Sunday, June 26, 2011

Caring For a Rabbit – Getting the Best Food For Your Rabbit

They say that rabbits are among the favorite pets of children and adults because of their adorable and friendly nature. But owning one is not that easy because you have to ensure they are in best condition.

Majority of pet owners love to have them as pets because they are undemanding, quite, do not need to he walked often and do not require frequent veterinarian check up. However, like most pets, it is your responsibility to provide them an excellent, healthy and conducive environment. Caring for them and providing them quality and nutritious foods are among the numerous facets of a responsible pet owner.

How their digestive system works:

As pet owner, you need to know that rabbits do not get all the needed nutrients in their body, thus they have a system that corrects the problem. As they eat their food, it passes through their digestive system and are excreted as cecotropes or night feces. These wastes are not smelly compared to other animal manure, but they come in cluster of grapes shape. To get the nutritive value of the food they ate, they eat the cecotropes. In this manner, the food passes their digestive system for the second time and they excreted hard dry pellets, commonly known as rabbit droppings.

Like any other pets around, rabbits do need nutritious foods to keep them in tip top shape. Their foods should contain the needed elements in proper ratio and amounts to ensure their optimal health and growth. As a rabbit owner, it is vital for you to become familiar with high protein and energy rabbit food and high fiber rabbit food because they are vital in rabbits’ health, otherwise they became ill. However, you must be careful in choosing foods for your rabbits because they have sensitive stomach and digestive system than any other pets around.

Important factors to consider when feeding your rabbits:

1. They love to eat hay, vegetables and pellets.

2. You can also feed them variety of vegetables, like parsley, carrots, broccoli leaves, cilantro, oats, timothy hay and alfalfa. Depending on the size of your rabbit, you can give them 2 or 3 cups of vegetables daily.

3. If you intend to feed them with pellets, always ensure they contain 18% fiber, thus, you have to read food labels carefully. Water is very important for rabbit.

4. Make sure to give them fresh and clean water everyday. Always clean water container to avoid bacteria build up that may harm their health.

5. To give rabbits natural sources of food, you must give them fresh grass or hay that can be purchased in pet stores.

6. If you plan to feed them with prepared foods found in pet shops, never forget to consult your veterinarian first to ensure you have chosen the right food stuff for your rabbit.

Avoid giving them potatoes, cabbage, beans, cauliflower, lettuce, parsnips, Swedes, tomato leaves, potato tops, bunny sweets and junk foods because these foods cause diarrhea and gas problems.

Always make sure that the fresh fruits and vegetables you give your rabbits are pesticide free.

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