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Info Sheets : Rabbits

rabbitHelpful links on this site about rabbits and small animals

Useful links to rabbit-related sites

Why a House Rabbit? (All information has been reprinted with permission from House Rabbit Society)

Perhaps you've just adopted your first rabbit, or maybe you already have a rabbit and would like more information to help you understand her better. The House Rabbit Society, a national nonprofit organization, recommends that you keep your rabbit in the house rather than outdoors. Rabbits are intelligent, social animals who need affection, and they can become wonderful companion animals if given a chance to interact with their human families.

grey rabbitThe benefits of spay and neuter Although most rabbits will use a litter box, hormones may cause un neutered males and unspayed females to "mark 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 ages 3 1/2 to 6 months, depending on sexual maturity, by an experienced rabbit veterinarian. For rabbits more than 2 years old, get a veterinary checkup first.)

House trainingRabbits may have free run of the home. However, it's best for most-and necessary for some--to start with a cage. To make cage time learning time, fasten a litterbox in the corner of the cage that your rabbit chooses for a "bathroom." As soon as he uses the box consistently, you can give him some freedom. Place one or more large litterboxes in corners of the running area outside the cage. Use only positive reinforcement (treats and praise)--never punishment.

Bunny-proofing Bunny-proofing your home is part of living with a house rabbit. It is natural for rabbits to chew on furniture, rugs, drapes, and, most deadly of all, electrical cords. Cords must be concealed so that the rabbit cannot reach them. Exposed cords can be encased in vinyl tubing (found at hardware stores). By splitting the tubing lengthwise with a utility knife the cord can be pushed inside it. Give your rabbit enough attention, safe chewable's, and toys, so that she is distracted from chewing furniture and rugs. A cardboard box stuffed with hay makes an inexpensive playbox. Young rabbits (under a year) are more inclined to mischief and require more confinement and/or bunny-proofing than mature rabbits.

House rabbits and other animals 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).

Cages: rabbits need lots of room to run, they love to explore and go on adventures. If they are in a cage they need at least 2-3 hours of running time each day. Cages should not have wire girds on the floor. This can harm your bunny's feet in the long run. Dog Exercise pens-Cheap and make great cages. They have lots of room to run. Stores:, , check your local stores:Petco,Petsmart etc.. Cage-Leith petworks is highly recommended by the House Rabbit Society:,

Hay is very important for rabbit's digestive system. They should have unlimited access to fresh hay. Oxbow Hay Company 1-800-249-0366, *Wonderful mail order hay and rabbit pellets

Limited pellets daily
Fresh water
Hay /straw (for digestive fiber and chewing recreation)
Fresh salad veggies/fruit (add gradually)
Barley/oats (very small amounts)
Wood (for chewing recreation)
Multiple enzymes (digestive aid)
Petroleum laxative (when needed for passing hair)

Flea comb
Flea products safe for cats
Toenail clippers

Dust-free litter (not wood shavings)
Pooper scooper
White vinegar (for urine accidents)
Hand vacuum
Chlorine bleach (for disinfecting)
Litterbox (in cage)

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