Nutritional Supplements for Your Rabbit

Nutritional supplements for rabbits include licks, vitamin and mineral supplements, and certain fruit supplements.

Licks

Many rabbit owners provide their animals with salt or trace mineral licks. Such items contain salt and other minerals a rabbit needs in its diet. Also, they may aid in wearing down the teeth and help provide enrichment or prevent boredom in the rabbit.

Rabbits do not need a salt lick if they receive a complete feed. In general, commercial rabbit feeds contain appropriate amounts …

Nutrients Required by Rabbits

A nutrient is a chemical or substance that an animal requires to live and grow. Nutrients can be found in food, synthesized in the body, or taken in from the environment. Nutrients that must be consumed in the diet because the animal cannot produce them or cannot produce them in sufficient quantities are considered essential nutrients. Those the animal can synthesize to meet its needs or does not need from the diet are considered nonessential nutrients.

All animals require six …

Enteritis in Rabbits

Rabbits are prone to gastrointestinal tract diseases. One commonly observed gastrointestinal tract disease in rabbits is enteritis, or the inflammation of the intestines. Enteritis can cause high death rates in rabbits. A variety of causes can lead to enteritis, and if left untreated, it can result in serious health consequences for the rabbit. Enterotoxemia is one form of enteritis caused by pathogenic bacteria overgrowth. Mucoid enteritis, another form of enteritis, can cause a high level of mucus secretions, which can …

How to Feed Your Rabbit

Amount to feed

Rabbits should be provided with a pelleted diet daily.  You may also choose to feed a home-prepared diet of fresh vegetables and greens.  The amount to feed depends on the rabbit’s age and reproductive status.  Young growing and pregnant or nursing rabbits may be provided with food ad libitum.  This means they are provided with an excess of food and can eat as much as they want during the course of the day and night. 

Adult …

Choosing a Diet for Your Companion Rabbit

When choosing a diet for a house rabbit, remember that as an herbivore (plant eater), a rabbit constantly needs food moving through its digestive tract. The specific diet you choose for your rabbit will depend on several factors, including age and weight of the rabbit, environmental conditions, and purpose of the animal.

Diet Types

Rabbits are concentrate selectors, so they naturally pick and choose foods higher in energy density. Providing a pelleted rabbit food helps ensure that your animal is …

Why do rabbits eat their feces?

Though it seems like a strange practice, eating feces, or corprophagy, is an essential behavior for maintaining health in rabbits. Rabbits are hindgut fermenters, which means that a significant portion of digestion occurs in the cecum and large intestine or at the end of their digestive tract after nutrient absorption has already occurred. This is unlike humans, dogs, and cats who absorb most of their nutrients in the small intestine, or upper portion of the digestive tract.
Unlike ruminants such …

Hairballs in Rabbits

Read the following article to understand more about how hairball prevention and treatment can impact your rabbit’s health.

Introduction

Part of a rabbit’s normal behavior is regular grooming. Regardless of whether rabbits are allowed to mutually groom each other or themselves, their stomachs will usually contain hair. Normally, ingested hair is passed when a rabbit defecates. However, certain rabbits have difficulty passing hair through the digestive system. In the event that a rabbit is unable to pass ingested hair, a …

Rabbit Behavioral Problems: Barbering

rabbit ear tattoo2

Introduction

Grooming is a normal aspect of rabbit behavior, but occasionally rabbits may develop unwanted grooming habits. Barbering is a form of grooming in which a rabbit repeatedly plucks the hair off itself or another rabbit. Barbering may be caused by several factors, ranging from dominance issues to nutritional deficiencies. Barbering can escalate to the point where rabbits that are housed together may need to be separated.

Predisposing Factors

Barbering can be caused by a variety of factors:

  • Pregnant females

Gastrointestinal Stasis in Rabbits

Gastrointestinal (GI) stasis is the term for lack of movement through the digestive or gastrointestinal tract of a rabbit. This disease is often difficult to recognize and treat. It can commonly occur in rabbits that are stressed or have sudden changes to their environment or diet. If not recognized, rabbits may quickly enter into a downward spiral and may die if untreated.

rabbit eating

Gastrointestinal stasis occurs when movement in the digestive system slows down. It decreases the appetite of the animal …

Housing for Indoor Rabbits

Introduction

Finding the correct cage is one of the most important factors of rabbit ownership. Providing your rabbit with a comfortable living space will help ensure a positive attitude in your rabbit.

Rabbits that are kept indoors need a familiar place that functions similar to a burrow. An indoor cage should be a place to rest and relax. Cages allow the rabbit to be unsupervised. When rabbits are allowed to roam freely around a house, they should be supervised at …