Domestic rabbit

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Domestic rabbits

The domestic rabbit is the domesticated form of the European Rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus).

Domestic rabbits are kept as livestock, for meat or their fur; or they are kept as pets. Like other domesticated animals, there are many different breeds. The most popular rabbit breed is the Netherland Dwarf rabbit. Another popular breed is the Mini Lop. The largest rabbit breed is the Flemish Giant rabbit. The Flemish Giant rabbit can weigh up to 19.8 lbs (9 kg). Most domestic rabbits live for 7 to 9 years, but they can become up to 15 years old if you take good care of them and if they have good genes.

Cage[change | change source]

Domestic rabbits usually live in a cages. Several rabbits can live in one cage, but if so they should be spayed or neutered. Spayed or neutered rabbits are less likely to fight, and they can't have babies. You should clean the rabbit cage as soon as it gets dirty. Rabbits usually poop in a corner which makes it easy to remove.

Diet[change | change source]

Rabbits are grass-eaters. The rabbit's diet should consist of 80-90% grass or hay. A rabbit can feed on hay and a little rabbit pellets all the year round. Because fruit and vegetables contain a lot of fructose (fruit sugar), you should only give your rabbit it from time to time. It's good for the rabbit's teeth to have sticks to chew on. Rabbits should have free access to hay so that their digestion works well. You should avoid giving your rabbit muesli-style foods, because they contain too much fat. Fresh water should be accessible for the rabbit at all times.

Health[change | change source]

Overgrown teeth are a big problem in rabbits. Also, if the owner doesn't clean the cage on a regular basis, the rabbit can get sick. True diarrhoea is uncommon in rabbits, but if your rabbit gets it, you should contact your vet immediately. If the rabbit has a severe stomach or intestine infection, it can die within 24 hours.

Breeding[change | change source]

A rabbit gets sexually mature by 3-6 months of age. Large breeds get sexually mature earlier than dwarf breeds. Rabbits should not be bred too early though. A female rabbit should be at least 8 months old, and not older than 12 months, when you breed her for the first time. A rabbit can have 2-15 babies.

Other websites[change | change source]