Friday, 11 September 2009

Rabbit Housing

Rabbits need an enclosure that is at least 4 times the length of the rabbit. Typical enclosures are x-pens, multiple-level condos, large dog cages, a room, and even a whole house.

A puppy training folding fence 26 or more inches tall serves as a simple pen, called an exercise pen or x-pen. It provides more free space and is easier to clean than some traditional cages. Multiple x-pens can be joined to enlarge the enclosed area. An x-pen’s portability is useful for travel with rabbits and for introduction and bonding.

A customizable pen is a multiple-level condo. The rabbit condo can be made by using cable ties and storage cubes available at home supply stores. Corrugated plastic and carpet remnants are commonly used as flooring. A multiple-level condo provides the rabbit plenty of jumping options and variety. The owner chooses the dimensions and layout.

Another type of pen is a large dog cage. House rabbit organizations caution against using a grid floor, as this will cause sore hocks (sores on the bottom of the rabbit’s back feet). Carpet or linoleum can be added to a cage that has a grid floor to protect the rabbit’s feet, or sometimes the grid can be removed.

A rabbit-proofed room outfitted with a litter box, toys, and food can also serve as an enclosure. Rooms shared with humans, such as a bedroom or a kitchen, are typical. Where it is practical to rabbit-proof an entire house, a house rabbit can freely roam the house as cats and dogs do. Depending on the rabbit, this could require additional litter boxes, possibly one per room or per floor.

Within its enclosure, a house rabbit is provided a small shelter to hide and rest in. Cardboard boxes work well both as shelters and chew toys so long as they do not provide sufficient elevation that the rabbit could jump out of a pen.

taken from :

Rabbit House Proofing and Toys

A house rabbit needs at least two hours daily out of his cage to run and explore. He is provided an area where he is free to roam in which hazards (to house or bunny) have been mitigated. For example, to prevent electrocution, an owner will hide electrical cords or cover them with flexible clear tubing (slit lengthwise), such as that purchased in the plumbing section of a home store. Also of concern is rabbits’ tendency to chew some types of woodwork and carpet edges. This problem is mitigated by providing something in the room that will attract the rabbit to chew instead, such as an old phone book, large pieces of paper, or a toilet paper roll.

Despite the hazards, a house does provide an inherent shelter. House rabbit owners do not leave their rabbits outside unattended, since predators may attack, or there may be pesticides that can harm the rabbit.

House rabbits need to play to keep their minds active and their bodies trim. Rotating through a collection of toys provides variety and keeps their interest. Toys must be non-toxic and include cardboard boxes with holes cut in them, toilet paper rolls stuffed with hay, PVC pipe to tunnel through, balls with holes for food to tumble out, plastic rattles for the rabbit to toss, straw mats, or untreated wicker baskets to chew. Some rabbits enjoy cloths that are dangled into their cage (though supervision with these materials is mandatory should the rabbit ingest any of it). All house rabbits need wood toys that they can chew on to wear down their teeth, which will continue to grow to malocclusion if they have nothing to chew. Toys can be purchased at a pet store, improvised from paper refuse, or they can be handmade.

taken from :

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Rabbits, a funny pet

As a pet, rabbits was ranked first in comparison with the other animals. Maybe this is because rabbits are so unique. Rabbits behaviour is lively, hair color and the pattern is different, and don’t forget, rabbits is so cute. It ears are long and mostly upright to the top, made rabbits appearance catch our attention.

Most human love the uniqueness. Uniqueness always arouse inspiration. Inspiration always encourage the dynamic life, to changes towards a better and advanced life.

Rabbits, a beginning

In The New Rabbit Handbook, Rabbits (Orytolagus Cuniculus forma domestica) and Hare (Lepus europaeua) came from Europe, then spread across the globe.

Rabbits is the member of Logomorpha Order and Leporide family. It’s body length is around 40 - 50 cm (16 - 20 inches) and body weight around 3 kg. Rabbits have a long incisors. That incisors is used to cut and dug the ground. Rabbits love to hide under the ground. Rabbits exist almost everywhere in the world. People love to hunt or pet it, including you isn’t it?

taken from :

Rabbit Diet and eating habits

Rabbits are herbivores who feed by grazing on grass, forbs, and leafy weeds. In consequence, their diet contains large amounts of cellulose, which is hard to digest. Rabbits solve this problem by passing two distinct types of feces: hard droppings and soft black viscous pellets, the latter of which are immediately eaten. Rabbits reingest their own droppings (rather than chewing the cud as do cows and many other herbivores) to digest their food further and extract sufficient nutrients.

Rabbits graze heavily and rapidly for roughly the first half hour of a grazing period (usually in the late afternoon), followed by about half an hour of more selective feeding. In this time, the rabbit will also excrete many hard fecal pellets, being waste pellets that will not be reingested. If the environment is relatively non-threatening, the rabbit will remain outdoors for many hours, grazing at intervals. While out of the burrow, the rabbit will occasionally reingest its soft, partially digested pellets; this is rarely observed, since the pellets are reingested as they are produced. Reingestion is most common within the burrow between 8 o’clock in the morning and 5 o’clock in the evening, being carried out intermittently within that period.

Hard pellets are made up of hay-like fragments of plant cuticle and stalk, being the final waste product after redigestion of soft pellets. These are only released outside the burrow and are not reingested. Soft pellets are usually produced several hours after grazing, after the hard pellets have all been excreted. They are made up of micro-organisms and undigested plant cell walls.

The chewed plant material collects in the large cecum, a secondary chamber between the large and small intestine containing large quantities of symbiotic bacteria that help with the digestion of cellulose and also produce certain B vitamins. The pellets are about 56% bacteria by dry weight, largely accounting for the pellets being 24.4% protein on average. These pellets remain intact for up to six hours in the stomach; the bacteria within continue to digest the plant carbohydrates. The soft feces form here and contain up to five times the vitamins of hard feces. After being excreted, they are eaten whole by the rabbit and redigested in a special part of the stomach. This double-digestion process enables rabbits to use nutrients that they may have missed during the first passage through the gut, and thus ensures that maximum nutrition is derived from the food they eat. This process serves the same purpose within the rabbit as rumination does in cattle and sheep.

Rabbits are incapable of vomiting due to the physiology of their digestive system.

original article from Wikipedia

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Rabbits as Pets

Pet rabbits kept indoors are referred to as house rabbits. House rabbits typically have an indoor pen or cage and a rabbit-safe place to run and exercise, such as an exercise pen, living room or family room. Rabbits can be trained to use a litter box and some can learn to come when called. Domestic rabbits that do not live indoors can also often serve as companions for their owners, typically living in an easily accessible hutch outside the home. Some pet rabbits live in outside hutches during the day for the benefit of fresh air and natural daylight and are brought inside at night.

Whether indoor or outdoor, pet rabbits’ pens are often equipped with enrichment activities such as shelves, tunnels, balls, and other toys. Pet rabbits are often provided additional space in which to get exercise, simulating the open space a rabbit would traverse in the wild. Exercise pens or lawn pens are often used to provide a safe place for rabbits to run.

A pet rabbit’s diet typically consists of unlimited Timothy hay, a small amount of pellets, and a small portion of fresh vegetables.

Rabbits are social animals. Rabbits as pets can find their companionship with a variety of creatures, including humans, other rabbits, guinea pigs, and sometimes even cats and dogs. Rabbits do not make good pets for small children because they do not know how to stay quiet, calm, and gentle around rabbits. As prey animals, rabbits are alert, timid creatures that startle easily. They have fragile bones, especially in their backs, that require support on the belly and bottom when picked up. Children 10 years old and older usually have the maturity required to care for a rabbit.

The service and therapy animals organization Delta Society has used pet rabbits as therapy for adults and children since the 1970s.

taken from Wikipedia

Rabbits Clasification

Rabbits and hares were formerly classified in the order Rodentia (rodent) until 1912, when they were moved into a new order Lagomorpha. This order also includes pikas.

Order Lagomorpha

Family Leporidae

1. Genus Pentalagus
Amami Rabbit/Ryūkyū Rabbit, Pentalagus furnessi

2. Genus Bunolagus
Bushman Rabbit, Bunolagus monticularis

3. Genus Nesolagus
a. Sumatran Striped Rabbit, Nesolagus netscheri
b. Annamite Striped Rabbit, Nesolagus timminsi

4. Genus Romerolagus
Volcano Rabbit, Romerolagus diazi

5. Genus Brachylagus
Pygmy Rabbit, Brachylagus idahoensis

6. Genus Sylvilagus
a. Forest Rabbit, Sylvilagus brasiliensis
b. Dice’s Cottontail, Sylvilagus dicei
c. Brush Rabbit, Sylvilagus bachmani
d. San Jose Brush Rabbit, Sylvilagus mansuetus
e. Swamp Rabbit, Sylvilagus aquaticus
f. Marsh Rabbit, Sylvilagus palustris
g. Eastern Cottontail, Sylvilagus floridanus
h. New England Cottontail, Sylvilagus transitionalis
i. Mountain Cottontail, Sylvilagus nuttallii
j. Desert Cottontail, Sylvilagus audubonii
k. Omilteme Cottontail, Sylvilagus insonus
l. Mexican Cottontail, Sylvilagus cunicularis
m. Tres Marias Rabbit, Sylvilagus graysoni

7. Genus Oryctolagus
European Rabbit, Oryctolagus cuniculus

8. Genus Poelagus
Central African Rabbit, Poelagus marjorita
Three other genera in family, regarded as hares, not rabbits

hope this help..