- How to Discipline your Rabbit
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- Rabbits need:
- Bunny Benefits: 10 Reasons a Rabbit Might Be the Pet for You
Rabbit's who are new to each other need to be introduced gradually and under supervision. In terms of human company, handling your rabbit gently from an early age is important as little handling early on, or rough handling can cause distress.
How to Discipline your Rabbit
Normally, rabbits will be scared of cats and dogs as they are natural predators, however, if pets are introduced with care in early life, friendships can be forged. A good combination is a neutered male and neutered female. Some animals become more dominant than others. Make sure they have plenty of water and shade, and adequate ventilation.
A fan on a low to moderate speed can be placed outside the enclosure on warm days but should not blow directly onto where the rabbit lies. On very hot days you should keep your rabbit in a cool place inside ideally air-conditioned for the day. Rabbits who are properly socialised including being handled appropriately from a young age tend to be calmer and more confident when handled.
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They are also more likely to be less stressed and even enjoy being handled if they have been adequately socialised. Rabbits always need to be treated gently, and handled carefully and securely. Even when they are calm and well socialised, sometimes rabbits can panic and may struggle or jump from your arms; this can lead to injuries to the rabbit or person and potential escape.
Rabbits can be easily hurt if they struggle; their spines are particularly prone to injuries, which can be serious, even fatal. This is part of the flight, fight, freeze response and is how some a prey animals react when captured by a predator.
Rabbits exhibiting this behaviour are extremely distressed. It is unacceptable to subject rabbits to this kind of treatment. Rabbits should not be held or lifted by the scruff of their neck; proper gentle handling should be used instead. Appropriate handling will be safer and less distressing to the rabbit.
A rabbit must never be lifted or held by the ears. This is distressing, painful, and cruel, and can also damage the ears. Please see this article for more detail on handling rabbits properly.
When you are considering whether to add some rabbit companions to your family, we urge you to consider adopting, as good homes are always needed for the many rabbits being cared for by animal shelters and rescue groups. Reputable shelters and rescue groups will ensure their rabbits are vaccinated and desexed as well as given an overall health and behaviour assessment prior to being available for adoption.
Bunny Benefits: 10 Reasons a Rabbit Might Be the Pet for You
Home Companion Animals Rabbits Can you give me some general advice on caring for my rabbits? Rabbits need the companionship of other rabbits Rabbits are a social species and should not be kept alone, or without at least one other rabbit with whom they are compatible. Enclosure If kept outdoors, rabbits need a good-sized predator proof enclosure away from wild rabbits with two compartments: The hutch part of the enclosure should provide a safe place to sleep and hide. This compartment should be enclosed to protect the rabbits from draughts and rain.
Burrowing is a normal behavior for rabbits that they need to be able to express, and they require a safe and enclosed space to hide in for comfort. The shelter needs to be large enough for all of your rabbits to lie outstretched and sit down without restrictions so the rabbits can choose where they spend their time. The hutch should serve only as a temporary enclosure for your rabbits, and a safe place to sleep. Exercise and enrichment Rabbits are intelligent animals that need plenty of exercise and room to run around to keep them mentally and physically stimulated.
Provide food-stuffed toys and objects to encourage play and exploratory behaviour. Keep in mind toys should be rotated to avoid boredom and must be safe.
Hiding food to encourage foraging or providing it in a way which stimulates the rabbits mentally and physically such as treat balls, food wrapped in paper etc are a good form of enrichment. Rabbits should always have unlimited access to good quality grass hay and fresh water, as well as any dietary enrichment items. Diet Feeding the right diet is one of the most important aspects of maintaining a healthy rabbit. General Health When you first obtain your rabbits, their health should be checked, ideally by a veterinarian. Read our article about litter training to learn more.
Rabbits must have access to unlimited grass hays at all times. It is very important to ensure that hay allergies will not pose a problem for anyone in the household. Bonding with a Bunny: Rabbits can be quite affectionate animals, but personalities definitely vary from individual to individual. See our article, Building a Relationship with Your Pet Rabbit , for more information about taking steps to bond with a bunny.
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Talk with a volunteer at a local rabbit rescue to learn more about which rabbit or pair of rabbits has a personality that would be a good fit for you and your family. Very few airlines allow rabbits to fly in-cabin within the United States and abroad.
Oftentimes rabbits are subjected to multi-month-long quarantine periods upon arrival into other countries, and in many places, pet rabbits are not permitted in at all. Adopting a rabbit is a long-term commitment. Rabbits are NOT low-maintenance pets. So adopting a bunny should be a family decision.