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How do you protect rabbits from foxes?

(22 Posts)
dongles Fri 15-May-09 19:01:05

We live in an urban area with lots of foxes, but my DS really wants a rabbit for his next birthday present. I keep hearing horror stories about rabbits being taken by foxes, and wondered how this generally happens. Is it at night and from a hutch or run? Is there anything that can be done to protect them? Thanks.

PaulaAtMummyKnowsBest Fri 15-May-09 22:41:48

watching this one closely as we have just put our rabbit outside

fruitshootsandheaves Fri 15-May-09 22:45:15

We've never lost any of our rabbits to a fox (lost one to a weasel once which got through the wire) ours are in a large covered run attached to a hutch all on paving slabs as they made too much mess of the lawn with their digging.

GrimmaTheNome Fri 15-May-09 22:50:20

Our neighbours seem to put their hutch into the garage at night - don't know if thats because of foxes or cats or just because they want to give them more shelter, but maybe that would work.

dongles Sat 16-May-09 07:25:07

Thanks everyone. Has anyone actually lost a rabbit to a fox? My plan is for a secure hutch at night, but to leave them in a run on grass for most of the day, including when we go out.

foofi Sat 16-May-09 07:28:24

We have foxes around - even during the day. I puts the rabbits in a run outside as often as possible but I don't leave them when we're not here. During the night I bring them inside. I don't think there's any such thing as a fox-safe run.

cornsilk Sat 16-May-09 07:42:38

Let it live in the house.

dongles Sat 16-May-09 11:30:45

Yes, quite tempted to bring them inside during the winter and will attempt to toilet train them but the idea of randum, unseen wees is not appealing.

thesockmonsterofdoom Sat 16-May-09 11:20:12

have a look at this www.omlet.co.uk/products_services/products_services.php?view=Rabbits I have one for my chickens and it is great, dont know much about rabbits tough.

cornsilk Sat 16-May-09 11:53:19

They are easy to train. They won't wee all over the place!

dongles Sat 16-May-09 15:50:15

That eglu looks nice, but a bit pricey for me at the moment.

PaulaAtMummyKnowsBest Mon 18-May-09 17:43:06

my rabbit is housetrained as he has been living int he house.

We have him outside now that the weather is warmer and when the weather turns, he'll come back in the house to live.

Rabbits are very clean and will alsways toilet in the same place - ours has a corner in his hutch. He can be hopping around the house quite merrily but always returns to his hutch to toilet.

PaulaAtMummyKnowsBest Mon 18-May-09 17:43:07

my rabbit is housetrained as he has been living int he house.

We have him outside now that the weather is warmer and when the weather turns, he'll come back in the house to live.

Rabbits are very clean and will alsways toilet in the same place - ours has a corner in his hutch. He can be hopping around the house quite merrily but always returns to his hutch to toilet.

sathanas Mon 09-Aug-10 18:56:42

I lost all three of my baby rabbits to a fox on Friday night. The cage was locked with a bolt lock (recommended fox resistant) but it still got in a killed them. We had only had them for 15 days and it is devestating. Going to get better locks and put bungee bands on all the doors too. Have been told that if a man wees in the garden it acts as a deterrant..

Lizcat Tue 10-Aug-10 13:25:49

I am another rabbit owner who has given up keeping rabbits in an urban garden as I have had 4 rabbits brutally murdered in the last three years. We had purchased a £250 cage that was supposed to be fox proof and unfortunately was not, my DH wees regularly on the compost heap (whole other thread). I tried everything but our fox is just too determined. goes of to weep quietly in a corner

spacedog Wed 11-Aug-10 19:42:51

If you're planning to keep a solitary rabbit they should be a house rabbit. Rabbits need company to exist happily.
If you buy two you can keep them safely in a garden but you'll need a large well made hutch with shiplap, weldmesh and sliding bolts. They will need min 6x6x2ft hutch and 24 hour access to min 6x4x2 ft run (weldmesh), based on concrete or slabs so foxes don't dig in or rabbit out. Don't leave them on grass if you're not there.
I've kept rabbits for years in an area rife with urban foxes (inc mothers and cubs living at the bottom of the garden) and haven't lost one yet following the above rules.

Nattynar Fri 13-Aug-10 13:50:26

I've had rabbits for over 20 years. Only once has a fox got into a hutch. Luckily my brother saw this happen, and the rabbit escaped unharmed. Unlike mr foxy who my dad made sure never killed another bunny.

Make sure the cage has fox proof wire, and bolt locks as others have said. You could always keep the rabbit in a shed, which you lock at night.

We always sleep with one ear open, and actively chase, shout, throw shoes at any foxes we've seen near our house. I do leave mine out during the day but when I'm in. As for runs, 2 of my baby rabbits that I gave to a friend, were killed midday whilst my friend was at home when they were in the run. At least when the bunnies are loose, they have a fighting chance of escaping, and find somewhere to hide.

ratspeaker Wed 18-Aug-10 16:43:45

We have a house rabbit, uses his box. Does have a tendency to nibble the wallpaper but otherwise he's OK. Oh and need to keep cables out his reach.
He gets on alright with our cat too.

FleurDelacour Wed 18-Aug-10 17:04:02

We also have two house rabbits. You just need to cable proof the rooms they have access to. They are very clean. Super pets. They get a lot more attention if they are inside the house so you get more pleasure from them.

143JB Tue 24-May-11 20:53:31

I had 5 rabbits, 3 were found dead this morning in the garden. There was no blood or signs of injury but when taken to the vets to see what had happened they said it was a fox. Looking very closely, we could just make out two small holes where one rabbit had been bitten but the other two had only internal holes. The fox must of just neatly killed my rabbits but then left them, I don't understand why they would this.

AprilSunshine Sat 04-Jun-11 11:14:15

My rabbits were killed by stoats/weasels. You can tell with these as they always have two small puncture holes at the back of the neck. I will always keep rabbits in a hutch in the garage now and put them in a run in the garden only when supervised

H007 Sun 03-Jul-11 08:03:16

I have three bunnies which are outside they do get regular visits by Mr Fox however our deterrent is a dog... Doesn't matter what time of night the rabbits start thumping dog wakes up and is at the back door going nuts. If Mr Fox doesn't run away then the door is open and the dog is off. He never comes back more than once a night.

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