Monday, December 27, 2010


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Ideal Rabbit Hutch

Not only are rabbits cute, they make excellent pets requiring minimal care once you know what you’re doing. Bear in mind that rabbits can live anywhere from 5-10 years so make sure you’re ready to make that kind of commitment before buying one. Also be prepared to provide your pet with an appropriate rabbit hutch so your bunny can feel safe and secure. Consider the amount of time you have available to interact with your pet because rabbits are social creatures and shouldn’t be left alone for long periods of time. If you’re thinking of getting more than one rabbit then consider purchasing one of the larger multi level rabbit hutches available.

If you decide to buy an indoor rabbit hutch then you will have to provide it with some outdoor time. A rabbit run in your garden would be ideal but be very careful to make sure it’s predator proof. Never leave your rabbit unsupervised in an insecure rabbit run. If your rabbit is kept indoors you must provide it with entertainment. Allow your rabbit freedom to run around in a room but make sure there is nothing to harm it such as chemicals and electric cables. Rabbits love to chew so provide your bunny with toys and safe things to chew on.

If, on the other hand, you have room in your garden or backyard, you may consider an outdoor rabbit hutch. Outdoor rabbit hutches come in a large variety of sizes and designs. Always ensure you choose the proper size for your rabbit, keeping in mind the general rule that the hutch should be at least 4 times the size of your rabbit to allow it to move around fairly easily. Bigger is always better and some rabbit hutches even come with a rabbit run to provide your rabbit with some outdoor exploration experience. Rabbits love to hop around and explore.

When space is limited you can elect to purchase a multi level rabbit hutch to ensure your rabbit has ample space to move about. Wooden rabbit hutches are the best when choosing an outdoor hutch. Some multi level rabbit hutches even provide attic and storage space. The attic space can be filled with straw during the winter months to provide warmth and insulation. Storage space can be used to keep food and treats for your rabbit in a convenient and tidy manner. If you live in a particularly cold part of the world, rabbit hutch covers are available to provide extra warmth and insulation.

Whichever design you choose, make sure it is sturdy and safe. Rabbits are easily frightened and your rabbit hutch should provide an enclosed area where your rabbit can hide from anything that intimidates it. So next time you’re choosing from amongst the many rabbit hutches available, remember these simple rules: size, safety and practicality. Making the right choice can mean the difference between having a healthy, thriving pet and one that is unhappy and unhealthy.

Housing Your Pet Rabbit – Finding the Perfect Hutch

Rabbits make ideal first pets and are relatively easy to take care of; however, before you go out and get one, you have to make sure you have a proper rabbit hutch. It is vital for the well-being of your future pet that careful care and consideration goes into the preparation of your new rabbit’s home, some breeds of rabbits can live up to 15 years so extra care should be taken to ensure your bunny leads a safe and comfortable existence. Rabbits like to hop around so be sure to get a good sized rabbit cage or hutch for your bunny. A good rule of thumb is to get a hutch that is at least four times the size of your rabbit, bigger is always better. Also make sure your rabbit can sit up without hitting its head on the ceiling. You will also have to decide if you’re going to keep your rabbit indoors or out.

As rabbit are prey animals, they can be easily scared or intimidated by night time prowlers such as dogs, cats and foxes, so you will have to provide your rabbit with a safe shelter if you will be keeping it outdoors. If you decide to buy an outdoor rabbit hutch choose one that is sturdy and well built. There is a wide variety of rabbit hutches available to choose from so try to pick on that has a sheltered area to provide your rabbit with warmth and security. A wooden rabbit hutch is ideal for keeping your rabbit outdoors and to further weatherproof and insulate it rabbit hutch covers can be used.

Some hutches are outfitted with a rabbit run to give your rabbit space to exercise and some even have storage spaces to conveniently store all your rabbit paraphernalia. If your rabbit hutch has a rabbit run which allows your rabbit access to a lawn, make sure that area is never treated with any chemicals such as pesticides or herbicides. The rabbit run should be securely wired with care taken that the rabbit doesn’t burrow out from under it.

If space is an issue you can purchase a multi level rabbit hutch to ensure your rabbit has space to move around and explore. Avoid hutches with wire flooring as they can cause damage to the rabbit’s paws and hocks, a solid floor is more appropriate. Most rabbit cages and hutches come with a pull out pan to enable easy cleaning, and you can even litter train your rabbit to use a litter pan.

Always practice common sense when choosing your rabbit hutch. A rabbit can die of fright if spooked by a predator so it’s crucial to provide a secure environment for your bunny so it can hide from prying eyes (and prying claws) and feel safe. If you decide to get more than one rabbit, make sure you get an adequately sized rabbit hutch otherwise they might end up fighting. If the weather in your area is harsh, provide your rabbit with straw or hay and a hot water bottle for warmth. As mentioned before rabbit hutch covers are available which provide extra weatherproofing and insulation. Choosing the right rabbit hutch can help ensure you many years of enjoyment with your bunny.

What Kind of Care Do Rabbits Need?

There are a number of different things that need to be done in order to make sure that your pet rabbit is as happy as possible. Many of us that own rabbits as pets really enjoy the personality that many of these unusual animals have. If we take care of them properly, they will be healthy and will provide us with years of companionship. Here are several different ways that you can take care of your rabbit to make sure that they are as well-adjusted as possible.

One of the most important things for you to consider is the type of housing that you're going to give your pet rabbit. There is a bare minimum of 2' x 2' x 4' that is necessary in order to house your rabbit properly. Most people tend to go a little bit larger than that, even though the rabbit will not necessarily know the difference. The type of material that is used for the rabbit hutch is also something to consider, and you would want to make sure to provide a solid surface in order for them to have a comfortable place to rest. Even though the majority of it can be made out of wire, don't force them to stay on the wire permanently.

Feeding your rabbit properly is also very important, and there are a number of different things for you to consider in this regard. Most of the rabbit chow that is available commercially is able to provide much of what your rabbit is going to need, but you are going to have to supplement their diet with fresh, raw vegetables. It is especially important to provide your rabbit with green, leafy vegetables on a daily basis. Many people also feed their rabbits sprouts and other vegetables as a treat and also because of the energy that it will provide for them. Humans can learn a lot from the way that rabbits eat.

As far as exercise is concerned, this is something that every rabbit is going to need on a daily basis. If you currently are keeping your rabbit outdoors, it is important for you to provide a large area that is enclosed completely in order to avoid escape. Several hours a day is a sufficient amount of exercise, and they will surely enjoy even more if you are able to provide it for them. Indoor rabbits may enjoy the run of the home, but you might end up having to pick up after them quite a bit in the process.

One final thing that you need to think about is the grooming that your rabbit may need. A daily brushing with a flea brush, is essential in order to make sure that your rabbit's coat is as smooth and critter free as possible. It is also a good idea for you to regularly schedule visits with your veterinarian and perhaps even take them for a professional grooming from time to time. All of these things combined can help to keep your rabbit as healthy as possible.

Some Different Styles Of Rabbit Cages

Rabbits are clean animals and they enjoy being litter-trained; therefore, they are quite happy to live in rabbit cages which keep them safe and comfortable. There are many styles of prefabricated or do-it-yourself cages to choose from according to your preferences and needs. Well made, indoor and large outdoor cages or pens will help your pet live a happy, healthy life.

The first and most important factor to consider with any type of cage is, however, that the size ought to correspond proportionally to the size of the bunny. It is recommended that the cage be at least four times as big as your rabbit. A 36" x 36" cage, with a height of 24" to 36", ought to be sufficient to accommodate a single rabbit weighing over 8 pounds.

Any style of cage with a height of at least 24" could accommodate within it a second-story loft with a ramp. This type of cage, as well as those without a loft and only one story high, would benefit from having a ramp which leads from the exit-way allowing your pet to come and go leisurely from their little haven. It is for this specific reason that a cage with a side-door is recommended over one with a top door.

Your cage should have a secure locking device to ensure that it remains tightly closed, especially in the case of side doors. Otherwise, it would be unfortunate if the little furry guy or gal squeezed through, burrowed out, or got stuck in the doorway when no one was around to catch it or help it out of its dilemma!

A cage with a larger doorway on the side is preferable over a smaller one one so as to facilitate easy removal of a litter pan. And as previously mentioned, the rabbit can then get itself in and out easily without your help. Since the best cages are made of wire, it would be in your best interest, and that of your rabbit's, to ensure that the all side-door frames are smoothly covered to prevent injuries and deter rabbit-chewing.

A style of cage with wood flooring instead of wire would be cozier for your pet so its paws and skin do not become irritated. If treated with a non-toxic substance and fitted tightly against the sides of the cage, wood flooring would be safe for bunny, impossible to chew and easy to remove for cleaning. A soft layer of hay covering an easy-clean floor would be appreciated by your rabbit and the cleanliness of the cage would be simple to maintain.

Hay will stay fresh, soft and dry if there is a litter box available for your pet and if the hay-bed is replaced at least weekly. You can simply brush the old hay from the wood, wipe the floor clean using non-toxic cleaners and reduce your cleaning time while simultaneously making this style almost self-cleaning - you will be as happy as your pet!

Outdoor types of cages can be constructed or prefabricated just as easily as indoor ones. A well-covered, secure, outdoor playpen area would be appreciated by your pet, but don't forget to be sure that you have laid down an indestructible floor underneath it - as rabbits love to burrow and chew.

Bad weather and predators such as cats, dogs, hawks, etc. Will not be able to harm your pet in its safe, outdoor cage. In addition to the indoor styles mentioned earlier, an outdoor cage modeled with a bit of sophistication would sport a water-proof, covered top. If this cover allowed light in as well, your bunny would love to being out of doors while you are away during the workday provided it will be shielded from the blazing sun. It will also enjoy sleeping in its protected environment all night long.

The range of styles of rabbit cages is much larger than one would think. Given that wide selection, however, just a as with humans, the cleaner and safer rabbit cages are, the happier the rabbit.

Rabbit Hutch - How Big Should A Rabbit Cage Be?

How big should my rabbit cage be?

If you have a rabbit or you are thinking of getting one, then you he is going to need a cage of some sort. This is where you rabbit can enjoy some quiet time.

But how big should this cage be?

Most vets will recommend that for a 6 to 7 pound bunny, the dimensions of the cage should be as follows:

2 Ft. Wide
2 Ft. Long
18 inches high

Why so big? Well, you want to give your rabbit room to just be, to stretch out, perhaps do a little exercise, or even stand up. Even though your rabbit may be tiny right now, that little bunny is going to grow up, so get a cage that your rabbit is going to grow into not grow out of.

Also, make sure that the cage is constructed well, that means if you see something like chicken wire in the cage, hop away and leave it at the shop. The floor also should be sturdy too.

You want to avoid having wire on the floor of your rabbits cage. Your rabbits paws can get a condition called "sore hocks" from walking on a wire floor too much. If you have wire on the floor, then you can cover with any kind of wood with one exception: Whatever you do, don't use redwood! It's very toxic for rabbits!

Keep in mind that a cage should not be used as a substitute for real exercise time. Just like humans, rabbits need to exercise to stay healthy and happy. Plus, how are you and your new rabbit going to get to know each other if he is in the cage all the time? You would be missing out on the best part of having a rabbit as a pet, getting to know their magical personalities. And I'm sure your rabbit would love to get to know you better as well!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Double Rabbit Hutch: Get A Double To Avoid Trouble

Rabbits make fine pets, but they are notorious for being wont to reproduce. This is a natural instinct that they possess, and more than one unwitting pet owner has had trouble with unexpected litters. The problem is that newbie pet owners forget about the sex of the animals, and the consequences that may ensue. For the most part, it is a failure on the part of the pet owner to keep the opposite sexes separate. For example, if you have two rabbits, a double rabbit hutch makes a fine long-term habitat, especially if you are unsure of their sexes.

A double rabbit hutch is distinct from two rabbit hutches. You might think to yourself “What difference does that make?” Well, a lot actually. For one thing, a double is more cost-effective in terms of materials and time to build. You can save material on at least one wall section. You can save time by constructing a single, whole roof instead of two smaller ones. Of course, it can also be a bit more difficult to move the hutch as a whole.

For the most part, a double rabbit hutch serves its purpose well. One situation where it might be better to have two separate cages is if you need to quarantine one rabbit. This can be because the rabbit is sick or is being bullied by the other rabbit – as far as rabbit bullying goes, anyway.

Rabbit hutches are usually made of wood and wire mesh. The most common variations are the single and double rabbit hutch, while triples are a bit more uncommon. Some hutches are built to be easily attached or are already built with attached runs, to provide both long-term shelter and exercise area for the rabbits.

So why choose a hutch instead of a cage? Cages are made of mesh or bars on all sides. This provides excellent ventilation and waste management properties, but in fact the openness can be a little too much. Rabbits are docile, shy creatures, and they like being able to hide away, as attested by their natural affinity for burrowing. Hutch is often made of wire mesh on only one side, and has a section made of wood panels. This provides enough ventilation without making the rabbit feel too cold, while providing a more shaded, secluded area to retreat to.

On the other hand, a rabbit cage is more portable, since they are lighter given the fact that most cages are made only of wire mesh. Of course, if you choose a cage for your rabbit, you must keep it indoors because otherwise will be no protection against the elements. Rabbit have fur, but that won’t keep them very warm, and you can forget about drying off quickly.

A Guide on How to Build a Rabbit Hutch Properly

A rabbit is a loveable pet. Your children would love to have it as their pet. Rabbits do not require as much care and attention as dogs or cats. They adapt easily to their environment, so they can easily live indoors or outdoors. It is advisable, however, to keep them as outdoor pets because they fare well better outdoors. To keep them safe and snug, you would have to put them inside a rabbit hutch that is warm and secure. Now, you are probably thinking, “But I don’t know how to build a rabbit hutch!”

You don’t really have to worry about learning how to build a rabbit hutch. It is really quite simple. However, it is important that you draw out your plans first before you start soldering the hutch’s frame. Make sure that you have carefully considered every tiny detail so you will have everything at hand when you start making the hutch.

When drafting your plans on how to build a rabbit hutch, you need to take into consideration the size of your rabbit and of course, its growth. Is your pet an incredibly large or small rabbit? Do you think he or she will likely to grow more in size? You really don’t have to decorate the cage flamboyantly. You just have to make sure that the one-room space your rabbit will occupy is roomy, warm and safe.

So, what do you need? To build a hutch, you need to have the following at hand: wire cloth, eight pieces of wood or metal rods, hinges, staples, woven hardware cloth or wire rolls (with the former being much preferable), formica sheet, and 2x4” stock. For tools, you need to have wire snips, gloves, screw driver, staple gun, coping saw and soldering iron.

Of course, you can always make wooden rabbit hutches but it is better to learn how to build a rabbit hutch that is made of metal. Metal hutches are more superior. They are easy to clean and bad odors don’t stick to metal easily.

When you are learning how to build a rabbit hutch, you need to consider the proper materials to use when building the walls, roof and flooring. For instance, you cannot use the wire mesh for the hutch’s flooring. This will likely harm your rabbit’s paws. The wire cloth is advisable for the flooring. The wire mesh, however, is great for the walls, but then woven hardware cloth is even better.

To construct the frame, you would have to lay out the pieces you need for the frame. Cut these pieces into the desired length. Solder the hutch side walls and then attach them to the front and rear rods in order to create the metal frame. Once you are finished with this, you can then construct the door and attached the same to the frame using screw and hinges. Once you have the frame, you can then roll the wire mesh or woven hardware cloth to create the walls. Tack the corner points and flatten the wire ripples. For the flooring, you would have to cut the 2x4 inches stock and attach them to frame with staples. Place a piece of Formica underneath to catch the rabbit’s wastes.

Having Fun In Rabbit Runs

Rabbits are fine creatures to have as pets. Any loving pet owner would want to provide for the animals’ basic needs. Aside from food, drink, and shelter, rabbits need to exercise too. Otherwise their muscles atrophy and they lose energy and immune system strength. In the end, exercise can only do good for your pet bunnies. But how do you let them get their exercise? You can’t exactly leave them in the open to frolic as they wish – they might get hurt! That is why we have rabbit runs!

Rabbit runs are large enclosures for rabbits. Unlike hutches or cages, these have open bottoms, such that the ground is open. It does have walls and a roof to keep the rabbits from getting out or predators from getting in. After all, just because they are your pets does not mean that the rabbits’ natural predators, like foxes, will stay away.

These structures provide several advantages over the standard rabbit cage or hutch, but they also have some weaknesses. Note for example that the lack of a bottom means that the unit cannot be lifted up with the rabbit inside. Additionally, the lack of a floor suspended above the floor means that feces and urine are in easy reach, making hygiene a bit of a problem.

On the other hand, rabbit runs are wonderful additions. They give your rabbit the freedom to run and play in a spacious yet secured environment. The best place to use these runs is outdoors, on the grass. Your pets can enjoy the natural feeling of a grass surface while getting the sunshine, air, and exercise they need to stay healthy and happy.

Some runs are made to be collapsible, making them easy to store when not in use. This is because runs are not the best for keeping rabbits, and are at best used occasionally. If you want to keep your rabbit safe, then indoor cages or hutches are still the way to go. That way they are protected from harsh weather conditions as well as predators.

The construction of rabbit runs varies. At the very basic level, you can have a circle of wire mesh, staked into the ground and covered with some fine mesh. This is easy to make but is not easy to put away, nor does it provide much protection. You can buy or make wood-reinforced wire-enclosed runs, which provide good protection, but you might experience wood rot if you are not careful with it. Lastly, there are rabbit runs made of jointed metal cage panels. These make assembly simple and quick, and also afford you very good protection for your rabbits. Of course, prices will vary depending on the type and quality of the product you choose. Good accessories to include in these runs are drinking water bottles and shaded areas for cooling off.

Caring For Your First Rabbit

Rabbits make wonderful indoor pets for first time pet owners. In fact, many domestic rabbits are meant to be kept indoors. Domestic rabbits are not like their wild cousins; they do not fair well in extreme temperatures. They also do not react well to predators. Domestic rabbits are very attentive and affectionate. They care about their owners and are very social. Domestic rabbits are meant to be played with and loved by the entire family.

The choice of whether you keep your rabbit in a cage or allow him to roam freely is up to you. If you do opt to keep your rabbit in a cage, you should make sure that he is allowed to get out of his cage every day so he can exercise. When purchasing a cage for your rabbit, you should take into account how big he will be when he is mature and purchase a cage that is five times that size. Your rabbit's cage should be big enough for him to sit up on his hind legs. You should also put cardboard or a piece of untreated pine wood in the bottom of wire cages to protect his paws from the wire.

If you decide to allow your pet to roam, make sure that your home is safe. Rabbits like to chew and they don't know the difference between an electrical cord and a stick. Most rabbit owners that do allow their pets to roam limit their wandering to specific areas.

Rabbits are herbivores, which means that they only eat fruits, vegetables and grasses in the wild. You should keep a bowl of commercial rabbit food in your pets eating area. However, you should feed your rabbit hay every day, as well. Many rabbit owners also feed their pets a few fruits and vegetables, such as a carrot or a bit of apple. Always provide something hard and crunchy for your rabbit to gnaw on. This will keep his teeth from becoming overgrown. You should also make sure your rabbit has access to water and that it is changed every day.

Many domesticated rabbits become accustomed to be handled and even enjoy being held. However, you should always use both hands when picking up your rabbit. Place one hand under his chest and the other around his rump. You should never lift your rabbit by his ears.

Rabbits keep themselves clean. However, you should brush rabbits that have long hair regularly to keep their fur from matting. You should trim your rabbit's nails every six weeks. Also, check your bunny's teeth when you trim his nails to be sure they are wearing evenly. If a rabbit's teeth don't meet evenly, they may grow too long and curl, preventing him from eating. If his teeth are growing too long, you will need to ask your vet to trim them on a regular basis.

Choosing A Pet Rabbit Thats Right For You

Having a pet rabbit can be such a rewarding experience. But with all the breeds, sizes and colors, how do you select the rabbit that is just right for you? This article will help you select that perfect rabbit.

Choosing the right rabbit for you and your family can be a very exciting process. There are currently over 40 recognized breeds of rabbits. Many of the breeds have multiple varieties and colors. Rabbits range in size from 2 pounds to over 10 pounds. So the choices are very abundant.

Many breeders give different answers regarding the preferred gender for a pet rabbit. This is compounded by the individual temperament of the rabbit. Often a doe (girl rabbit) that is not spayed, can become territorial was she reaches maturity. She may nip at you when reaching for her or even her food or water dishes. Some does will eliminate that aggression when a familiar face does the feeding on a daily basis. Some does we’ve found to be non-aggressive, and yet others can become territorial towards everybody, but that is very rare. If you do not plan to breed your rabbit, and you want a doe, it is best to have her spayed to help reduce the chances that she may protect her den.

Bucks present a different problem all together. Bucks generally are not aggressive. However, spraying can be a problem. When the buck reaches maturity he may start to spray his urine everywhere to let the whole world know he is ready for a mate. Again, not all bucks will do this, and typically the ones that do, will only do so for a short period of time. This problem can be eliminated by having the buck neutered.

Grooming is another consideration. The wool breeds such as angoras and jersey woolies require extra work in grooming. All rabbits need a good routine of grooming by their caretaker, but the wool breeds require more time because of the nature of their fur type.

The best way to see and find out about rabbits is to attend a rabbit show. At the rabbit show you will find many breeders and most of the breeds of rabbits. To find a show near you visit our calendar page and search for a show in your state.

I would not recommend buying a rabbit without first seeing it, nor would I recommend purchasing a rabbit from a pet store. It would be in your best interest to find a breeder in your area of the breed you think you would like. Visit with that breeder. See what the conditions are in the barn. Ask if you can hold a rabbit. Watch the rabbit’s reaction to their cage being opened. Rabbits that love attention, will immediately come to the door, some will even make happy grunting type noises. Other rabbits will immediately go to the back of the cage. If a rabbit moves to the back its probably not a good rabbit for you.