Rabbits may be easy to love, but they're not quite as easy to care for. These lovable, social animals are wonderful companions for people who are willing to take the time to learn about their needs. Even though providing care for these adorable creatures isn't difficult, rabbits have a long lifespan. They can live up to or more than 10 years with many specific care requirements. Anyone considering adding a rabbit to their family should carefully research books and web sites on rabbit care before making a decision. When you are knowledgeable enough on rabbits you will be ready to have one as a pet.
Every rabbit owner should know that the safest place for a rabbit to live is indoors. Rabbits should never be kept outdoors! Domestic rabbits are different from their wild relatives. They do not tolerate extreme temperatures well, especially in the hot summer months. Even in a safe enclosure, rabbits are at risk from predators. Merely the sight or sound of a nearby wild animal can cause rabbits so much stress that they can suffer a heart attack and literally die of fear.
Whether you decide to let your rabbit roam free in your entire home or just a limited area, it is important that you make everything rabbit-safe. One little bunny can easily find a whole lot of trouble in an average home. Because rabbits like to chew, make sure that all electrical cords are out of reach and outlets are covered. Chewing through a plugged-in cord can result in severe injury or even death. Their chewing can also result in poisoning if the wrong objects are left in the open or in unlocked low cabinets. Aside from obvious toxins like insecticides and cleaning supplies, be aware that common plants such as aloe, azalea, Calla lily, Lily of the Valley, philodendron, and assorted plant bulbs can be poisonous to rabbits.
If kept in a cage, rabbits need a lot of room to easily move around. A rabbit's cage should be a minimum of five times the size of the rabbit. Your rabbit should be able to completely stretch out in his cage and stand up on his hind legs without bumping his head on the top of the cage. Additionally, cages with wire flooring are hard on rabbits' feet, which do not have protective pads like those of dogs and cats. If you place your rabbit in a wire cage, be sure to layer the floor with cardboard or other material. Place a cardboard box in the cage so the bunny has a comfortable place to hide, and respect your animal's need for quiet time. Rabbits usually sleep during the day and night and become playful at dawn and dusk.