It’s been a while… I know.
As my post title suggests, we’ll be talking about a beach house bunny today- the secret to a happy rabbit.
Before I begin on how to take care of your pet rabbit or how to share your apartment with a bunny, which would be a better title for this, let me tell you what all we have juggled a lot. A lot means, a lot.
In Pursuit of that Perfect Pet
Since the time we’ve started staying together, we’ve been looking for pets. Dogs, cats, fishes, at adoption sites, rescue lists, pet shops, from a friend of a friend who eventually decided to not give his lab puppy away after we’ve travelled 50 kilometres to get him and were mentally prepared- it was never ending. We exchanged links over email keeping our most important assignments at bay, we liked several rescue pages over Facebook to see if that dream puppy was somewhere along- nothing. When does one call enough, enough?
Tired and beaten and badly wanting, Ro decided we’ll keep fishes. So there we were in the pet shop, several hours later waiting to pick up Ro’s favorite fighter fish and guess what happened? From a whole room full of potential pets, I impulsively picked up a baby bunny. I could never let it go!
I’ve heard that they stay best in pairs so we took 2. One grey and one white.
Unfortunately, the Grey one died after a week.
On close heels of his death, we got 3 rabbits to keep the one who survived from the first lot company but all of them died, one after the other, leaving him alone as ever.
We read it up online and found no source to explain the sudden deaths. I also read somewhere that they die sudden.What a major heartbreak man!
We decided to never get another rabbit again and keep him single with us.
We thought he’d die in a week as we’ve heard they are social animals. Pardon us for being cruel- when you see too many deaths, you tend to get annoyingly practical.
Its over a month and a half now- fluffy is doing great and he is very happy. He is that little creature who trots on your feet as you make yourself a cup of coffee and needlessly give you all the love he has. He might nibble on your favorite slippers and sometime your fat toe too but its all too sweet to even pay attention to the damage. They are your everyday mental damage control device.
So how did he survive? How did that happen?
This is where I’ll give you the secrets to a happy rabbit and bust some myth’s arse.
From what I have learnt-
1. Not all bunnies survive. Take this hard fact from me. Bred in captivity and in enormous numbers, its evident that only some will have survival-of-the-fittest genes. Count 1 out of 20. So, if your baby bunny die, don’t blame yourself for the rest of your life. They might be from a bad stock.
2. Your bunny will always be happy if you interact with it. Call it names, go near it, play with it, snuggle it a bit. They are social animals remember? Not rabittically speaking but for real. They love company.
3. Never, ever give your baby bunny a bath. It kills them. Sponge them with lukewarm water atleast until they are a month old, if you feel he’s gotten dirty. They generally clean themselves.
4. Hay is the happy secret. Make it mandatory to give him hay. Make it available to him all times of the day. Your rabbit can eat cabbage, fresh coriander, tomatoes, beetroot, spinach (fluffy hates it. He just ignores it) along with hay. You can feed them veggies twice or in little amounts throughout the day. One very important thing to note: Please make sure you are feeding your bunny at the same spot- ideally his basket. This will also train him to expect food only in his corner. For added benefits, read point 7!
5. There is no need to buy expensive cages and bedding and running wheels or whatever you buy. Get a big enough basket, line it with newspaper, get cheap straw and make his bed. On one side, keep his hay. Get a bigger basket to keep him caged when you want to.
6. The best exercise your bunny can get is to run around the house. Let him. Its fun.
7. You cannot potty train anyone. However, you can notice where it generally pees. Rabbits are good. They poop and pee while they eat and all one really needs to do is give him his food in his home and cage him. Do it for 5 days and it will automatically poop there. MOSTLY. Don’t be surprised if you find round pellet like poop in corners. Just broom it out and throw them in the dustbin. If they pee everywhere but their cage, clean it with dettol. They hate dettol and never pees there 😛 My bunny however has chosen one rug and his home as his loo. Your bunny will choose 2-3 areas for himself. Note these areas and provide cheap rugs. MYTH: Rabbits pee stinks. Ball-talk. It doesn’t. You can just wash the rug once in 3 months.
8. Keep straw in his bed and not fancy self-absorbing stuff because it absorbs pee like magic, its cheap and it dries really fast, keeping his home dry.
9. They tend to eat their poop sometimes. Allow him. Its full of fiber.
10. Limit sweet treats to once in 15 days. Pet him and give it to him. He will lick your hands with tiny tongue that feels like heaven.
11. When you want to punish him, cage him and scold him. It really works.
12. A single rabbit can be your pet. That social thing is bullshit.
13. If you have free wires running around the house, just switch the connecting plugs off. They actually dont bite wires. They like hairbands though 😛
Sharing it for securing a place in Bunny Heaven:
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Coastal Charm – Nifty Thrifty
Vintage Wanna Bee – Talent Tuesday
Primp – Primp Your Stuff Wednesday
20 thoughts on “13 Secrets To A Happy Rabbit”
Thank you! Yes, I didn’t get a dog but managed to get a rabbit 🙂
I rescued two rabbits several years ago. They lived about 5 years. We kept them in the house at first. They used a litter box just like a cat would (just so you know they will do that naturally if you provide one) they never pooped or peed anywhere else. They began to chew on cables. So were then kept to the kitchen and at that time we had an entrance that led to our closed in deck. They were very happy bunnies. They had a cage by that time with steps. They could go in and out as they chose. It had a sleep area and a play area with hay……………..now you do need to provide chewing material. Rabbits teeth continue to grow and need to be filed down or else they cut into the bottom lip. So give them twigs to chew on.
Both rabbits died of cancer. One in the jaw………….the other had breast cancer and we let her live as long as we could. When it became obvious she was in pain and could no longer jump up on the picnic table and have fun, (she still wanted to) we had her put to sleep. My vet said that they should be spayed just like a cat or dog to prevent that. ………….I just thought I would add a few more suggestions to what you have said. One more thing………..don’t buy them as Easter gifts, they are living feeling loving beings and not disposable. Thank you for giving me a chance to say that
I love that you came to my blog and contributed. Yes, one should never buy them as Easter gifts. They demand your attention as much as a dog or cat would.
Thank you for this valuable information. 🙂
I hope I didn’t overstep the boundaries. They may not live as long as cats and dogs but they make such wonderful companions if treated kindly. .
Of course you didn’t 🙂 It was really helpful.
What a sweet bunny! Great advice, and also from Janice (the other Janice). I would definitely give the litter tray a try – if you can have all that minus the rug-as-toilet-area it would be a perfect situation. On the other hand, we have fitted carpets in these colder climes, so clearing up after animals is much harder, and once the odour gets into the carpet the pet keeps using that area – it doesn’t matter how hard you scrub to get the stain and the smell out. 🙁
Yes Janice (the other one) had some great insights. What an irony! Right after I finished writing this post (after monitoring him for 1 month) he went ahead and peed on our guest room bed. He is being punished now. (No grapes for 2 weeks)
I know how miserable it is to scoop poop off a carpet. I had dogs, remember? Miserable.
That little guy is beyond cute!
I’d like to point out though, from personal experience with my bunny, that they do like wires and stuff. It’s a better idea to keep them out of its reach just in case or you could wake up to the landline phone not working and wonder why for two days until you accidentally notice the cable from behind the cabinet was chewed in half. 🙂
Oh, and its pee does stink. Not while it’s this small, but later. So it’s a great thing to have it eat in only one place, it’ll be really easy to clean that spot every morning or night.
PS: this is my bunny 🙂 http://estrella05azul.wordpress.com/2010/04/04/blessed-easter/
Unfortunately I had to give her away….. She now lives with a wet, who has a boy bunny and has the space to keep them both.
So cute! Love that pink flower. Is that a bunny clip? or you did it just like that? 😛
She has lop ears actually, not pointing up like that. That’s one of my old hair clips, keeping them straight. Figured the bunny should be festive on account of the Easter photo shoot 😉
Ewww! Okay training time on it seems.
Actually ya, its been marking its territories lately 🙁 What a (you know what I want to say)
Once it’s done, it’ll cool it down a notch. But good idea to train, nonetheless. Better safe than sorry.
Another thing I remembered is that pet shops get bunnies when so small they fit in a cup (demonstrated so well by you in that cute pic!), and sell them. And pet shops won’t admit to it flat out, but the only thing is, they’re a bit small to be taken from their mommy at that point. Which is one of the reasons they can die so suddenly.
I got mine directly from the breeder, and only when she was two months old (or ten weeks, can’t recall right now). Definitely not teacup-sized, but still tiny enough and the cutest!
Oh ya, we are training him…but Im a lil skeptical on whether or not should I spay it 🙁 I dont want to kind of disturn its potential of becomeing a father…And ya, Im with you on the fact that pet shops sell them too young. When I got him, he was like this tiny baby. We thought it won’t survive you know…I literally cared for it like a baby…So many rabbits died though in my house. 3!
I know, it’s really sad. That is why I wanted to make sure you aren’t blaming yourself or anything. This one survived, so you are caring for him really well!
You can decide on the spaying thing later. He’d have to reach maturity anyway before you should go ahead with that, and you might just have him well trained by then 🙂
Hopefully! He generally behaves well…he is a good kid 😀
I did blame myself for a while but figured that maybe I don’t have anything to do with it…
Good information. Great photos!
Thank you Linda 🙂