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Suitable housing for rabbits

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by Nina, Nov 13, 2007.


  1. Nina

    Nina PetForums VIP

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    I would ask all rabbit owners to please spare a thought for your little friends, and chose your housing carefully.

    There are far too many pet shops selling inadequate size hutches, with little or no room for them to turn around, let along stretch their legs. Please also remember that rabbits live in communities and ideally should not live alone. It really is worth that extra few pounds to insure that your bunny is happy and healthy.
     
  2. colliemerles

    colliemerles PetForums VIP

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    mine is on his own, maybe i should get him a friend,
     
  3. Vixen

    Vixen PetForums Junior

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    a female and male pair are much easier to bond than a male and male. However Id suggest getting them spayed and neutrd unless you want more!:)
     
  4. Debbie

    Debbie PetForums VIP

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    I have to agree with you here - why do pet shops still sell those little cages that are not big enough???
     
  5. colliemerles

    colliemerles PetForums VIP

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    thank you, i will get him a friend, but yes i will have her done, (dont want to end up with hundreds of them, ):D
     
  6. dh.dti

    dh.dti Guest

    wise idea lol...
     
  7. colliemerles

    colliemerles PetForums VIP

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    yes ,two will be enough,:)
     
  8. Brainless

    Brainless Guest

    When I bred and showed Rabbits the rule of thumb for hutches was a square foot of space for every pound of weight of Rabbit, so most of the commercially made ones are not even big enough for a 4 pound Dwarf. Most are far too narrow even if they look tall and long enough from the front. The Rabbit shoudl be able to lie fully across the narrowest side.

    I used to Have English Rabbits which are 6 to 8 pounds as adults. I had tiered hutches which were 3 feet x 2 feet deep x 18 inches high for the single rabbits, and 4 feet x 3 feet for the females who would sometimes have babies.
     
  9. Nina

    Nina PetForums VIP

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    I cannot understand why the RSPCA do nothing to stop these tiny hutches being sold!

    In my line of work, it is so frustrating to see rabbits suffering like this, and some hardly see the light of day!

    Great to see such positive comments.
     
  10. cavy_gal

    cavy_gal Banned

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    I have a two tier cage for my rabbit which was about £100, but at prices people can afford, they're going to go after the single teir and have a large run for the rabbits in the garden or allowing the rabbit to stretch its legs inside the house. Some I've seen, that are big enough for about 4 rabbits can come to over £200, theres no way someone should have to pay for a hutch at that price where they get damp and rotten outside. I've had to replace hutches that have become damp and rotten (not just because of rain but because of the mess they leave, it soaks into the wood and theres no way you can get it out) and they've only been about £30 to replace in the past.

    My rabbit also is extremely used to being on his own, he has been for 5 yrs, he's a grumpy rabbit and hates anyone going into his hutch so a friend, thats a huge "no no" lol, though it would be lovely to see him with a friend, I was tempted to get a female for him possibly to help him calm down, the cage is big enough, he's been done, but I wouldn't be able to buy a new hutch just like that if things went wrong. Nice thought but not for my bunny :)
     
  11. Brainless

    Brainless Guest

    There is no need to have a problem with rotting hutches. When you get them you should buy a tin of bitumen paint, the kind of paint metal drainpipes used to be painted with. This is waterproof and will prevent any wet penetrating the floor or walls.

    It doesn't smell and dries to a gloss finish which soon matts down, or can be sanded a little to take of the shine. A couple of coats on the floors and about 6 inches up the sides will do the trick.

    Also few hutches have enough roof overhang to protect the sides from weather, so either roofing them over with a larger felted roof, or keeping them in a shed or constructing a car port/pergola type structure under which they can be sited will protect them and also have the advantage of airflow which can be a problem in sheds in the summer.

    If enough woodshavings are used to be honest hutches should nver be wet.

    Most bunnies use one corner of their hutch for weeing so you can clean this corner every other day and shift the rest of the dry shavings to this area and top up, with a full clean out once a week.
     
  12. Nina

    Nina PetForums VIP

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    I know that you can treat a hutch, but you must be extremely careful that nothing is toxic to your rabbit.

    I agree that large hutches can be very expensive, but people should budget for this before buying rabbits. In my line of work, you really do come across such unsuitable living arrangements for animals, and my advice was really to be taken as a whole. Of course their are grumpy rabbits that find company a good excuse to vent their anger, but on the whole it should be remembered that they are community animals, and living alone is really not an ideal solution.

    I am sure that the majority of people, will do their research and costings before buying a pet, also taking into account the cost of veterinary fees, food and arrangements for when you are away. The expense of owning a pet can really add to your household budget, so please consider this before buying, not to mention the time and cleaning out etc.
     
  13. cavy_gal

    cavy_gal Banned

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    I really think its a bad idea to use any type of chemicals on or around an animals home unless it was strictly made for the animal itself. We could move the hutch out of the rain into th utility room but my dad would never agree to that and besides, it'd upset his body temperature being indoors. We have a garage but its full of stuff I really wouldn't trust around an animal.

    And to Nina, I disagree entirely. If a rabbit and guinea-pig living together is frowned upon by so-called "experts" because a guinea-pig can be kicked and injured, then surely another rabbit can be kicked and ingured by another rabbit?? My dog is even terrified of my rabbit, he's beaten him across the nose and my dog ran off with my rabbit chasing him. He's not what you'd call a "happy bunny" lol, he's arrogant and stuck up and very territorial so I wouldn't wanna put another rabbits life in danger with him. I don't believe rabbits make very good pets anyway, but it all depends on the rabbit itself.
     
  14. Nina

    Nina PetForums VIP

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    Unsure exactly what you are disagreeing with!

    It is a fact that rabbits live in communities, and in general would prefer company.

    I have seen a rabbit and g. pig living quite happily together, but again as a rule of thumb, it does not make for an ideal relationship. I have known several cases throughout my working life where g. pigs have been severely injured by rabbits, and can only speak as I find.

    You state that rabbits do not make good pets! Strange comment to make since they are the third most popular pet with an estimated 1.5 million in this country today, and make an ideal pet for young children.

    Rabbits do not fair well in cold draughty conditions, and rely on their owners to provide the correct living conditions. They much prefer the shelter of a garage in Winter, to the extreme cold outside.

    I totally agree however, with your comments regarding cleaning products for hutches, so at least we do have a little common ground here.
     
  15. jo-ann

    jo-ann PetForums Junior

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    i think that all rabbits should have a very larg cage and some were to run i have 3 giants and 3 lionheads
     
  16. AnimalLoversWeb

    AnimalLoversWeb PetForums Junior

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    This is a run rather than a hutch but if you have some other form of covering it is a very spacious area for rabbits (or other small animals):

    [​IMG]

    We keep our rabbits in an unused stable so lack of a roof is not a problem, they are male and unfortunately despite neutering will not get along and we wanted them to have the maximum space that we could.

    So we need 3 separate housings and the above run is massive. 6 foot long, 4 foot wide and 2 foot high! We found that the height was the main area that the large retail outlets were ignoring as a rabbit needs room to stand tall comfortably occasionally.
    We got 3 of these for £45 each from a supplier on ebay and think they are fantastic. This is cheaper than much smaller and poorer quality runs in the retail outlets.
    Our rabbits also get rotated to an outdoor dog run for access to fresh grass daily as well.
     
  17. Leanne1989

    Leanne1989 PetForums Junior

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    House bunnies are great!! I have 2 of my netherlands inside and they are so sweet. they use there litter tray and never chew at all. I brought a ppuppy pen for them to go in while im out and at night it cost £45 and is really big! I hate the fact the RSPCA arn't doing anything at all to stop these tiny hutches...i saw a hutch the other day not big enough for a mouse!!:mad:
     
  18. IzzyTwig

    IzzyTwig PetForums Senior

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    I've resorted to building my own hutches, cages and runs because pet shop one are either too small or incredibly expensive. I get quite upset when I see people buying a cage only just suitable for a guinnea pig to keep 2 rabbits in :(
    The problem is not the pet shops selling small cages but the lack of education out there telling people that rabbits need a lot of space. So as people buy the small ones and not the big ones the pet shops will stock more small ones as they're better sellers.
     
  19. Nina

    Nina PetForums VIP

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    Lots of people are now resorting to building their own hutches. Not only this, I have clients that erect amazing chicken houses. If people have the time to do this themselves, it puts a stop to these unscrupulous people who sell such small hutches.
     
  20. -ange-

    -ange- PetForums Newbie

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    I do agree the hutches in some shops are way to small, but them you look at the ones that are the right size and then you look at the price!! They can be way to pricey. And sadly people pay it coz they want the best for their bunny.

    I have mine made to order and they are far better than the shop ones, and not pricey at all for the work that goes into them.

    I have 14 rabbits, but not all are in pairs. Some just don't like sharing their hutch with anyone, but love playing in a run with company. And then I have 2 bucks that will kill any of the other bucks if they get in their way!! But are the sweetest things on their own.
    So not all rabbits can be in with other rabbits, guinea pigs are good for keeping them company but I would only do that if the rabbit is small like a Netherland Dwarf or a mini lop. I have pigs in with a netherland dwarf - I'm sure he thinks he'sa pig too!!!
     
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