It must be understood that this is a completely natural process in the rabbit, whereby part of the food intake is re-ingested, and goes through the digestive channels for a second time. There are two types of droppings; hard, dry glossy, round pure waste ones, that are passed regularly throughout the day; and the small soft dark faeces (called caecotrophs) that are formed in clusters, and enclosed in a coating of gel mucus. These caecotrophs are taken direct from the anus and swallowed whole; consequently, wire floors do not interfere with this action. Re-ingestion occurs mostly at night, unobserved. Caecotrophy is a vital function in the rabbits complicated digestive system.
Deprivation of these caecotrophs will cause diminished health. The owner has reason to be slightly worried if groups of these are found on the hutch floor in the mornings. It can occur in an obese animal, or , for any reason that prevents the rabbit being able to sit up, and bend its head right down between the hind legs in order to reach the anus. There can be an excess of caecotrophs if the diet is too high in protein, carbohydrates and sugar; the remedy is to cut down on the over rich feed, and to introduce a high fibre diet with plenty of hay; a small amount of green food; a slice of apple daily; and a restricted measured amount of pellet / corn / mix.