Authored by Brandy Burgess in Pets
Published on 11-15-2009
Taking care of a pet rabbit is a big responsibility that involves as much physical care as it does emotional care. Rabbits need a clean environment, fresh food and water daily, occasional cage cleanings and lots of attention. Use this guide on how to take care of a rabbit to maintain a happy and healthy pet.
Buying a Pet Rabbit
Before going to the pet store to purchase a rabbit, you should consider several things. Do you have any other animals in your household that could potentially pose a threat to the rabbit? Do you have the finances available to take care of the rabbit? Are all of the rabbit supplies purchased and ready for use? And finally, do you have the proper knowledge to take care of a rabbit? Once you have considered and taken care of all of the above, you can decide which type of rabbit you want.
Rabbits come in a variety of colors including white, shades of brown and beige and shades of grey. Some rabbits have a mixture of several different colors. You should try to purchase a rabbit while it’s still quite young. This will help them to adapt quickly and they will be easier to tame. Rabbits can live up to 12 years if properly taken care of.
Set Up the Rabbits Cage
First you will need to find a place for the cage that is safe, warm and out of direct sunlight. Inside the cage there should be straw so that the rabbit is comfortable and able to keep itself warm. The cage should be comfortable as this is where the rabbit will spend most of its time. The cage should be large enough so that the rabbit can easily run, jump and play. Without proper exercise, your rabbit may become lethargic and extremely aggressive.
Inside the rabbit’s cage, there should be a bowl of fresh food that is supplied daily as well as a refill of fresh water in a water bottle. You can purchase store brand rabbit food which will be their main source of food. You should also provide your rabbit with fresh green veggies each day such as celery, cabbage and broccoli. They also enjoy the occasional piece of fruit. Rabbits will also eat the hay in their cage.
Taming Your Pet Rabbit
It may take time to tame your rabbit to the point where you can pick it up without it jumping or biting. When first bringing home your pet rabbit, you should not touch or pick it up for at least a week. They need time to adjust to their new environment and may be scared until they realize that this is now their home. When you do begin to touch and tame your rabbit, start by petting their back so that they get used to your smell and touch. Let them know that you are not going to hurt them.
The best way to lift a rabbit is by placing one hand below its hind legs for support and the other hand below its chest. The rabbit’s entire weight should be supported by your hands. Avoid letting small children lift up the rabbit as they may not lift correctly or accidentally drop the rabbit, causing harm to their small bodies. With proper care, the rabbit should grow up healthy, active and happy.