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Rabbits, advice please......

(13 Posts)
npg1 Thu 16-Jul-09 15:27:57

Hi everyone. Well my DD (nearly 7yrs old) really wants a rabbit and I would love one to. We also have a nearly 3yr old.

I am after advice about which sex is best, how many to get, 1 or is 2 better? what type of breed, I like lops.

Also had a quick look at hutches/ runs etc and they are so expensive! What type would you recommend? I like the ones with hutch ontop and a run underneath and I also saw a triangular run with a hutch bit on the end, would this be suitable or is it better to have a seperate run and hutch?

Thanks!

FernieB Fri 17-Jul-09 08:53:26

If they're going to be outside you're better getting 2 so they have company. In which case try and get siblings (but not 2 males) and they should ideally be neutered. Hutches are expensive but you only buy it once! Go for the biggest you can afford and have space for - the more space they have to hop the happier they are.

A lot of the rabbit websites will tell you that rabbits are not the most ideal pets for young kids as they are not generally fond of being handled. However, my twins were 6 when we got our houserabbit and she gets on fine with them (she has got plenty of places to hide if she wants to avoid them).

Good luck and enjoy your new pets.

beautifulgirls Fri 17-Jul-09 13:57:26

They should be vaccinated for myxymatosis and hvd so do consider this additional expense too. Diet is very important for gut and dental health. Complete pelleted food and food quality hay is essential plus fresh food and grass for vitamins too.
Not all rabbits get along well together, even siblings. Neutering is advised for boys and girls and can help reduce fighting risk. Also be aware it can be quite difficult to accurately sex young rabbits so you may think you are getting one gender only to find the opposite, or if you are unlucky and get two rabbits maybe one of each when you had thought it was two the same!

bedlambeast Fri 17-Jul-09 19:52:17

Message withdrawn

foofi Fri 17-Jul-09 19:55:27

Why not 2 males FernieB? Our 2 males get on really well - we were told not to get 2 females as they are very territorial and fight - friend has also had that experience.

We have lionhead - and really I would say they are too fluffy - difficult to keep knot-free and sometimes can't see if you don't trim round their eyes!

Be prepared - there is a LOT of poo with rabbits!

whispywhisp Sat 18-Jul-09 15:14:32

Definitely agree with getting myxi and VHD jabs - need to be done about 3 wks apart and done annually and yes it can be expensive and if you're going to get two rabbits obviously double the cost - some vets may give you a slight discount if done together. I've always found male rabbits to be quite docile but I've always had mine neutered otherwise they're pretty good at spraying! Food...definitely suggest pellet only - rabbits can be quite selective with their eating and pellet only stops that plus includes the necessary vitamins. Always make sure they have stacks of fresh hay - hay contains vitamin c which they must have plus munching on hay helps to keep their teeth down and rabbits can be very prone to dental problems - ie overgrown teeth which if left untreated can prove fatal. They must be kept in a hutch that they can stand up on their hind legs in - otherwise a too-smaller hutch can cause joint problems. Having two rabbits is a great idea and yes they can help each other keep warm on the colder nights. If I were getting two I would look at getting siblings - so atleast they are used to living with each other already. Rabbits can be a full-time job - they need very regular cleaning out and must be kept in clean hutches - they can be prone to fly-strike - ie where the flies lay eggs on/around their back ends and maggots infest...this is partly due to lack of cleaning on the owners part and also restriction of room in a hutch or a runny tum. Fly-strike, again if left untreated, can also be fatal.

Other than that...I have thoroughly enjoyed having the many rabbits that I've had - they're lovely animals and make fantastic pets. I don't have any now - I have guinea pigs instead which also make brilliant pets especially as they are so noisy when they know food is about!

notjustapuppymum Sat 18-Jul-09 15:23:21

In my experience male rabbits have a nicer, more tolerant nature than female rabbits. One female I had actually used to growl!!

whispywhisp Sat 18-Jul-09 16:08:29

I had a female rabbit that used to kick me and growl too....yet I handled her every day - she would only ever let me pick her up too - I think DH was actually scared of her! I have always found male bunnies more handleable.

whispywhisp Sat 18-Jul-09 16:10:24

Oh and a hint with runs....the wooden variety, not diarrhoea that is!

I tend to steer clear of triangular runs - the ones with the covered ends. Getting an animal out of a triangular run is quite difficult cos they tend to run to the end which is enclosed and you can't get them out...if you do buy a triangular run then buy an igloo that they can run into and you can lift the igloo up with them in it so much easier.

The runs I've had have always been the rectangular ones with a fully opening top. That way you can climb in and catch them/lift them out.

fruitshootsandheaves Sat 18-Jul-09 16:24:25

get a guinea pig

We have both rabbits and guinea pigs, and the piggies are much nicer to handle and cuddle IMO

whispywhisp Sat 18-Jul-09 16:28:34

We've got 5 guineas...they are lovely and you don't have the cost of vaccinations etc and they are such characters!

npg1 Sun 19-Jul-09 18:07:02

Hi everyone, jusy giving you an update.

Friday we got 2 lionheads, yes very fluffly but very cute! They are 9 weeks old. I have them in a big hutch together and I have got a big wooden rectangular run for them. So far so good, they play, clean and lay with one and other although today the 'definate' girl has been trying to hump the other one. Is this normal even for same sex bunnies?

The lady i got them from said she is certain they are the same sex and showed me one of them and it looked like a girl. I have tried myself to see the other one but cant quite get hold of her properly and push down in the right area.

I will take them to the vet in a couple of weeks to have them sexed and talk about jabs/ neutering etc.

Thanks everyone.

sharonanne Sun 19-Jul-09 20:05:43

we have two females and they try humping each other we were worried but got them checked by the vet and they are def females

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