With an increase in wild rabbit populations in urban areas, mink with newborn rabbits is more likely to be found than ever. Unfortunately, burrows that seem abandoned are not really burrows, and wild rabbits extracted from burrows by humans are unlikely to survive without the help of a veterinarian or wildlife rehabilitator. In many countries, caring for wild rabbits is illegal, unless you are a licensed rehabilitator. If you need to take care of an orphaned bunny, before arriving at a veterinarian or wildlife rehabilitator, read this article for help.
Accommodation Features: Rabbit House
If you decide to get rabbits and create a mini-farm in the village, then at the first stage you need to take care of their place of residence. A ready-made room for rabbitry is created or used. More compact animals will be housed in 2-tier cages. Keeping rabbits in a closed way is more convenient and rational. Drafts and dampness, prolonged exposure to the sun should be excluded, but create an opportunity for ventilation.
Outdoor Home Cage Option
In a pet, the cage is placed away from heating appliances. If you grow a rabbit in a hot room, then the "eared" will experience constant thirst, the state of health will worsen. Keeping it in a cage is not always recommended. To make a pet feel good, they let him run around the apartment.
Longer pet arrival times - their cage
Keeping a house clean for an animal is an important condition for its health. Dirt and urine cause diseases of the respiratory system and eyes, so the tray is removed three times in a week. Once a week, washed completely with disinfectants.
Portable Cell Option
Feeders, drinking bowls, manger for hay should be placed in the cage. They need to be well fixed so that the animals can not spill water or contaminate the feed. You need to wash them as often as possible.
Animals love to enjoy indoor flowers. It is necessary to remove poisonous plants from the apartment, install the rest on cabinets or hang in a cache-pot.
Is it possible to keep rodents with chickens? Their cohabitation is possible only if there are no other options. Although these are completely different species, they have common diseases. In addition, "eared" uncomfortable in a society of loud and bustling hens. Therefore, keeping chickens and rabbits together is not recommended.
Rabbit Feeding: Diet
Caring for a rabbit involves a balanced and thoughtful diet. It is necessary to track what and in what quantities the animals eat. There is a special compound feed to which they need to be trained. Due to the hard granules, the rabbit's teeth grind well, the growth of which never stops.
In summer, the best diet for rabbits is fresh grass.
In winter, hay is introduced into the diet. In the feeder should be solid food: carrots or other root crops, hard branches of fruit trees. Mixers are prepared with boiled vegetables or potatoes with the addition of bran. In a small amount, salt, bone meal and chalk should be present in the diet. Feeding occurs twice a day, a break between which is 12 hours.
When breeding rabbits, proper feeding is very important.
An important condition is the constant addition of water to the drinkers. Without water, feed is not fully absorbed. If the food is dry, then a day “eared” needs 0.5 liters. water. In summer, there is no such need for water, since the feed is juicy.
Basic care requirements
A rabbit is a moving animal that needs activity. For walking, they put on a harness (a collar with a leash). In order not to frighten the animal, the harness must be worn carefully and slowly. The harness is not tightened, but fastened, otherwise the rabbit can strangle itself out of fear.
Before buying a pet, carefully study the question of how to properly care for rabbits. There are many important methods of care, without which the animal will feel uncomfortable.
When grazing, the claws grind themselves, but in an apartment this is not possible. The haircut technique is simple, the nails can be cut with nippers. The procedure is carried out regularly: the nails are cut once a month. Trimmed claws gently file. Cut them carefully, as they contain capillaries.
The fur of the animal needs daily care (even during molting) so that no tangles are formed in the wool. Wool rolls quickly, so grab a comb or pooderka for cats or dogs.
Wool often enters the animal’s stomach, clogging its intestines. This is the most dangerous disease that can be prevented by caring for the fur.
Is it possible to bathe rabbits? This procedure does not need a furry pet when it is at home. And washing it is not so easy. If the rabbit is very dirty, then swimming is necessary. The process of taming to this procedure is not possible. If the pollution is partial, then wipe the dirty place with a damp cloth.
The teeth of the animal grow throughout life, and caring for the rabbit at home involves regular grinding. Teeth grind with:
- Special feed,
- Solid vegetables
- Fruit tree branch
- Special sticks with vitamins and cereals, toys.
Neutering a rabbit involves removing the reproductive organs in males. Sterilization is a necessary procedure that helps:
- To increase their growth by 20% without additional costs for feed,
- Keep males in one cage,
- Indoor rabbits cease to breed,
- Increase their life expectancy.
Castration of rabbits contributes to their more relaxed behavior: they are not aggressive and do not bite. They are neutered at the age of 4 months to 2 years.
Taming to the tray, tray fillers
The “eared” gets used to a special toilet installed in the cage quickly. When he begins to go to the tray in the cage regularly, then you can try to train him to the toilet in one place in the house.
It is possible to recognize why a pet refuses to go to a place suitable for it, for a number of reasons:
- The tray is not large enough or uncomfortable
- A nasty animal filler
- Unsuitable place chosen for the toilet.
To teach a rabbit to “visit one place” is quite realistic. It is better to tame an adult castrated rabbit than a three-month-old rabbit. Gradually he will recognize his tray.
With artificial filling, rabbits feel more comfortable
Artificial fillers create more comfortable conditions for animals and make it easier to care for them, which removes the question of how to teach a rabbit to a tray. Fillers are:
- Compressed wood pellets,
The most high-quality, safe and expensive are silica gel fillers, which change 1 time in 30 days. The choice is up to the owner.
Taming to hands
To understand how to accustom a rabbit to his hands, you need to watch him. At first, he will be shy, so you need to talk with him so that he becomes comfortable and accustomed to the environment and the new owner.
Rabbits at home
Since this animal is "burrowing", raising above the ground for him is a shock. Do not lift the animal by the ears. For him, it is very painful and can damage the ear membranes and muscles. This must be done very carefully so as not to cause fear:
- Stroke the animal through the hair - from head to tail
- Take it under your torso, supporting it from below
- Do not lift high, keep it level with you.
If you behave correctly and carefully treat the animal, then the question of how to tame a rabbit in your arms will disappear by itself.
Rabbits are animals with a developed nervous system. Stress for him is loud sounds, noise, flashes of light, an unexpected change in daily routine. Try to protect him from this and do not touch when he is eating, washing or sleeping.
For "eared" created special toys. Small rubber balls, soft toys, old books will do. They develop rabbits physically, and they do not spoil household items so much. How to wean a rabbit to nibble wires: give him a toy.
Why does the rabbit bite?
Aggression of the animal is manifested in the form of grunts, throws and bites. They bite most often because of fear. A female with cubs can also bite, protecting offspring. Food and territory are also subject to protection, so the reasons may be different. In order to wean a rabbit to bite it is necessary:
- Try changing his diet,
- Treat him with care and care in order to relieve fear.
It is important for the pet to know that he and his offspring are safe, then he will stop behaving aggressively. A physiological factor such as sleep is also important.
Sometimes it seems that animals do not sleep at all. But most often they don’t sleep at night, and during the day they look awake, but in reality their eyes are a little covered and they hardly react to sounds: this is how rabbits sleep.
Life expectancy and sex determination
On average, furry rodents live from 5 to 10 years. It all depends on the care and maintenance, on the attitude to the animal. Large females become sexually mature at 5-8 months, and decorative ones at 4-6 months. The instinct of reproduction is pronounced, pregnancy lasts about a month. In litter in large breeds - up to 12 cubs maximum, in ornamental - up to 5 individuals.
White Giant Rabbit Family
After the rounding, small and helpless rabbits appear. Newborn babies are born naked, eyes open after 2 weeks. They begin to eat on their own on the 15-17th day after birth. In the first days of life and during the growth period, rabbits are needed; the rabbit must be well fed, and her diet must be made more diverse. Care for rabbits should be carefully and carefully. The babies must be with their mother for up to 3 months, after which they are prepared for sale. So the care of rabbits up to 3 months is carried out by the female.
Sex of rabbits can be determined closer to 3 months of their life
Until three months of age, no one will give an answer to the question of how to find out the sex of a rabbit, since it is impossible to find out sex during this period. In older animals, the male can be distinguished from the female only by reproductive organs. The sex of the rabbit is determined by carefully examining the reproductive system of the rabbit and the rabbit. This is the only method by which one can say a boy or girl was born.
How to determine the age of the rabbit?
It is impossible to determine exactly how many years animals live on external grounds. But there are a number of tricks that allow you to do this:
- Palpation of ribs that are well palpated. Up to 6 months, ribs are soft,
- The color of tooth enamel. The yellower the teeth, the older the rabbit
- In an adult "eared" eyelids sag, swell, become uneven,
- The length of the claws, even if they are sheared, these places are clearly visible. In older individuals, they are bent.
Experienced rabbit breeders are able to determine the approximate age of the animal according to these characteristics. In size it is impossible to do this, since the size depends on the breed and a number of other factors.
Main features of keeping rabbits
Their health depends on the quality of rabbit care. Rodents are characterized by a weak immune system, they are susceptible to infectious diseases that spread rapidly and destroy the entire population. Another feature of animals is a sensitive digestive system. Violating the rules of feeding, the owner of the animal may lose it.
Consider the main features of the content of rabbits:
- Home improvement. Pets are provided with a comfortable home with enough free space. Inside regularly clean up, remove excrement and change the litter.
- Cell placement. Rabbit houses are placed in a place protected from direct sunlight on the street or indoors. Animals are protected from draft and damp.
- Food. It is important to make the right diet, including hay, vegetables, grass, concentrates, and provide pets with clean drinking water.
- Vaccination. From a month and a half, animals are vaccinated to protect against dangerous infections.
Pets are more protected from disease than rabbits living on the street. They are kept warm and receive good care. It is important to take care of a comfortable home, a varied diet and animal hygiene.
Getting to know your pet and getting hold of your hands
Having bought a rabbit and delivered it home, it is worth giving him time to adapt. These animals are very sensitive, they can die of fear. Moving and changing the environment - a lot of stress for the animal. In the first few days he will not be active, but will begin to sniff the house and look around.
It is necessary to accustom an animal to hands gradually. Immediately after the purchase, the animal is placed in a cage and does not bother. When he is comfortable, you can offer your pet a slice of apple or carrot by gently stretching the treat through the wire rack. At this moment you can’t make noise, it is important that the eared man takes a treat. Over time, he will get used to the smell of the owner’s hands and the sound of his voice.
A few days later, the animal is released from the cage for a walk around the room, so that he can get comfortable there. You can pet your pet if he does not resist. Taking a pet in the early days is not recommended. This is done when the degree of his confidence in the owner increases.
Attention! You can not approach the animal from behind and stand above it, the animal will perceive this as a threat.
Home Improvement and Site Selection
It is important to choose the right cage for your pet, given the breed and size of the adult. If the animal stands on its hind legs, it should not rest against the ceiling. It is recommended to allocate 0.7-0.8 m2 of free area per pet. It is worth considering that the tray is placed inside, it will occupy part of the space.
Home improvement of decorative rabbits
Keeping a rabbit at home involves placing the cage in the quietest and coolest room. It is better to install it away from heating radiators on an elevation - a pedestal or table. So that the pet does not suffer from heat, its home is protected from direct sunlight.
Inventory for a rabbit house
The cage is equipped with a drinking bowl and feeders. Rabbits drink 300 ml of water per day, and in summer even more. Experienced rabbit breeders recommend the use of nipple drinkers. They have several advantages:
- the water in them remains clean,
- the container is mounted on the outside, it is protected from tipping over,
- the rabbit will not gnaw a tank of water.
The animal will need 2 feeders - a nursery for hay and for compound feed. This inventory is also worth attaching to the walls of the cage. A tray with a filler is placed inside the house.
How to care for domestic rabbits?
Care for eared rodents at home includes care for the health of the animal, proper organization of feeding, hygiene and other activities.
Pets are kept clean. Inside the cells are cleaned twice a week, and the tray is cleaned every day. Feeding troughs and a drinking bowl need to be washed and disinfected with boiling water or special means.
If the pet is dirty, it can be partially washed. In case of emergency, for example, if the animal smells of urine, it is bathed in a basin with warm water.
Attention! Bathing is stress for the pet. The windows are closed during the procedure, and after washing, the wool is thoroughly wiped with several towels. The ears of the animal cannot be wetted.
Pets are recommended to comb out. This tip is especially relevant during seasonal molting. Rabbits constantly lick themselves, and the fallen hairs swallow. However, they do not know how to burp wool, like cats. To avoid clogging of the intestines with lumps of hair and the formation of tangles, animals are combed out.
Attention! The coat of Angora rabbits requires more thorough care.
Pet Health Care
Proper care of rabbits is also a concern for their health. At the age of one and a half months, animals are first vaccinated against dangerous infectious diseases: myxomatosis and HBV. If desired, they are vaccinated against rabies, which is not included in the mandatory list, but if you plan to travel abroad, it is necessary.
It is important to monitor the state of the animal constantly. The animal should be shown to the veterinarian after detecting signs of malaise. These include:
- lethargy, lack of appetite,
- wet face
- discharge from the eyes, nose, sneezing,
- tooth grinding
- bumps, ulcers on the body.
Caring for rabbits at home includes walking. It is useful for the animal to move a lot and be in the air in good weather. Every day the animal is released from the cage so that it runs around the house for an hour or two.
In the summer, when there is no rain, the pet is taken out onto the street. For walking you will need a harness, a special leash. You can buy it in a store or sew it yourself.
Important! For walks with a rodent, choose quiet and peaceful places.
Having bought a rabbit for keeping at home, it is worth considering whether he will have a couple. At the age of 3-4 months, rodents begin puberty. Pets at the same time become restless and even aggressive. Males mark territory, scattering droppings. Хозяину придётся принимать решение – прибегнуть к кастрации зверька или завести ему пару.
Половозрелые особи быстро плодятся. At home, females are ready for mating almost every month. After mating with the male, pregnancy occurs, which lasts 28–32 days. In one litter, 5 to 12 rabbits are born. It is important to think in advance whether it is advisable to keep a couple of rabbits at home.
Most pet owners resort to castration or sterilization. This procedure is carried out from the age of four months in a veterinary clinic. After it, rabbits are not able to breed, their behavior is normal.
Attention! Castration allows you to extend the life of the animal, as its body does not wear out as quickly as in individuals that bring offspring.
How to train a domestic rabbit in a tray?
Street keeping rabbits does not imply accustoming animals to the tray. Pets should be able to cope so as not to pollute the apartment. It is recommended to place the tray in the far corner of the cage, and next to it to establish a manger for hay. So the animal will quickly learn to go to the toilet in the right place, because rabbits often defecate with food.
When the animal gets used to using the tray in the cage, you can get another toilet and put it in the apartment. When the pet goes there, it must be praised and encouraged by the treat.
Outdoor rabbit care
If the purpose of buying rabbits is different - getting meat and skins, then caring for them will be different from the one that domestic animals provide.
Street keeping rabbits requires the construction of cages, sheds or aviaries, and different categories of animals are kept separately. It will be necessary to equip homes for:
- mating animals
- keeping females with cubs,
- young animals
In regions where winters are quite severe, you need to think about how to keep rabbits in the country in the cold season. You may have to build a barn or insulate the cells. Particular attention is paid to the arrangement of homes for rabbits with rabbits. They are equipped with a warm mother liquor, otherwise the kids will freeze and die.
Many farmers prefer free keeping rabbits. To do this, animals are equipped with aviaries or pits are used 2 meters deep, where animals live in conditions close to natural. They move a lot, which has a beneficial effect on immunity.
Free keeping rabbits
True, this breeding method has several disadvantages, for example:
- fights often occur in pits and enclosures, so animal skins spoil, and their price decreases,
- infections spread quickly
- animal meat is getting tougher.
Attention! With any method of keeping rabbits, it is important to avoid overpopulation. At least 0.7 m2 of free space is allocated to each individual.
Keeping rabbits on the street is not suitable for residents of the northern regions. Where in winter the air temperature drops to -25 degrees, it is advisable to transfer the cells to the room.
Proper care of rabbits means providing them with proper nutrition. The diet of herbivorous rodents consists of 4 components:
- hay and twig feed
Attention! Farmers must add vitamin and mineral supplements to the diet to strengthen animal immunity.
The main rule of feeding animals - their menu should be varied. Almost 30% of the food that rabbits eat per day is concentrated feed - this is feed or cereals and legumes.
A significant part of the menu is hay. It has a beneficial effect on digestion and helps rabbits grind their teeth. Green food - grass and tops, prevails in the diet in the summer, it is a source of vitamins. Rodents give plants only in a dry state.
Rabbits can not be fed:
- wet grass
- poisonous plants
- meat and sausage,
- red beets
- tops of tomatoes and peppers,
- citrus fruits.
Reference. Fruits and berries are given to pets a little 2 times a week.
How to properly care for rabbits at home and on the street, it is worth learning before acquiring pets. It is important to familiarize yourself with the requirements for keeping animals and feeding them, and then start the animal. Attentiveness and love are the key to successful rodent cultivation.