Rabbit Survival Kit! - What You Will Need Before Bringing Your Furry Friend Home 🐰

August 26, 2019





Hello! Here is the first part of a short blog post series for Rabbit Care!

As some of you may know already, I am the proud owner of @GizmoWithBubus which is a bunny Instagram I made for my little angel, Gizmo!

When I first started posting pictures of Gizmo, I didn't have a lot of information about Rabbit care even though I had been his mommy for 6 years. I don't want others to make the silly mistakes I did and be able to give their new buns the best life they can, so heres a bunny survival kit on what you need before bringing your furry friend home!.


LIVING SPACE

I personally recommend a free roam rabbit because I know rabbits hate being caged up, believe me. I had Gizmo and Samson in a wire bottom cage for the first few years I had them and then in another cage that didn't give them enough room to run. Wire bottom cages are terrible for your rabbits feet and can cause sore hocks which is very painful.










This is the cage I had for my buns after the wire bottom one. I hated the wire bottom one so much but since I was young and lived with my parents, I listened to them. The cage in the picture held two bunnies and got so dirty so fast. I will admit, I was a terrible owner when I stayed with my parents because my boys lived in the basement. This cage doesn't have enough room for a litter box and the hay rack is too small. Samson and Gizmo mad the best of it though, they loved coming outside to play and the last few months of Samsons life, I brought them up to my room and they sat on my bed with me.

If you have to have a wire bottom one, put some sort of flat surface on top of the wires. X-pens are the best for your rabbit.
This was the setup for Bunso and Gizmo. It was large enough to add their litter box and had space for them to play even though these boys were mostly free roam. X-pens should be tall enough for your rabbits to not be able to jump over them and large enough for them to stretch out. All circumstances are different and if you have to keep your bun in a cage, make sure they have a lot of time out of the cage.

DIET

From https://rabbit.org/feeding-the-proper-diet/

Rabbits are herbivores so they eat veggies and hay. In this little info graphic, you can see that hay is 80% of a buns diet. Timothy hay for adult rabbits and alfalfa hay for baby buns should always be available. Some people are allergic to timothy hay so orchard grass hay is another alternative! With Samson and Gizmo, they got hay but they both didn't eat hay a ton which isn't the best for rabbits. They liked their pellets more and I don't know how the boys didn't have any GI problems for as long as they were alive. That's not recommended and my boys now get Timothy hay in their litter box everyday. Pellets are only 20% of their diet and those have to be timothy hay based pellets. DO NOT get any rabbit food that has nuts, corn or all those other things that look like bird food. Rabbits shouldn't eat those. Green veggies are 15% and the best is romaine lettuce in my experience. It is 1/4 cup of veggies per pound of rabbit. I know the rescue I volunteer at gives their rabbits 3 different kinds of greens but for my case, the boys get romaine lettuce every night for dinner and sometimes we switch it up with kale or cilantro. There are a ton of other veggies you may give your rabbits and you can look at them here: https://rabbit.org/suggested-vegetables-and-fruits-for-a-rabbit-diet/

Treats are something buns should only have 2% of each day. Good treats are fresh fruits and dried fruits without any added sugar. Oxbow makes great treats for buns and lists all the ingredients on the back! My rabbits don't really care for them though, they are spoiled with the fresh fruits already like banana and grapes.

A warning here, DO NOT buy those yogurt treats from the pet stores. Yogurt treats are dangerous for your buns health and I do not know why they are still sold in stores. I'm guilty of buying those yogurt drops one time for Samson and Gizmo and never bought them again afterwards.

Be careful though, bunnies will constantly beg for fruits if they see you eating them. I always have to eat fruit in another room so the boys won't bother me.

For water, use a dog bowl. Bunnies can drink as much water as a small dog. The water bottles aren't the best for rabbits. They can't get a lot of water from those.
Oxbow Treats
LITTER BOX

Litter box training your bun can be hard but rewarding. Rabbits can be litter trained just like cats since they are tidy animals and like to keep things clean. Spaying and neutering your rabbit will help make the process 100 times easier. Find out where your bun likes to do their business. Usually this is in a corner of the room so they feel like they have some protection. The best litter I have found is horse pine pellets or cat litter that isn't made out of clay. I put some newspaper on the bottom and then put the cat litter followed by hay on the top. Hay is super important in the litter box since buns like to eat and poo at the same time.

Resulta ng larawan para sa yesterdays news
Cat litter I use

TOYS

Keeping a bun happy and busy means they are less likely to cause some havoc on your home. Unless your bun is like Bunso and constantly wants to get into everything and anything then you gotta improvise. Toilet paper rolls, newspaper, phone books, love letters from your ex and cardboard boxes are all great toys for your bun to bite and chew on. Best thing is, they are cheap and you probably already have some of those in your home! Cardboard boxes are a good hiding place if your bun gets frightened. I have bought so many rabbit toys from the pet store and my buns still won't play with them. They like spilling water bottles and licking clothes so I gave them some empty water bottles and a few old shirts. 

Bunsos box




Last but not least, find a rabbit savvy vet! Most animal vets won't take rabbits since they are considered exotics. Contact your local rabbit rescue for their recommendations!



Thank you all for reading!







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