Lots of people love to have rabbits as pets. The cute, little creature looks adorable and is fun to have around. However, one needs to remember that rabbits have a different nature than the 'more-common' cats and dogs, thus need to be treated in a special way. For example - though a rabbit looks charming and cuddly, it does not like being held too much. Occasional petting is okay, but don't keep holding it for too long. This way, there are certain other things that you need to keep in mind while taking care of your pet rabbits. Read on to know more.
How To Take Care Of A Rabbit As A Pet
- Before you bring a rabbit to your home, you need to decide whether it will stay inside the house or outside. However, since rabbits love to be near people, indoors will be advisable.
- If you are planning to keep your rabbit inside the house, you will have to build a cage for it and cover the floor with shavings, sawdust, or straw. Makes sure to change the shavings everyday.
- Those who want their rabbit to stay outdoors should build a hutch for it. For a single rabbit, the hutch should be a wood frame, at least four feet long and a couple of feet wide. It should be raised above the ground and be about four feet high.
- The cage or hutch of a rabbit should be large enough to accommodate it when it is fully stretched. At the same time, there should be extra space for a litter box as well as for keeping the feed and water.
- Rabbit pellets will form an important part of the diet of your pet rabbit. However, you need to provide it with additional nutrition also, mainly in the form of good quality hay and a variety of fresh green vegetables.
- Though rabbits like to be near people, they do not want to be held often. Remember, it is a rabbit and not a dog, which needs continuous petting. You should especially keep them away from small children, who may not handle them well.
- Rabbits need to chew a lot. So, it is advisable for you to provide them with safe chew toys.
- As soon as you get a rabbit home, get it spayed or neutered by a veterinary doctor.
- Since rabbit urine has quite a strong odor, you will have to change its litter box frequently.
- Rabbits need to be active constantly. Develop a fitness regime for them, which involves a lot of jumping and running around. This will keep them fit, physically as well as mentally.
- A cage is meant for the rabbit for relax in, at night or whenever he feels tired. Make sure to keep its door open always.
- Try to stay away from commercially available rabbit food as much as possible. Though your rabbit would like the taste, it would only add empty calories to its diet.
- While lifting your rabbit, make sure that its hind legs are not left dangling. At the same time, never lift it by its ears. In fact, you should put one hand below its hind legs - for support and the other below its chest and then only, lift it.
- During winters, cover the front of the hutch with old rugs, blankets, or tarps. This will help keep the cold winds away from your rabbit's shelter.
- Though your rabbit might not drink water too often, make sure that it has access to fresh water all the time.
- Whenever you take your rabbit outside, remember to rabbit-proof the area, so it does not end up getting lost.