Rabbits

Understand routine care for rabbits as pets.

This is a description of the basic care of rabbits as a house or outside pet.  A summary of basic feeding and daily care. 

Rabbits need to be kept in a cage large enough to allow the rabbit to move freely whilst accommodating the litter tray, food and water bowls.  The bottom of the cage should be solid, or covered with a solid surface such as linoleum.

Rabbits are clean by nature and therefore, a litter tray should be provided in the place where the rabbits toilet.  The rabbits will naturally designate an area of the cage for this which is where the litter tray should be placed containing hay or pelleted newspaper litter.  The litter box will need cleaning daily.

Once or twice a week the cage should be cleaned out by sweeping all the bedding and cleaning the whole cage with mild soap and water.

In terms of food, there should be grass and hay available at all times with vegetables and a little fruit.  Commercial rabbit food should be offered in limited quantities.  Fresh water should be available at all times and care should be taken if using a bottle that the bottle is cleaned regularly including the ball in the nozzle to ensure it works properly.

Rabbits should be allowed to play in a large designated area for a few hours every day to maintain the rabbit’s muscle tone and to prevent boredom.  Toys can help prevent boredom and the associated destruction, suitable toys include cardboard boxes, phone books as well as commercially available rabbit toys.  They also like to dig so a box filled with dirt or hay would satisfy this need.

Rabbits can be gently brushed to remove loose hair and maintain a healthy looking coat.

All pet rabbits should be spayed or neutered to prevent unwanted litters and disease such as uterine cancer in females.  Rabbits which haven’t been spayed or neutered should not be housed together as they can become very aggressive to each other.

 

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