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Rabbits Rabbit cage help and care!

KristenMatejka

Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Oct 26, 2011
Messages
406
I have had guinea pigs for over 6 years now so I don't need to know anything about them but I need to know more about my rabbit I just got last night. Most people I have talked to have said that generally they are the same to take care of as guinea pigs. But the big guy I just adopted is rather obese. Sitting at almost 10 pounds. He is litter trained though so I give him free range of the apartment. He only goes into his cage when hes hungry, thirsty, or at night. But I do want him to have a good sized cage for his size for when hes in there at night. I need to know a good cage size for him because i know his current one is too small! I also need to know more things about bedding and toy ideas? I got him some rice pops from petsmart and he loves chewing on some of the wood toys but he is getting bored easily. He doesn't move around to much so trying to get some ideas to stimulate him to move around and get healthier. I am taking him to the vet tomorrow so they can take a look at him.
 
How well is he litter trained? If he is perfectly litter trained then you don't need to worry about bedding except in his box. I used Yesterday's News the unscented cat litter made from recycled newspaper. The rescue I volunteer at uses wood pellets, the kind that go in horse stalls.

Have you rabbit proofed your apartment? You'd be surprised what a rabbit can get into, even after you've had them for awhile they will still surprise you. I had one bunny get on top of a book shelf to eat a ficus. I'm not sure how he did it. Something about coffee table to TV to bookshelf. All it all it was very impressive. Though this rabbit was particularly troublesome.

The cage at the bottom of this post is the one that I used for many years. It was a great cage. It will be big enough for a 10 lb rabbit and give him enough space while you are sleeping or away.

As for toys - rabbits are very inquisitive. Try cat toys. Anything that can't be easily broken or has holes they can get their teeth stuck into. My guys use to love those little balls with the feathers in them. They would pick them up and toss them around. I have had a few rabbits that liked to chase strings and one big ol' Californian that loved to pull on those hanging cat toys with the bouncy string. He use to pull them back then let go and the toy would bounce around and the bell would ring and the bunny would run around and around the pool table doing binkies (pop corning). It was hysterical.

Rabbits are pretty smart. Once your bunny knows you a little better you can stimulate him by teaching him tricks. A good one to teach them is "Go Home!" I did this by repeatedly saying "Go Home" while chasing them back to their cage, once there I gave them a treat. Eventually they start to figure it out. It's best to do this in a small space where there isn't much space for them to runaway from. Some rabbits did it all very willingly but I had one bunny that thought he was better than everything and everyone, he was never pleased with going home. I wish I had a good book title to give you to help with the tricks but I can't think of any at the movement.

Rabbits can also learn to walk on a leash. I use to take my bunny to the park and we would read under a tree while he ate grass or slept. You must watch out for irresponsible dog owners that think their dog is perfect and doesn't need a leash, though.

Is your new bunny neutered? If not I would get it done. Especially a male bunny! Male rabbits tend to spray their urine to mark their territory. They have incredible distance when doing this and it can really ruin a whole room in a house. It stinks too. A neutered rabbit is also better at using his litter box.

That's all I can think of at the moment, though there is a TON more information out there. Try Rabbit.org for some great house rabbit information.

 
YES to all of the above!
We've had 2 house rabbits in the past and have 2 now. They are a lot of work, more work than guinea pigs IMO. Mine are also litter trained but they still tend to make a mess with the litter (even with a high sided litter box) so I'm always sweeping. I just use carefresh in the litter box but don't use any other litter.
They also shed A LOT, at least mine do. They need daily brushing and my kids have to sweep or vacuum daily.
We keep ours in a dog pen like this when they are not out-we have the 36" high one:
Amazon.com: Midwest Gold- Zinc Indoor/Outdoor Exercise Pet Pen, 24W x 24H: Pet Supplies
If you look at the pics shown with this cage they even show 2 pics with rabbits in the cage.

We have the rubber playmats on the floor under than but we make sure the edges are not inside the pen to be chewed. We also put little pet beds or old towels for them to lay on-they love them.

I give them sticks to chew, wicker balls, toilet paper tubes, kleenex boxes stuffed with hay, and even small stuffed animals to play with.

And yes, we had our male neutered because he was spraying, stinky, and getting aggressive. Now he's a sweetie.

ETA-BEWARE of cords! With my first house rabbit we went thru 3 phone cords and a lamp cord before we got them all rabbit proofed. And he did get 1 zap that curbed him of that bad habbit-thank goodness he was OK. But cords can be VERY dangerous for rabbit and you if they get frayed.
 
Yes! Cover all wires! Petsmart sells a wire cover as do most hardware stores. This is a must do. My first house bunny got into my computer wires and chewed them all up. This was 12 years ago, computer wires were much more expensive than they are now. Also don't leave anything on the floor that you don't want carried off or chewed on. My husband left an x-box (cords and all!) on the coffee table in our apartment and walked off. My bunny chewed all the cords. Every single one right through. Try to think of rabbits as a cross between guinea pigs, dogs and cats. Their level of care is probably closer to that of a cat than it is to a guinea pig.

Rabbits are great pets! Especially in an apartment. I loved having them around. They have such awesome littler personalities. I really can not wait until my kids are old enough to get two house bunnies. They are wonderful animals!
 
Agree with everything above.

Here are some toys you can try. My rabbits love most of these
(broken link removed)
FAQ: Toys
I also made/got my rabbits a maze, dig box full of hay, cat cubes from walmart, cat crinkle tunnel from walmart, cardboard tunnel from home depot, books, etc. They love the toys rom bunny bytes
Welcome to Bunny Bytes: Outfitters of the Urban Rabbit

For litter I use hardwood stove pellets that I get at menards. They are 40 pounds for $5
 
Thanks to everyone for giving me a ton of useful information! Last night I bought him some rice pops, some willow sticks and a wooden carrot and he seems to like them very much! He is very well litter trained. He has the run of the apartment and all wires we have are currently put up out of his way but im not too sure if he would chew on the wooden legs of our desk though? He seems to be very fond of apples but i was told his favorite are dandelions but i cannot find them anywhere! Any suggestions on where I can buy some?
 
Also, the fur on his bottom does seem to get tangled very easily! Should I trim it or just brush him several times a day? I made him a toy out of timothy hay and a toilet paper roll and cut the ends as I have seen on several websites..he wasn't eating the hay until I did that, so should I just continue to do that? The people that had him before said he never got any timothy hay.
 
Poor boy. He needs hay just the same as the guinea pigs do. Just keep offering him hay, eventually he will start to eat it and I'm sure love it. He may chew on the legs of the table but most rabbits don't. If he shows interest try Ick or Bitter Apple sprayed on the legs to keep him from doing that.

What kind of rabbit is he?
 
Also, I will be getting him neutured but i do want to get him a companion so he is not lonely. All of our pigs have companions and he doesnt. Dont know what kind he is and I'm very curious. Would another kind of rabbit work or no? I dont know if i put a small female in with him if he could hurt her or not. [GuineaPigCages.com] Rabbit cage help and care![GuineaPigCages.com] Rabbit cage help and care![GuineaPigCages.com] Rabbit cage help and care!Also I could use some name ideas. :/
 
I honestly have no idea what kind he is, was hoping someone could give me an idea. The lady that had him said he may be part cottontail?
 
He looks like a big brown rabbit. =/ Telling breeds can be hard with rabbits since they have very few distinguishing features breed to breed and it is more done by body type, size or fur type. I highly doubt he has any cottontail in him.

Keep offering him hay. Rabbits need hay the same as guinea pigs. If that is the way he is eating it than keep at it until he gets use to hay.

A female rabbit would most likely get along better with him than another male but that isn't a garentee. Rabbits are as hard to match up as guinea pigs can be, more so actually! Do you have a rabbit rescue near you that you could take him to a few dates on? Before you get him a buddy make sure he is neutered and you get the other rabbit fixed as well, even a girl, rabbits can be very territorial.

He looks like a short haired rabbit. Does he have matts on his rear or what? If he has matts I would cut them out and just try to brush him every now and again though he is probably not going to like his butt brushed.
 
He does have a few mats but I read online it is very easy to accidently cut their skin so I was going to take him to a local groomer with experiance with rabbits to do it because I just dont feel comfortable doing it yet. I could look it up to see if there are any local rescues in the area. He seems to be very calm and likes to cuddle but he absolutely wont let me get ahold of his feet to trim his nails! Theyre too long and very sharp and he keeps accidentally scratching me. Also, any ideas of how much food to give him to help him lose some of the extra weight? When he runs around for a while I can hear him wheezing? Is this something that should be a big concern?
 
At 10 lbs he should be eating about 1 cup pellets once a day with unlimited hay, if he still isn't loosing weight with the extra exercise you could bring it down to 3/4 cup.

Wheezing? That has me concerned. Have you taken him to the vet yet? The vet should listen to his lungs. It could be he is just fat and out of shape but still... it's odd. Rabbits are the same as guinea pigs as they like to hide when they are sick until the end. Definatly get the vet to check that out.

Here is a video on cutting nails. This is not the way I like to do it with nervous or hard to handle bunnies. I don't trust I can type out how to do it the other way so I'll look for a video after my son naps.

Bobtails Rescue: How to clip your bunny&(broken link removed)s nails - YouTube
 
I am on my lunch break for work now but I get off in about 4 and a half hours so I'll be taking him directly to the vet when I get off of work today, just got him the night before last! I especially need to get him checked out because I dont want anything passing to my pigs. i'm hoping he is just wheezing because hes fat because his last owner kept him in a dog crate all day long and gave him a gravity feeder which she kept full at all times.
Thanks for all the info! your a life saver!
 
That sounds like it will work. Ask the vet to show you how to clip nails while you are there. Also check the bottoms of his back feet. He may have sore hock from sitting in a dog create board all day. When rabbits are board they will rock on their back legs sometimes they will wear away the fur there and create sores. It also happens when they can't get off of a wire bottom.

I can't really think of anything else. He looks like a sweetie!
 
I got off early so I can take him to the vet in an hour from now to get him checked out completely. Checked references and their very familiar with rabbits so hoping it goes well!! I'll let you know how it goes :) But he is a big cuddle bug and I'm so glad I got him away from them. I checked out his paws and they look okay to me but never hurts to be sure, right?
 
Awesome! I hope everything goes well at the vet. Keep us updated!

I saw it all the time when I worked as a vet tech and now as a rescue volunteer; Rabbits that came in where all their problems were simply related to not being taken care of properly. Hopefully the only thing this guy has is just being over weight!

Best of luck!
 
Good news! Healthy as can be! Only overweight! Gonna start his diet and get him to start running around more. Vet was VERY GOOD. She has her own rabbits so she knew alot about rabbits. She trimmed his nails up and said his teeth are in great condition.
 
Yay!! That's awesome! I'm so happy for him and you! Congratulations!
 
Thanks! Now I can focus on just spending time with him and finish settling him in to our family.
 
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