can sound strange. Indeed, there are those who may wonder whether rabbits are capable of eating newspaper at all.

So the best place to start our discussion may be by finding out whether, in the first place, rabbits are capable of eating newspaper.


Are Rabbits Capable Of Eating Newspaper?

Rabbits are capable of eating newspaper.

It is not uncommon to find a rabbit nibbling on newspaper, if it has access to it.

All forms of paper (and paper-like materials such as cardboard) seem to be very attractive to rabbits for eating.

That is why you often find someone who keeps rabbits saying, my bunnies keep eating newspaper and cardboard. This only goes to show that rabbits are indeed capable of eating newspaper.

If you visit the various forums on which rabbit owners discuss issues, you tend to find lots of threads on rabbit chewing on paper and cardboard.

And that then leads to questions like, can bunnies eat cardboard and newspaper safely…

But with regard to the basic question, can rabbits chew on newspaper, the answer is ‘yes’.  Rabbits have the ability to eat newspaper. They chew it, then actually swallow it.

What we really need to focus on, however, is whether the newspaper is safe for the rabbits.

So we need to ask ourselves questions like, is newspaper safe for rabbits to swallow? And by extension, is newspaper a safe bedding for rabbits?

But the basic fact remains that rabbits do have the capability to eat newspaper.


Is Newspaper Safe For Rabbits To Eat?

Upon realizing that your rabbits have been eating newspaper, your main concern will likely be on the safety of it.

So you will be having questions like, is eating newspaper bad for rabbits? And can eating newspaper harm my rabbits?

The truth of the matter is that newspapers are not safe for rabbits to eat.

There are two main risks when rabbits eat newspaper.

Firstly, the paper itself may cause them constipation. In the worst case scenario, it may even cause them internal blockages.

Secondly, the ink with which the newspaper is printed may poison the rabbits.

For those reasons, newspaper is not safe for rabbits to eat.


Can Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

Newspaper is not good for rabbits to eat. To be sure, the rabbits are quite capable of nibbling on newspaper. But as we have seen, newspaper is not safe for rabbits to eat. They therefore shouldn’t eat it.

A rabbit that eats newspaper is at risk of developing constipation. If it is particularly unlucky, it may even develop gastrointestinal blockages. That is because the rabbit’s system can’t digest newspaper.

Thus when a rabbit eats newspaper, the best one can hope for is that the newspaper will pass through and come out as poop. Sometimes that happens.

But at times, in fact quite often, the rabbit that has eaten some newspaper gets constipation. Sometimes it gets worse: gastrointestinal obstruction.

Moreover, a rabbit that eats newspaper is at risk of suffering from poisoning. If the ink used in making the newspaper is petroleum-based, this is a very real possibility.

Due to those factors, eating newspaper is not good for rabbits.


Why Do Rabbits Like To Eat Newspaper?

As noted earlier, the phenomenon of rabbits eating newspaper is quite common. It leads to an interesting question – namely, why do rabbits eat newspaper?

As it turns out, there are two things that commonly make rabbits eat newspaper.

The first thing that makes rabbits eat newspaper is boredom. If a rabbit is experiencing boredom, it easily resorts to eating newspapers. So in this case, you find the rabbit simply eating the newspaper to keep itself busy.

The second thing that makes rabbits eat newspaper is hunger. If a rabbit is hungry, it may decide to nibble on whatever happens to be easily available. So it opts to eat the newspaper lining its cage.

Thus if you find your rabbit eating newspaper, it is likely to be due one (or both) of those factors. It could be due to boredom and/or hunger.


Should Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

As we said while answering the can rabbits eat newspaper question, the answer is simply ‘no’. Rabbits shouldn’t eat newspaper.

Eating newspaper may put the rabbits’ health at risk. This is because the rabbit may develop constipation, due to eating newspaper.

Eating newspaper may actually put the rabbit’s life at risk. This is because the rabbit may get gastrointestinal obstruction from eating newspaper. Or the rabbit may suffer poisoning from the newspaper ink.

Thus rabbits shouldn’t eat newspaper at all.


What Can Rabbits Chew On Instead Of Newspaper?

There are many better things for rabbits to chew on, instead of newspaper.

Alfalfa cubes are good for rabbits to chew on. So is pine firewood. Even their regular hay food has good chewing value.

But chewing on newspaper isn’t good for them at all. In any event, given the soft texture of newspaper, it doesn’t offer the rabbits much chewing value.


Can Any Type Of Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

In posing the can rabbits eat newspaper question, most people have a specific type of rabbit in mind.

They may be asking with regard to wild rabbits. Or they may be asking with regard to pet rabbits. They may also be asking with regard to a specific type of pet rabbits – like say, dwarf rabbits or bunny rabbits.

We thus need to look at some of the types of rabbits, with respect to the newspaper eating issue.


Can Wild Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

Wild rabbits shouldn’t eat newspaper.

In case a wild rabbit eats newspaper, there is a high likelihood of it suffering from constipation.

But a wild rabbit that eats newspaper may also end up suffering from potentially fatal internal obstruction.

For these reasons, wild rabbits shouldn’t eat newspaper.

If wild rabbits regularly visit your place, it would be improper to offer them newspaper. It is not good for them at all.

Can rabbits eat newspaper
Can Rabbits Eat Newspaper Excessively?


Can Pet Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

Newspaper is not good for pet rabbits.

That is because the newspaper is a health hazard for the pet rabbits.

When a pet rabbit eats newspaper, there is no knowing what outcome it will have. The newspaper may just go through the rabbit’s system, and come out as poop. Even then, there will likely be some degree of constipation.

In case the rabbit too huge chunks of the newspaper, it may suffer from internal blockage. This can easily lead to the loss of the rabbit’s life, in the absence of proper intervention.

Thus if you keep pet rabbits, you need to try and ensure that they don’t have access to newspaper.


Can Dwarf Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

Dwarf rabbits, whose size tends to be relatively small, are at even greater risk of bad outcomes if they eat newspaper. Therefore the dwarf rabbits shouldn’t eat newspaper.

Because they are small, their gastrointestinal tracts tend to be narrower. This increases the risk of them suffering from intestinal blockages, if they happen to eat newspaper.


Can Bunny Rabbits Eat Newspaper?

Eating newspaper is not good for bunny rabbits.

The ink with which the newspapers are printed may be toxic to the bunny rabbits.

And the paper itself is not altogether safe either: as it can be a hazard for constipation and intestinal blockages.


Can Rabbits Have Newspaper In Their Cage?

So far, we have been making reference to newspapers in the context of the rabbits eating them. But what about the use of newspaper as bedding in the rabbit’s cage?

Can rabbits have newspaper in their cage? The answer is that newspaper is not the best bedding material for a rabbit’s cage. That is because with newspaper bedding, there is always the risk of the rabbits eating it.

And as we have seen, eating newspaper can be the genesis for many rabbit health issues.


What Should I Do If My Rabbit Ate Newspaper?

The right course of action depends on how much newspaper the rabbit ate.

If it was just a little well-shredded newspaper, chances are that it will go through the rabbit’s digestive system. Then it will come out as poop. But there may be some constipation, even then.

So you need to mitigate the rabbit’s constipation.

But if my rabbit has eaten lots of newspaper, things would be different. In this case, there is a huge risk of the rabbit suffering from an intestinal obstruction.

And if the ink used in printing the newspaper is toxic, that too may have issues. Therefore it may make sense to seek veterinary attention. Or at least put the rabbit under close observation.

And if you notice any unusual signs, such as bloating, lethargy and pain symptoms, rush the bunny to a vet.


How To Stop My Rabbit From Eating Newspapers?

So far, we have seen that eating newspaper can be very hazardous for a rabbit. That naturally leads to another question, on how to stop the rabbit from eating newspaper.

One simple strategy is that of minimizing the rabbit’s exposure to newspapers. Use another material to line the rabbit’s cage, rather than newspaper.

If you have to use newspaper, at least ensure that it is printed using soy ink: not petroleum-based ink.

Provide the rabbit adequate food, to ensure it doesn’t resort to eating newspaper due to hunger.

Also provide the rabbit with lots of toys, and possibly a mate, to minimize boredom. This is to ensure that the rabbit doesn’t resort to eating newspaper due to boredom.


Final Verdict – Can Rabbits Eat Newspaper

Newspapers are not good for rabbits to eat.

The ink with which newspapers are printed often turns out to be potentially toxic to rabbits.

Moreover, the actual paper often causes rabbits to suffer from constipation, if they eat it. At worst, it can actually cause intestinal blockages.

Rabbits typically eat newspapers due to boredom or hunger. Providing them with toys (or mates) to play with minimizes chances of them resorting to eating newspaper due to boredom.

Further, providing the rabbits with adequate food, including plenty of fiber, minimizes chance of them eating newspaper due to hunger.

Can rabbits eat newspaper
Can Rabbits Eat Newspaper Frequently?

There are lots of alternative materials you can use as rabbit cage bedding, instead of newspaper.

If your rabbit eats just a little newspaper, it (the newspaper) may go through the rabbit’s digestive system. Then it may come out as poop. Even then, there may be some degree of constipation.

You may therefore need to offer the rabbit some support to ease the constipation.

But if a rabbit eats lots of newspaper, the risk of internal obstruction may be quite high. You therefore need to observe the rabbit closely, for obstruction signs such as bloating, lethargy and pain.

In case you see even the closest hint of internal obstruction, you need to rush the rabbit to a vet.

As a pet lover, make sure to learn about pet more and give your pet rabbit a good and comfortable life!

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The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional veterinary advice, food recommendation, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or for pet food related questions.

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