Author Topic: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed  (Read 4693 times)

Offline MMak

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Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« on: December 14, 2010, 07:02:53 PM »
My sister just recently notified me that she is adopting 2 bunnies this friday. They are both approximately 6 weeks old.

Even though they aren't my bunnies, I'd like to have as much info on hand for her as possible.
I'll be looking through these forums and on websites, of course, but I know some really important information can be missed.

Please, feel free to boast your bunny knowledge!
 :)
 

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2010, 07:05:18 PM »
Also... thought I should add...
I'll be helping to buy her a few supplies to start out.

Timothy Hay & Oxbow tend to be the best, correct? Even for babies?
Hay is free-fed and the pellets should be scheduled?
Oh, and of course, fresh fruits and veggies!

She'll be temporarily keeping them in a small bunny cage, however in a few weeks or so she is getting a custom-built 2 story rabbit hutch built by our brother, as he is a construction worker.
They will also, of course, have plenty of free-ranging time.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2010, 07:10:08 PM by MMak »
 

Offline htsr4

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2010, 07:21:40 AM »
Timothy hay and Oxbow are good. Since they are 6 weeks old they will need alfalfa pellets. Tey can have unlimited pellets at 6 weeks. I would not give them any less than 1/2 cup a day. Once they are over 6 months they will only need 1/8 cup of timothy based pellets.
Bunnies can be destructive. Here is how to bunny proof.
http://www.rabbit.org/faq/sections/rabbit-proofing.html

They need their nails clipped once a month.

When you say hutch does that mean they will be housed outside?

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2010, 12:09:57 PM »
Yes, she has decided to house them outside. which I know isn't the most popular thing anymore..
however she will be adding a insulated shelter inside. The hutch will also have a house-like roof.

I've read that they should have alfalfa hay when they are babies.. and you said alfalfa pellets..
Soo.. is it okay to buy alfalfa hay first, plus oxbow pellets, and then gradually change over to the timothy (& keep the pellets) once they have matured?

Nail clippings will be no problem. She owns 2 dogs, so she's quite use to that routine!

I've done a bunch more research for her and have printed out about 10 pages.. will probably buy her a book in the store as well..
but I'm still very open to gathering any other information for her..as I know there are endless things to learn when it comes to animals! :)
I want to help her out as much as possible.

What do you use for water - dish or bottle, and why?
I've been getting conflicting answers.. some sites say water bottles are the best option, others say dishes.
I know with rats, dishes aren't so great because there is a chance of urine getting into it..
 

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2010, 04:50:03 PM »
Oh, and I can't seem to find any sites with info on this...
I'm assuming second or third cut alfalfa can both do? No first cut?
 

Offline htsr4

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2010, 05:50:30 AM »
Rabbits really should not be housed outside. Its just not safe. There are predators bugs and the weather. I have heard so many storeis of people going to check on their rabbits and the find them missing or dead.

Water bowls are better. Most rabbits prefer them. Its easier for the rabbit to drink out of them. I dont think rabbits ever pee or poo in their water bowls.

They can have alfalfa hay or pellets not both. That would be too much. So alfalfa pellets and timothy hay will work too. Once they are over 6 months they need timothy pellets and timothy hay.

This is a great rabbit website.
http://www.rabbit.org/

Are the rabbits fixed? Are they already bonded?

Offline Jennicat

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2010, 11:06:56 AM »
It's not the most popular thing anymore because on average it shortens their lifespan to a quarter of what they could be.
1 dog, 1 cat, 2 rats, 3 guinea pigs -- and a horde of fosters.

Adopt before you Shop!
http://www.allcreaturesrescue.org

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2010, 02:18:24 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions and advice everyone. :)
Looks like the rabbit section here isn't as busy as the rat section (I'm a rat owner..)

My sister picked up her bunnies the other day (I'll post photo's later!)
Wasn't able to get on here in time to see your suggestions for food, but she's been in contact with a local humane society and I've helped her out by
doing lot's of research on the web (http://www.rabbit.org being one of my favourites!)

I'm quite big into the horse world so I connected my sister with a local who sells some high quality hay.
It's 3rd cut alfalfa with a little bit of timothy mixed in, but like I said... it's REALLY good stuff :)
She bought a 110 pound bale of it lol
No one seems to know the answer as to what cut of hay bunnies require.. but 3rd cut was all he had, and it's generally the highest quality hay anyways!
We also went out to the pet store and she picked up some Oxbow pellets. They are currently being free-fed both the hay and pellets.
I bought about $100 worth of stuff for my new nieces  :heart:

I understand everyone's concerns about the outdoor hutch, but keep in mind that these aren't my bunnies nor my house. I'll let her know what everyone has said, but I believe she was already aware of the debate on it..
The humane society has helped her plan the structure of it so the bunnies are as warm and safe as possible  :)
The hutch isn't built yet, so they are being kept in a temporary small cage inside (with loads of toys, blankets, chews, food, water & beds).
My sister said she'll be keeping that cage in case the weather were to ever get really bad outside.. although we do tend to get mild weather where we live!

Htsr4, the rabbits are not currently spayed, although they will be in the near future. They are both from the same litter, so yes, they are already very bonded.
Not sure if I've already mentioned this on here, but they are rescues. We didn't just take in 6 week old babies from an irresponsible breeder, if thats what anyone is thinking. ;)
 

Offline htsr4

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2010, 07:23:39 PM »
3rd cut hay is the best. 2nd cut will work too. 1st cut should be avoided.
 
I asked if they were fixed or bonded because once rabbits reach sexual maturity they will fight and become territorial. Even when they are from the same litter. I would separate them. Once they are around 3-4 months old they will start to fight and its best to wait to get them spayed when they are 6 months. Surgery is safer when they are 6 months. 

Offline Jennicat

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2010, 09:43:39 PM »
Ditto htsr4 -- it's extremely hard to keep babies together as they grow up and reach adolescence, especially same sex babies.  If they ever fight, you have a very small chance of ever getting them back together.  You've got a better chance if they can live next door to each other until they're fixed and then be rebonded when there's no chance of hormonal issues.

We get in split pairs from these types of situations a LOT.
1 dog, 1 cat, 2 rats, 3 guinea pigs -- and a horde of fosters.

Adopt before you Shop!
http://www.allcreaturesrescue.org

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2010, 10:12:38 PM »
Hmm, interesting. I'll let her know.
Hard to believe when they always sleep together and groom each other, but I understand!
:)
 

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2010, 04:00:38 PM »
They've been eating SO much food.. they LOVE that hay :)

I posted photo's here:
http://www.goosemoose.com/component/option,com_smf/Itemid,118/forum,rabbit/topic,4079655.0
 

Offline htsr4

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2010, 10:20:57 PM »
They are so cute. Yeah, rabbits usually love 3rd cut hay. I just got a bunch of 3rd cut bluegrass hay and my bunnies have never eaten so much hay.

Offline pita

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #13 on: December 31, 2010, 01:36:51 PM »
I just wanted to say that I keep two of my rabbits in a HUGE hutch outside and I've never had a problem. When I got them they were used to being outsidr; I tried bringing them inside and they turned aggressive. Put them outside, tge sweetest things.  I live in New England, so the weather's harsh.  They have an insulated chamber with a snuggie safe heater in the winter and I cover the screening in plexiglass.  In the summer they have a playpen attatched to the hutch (hutch is 7 feet long, 2 1/2 feet deep, and four feet tall, playpen attatches and is four feet tall by two feet long) so they can get out in the sun.  I freeze the snuggie safe heater and put it in their chamber, it gives them a nice cool room. I've never had a problem.  I bring them in if it's ridiculously hot or cold, but they hate it. So just mame sure it's pfedator proof and keep the temp controlled in at least their insulated room and they should be fine.

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #14 on: December 31, 2010, 05:22:12 PM »
Thanks, and yes.. these 2 are technically "feral" bunnies.. they were born inside a barn.
They are still inside, for now, but my sister will be making sure their as safe and comfortable as they can be inside their hutch. I may even be able to persuade her to put the hutch in their shed, if she is able to find the room for it..
I also told her to use plexiglass or coroplast over the wood, on the inside, so it can still be properly santized and protected from their urine. I've seen some pretty stinky hutches out there!
« Last Edit: December 31, 2010, 05:23:45 PM by MMak »
 

Offline htsr4

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #15 on: January 01, 2011, 12:38:36 PM »
Nothing for sure will happen if you house them outside but things do happen all the time. Even if a wild animal could not get in people can and do steal rabbits, guinea pigs and other animals that are outside. Even if you think your rabbit is safe a determined wild animal or a bug could easily get into their cage. Wild animals look at caged animals as easy meals. The rabbit cannot run away.

Offline MMak

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #16 on: January 01, 2011, 02:34:33 PM »
Yes, for sure. I understand that :)

If they were mine, I would probably house them inside.. but they aren't.
 

Offline Jennicat

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Re: Any & All Rabbit Info Needed
« Reply #17 on: January 01, 2011, 02:52:29 PM »
It's also important to remember that rabbits can literally be scared to death.  You can completely predator proof a hutch and one predator attempting to tear the hutch apart could frighten them to death.
1 dog, 1 cat, 2 rats, 3 guinea pigs -- and a horde of fosters.

Adopt before you Shop!
http://www.allcreaturesrescue.org