Living with a Rabbit Living with a Rabbit
Rabbits can live quite peacefully inside the home with the rest of the family. If they do, then you will need to litter train your rabbit, bunny proof your home, and spay or neuter the rabbit. Keeping the rabbit in the cage at night and when you will be away for any lengthy period of time is a good idea.
Bunny Proofing Your Home:
Rabbits are very playful creatures and can get into quite a bit of mischief, especially if left on their own for a long time. A few simple steps can provide your rabbit with a safe home, and you with peace of mind. Since rabbits like to chew on things, it is especially important to hide or encase your electrical wires. Hardware stores sell various items for securing wires.
Rabbits have a tendency to chew almost anything from cardboard boxes to plastic feeding dishes. If you provide alternative things for them to chew, this will ease the situation. You can provide a variety of items for your rabbit to chew, such as, a small pile or basket of hay, willow, or pine branches, or even a small, cotton towel.
Litter Training Your Rabbit:
Rabbits can be litter trained. In the beginning, it is best to have a cage for your rabbit, even if you intend to allow the rabbit to roam your home freely. If you plan to keep the rabbit in a cage, then you can ignore this step of the training.
However, if you intend the rabbit to travel the inner regions of your home, you will want to train the rabbit to use a litter box. You can do this by placing a small litter box in a corner of the cage for the rabbit to use. Once you begin to allow the rabbit to travel outside of the cage, you will need to place additional litter boxes outside but near the cage area.
Spaying or Neutering Your Rabbit:
It is best to spay or neuter your rabbit, even if you are not planning on mating your pet. Several benefits will result from this procedure. The rabbit will most likely live a longer and healthier life.
Once rabbits have been fixed, they are less likely to mark territory. This is normal hormonal behavior. If you have more than one rabbit, it will also decrease the amount of aggression between your pets. Better litter box habits may occur as well.
Chewing is a normal and necessary part of your rabbit’s behavior. Rabbits will chew all kinds of items. Once your rabbit is spayed or neutered, the chewing behavior of your rabbit may decrease.
Providing a Cage
Rabbits need room to roam. If you provide a cage for your rabbit, it should be at least four times the size of your rabbit. Remember that rabbits do not have padded feet, and so, you need to provide a flat surface for them in part of their living area. Wire cages may hurt the bottom of the rabbit’s feet unless you provide this flat surface.
Remember that a rabbit’s cage is their special place where they can feel secure and safe. Provide everything they need and they will enjoy staying in the cage when necessary. Rabbits need to have toys to play with and small baby toys are great for this. A small cotton sock or blanket provides chewing toys as well. A box, or an area of the cage, with a small pile of hay is enjoyable for the rabbit.
Rabbits need a stable diet. Rabbit food may be purchased at pet stores, discount stores, or supermarkets. Rabbits enjoy fruits and vegetables, but these should be added to the diet gradually. Rabbit treats sold in the store may also be provided for the rabbit in small quantities. Fresh water is a necessity in order to keep the rabbit healthy.
Rabbits make friendly and lovable pets. Once you have done the initial work of providing a cage, safe environment, and purchasing needed supplies, the rest is easy. If properly taken care of, rabbits can live a long and happy life as one of the family.