It’s Rabbit Awareness Week! People in the UK can find free rabbit vet clinics in their area to get their rabbits a full health check.
This week also coincides with a new study about rabbit food conducted at Edinburgh University. Researchers have confirmed that muesli-style rabbit food cause major dental and digestive health issues in rabbits. The study provides a compelling argument that pet stores should stop carrying muesli-style products. According to Professor Anna Meredith, who conducted the study, “Vets have suspected for a number of years that feeding muesli-style foods could lead to health issues in rabbits, and now we have the proof.”
What should you feed your rabbit? The main staple in a rabbit’s diet is hay. Learn more about a proper pet rabbit diet in our article, What to Feed Your House Rabbit. You can get more tips on providing a happy and healthy home for your bunny in our Rabbit Care, Bunny Behavior, Rabbit Health, and New to Rabbits sections.
Learn more about Rabbit Awareness Week and the muesli food study here:
A fifth edition of the House Rabbit Handbook by Marinell Harriman, founder of the House Rabbit Society, has just been released!
The new edition includes more photos as well as recent discoveries and insights from caregivers across the continent.
If you live in the Richmond, CA area, there will be a book release party at the HRS Rabbit Center on May 11 from 1-4pm. You can meet Marinell and get your book signed!
Buy the fifth edition online at the Drollery Press website.
Spring has sprung here in Connecticut! After a frosty March, April has finally brought some warmer temperatures to the area. This means more time outdoors!
Have you started a bunny garden yet? If not, now’s the perfect time to get some veggies growing! So far, we’ve planted a couple different types of romaine and greenleaf lettuces, bok choy, and Paris market carrots. I also have a plan to plant some oregano and some mint in a raised bed and let them battle it out. If you’re new to gardening, read our tips to starting your own bunny garden. It’s not too difficult to grow a few basics for your rabbits – especially if you include dandelions as one of your crops!
Springtime also means more wild baby bunny sightings! Read our article about what to do if you find an orphaned baby bunny in your yard.
Don’t let this happen to you and your bunnies! This infographic by DugDug highlights the importance of spaying/neutering your pet rabbits:
Pam of Sweet Binks shared a great message about how live rabbits are not appropriate Easter gifts.
ABC6 – Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather
For more information, see:
Our big box of Timothy hay from Small Pet Select arrived today, and needless to say, the buns were very excited. They could smell the fragrant contents before I even opened the box. Cosette decided I was too slow opening it, so she started to help. She’s very good at unwrapping gifts.
She became a blur when I finally opened the box, swiping the first bite.
Coco decided he’d have better luck on the other side.
He happily munched away…
…until he realized that the lid had created a makeshift tunnel. He can never resist a good tunnel.
Cos started to wonder why I was taking photos. The clicking was ruining her dining experience.
“Still here, eh?”
I took the hint, and turned off the camera so they could eat in peace.
You can buy this hay online for your buns at Small Pet Select. Their boxes of Timothy hay come in various sizes all the way up to 60 pounds. (Click on the link for Timothy Hay on the left to see the larger size options.)
On the topic of hay, be sure to check out our article about the importance of hay in a rabbit’s diet.
Congratulations to Amber who won our Bunny Holiday Card Giveaway!
We had some fantastic responses to the question in our giveaway, What’s your best piece of advice for new bunny owners? Amber’s piece of advice was:
I always tell new rabbit owners: when trying to understand bunny habits, think of a rabbit more like a cat than a large hamster. They are much more curious, interactive and clever than I think most people anticipate.
Here are a few more responses:
- Be patient! It takes bunnies so much longer to trust and form bonds than a cat or a dog, but it’s so rewarding once they do. I also preach the glory of cord protectors.
- Spend time with your buns. They are not cage animals. I’ve found that the personalities of our two rabbits really came out when we allowed them to hop around the house freely. Also, if you have access to fresh hay, buy it! The hay at the pet stores is expensive and my rabbits don’t really care for it much. But the fresh hay I buy at the MSPCA @ Nevins Farm, they absolutely love!
- Make sure you potty train your new bun! And feed him or her lots of hay
- Read lots of bunny books and articles to be sure you’re getting different perspectives! Also, get a big box and cut out a slot so they can jump in and fill it with newspaper and cardboard to protect your carpet and furniture!!!
- Get in touch with your local House Rabbit Society chapter. Its always good to be a part of a community of experienced bunny people who can answer any question you have.
For all the great answers, see the comments on our giveaway post.
Rabbit Awareness Week 2012 takes place September 15-22. Each year during this special week, vets, pet retailers, welfare charities and manufacturers in the UK work together to promote the proper care of pet rabbits.
Thousands of vets throughout the UK offer free health clinics, while retailers and rescues offer fun and educational events.
If you live in the UK, you can learn about these special events or submit photos of your bunny at www.rabbitawarenessweek.co.uk.
Every year, International Rabbit Day is held on the fourth Saturday or Sunday of September. This year, that weekend falls on September 22-23.
International Rabbit Day is a day to consider the welfare of all rabbits — to promote the proper care of pet bunnies so they can live happy and healthy lives. We’d also like to call attention to the joy and enrichment that well-cared-for rabbits can bring to the lives of their human companions.
Below are a few articles from My House Rabbit that fit the spirit of the day:
What is the mainstay of a rabbit’s diet? Carrots? Nope! Rabbit pellets? Wrong! The right answer is hay. The RSPCA is spreading the word with a new campaign called Hay Fever!, which educates the public on the right foods to give to their pet rabbits.
According to the RSPCA:
In fact hay and grass are the key components [of a bunny's diet], and a new study commissioned by the RSPCA shows a lack of hay and grass in rabbits’ diets is one of the most important welfare issues affecting them today. Indeed, in a recent poll only 8% of rabbit owners knew hay and grass are the most important parts of a rabbit’s diet.
It is vital that rabbits are given a hay-based diet to provide fiber for good digestive health and roughage for good dental health. A hay-based diet helps prevent potentially deadly conditions such as GI stasis, in which the digestive system comes to a halt, or poopy butt, which can lead to fly strike.
For more information about the Hay Fever! campaign, see the RSPCA website.
You can also read about the importance of a hay-based diet in our articles: