7 Things to Know When You Adopt a Rabbit!
27 April, 2017
Rabbits are adorable pets that can be a great addition to your family. They do require some care and maintenance as any other pet would. Rabbits are fun, intelligent and social animals who also thrive on attention. Below are seven basic essentials when you bring your newly adopted rabbit to your home.
1. Your first need to rabbit-proof your home
Rabbit-proofing your home is part of living with a house rabbit (not unlike young infants). Just like cats or dogs, it is only natural for rabbits to chew on furniture, rugs, drapes, and electrical cords. Cords must be concealed so that the rabbit cannot reach them. Exposed cords can be encased in vinyl tubing to protect your rabbit and your electric cords.
2. The basic housing essentials are a must for your rabbit
Housing essentials include: a roomy cage, resting board, litter box that goes in the cage, pellet bowl or feeder, water bottle/crock, toys, and a pet carrier.
3. What you should be feeding your rabbits:
Limited pellets daily, fresh water, hay /straw (for digestive fiber and chewing recreation), fresh veggies, barley in small amount, wood (for the right chewing), multiple enzymes as a digestive aid. See our article on Your Rabbits Diet
4. Grooming list for your rabbit:
A flea comb, brush, flea products safe for rabbits, toenail clippers
5. Spaying or neutering your rabbits:
Although most rabbits will use a litterbox, hormones may cause unneutered males and unspayed females to mark their territory. Spaying or neutering your rabbit improves litterbox habits, lessens chewing behavior, decreases territorial aggression, and gives your rabbit a happier, longer life. Have your rabbit neutered between the ages of three to six months, depending on the rabbit’s sexual maturity by an experienced veterinarian.
6. Make sure your rabbits get exercise
Rabbits need to get exercise. But first make sure they know how to use a litter box. Fasten a litter box in the corner of the cage that your rabbit chooses for a “bathroom.” As soon as your rabbit uses the box consistently, you can give him some freedom. Place one or more large litter boxes in corners of the running area outside the cage. Always use positive reinforcement and never punish your rabbit.
7. Rabbits usually get along well with cats and dogs
House rabbits and indoor cats can get along fine, as do rabbits and well-mannered dogs. Dogs should be trained to respond to commands before being trusted with a free-running rabbit, and supervision is needed to control a dog’s playful impulses (this is especially true for puppies). If you want to add another rabbit to your family, rabbits that are neutered adults of opposite sexes work best and they should be introduced for short periods in an area unfamiliar to both rabbits.