Basic Summary:  Critical : Protein rabbit food, fiber food e.g. Timothy hay,  water, space to hop temperature control or place to burrow well with extreme temps (below 20 F and above 85)- Mostly its the heat that is the problem. -Do not go from very cold to indoors.

 --Some rabbits when confined may get depressed and languish when not around others 

Babies:    When very young-Kale or maybe some other dark greens, may actually not just be a nice healthy food but critical for them.  When under about 7 weeks, they'd likely still want to nurse but mother may not be doing so and they don't eat the pellet food well and newly weaned need all the help they can get.  So lots fresh kale, a bit of carrot.  They'll like dried fruits but keep very small amount  eg- 1-2 raisins and they'll love also fiber rich oat grain cereal or granola but DO NOT give very much and balance with the deep greens and timothy hay higher fiber foods.. so as not more than 10%.  Can mess up their bacterial balance which is how they digest all that grass.  


Please note

    1.  Cage size- small cages are marketed toward rabbit owners.  If they are spending much time in the cage it should be big enough to hop a few times -                    generally at least 8 sf for a small bunny.  All rabbits should have sometime out of any cage.   Rabbits like to roam outdoors- You can have them trained with raisins so that they come when called or withstand your adjacent presence then allow them outside and bring them in whenever.

    2.  Food: When very young alphapha based is ok but they still may prefer timothy based and food should be right about 16%-18% protein.  Many commercial foods have less protein but the cheap stuff at Walmart is good!

    3.  Predators:  Hawks sometimes can get them.  They do naturally take cover during the day but this may need to be learned.  Watch or cover is recommended when first introduced to outdoors.

   4.  Picking them up- Rabbits often enjoy petting but seldom getting picked up. 

   5.  If your habitat is less than about 1000 sq inches, your rabbit may not litter train well. 

   6.  Careful of quick and large temperature changes especially from cold to hot- can be fatal.

   7.  Rabbits do well with lots of timothy hay some grasses, beware of toxic plants you may have in their reach around the house.  Note also that they need to constantly most eat fibrous greens with minor amounts of other foods such as carrots.  You don't want to mess up their bacterial gut balance.  This also would relate to antibiotics possibly being fatal for them.

FAQ

   What I do for the litter box is I use some odor absorbing or just high end litter material for small animal in the box but that only gets changed about 1x a month as over this I just use free newspaper.  -not shredded but 2-3 thick sheets just torn off- so really easy to put in and take out.. This you could do in the morning as you feed/ water check and when you get home so box will basically be clean all the time.  This just takes 20 seconds.
   There's another way too even less demanding...this is wire on top of box that has that well developed odor cat litter under..
    
    I've had 2-3 bunnies so that companionship was not even needed.  They are social but not so needy though can vary with individuals... less needy than even a cat.  However I'd give a few minutes each day.  What is a bad combination is small confinement AND lack of any companionship but with some running around space that is what interests them.  And you can set up various pockets of interests.. Like a little basket with grass, ball with hay..a stick with maybe still some leaves..
  

Some quick links to rabbit care:

http://www.arba.net/PDFs/CAW.pdf

http://www.sandiegorabbits.org/adoption/Cages/cage.html

http://avianandexotic.com/   small animal specialist in the Raleigh Durham area

http://www.bhrabbitrescue.org/docs/RabbitCare.pdf

 

Ideas for good care along with budget in mind:   If you only have one or two rabbits, you may find it fairly easy to adopt them to house living.  With their strong territory instinct my be particularly amenable as they stay in predictable and more singular area. Usually litter box is opposite door entrance.

   You can get a dog pen wrap it with chicken wire to make a small safe outdoor run.  It'd be simple to cover of course if they need to be out with rain.   

   Oxbow makes good food and the Bulk bags Walmart green 8.00 for 25 lbs good..but beware the fancy low protein foods--more $ and not as good.

Mostly READ about them before taking one home.

 

To adoption policy page

 

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