Rabbit Care: How to Care for a Pet Bunny
Feb 16, · When a rabbit must be held or carried, support their front half, under their rib cage, with one hand and their rear end with the other, holding them close to your body like a football. Keep their legs tucked underneath them to avoid back injury, and never lift a rabbit by the ears of lovemeen.comted Reading Time: 8 mins. Place a cardboard box or “rabbit condo” in the cage so the bunny has a comfortable place to hide, and respect your animal’s need for quiet time (rabbits usually sleep during the day and night, becoming playful at dawn and dusk). When rabbits are kept in a cage, they need to Estimated Reading Time: 6 mins.
Rabbits make great pets but, like any living creature, they require certain conditions to be happy and healthy. This care guide introduces you to everything you need to get the most enjoyment out of your pet rabbit! The first thing to consider before you get a pet rabbit is that they have a long lifespan so be prepared to care for them long term. Rabbits are also unique creatures who form tight bonds with their families, but they also have some quirks you should know about. They require some routine vet care from a good rabbit vet and are not low maintenance pets if you are doing things right.
If you are prepared for all the unique qualities and needs of rabbits, you will be able to fully what is imagery used for the wonderful companionship they can offer. A fairly quick look over at your potential pet rabbit will help you sort out if there are any obvious signs of illness or other issues. While there are no guarantees, avoiding rabbits that have common signs of health problems can save you a lot of heartache in the future.
By having a close look at a rabbit you are considering, you also get a chance to see the personality of the rabbit. Also, if you have decided to add a rabbit to the family, it is highly recommended you start out by looking at your local shelter or rabbit rescues. There are lots of rabbits who need a second chance at a forever home. Whether you decide to go with a hutch or cagedeciding on a home for your rabbit is extremely important. Cages that are spacious enough, easy to clean, and easy for your rabbit to get in and out of will make sharing your home with a rabbit so much better.
A cage that is large enough is important for the well-being of your pet rabbit, but it is also no substitute for ample exercise and social time out what group sets hunting regulations in most states the cage. Bedding and litter are also important choices to make as cost and ease of clean-up will become your concerns over time.
Even the best quality rabbit pellet is not adequate on its own as a diet for pet rabbits. Plenty of fresh grass hay is very important in a rabbit's diet, as are fresh greens and vegetables. The right diet is critical to keeping pet rabbits healthy. Get the scoop on feeding your rabbit a well balanced and high fiber diet. Rabbits are playful, active, and curious, and they need a good variety of toys to keep them occupied and out of what is mental health act. Toys are also important to a rabbit's mental health and provide an opportunity for you to bond with your bunny.
Rabbits are quite trainable, but it may take some patience, especially when it comes to litter training and redirecting very natural behaviors like chewing and digging. Spend some time learning how to understand what your rabbit is trying to tell you through its body languages and soundsand rabbit-proofing your home, and you'll both be happier! Grooming rabbits is important for all bunny owners to be familiar with. Find out why regular brushing is a must, bathing is out, and the low down on nail trims.
The health of your rabbit is very important, and your rabbit's veterinarian will play a large role in keeping your bunny healthy. Spaying or neuteringproper diet, exercise and enrichment, and regular check-ups are all vital to helping your rabbit live a long and healthy life. Actively scan device characteristics for identification.
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Choosing a Healthy Rabbit. Choose a Rabbit Cage. Feeding Pet Rabbits. Continue to 5 of 8 below. Toys for Rabbits. Rabbit Training and Behavior. Grooming Rabbits. Rabbit Health. Related Topics. Small Pets. Read More. Your Privacy Rights. To change or withdraw your consent choices for TheSprucePets.
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How to Care for a Pet Rabbit. Step 1: Set Up Safe Indoor Housing. There are several options to house rabbits inside. They can live free-reign in a bunny proofed room/rooms, or they Step 2: Bunny Proof Your House. Step 3: Provide Fresh Hay. Step 4: Provide Fresh Greens, Fiber-rich Pellets, and Estimated Reading Time: 7 mins. Bunnies need an herbivorous (vegetarian) diet. They eat a lot of hay, a little bit of pelleted rabbit food, and a small amount of fresh vegetables every day. They need a high fiber diet, and they don’t eat grains (like oatmeal) or nuts. Feeding them isn’t as simple as opening a . Jan 17, · If you’ve ever wanted a pet you could sit with for hours, rabbits are for you. They love to be pet and massaged. Give them scritches on the top of their head or behind their ears and they will melt into the floor. If you stop petting them, most rabbits will nudge your hand to ask you to keep going because they like it so lovemeen.comted Reading Time: 8 mins.
Domestic rabbits are indoor pets that require as much attention as any other pet, including a specific diet and daily meals, regular cleaning of their quarters, daily monitoring and time out of their cage and medical care from a veterinarian with knowledge of and experience working with rabbits.
Rabbits are also highly social animals that crave contact and interaction with their human caretakers. They need a lot more time and effort than people assume, but the payoff is a curious, playful companion that will be part of the family for years. To adopt a rabbit, check with local animal shelters, small animal rescue groups or the closest chapter of the House Rabbit Society.
Rabbit Rescue and Rehab, the New York City chapter of the House Rabbit Society recommends the following items as part of their rabbit supply checklist:. Be sure to talk to your veterinarian about any nail-trimming questions you have before you attempt clipping at home. Cotter recommends putting sport socks on any furniture legs that the rabbit can get to.
Rabbits are small and delicate, and great care needs to be taken when handling them. Adults should be the primary caretaker of a pet rabbit and carefully supervise children interacting with them.
When a rabbit must be held or carried, support their front half, under their rib cage, with one hand and their rear end with the other, holding them close to your body like a football. Keep their legs tucked underneath them to avoid back injury, and never lift a rabbit by the ears of scruff.
There are no recommended vaccines for rabbits in North America, but pet rabbits should be seen by a veterinarian at least once a year for a checkup and all pet rabbits should be spayed or neutered when they reach maturity. This helps prevent uterine cancer in female rabbits, aggressive behaviors like mounting and spraying in male rabbits and unintended breeding. Finding a veterinarian who is knowledgeable about rabbit care and skilled in treating them can sometimes be difficult.
The House Rabbit Society maintains lists of veterinarians around the country and your local chapter or rescue society can likely also recommend a local veterinarian with rabbit experience. There are dozens of different rabbit breeds that vary in size, color and body and ear type, but all have their own charms.
A common misconception is that smaller breeds need less space than larger ones, but they actually need just as much room to run and hop around in. Some breeds have special needs that owners need to keep in mind. Angora rabbits, Heard says, are predisposed to hairballs because of their long fur and must be groomed regularly to prevent these.
Domestic rabbits can often live ten years or longer, sometimes well into their teens. Health care needs change with age, too. Younger rabbits are susceptible to intestinal disease as they develop the ability to digest hay and establish normal gut function, Heard said, and irregular bathroom use or loss of appetite can signal a problem.
Older rabbits, meanwhile, often develop arthritis and kidney problems. How to Care for Your Rabbit. Mary Cotter, founder of Rabbit Rescue and Rehab and vice president of House Rabbit Society, recommends a puppy playpen for your rabbit to call home, but if you have to use a cage, make it the largest one you can get. The House Rabbit Society recommends purchasing a cage or crate no smaller than four feet long, two feet wide and four feet tall. This provides enough space for a litter box, toys, food and water bowls and for the rabbit to stand or lay stretched out.
The crate should have a solid bottom, and a mat, blanket or towel on the bottom of the crate will keep the rabbit from slipping and give it a comfortable surface to sit on.
Once your rabbit has made their choice, place the litter box or pan there. Cotter recommends lining the box with a layer of newspaper and then filling it all the way to the top with hay.
Food: including hay, vegetables and pellets. Rabbits also need to stay hydrated, or intestinal issues can quickly occur. Fresh, clean water should always be available. Bowls for food and water : rabbits are curious and playful, and prone to tipping and flipping lightweight bowls as they move them around and explore their living space. Heavy ceramic crocks or metal bowls will be harder for rabbits to spill.
Toys : toys provide mental and physical stimulation to keep rabbits from getting bored, overweight and depressed. Good rabbit toys include paper bags and cardboard boxes for crawling into, scratching and chewing, small balls or cat toys that can be tossed around and kitty condos for climbing.
Play and exercise area : rabbits need four to five hours each day outside of their crate to exercise, play and socialize. Ideally, this area is carpeted to provide traction as the rabbit runs and jumps, as they can slip or slide and injure themselves on a hardwood or tile surface.
The fiber in hay will also encourage proper digestion. Fresh grass hays such as Timothy, oat, coastal, brome, Bahia or wheat hay should be provided to the rabbit in unlimited amounts every day. Vegetables : leafy green vegetables are used to supplement the hay and provide additional vitamins and nutrients.
The House Rabbit Society recommends feeding your rabbit a daily mix of three different vegetables like carrots, collard greens, beet greens, broccoli and romaine lettuce.
Rabbit pellets : provide additional nutrients to a rabbit but should only be fed as an additional supplement to its diet. Water : as mentioned, rabbits should have access to fresh, clean water at all times.
Sipper bottles can be used, Heard said, but should be checked regularly to ensure they are working properly, as rabbits will chew on the ends and can cause them to jam. Treats : every pet deserves a treat now and again, but be careful which ones you pick for your rabbit.
Too many simple sugars or starches can throw the balance of bacteria in their intestinal tracts off, causing illness. Caring for a Rabbit Over the Course of Its Life There are dozens of different rabbit breeds that vary in size, color and body and ear type, but all have their own charms.
Seven months to one year: introduce other hays and decrease alfalfa; decrease pellets to half a cup per six pounds body weight; increase veggies gradually to two cups per six pounds of body weight.
One to five years: unlimited Timothy, grass and oat hay; half cup pellets and two cups veggies per six pounds of weight. Six and older: if normal weight, continue regular diet; if rabbit is frail or losing weight, more pellets may be needed maintain healthy weight. Rabbits can also become obese and suffer health effects from extra weight, so it is important to stay in the healthy range.
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