09 Dec 15 Reasons A Rabbit Might Be The Pet For You
Pets can add a lot to your life. No matter which type you get, they offer affection, fun, and companionship. There are many different pets available, but one of the most overlooked is the humble rabbit. Bunnies might just be the cutest of them all . From their soft fur to their long ears and twitching noses, they’re pretty much the gold standard for cuteness!. However they have more going for them as pets than just their appearance. In fact, bunnies make amazing pets that suit a range of owners and living situations. So, if you’re trying to decide on a furry companion, here’s why you should choose the floppy-eared kind!
1. They’re Small
Most dogs and even some cats require large open spaces where they can run around and stretch their legs. The same is true for rabbits however the space needed is considerably smaller. Ideally, rabbits should be housed in areas where there is ample room to run about. It is also a bonus if your bunny has access to a garden/backyard where they can exhibit their natural behaviours whilst being safe from predators. For Rabbits housed indoors in x-pens (puppy exercise pens), the essentials include a feeding/drinking station, rabbit litterbox, hide-away spot and a place for your rabbit to stretch out. Should you have a spare room in your house feel free to convert it to a bunny den! If no rooms are available daily exercise outside of their enclosed pen is recommended.
2. They’re Good House Pets
Rabbits will happily enjoy living inside your home for their whole life. As long as they can hop around a room for exercise whilst getting plenty of nutritious hay to eat, they will be perfectly content and healthy living in your apartment or house. This means you don’t have to miss out on having a furry pet just because you don’t have a backyard.
3. They Don’t Bark
When you live close to your neighbours, noisy animals can be challenging. Barking, scratching, meowing, can all create problems depending on the thickness of your walls and distance from your neighbours; picture a dog barking all night and keeping you or your neighbours awake. However rabbits rarely make noise, and when they do it’s really quiet. This will ensure healthy relations with your neighbours whilst allowing you and them to sleep soundly at night.
4. They’re Cuddly
If you’re looking for a cute pet, chances are that you want one that’s affectionate and cuddly You probably dream of spending nights with something soft and warm and there is nothing softer than a rabbit! Through regular interaction and handling your rabbit will get to know your face and voice and will identify you as a source of treats, pets and love. With an established bond, your rabbit will enjoy nothing more than munching on some cilantro and watching Netflix.
5. They’re Economic to Keep
Rabbits can be a cost-effective pet if you have limited funds. They’re one of the smaller pets, so they don’t eat as much as other animals, and as long as you’re aware that some foods are dangerous for rabbits, you can supplement their diet with the parts of vegetables that you usually throw away. If you have a secure backyard, you can even let them outside to eat grass every day. Rabbits will happily act as your lawnmower and keep your lawns short. Just make sure you watch out for digging, as some rabbits are adept escape artists as they naturally dig burrows. Like all pets however, it is important that you are in a position to care for all their needs including proper diet and medical visits…
6. They Have Big Personalities
Rabbits might be small, but they make up for it in personality. Like every person, every rabbit is different. Some will be independent, others affectionate, and some will be socialites who absolutely love attention. That’s why it’s always best to get to know a rabbit before taking it home. This is your best chance of getting a rabbit that suits your personality and lifestyle. If you don’t have the chance to get to know your rabbit beforehand, then a wonderful surprise is in store. It’s a delight when you get to know a new animal, you never know who they’ll be!
7. Different Breeds for Different Needs.
There are more than 50 recognised rabbit breeds in the world. These breeds vary in size, colour and texture of their coat, and even in temperament. So, no matter what type of pet owner you are, there’s a rabbit breed for you. Just be sure to do your research before choosing a rabbit for its temperament as well as cuteness factor.
8. They Can Learn Tricks
If you’ve ever seen a magician do tricks with a rabbit, then you probably already know that they’re trainable. In fact, rabbits are quite intelligent, and if they get rewarded for doing something, they’ll quickly learn to repeat behaviours asked of them. This can also help to stave off boredom and prevent behavioural problems like inappropriate chewing of items. You can teach your rabbit to run an obstacle course, come when they’re called, jump through hoops, and fetch! Your rabbit will likely enjoy the exercise and stimulation and make for happy and busy times with your companion.
9. You Can Toilet Train Them
Untrained rabbits will go to the toilet anywhere and can make a real mess of your house, but they’re actually very clean animals and would prefer to have one specific toileting area. If you give them a litter area with clean paper or designated rabbit litter and do a bit of toilet training, they will soon go there and nowhere else, just like a cat! This will keep your house clean and sweet smelling not to mention your floors will thank you for it.
10. They’re Clean
Rabbits are naturally clean animals who regularly groom themselves and unlike dogs will not roll around in the mud after you’ve freshly groomed them. Rabbits should be brushed a few times a week, a fun relaxing activity which will help you bond with each other. Just remember, if you get a fluffy long-haired breed, you will likely have to brush them every day. This is the tradeoff for having all that fluffy fur.
11. They Live a Long Time
If you love and care for your rabbit it will enjoy a long and happy life. Indoor rabbits can live between 8 and 12 years, with some smaller breeds living well into their teens. This differs greatly to wild rabbits who must be vigilant for predators, endure temperature extremes and cope with infectious diseases. Longer life spans mean lasting companionship which you can bond and grow over.
12. Lots of Rabbits Need Homes
Particular dog and cat breeds are very popular and fashionable at the moment. These breeds can be difficult to find and often are very expensive to buy. Thankfully you won’t encounter this problem when looking for a rabbit. Many abandoned bunnies find their way to shelters every year. Fortunately a lucky few find themselves welcomed into new and loving homes, and you can become part of this loving group too!
13. They’re Good Pets for Adults
Rabbits can be a big responsibility for young children as they require special care and attention. Being a prey species they can react lightning quick if startled or picked up incorrectly. Sometimes they’ll simply run and hide however they can scratch and even bite. Rabbits are also fragile and being a burrowing species do not often fare well when accidentally dropped by little hands Bunnies require specialised food and ongoing care and often need an attentive eye to ensure their needs are being met. So if you’re an adult and don’t mind doing a bit of work caring for your furry friend, a rabbit will reward you for all your effort with affection, fun, and cuddly times.
14. They’re Funny
It sounds strange to say, but rabbits make for funny pets. They’re always curious and spend a lot of time investigating everything. In fact, you’ll probably find yourself sitting back and watching your pet hop around, sticking its nose into things and doing that cute nose wiggle. There’s always something going on when you have a rabbit in the house.
15. They’re Cute
The fuzzy, hopping bunny might be the cutest pet in the world. Between their little noses, their floppy ears, and that cute cotton tail, they have heaps going for them. This overwhelming cuteness is one of their biggest draws as pets; no one can resist them!
If you think a rabbit might be the pet for you after reading this list, make sure you do your research before buying. Rabbits aren’t always the easiest pets, and you will need to understand their needs if you’re going to keep them healthy and happy. Make sure you talk to a veterinarian who understands rabbits and get to know your potential companion before you buy or adopt them and may you have many fun, happy and adorable years together.
Author: Dr Jordan Dasilva (DVM)
Dr. Jordan hails from across the ocean from the winter lands of Toronto, Canada. He graduated from the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program at the University of Sydney in 2019 and has joined the team at Southern Cross Vets since. Dr. Jordan shares his enthusiasm and love for all animals, especially those with feathers and scales.