Is a Rabbit the Right Pet to Suit Your Lifestyle?


Bunny rabbits are the most underrated, misunderstood, and underestimated pet animal across the United States and beyond. Even though small animals, including rabbits, guinea pigs, and hamsters, are the third most popular group of pets in the country, so many people irresponsibly keep them caged in a small pen, which frankly is tantamount to animal cruelty.

Rabbits are curious, mischievous, adventurous, intelligent, and incredibly loving if you take the time and have the patience to create an emotional bond and a strong connection. Additionally, because even though they can make sounds, they choose not to as they are a prey animal, they are incredibly calming, and studies done in the States have even shown that a rabbit can help improve a person’s mental health and wellbeing.

Dispelling the Myth

There are a number of false truths surrounding the ownership of a pet rabbit. One of the fundamental ones is the completely false notion that bunny rabbits are ‘the perfect first pet for a child’. In actual fact, nothing could be further from the truth for a variety of solid reasons.

Firstly, as they are prey animals, rabbits make little to no noise and are extremely sensitive to loud noises as well as being perpetually frightened of being picked up, both not ideal for being around children. They have fragile bones in their back, and if they have to be held, it has to be in a secure and special manner, again making it inappropriate for them to be around children.

Fascinating Facts

A domesticated house rabbit has a life expectancy of over ten years, and during this time, they will develop a stronger and stronger bond with their owner over the years. Rabbits are complex animals and need special care and attention as well as a rabbit-specialized veterinary practice. Vets such as can advise you on the specific things you need to watch out for with rabbits, as well as provide regular top to tail checks as often as you feel necessary.

Rabbits produce two types of poop: round, hard, hay-colored pellets and softer cecotropes which they eat directly from their rear end. Ideally, you will never see the rabbit eat the cecotropes, as it is a speedy and private process for them.

Dos and Don’ts of Daily Care

Bunny rabbits have an incredibly strong sense of smell and are, by their nature, particularly clean animals, so it is vital to clean out their litter trays daily. All toys and playthings should be kept clean and fresh, and their living area should also be kept as neat and tidy as possible.

Do make sure you line the litterboxes with newspapers and hay or just the latter as rabbits like to munch on hay at the same time as doing their business. Stay away from wooden shavings as your bunny can ingest them, and ensure there is good quality hay in both the litterboxes and in their hay rack.

As they are prey animals, most rabbits find it a frightening and disturbing experience any time their four paws are not firmly planted on the floor. However, with gentle patience, as a rabbit gets older and the trusted bond and connection between you gets stronger and deeper, it may well be that your rabbit will one day trust you enough to be comfortable being held and maybe even begin to enjoy it.

As unpredictable as ever, some rabbits actually enjoy being cuddled and picked up, and as every rabbit is as entirely individual and different from the next, it is essentially the luck of the draw which type of rabbit you end up with.

It may surprise some to learn that rabbits can really and truly hold a grudge against their owner, and this grudge can last anywhere between an hour and three days, depending on how much they feel you have wronged them. Rabbits show their displeasure to their owner and, for that matter, other rabbits by flicking their back feet out at you as they run away. In the wild, rabbits have a very strict hierarchy, and they apologize to each other by resting their head upon the other; it may help you get back into your grumpy rabbit’s good books by approaching your rabbit in the same way.

Never feed your rabbit any processed or human food of any kind. While there are several notable exceptions to this rule, rabbits have overly sensitive stomachs yet are unable to vomit. This means that whatever they consume, their bodies have to deal with internally rather than simply throwing it back up again.

Adopt Don’t Shop!

Across the United States, as in most of the western world, rabbits and other small furry animals are the third most owned pet animal and, conversely and tragically, the third most abandoned pet in animal shelters, especially around Easter time (for obvious reasons).

The most important thing an animal lover and a potential pet owner can do is to adopt from one of the numerous local animal shelters or charities in their neighborhood. Such places are crying out for foster parents and people wanting to provide their furry residents with a new forever home. Rescue animals have even more love to give than animals that have come safely from their mother from a competent and ethical breeder, as they have seen hardship and quite often abuse, they just want to feel safe, happy, and, above all, loved and to love in return.

One of the most crucial things a responsible rabbit owner must do is to research extensively to find a professional rabbit-savvy veterinary practice in their local neighborhood. Vets such as can advise you on the best ways to protect your new rabbit, vaccinations, medical treatments, and even breeding advice if that is what you are interested in.

Bunny rabbits are the most adorable, mischievous (and often downright naughty) animals who will quickly rule the house with their bossy, inquisitive and cheeky ways.