How to Care for a Rabbit - Housing
There’s been lots of publicity about rabbits’ living quarters over the past year… and with the genius tag line ”A Hutch is not enough” created by our friends over at RAW (Rabbit Awareness Week 2017), I am sure the message is filtering through to the many rabbit owners who want the best for their furry friends. However, just in case you need a reminder, we have put together some tips on the best environments for your rabbits to hang out in!
Hutch / Cage Sizes & Exercise Runs
Rabbits are active animals (think wild rabbits) and need plenty of room to jump, hop, run, dig and stand fully upright without their ears touching the roof. And don’t forget, they need to stretch out fully when lying down!
By permanently attaching your rabbits’ shelter (for example, a large hutch, cage, shed or playhouse) to their exercise run, your bunnies will have space and the choice of which area they spend time in.
Protection from the Elements
The shelter and run needs to be ventilated, dry and draught-free and protected against extremes of weather. Many owners make a home for their rabbits in a shed or a playhouse and now it’s becoming more and more popular for rabbits to live indoors with the family too.
A Safe Place
Your rabbits need constant access to additional safe hiding places where they can escape, if they feel afraid, as well as platforms for which they can scan their environment for threats.
Living in the House
More and more rabbits are being kept in the house these day which is a great way of keeping an eye on them – they feel secure, can search out their favourite hiding place, love the companionship and won’t get bored! However, your bunnies will need somewhere secure to call their own like a dog crate or if you have plenty of space a room of their own. Rabbits need a minimum 3 hours free range time every day so ideally letting them loose around part of the house is a great way of keeping them fit, happy and healthy too!
Bedding and Timothy Hay!
Finally, Bunnies must have their creature comforts – luscious, long stem Timothy hay ! They will need enough for bedding to keep them cosy and warm, plenty to nibble and gnaw on all day long, and of course don’t forget they love to forage!
You probably know that there’s loads of information out there about your bunnies’ ideal environment… Here at Nibble and Gnaw we think the RSPCA and Rabbit Welfare Association are particularly good websites with sound advice… go have a look. You won’t be disappointed.
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