We recently moved 1,000 kilometers across the country, a re-settlement made more challenging because our two house rabbits do not like riding in the car. They will not eat nor drink, whether the vehicle is moving or parked. So we decided to split the drive into two six-hour days. We’d feed Priscilla and Ryan very well in the morning, get on the road early and check into a pet-friendly motel room in the early afternoon.
Because luggage room was at a premium in our Toyota Yaris, we considered various space-saving alternatives to a conventional exercise pen to house the bunnies both in the two motels and in our new home once the movers had unloaded all our belongings.
Kudos to whoever suggested a children’s play tent. Compared to an x-pen, they are ultra light weight, take up almost no room and can be unfolded almost instantly. The one I found looks like a bear, and it took the poor store clerk nearly half an hour to teach me how to fold it back up again, but once I mastered the skill, I was sold on how good this idea was.
Here is how we used it: Upon checking in to the motel, we brought the rabbits in their carrier and the folded tent into the room first. We popped the tent open, put in the carrier, opened its door and zipped up the tent. Now we could unpack the rest of our suitcases, hay and litter boxes, etc. without worrying about bunnies hopping out through the open motel room door.
Once unpacked, and with the room door latched, we let the rabbits out to explore the motel room while we lined the tent floor with newspapers and then loaded in their water bowl, litter and hay boxes.
We had gotten them used to the tent a couple of days before we left. We simply left it open in the living room, they discovered it and soon became comfortable with it. Because it has a roof, it’s kind of like a large tunnel or burrow, the kind of space rabbits naturally like. It has screen windows on both sides to let air flow through. Still, it might not be good to use in a hot place, because it does get hotter inside the zipped tent than in a more open room.
Anyway, for someone who is looking for a relatively inexpensive, light weight, and very portable place to house their bunnies, this might prove to be a good solution. It certainly worked well for us, Priscilla and Ryan.