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:
Remember the RSPCA’s video Happy Bunnies? (If not, watch it above!) Well, they’re putting together a new Christmas Special of even more happy bunnies, and they want to feature your rabbit!
Here’s how to get involved:
Take a video of your rabbit playing, interacting with toys, animal companions, or people. (Make sure your rabbit is playing naturally and actually enjoying the experience- do not make him/her perform or dress up in costumes for the video.)
Make sure the clip is under 1 minute long and is not too dark or shaky.
The British government is considering replacing current lab animal regulations with a new EU directive that offers less protection. Adopting the EU law could result in reduced inspections in labs, less oversight by ethical committees, inhumane methods of killing, and an increase in suffering by lab animals in the UK.
Every year approximately 10,138 rabbits are used in experiments in the UK. These animals need your help. If 10,000 people raise their voices by September 5th and urge the British government to say no to the EU law, this could prevent a huge step back in animal welfare in the UK. If you live in the UK, you can say no to the consultation by clicking here.
For all UK rabbit owners: the RSPCA wants to hear from you!
Rabbits are the third most popular pet in Britain, and many end up in shelters across the country. The RSPCA is launching a campaign to improve rabbit welfare, and the first step is gathering information about rabbits and their owners currently.
So if you live in the UK, own a rabbit, and care about rabbit welfare, take the survey here: Great Big Rabbit Survey.
If you participate, you can download a free rabbit screensaver and enter a free prize draw for rabbit food and supplies.
In light of the shockingly high number of pet rabbit neglect/abuse cases in England last year, the Royal Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) has launched a campaign called Rabbit Action Week.
During the week of March 28 – April 5, the society hopes to educate pet owners about proper rabbit care. Free health checks, neutering vouchers, and microchipping will be available at various venues throughout England.