Nest box flooring
YOU CAN use plywood on the floors, but you should seal the wood or it will absorb the urine and smell very strongly of ammonia during summer. The wood can also harbour parasites from the manure. A tray you fill with sawdust or similar placed in a corner for a ‘toilet’ can help.
Some rabbits can develop sore feet living on plywood due to damp or wet wood. Most experienced breeders who use plywood as flooring have their rabbits on a bed of deep shavings (not sawdust as it can cause breathing difficulties), especially if they have standard rex as this breed has particularly delicate feet (see box at right).
Mesh is the most common flooring for rabbit breeders, but there are a couple of things to note. Firstly, only use square, 10mm welded mesh or slightly larger if you have larger breeds as their droppings won’t fit through the holes – cut a couple of squares out in the ‘toilet’ corner to help the manure fall through.
The biggest thing to look for in the mesh is the gauge of the wire – the gauge of most mesh you can buy is too thin, whereas you need something thicker that can n carry the weight of your rabbits, such as 0.8mm or r (if you can find it) 1mm thick.
If you use a thinner gauge of mesh, keep an eye on the welds (this is where it will break), put supports every 35-40cm across under the floor to hold up the weight of a doe and her litter, and inspect their feet regularly in case of sores as a thinner wire is more likely to cut into them.