Friday, March 29, 2013

Owning a House Rabbit

For the last day of Bunny Week, I wanted to talk about owning a house rabbit. I've blogged about Trouble many times before, but I thought I'd go into a bit more detail. People are always fascinated to hear that our rabbit is loose in the house instead of locked up in a cage all day. Those same people wouldn't dream of keeping their cat or dog locked in small cage all day, so why would a rabbit be happy locked up? 

"Yeah.  Why would anyone do that?"

Rabbits are highly intelligent, affectionate, curious and playful. They like to be involved with what's going on with the family, whether it's artwork....


.... or paying bills.


Trouble is as much a member of the family as any dog or cat would be. He follows us around and likes to check out what we're doing. He enjoys spending time with us and hanging out in the same room as us, just like a dog or cat would.  


Here are the questions I hear over and over:

  • Is Trouble litterbox-trained?
Yes. Rabbits are very clean animals, most of whom have excellent litterbox habits. Not only does Trouble use his litterbox perfectly, but he only dirties one small corner of the litterbox.
  • Is it a pain to clean the litterbox?
No, not at all. Cleaning up after a rabbit is FAR more pleasant than cleaning up after a dog or cat.  
  • Does Trouble (or his litterbox) smell bad?
The droppings don't have a scent at all. The urine has a smell, but as long as you change the litter each day, it is very minor. Trouble himself does not smell at all.
  • Does Trouble destroy your stuff?
Rabbits not only like to chew, they NEED to chew. Their teeth are constantly growing. Trouble has chewed a few inappropriate things (most recently, the handle of a tote bag), but he isn't any worse than a puppy would be. As long as we provide fresh branches semi-frequently (his favorites are apple branches), he doesn't go looking for other things to chew.   
  • But what about cords?
Rabbits can chew through cords, mistaking them for the vines they must cut through in the wild. We have rabbit-safe cord covers on the cords in the area he's allowed in. Baby gates block him from areas we can't make rabbit-safe. 
  • Do rabbits do anything other than just sit around? 
I'll let this video answer that question.

There are many great reasons to own a house rabbit. You can find an excellent list here. There is an outstanding pro and con list here as well. If you do decide to adopt a house rabbit, please consider a rescue organization or shelter. There are so many wonderful rabbits out there who need a good home. Before adopting a rabbit (or any other animal), please do your homework. Rabbits have specific needs to keep them healthy and happy. If you adopt a rabbit, you are committing to ten years of providing a loving home.  

Owning a rabbit has brought us more joy than we ever thought possible. Trouble is awesome in every way. If you are considering a house rabbit or just have a question about rabbits, please ask in the comments! 

10 comments:

  1. He is soooooooooooo cute!! I had ONE bad experience with a friends rabbit when I was a teen (they didn't tell me he had to be held a certain way ... and he used his back paws to kick the heck out of my wrist tumor! OUCH and more OUCH!!) ... so I am gun shy of owning one :) One bitten, twice shy and all that :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Trouble HATES to be picked up or held - most rabbits are very uncomfortable unless they have 4 feet on the floor. He likes to snuggle, but it has to be on the floor.

      Delete
  2. Hi Cindy! Trouble is absolutely adorable! I love, LOVE your video! I really like how you answered the frequently asked questions, too!
    Happy Easter to you and your family, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm so glad you did this post, I had the same questions! I didn't know Trouble was able to roam around with you guys, that's awesome!! :) Love the video, too cute! And boy, he is FAST!! Do he and Trevor play chase in the yard? Very, very cool!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When Trouble is in the backyard, he's too busy investigating and/or grazing to play chase. They do chase in the house sometimes.

      Delete
  4. How cute! I loved seeing the video of Trouble :) And all the bunny crafts... fantastic!!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wow. I think you have done an awesome job at making Trouble part of your family. I've always wanted a rabbit.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Trouble is beautiful and I didn't realize he was so active. I also didn't know you could litter train bunnies. Very cool!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh wow! He IS fast! What a cutie! And I didn't realize you could treat rabbits the way you would a dog or cat! Wish I had known this as a child as I would have had a lot more fun w/ the rabbit I had! Very informative and fun post!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love the video! Thank you for your rabbit advocacy.

    ReplyDelete