Housing Rabbits Together

Introduction

Rabbits are social animals and can be comforted by the presence of a companion. Owners who have a limited amount of time to interact with their rabbit may want to consider adding another rabbit to provide companionship. Rabbits may be particular in their choices of companions and may not always get along when introduced as adults. When introducing two rabbits, it is important to gradually acclimate the rabbits to each other to prevent an extreme reaction that could lead …

Ectoparasites: Sarcoptic and Demodectic Mange Mites

Mange is a skin condition caused by mange mites – arachnids that live in the skin and cause irritation for our companion animals. There are two types of mange that affect companion animals – sarcoptic mange and demodectic mange. Regardless of the type, mange tends to more frequently affect dogs than cats; therefore, this article addresses the condition in dogs.

Sarcoptic mange

Sarcoptic mange, also occasionally referred to as scabies, is a highly contagious skin disease caused by mites that …

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 …

My rabbit keeps shaking his head and digging at his ears with his back feet. Why?

Your rabbit might have ear canker, which is caused by small parasites called ear mites (Psoroptes cuniculi). Check his ears for a brown discharge and crustiness. Ear canker can easily spread from one rabbit to another, so if you have other rabbits, check their ears also. Ear canker can be treated and cured by using chemical mitacide eardrops safe for use in rabbits or an injection obtained from your veterinarian. A few drops of light mineral oil used …

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: Kicking

Introduction

Rabbits are known for their powerful back legs, which allow them to move quickly over short distances. However, rabbits can also use their powerful back legs to kick their human companions, causing injury to the humans or themselves. Kicking in rabbits is a behavior that many rabbit owners observe. Owners should understand that kicking is an indication of how secure a rabbit feels when being held. Proper handling is the best option to help prevent this unwanted behavior.

rabbit long haired

Predisposing

Spaying and Neutering Your Rabbit

Introduction

Spaying or neutering your companion rabbit can have benefits for both the owner and the rabbit. Unwanted behaviors often develop in animals left intact. In addition, rabbits are at an increased risk of health conditions and decreased life span when not spayed or neutered.

rabbit and girl

Spaying or neutering

Neutering refers to the removal of the reproductive organs, which permanently prevents an animal from breeding. Technically, the term neuter refers to the procedure done in either a male or female animal, …

Rabbit Behavioral Problems: Inappropriate Urination

<rabbit long haired

Introduction

Marking objects or urine spraying is a normal territorial instinct that many domestic and wild rabbits display. Unfortunately, pet rabbits that spray urine create a problem for their owners. Those who own rabbits that spray are constantly faced with how inconvenient and costly this behavior can become. There are a few tips to help prevent this behavior, but the most efficient method is to have your rabbit surgically altered.

It is important to distinguish between urine spraying and …

Rabbit Behavioral Problems: Digging

Introduction

A rabbit habit that can quickly become a problem is digging. Rabbits that are kept indoors still have the instinct to dig, even if that means tearing up the carpet. Owners can take a few simple steps to prevent rabbits from damaging the flooring of a home.

rabbit and boy 3

Predisposing Factors

In the wild, rabbits create dens by excavating dirt and rocks. This behavior is based on the fact that rabbits are trying to provide shelter for themselves. Domestic rabbits still …

Rabbit Behavioral Problems: Chewing

Introduction

Like wild rabbits, domestic rabbits have the tendency to chew on objects. Rabbits that are kept indoors will chew on anything from carpet to wooden table legs. Owners must take care to rabbit-proof their home to prevent a rabbit’s normal behavior from becoming a major problem.

rabbit brown lop

Predisposing Factors

Chewing is a natural rabbit behavior. In the wild, rabbits regularly chew on different plant materials that range from abrasive to soft. Rabbits’ teeth grow continuously throughout their lives and must …