In the world of cute, cuddly young pets, rabbits, bunnies, or “bunny-rabbits” are absolute contenders for your love and attention. Perhaps unconventional, they certainly rival puppies and kittens for their sweetness and irresistible charms.
Their adorable qualities aside, rabbits are relatively easy to care for once you have the know-how. Understanding your bun-bun’s unique personality can be rewarding, and with all the right rabbit care tools at your disposal, the possibilities for fun are endless.
Pet rabbits have various attributes, such as:
- Highly companionable
- Can be litter box trained
- Long life (up to 12 years and sometimes longer!)
Like all pets, rabbits need supportive, long-term veterinary care. For your pet’s wellness, he or she should be spayed or neutered, groomed frequently, and receive tooth and nail trims. Nutrition, behavior, and disease prevention should be addressed regularly.
While every rabbit lover wants to enjoy a cuddle or two, not every bunny wants the attention. Watch for warning signs of distress, and always support their back legs. Remember, children must be supervised around rabbits (we recommend these rabbit care rules for kids).
Thumps in the Night
Due to the powerful thump of their hind legs, rabbits can inadvertently injure their backs from strain if held or handled the wrong way.
Don’t be alarmed if he or she thumps one or both of the back legs in response to fear, stress, danger, or when seeking attention. Try to meet your rabbit’s needs, and allow for some “downtime” in the nest or pen.
A Word on Housing
Rabbit care includes a safe place for bun-bun to hang out. When indoors, place their home away from household commotion or noisy areas. Outdoors, be sure their homes are shielded from direct sunlight, rain, and predators.
Your rabbit’s enclosure must be large enough to accommodate:
- Food and water dishes
- Litter box
- Moving about without tripping over things
- Laying down
There are some very creative ideas online for different cages, hutches, and runs. If the bottom is just wire, lay down a towel or soft bedding to cushion the feet (just monitor any chewing and eating). For physical health and mental stimulation, rabbits need to be let out every day.
Litter and Rabbit Care
Rabbits can be trained to use a particular place to eliminate waste. Instead of pine or cedar shavings or pellets, fill a small litter tray with alfalfa, oat pellets, or paper. Then cover it with hay. These helpful tips allow for great success. Be sure to clean out the litter box every other day.
The majority of your rabbit’s nutrition should come from hay (such as timothy, grass, or oat) and be supplemented with a high-fiber pellet and fresh, dark, leafy vegetables. The occasional treat may be a strawberry or carrot.
Chewing and Gnawing
Rabbits enjoy using their teeth on furniture, wood, and electrical cords (among other things). Prevent accidents by bunny-proofing your home and property.
Dental care should never be overlooked. Sometimes clipping or trimming the teeth is appropriate.
Easy Rabbit Care
Keep a close eye on appetite and energy levels, as the absence of both can indicate illness.
Please let us know if you have any other questions about rabbit care. Enjoy your sweet new pet!