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Bunny Love: 5 Things to Know Before Getting a Bunny

Thinking about getting a a pet rabbit? Good choice! If the idea of a house pet rabbits appeal to you, but you’ve never owned a pet bunny before, here are some things to think about before you bring a new rabbit into your home.

5 Things to Know Before Adopting a Bunny

1. Do You Have Allergies?

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People can be allergic to rabbits, even if they are not allergic to dogs and cats. People can also be allergic to grass hay, a rabbit’s diet or primary food. Before getting a bunny, make sure no one in the home is allergic. Visit an allergist or a home where rabbits live to see how you react to being around rabbits.

 

2. How Many Rabbits?

getting a bunny, both male and female

If you’re considering getting just one rabbit, be aware that rabbit experts recommend getting two. Rabbits are social animals who get lonely without a bunny companion. The best combination is male and female, because rabbits bond for life.

Of course, they should be altered before you bring them together, not just because you want to control breeding, but because altered rabbits make much better pets.

 

3. Rabbits and Children

getting a bunny for kids

Resist the urge to get a young child that baby bunny she’s been asking for. Rabbits are not the best choice for young children.

Rabbits can be injured (or even killed) by being held improperly, a common problem with young kids. Rabbits don’t always like to be held and cuddled, especially as they grow older, which may disappoint younger kids.

A distressed rabbit can also bite or scratch, something to keep in mind in homes with young children.

 

4. Dogs and Cats

getting a bunny with a dog

Do you have any other pets in the home? It is best to introduce a rabbit into a home with a calm, mature dog. Rabbits can get dangerously stressed when harassed by a rambunctious puppy.

Some dogs have a stronger predatory instinct than others, so keep this in mind when thinking about getting a house rabbit. House cats and rabbits can live very comfortably together. Consider introducing a larger, adult rabbit into a home with a cat, rather than a baby bunny.

Because rabbits can be more social than cats, you may be surprised to find the rabbit taking charge of the cat rather than the other way around.

 

5. What Breed of Rabbit is Best?

getting a bunny

Any breed of rabbit can make a great house pet. The main considerations when choosing a type of rabbit are size and level of care. The so-called “giant” rabbit breeds can grow to over 12 pounds.

They need more food and space and can be harder to handle than smaller rabbits. The “mini” rabbit breeds can weigh as little as 4 pounds. Small rabbits require delicate handling and some may nip more than larger rabbits. Fluffy rabbits like angoras are adorable, but they can require daily grooming.

Remember that pet rabbits are like wild rabbits. There are two things to remember with a pet and a wild rabbit: companionship and security.

Since they are typically prey species, rabbits need a shelter they can retreat to inside your home whenever they feel threatened. If you are frequently traveling and often leaving the house, rabbit ownership might not be for you.

 

Things to remember once you get a pet bunny:

  • Rabbit proof your home. Be sure to keep electrical cords, sockets, house plants, books, and other furniture they might chew on out of your rabbit's reach.
  • Rabbits need their litter box daily and have it completely cleaned weekly.
  • Keep their vaccines updated.
  • Rabbit pellets provide them a balanced diet but never over feed a bunny to keep them from being overweight.
  • Should you need to put them in a cage, ensure that they can stand on their hind legs without them hitting their head on the top part of the cage.
  • Keep them healthy by giving them fruits, root veggies, and leafy greens. Do not give them human treats as these are full of sugar and may be fatal for them.
  • Most rabbits like to stay grounded. Since they are prey animals, they easily get scared and do not like being picked up and cuddled with. They might accidentally hurt you and hurt themselves if they try to escape.
  • If you have a female rabbits, get them spayed. A female rabbit could have as much as 144 baby rabbits in a year! Help prevent pet overpopulation by being a responsible bunny parent.
  • Male rabbits have a tendency to be quite aggressive when their around 8-18 months of age and though testicular cancer or reproductive issues among rabbits are common, all these can be prevented by getting them neutered.
  • Give your rabbits treats like chewable toys or a seagrass mat.
  • Just like cats, rabbits typically groom themselves, but it is essential to keep their nails trimmed weekly and if you have a long-hair bunny, brush them weekly to prevent their fur from matting.
  • Rabbits tend to pass stool while eating, so be sure to have a lot of litter box around the house.
  • Hay is good for a rabbit's digestion. Give them oat hay, Timothy hay, or orchard grass.

House rabbits make wonderful house pets. To learn more about how to take care of rabbits, check out the House Rabbit Society website.

Looking for somebunny to love? Check out our Bunny collection here at Animal Hearted 🐰 

Up Next: The Ten Best Pets For Kids 

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