Rabbits, traditionally farm animals, are now becoming popular pets. They are affectionate, clean and intelligent animals. A rabbit needs a space to feel safe and most commonly people will house these pets in a large cage, or hutch.
A rabbit hutch also protects your furniture from sharp teeth, while giving your pet its own space. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at this product, as well as learning more about why rabbits make great pets.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 Key Facts
- 3 Our selection: The best rabbit hutches
- 4 Shopping Guide: What you should know about rabbit hutches
- 4.1 Should my rabbit leave its hutch?
- 4.2 What are the advantages and disadvantages of having a rabbit as a pet?
- 4.3 How do I keep my rabbit hutch clean?
- 4.4 How can I disinfect my rabbit hutch?
- 4.5 How big should a rabbit hutch be?
- 4.6 Where should I put my rabbit hutch?
- 4.7 Can I keep a rabbit hutch in my bedroom?
- 4.8 What should I feed my pet rabbit?
- 4.9 Is a rabbit hutch suitable for a hare?
- 4.10 What kind of floor should my rabbit hutch have?
- 4.11 Can I put a pregnant rabbit in the same hutch as a male rabbit?
- 5 Shopping Criteria
- 6 Summary
- A rabbit hutch should have different areas for sleeping and playing so that your pet is more comfortable.
- Even if you have a rabbit hutch in your home, you should let your pet run around the house or the garden for a few hours each day.
- There are a wide variety of rabbit hutches available, in various materials and sizes.
Our selection: The best rabbit hutches
In this section, you'll find a wrap-up of the five most popular rabbit hutches currently on the market. In this way, we hope to help you make the best decision about which hutch to buy for your rabbit.
Shopping Guide: What you should know about rabbit hutches
As it becomes increasingly common to have rabbits as pets, the hutch you choose is an important element, since it keeps your pet safe. As you read on you'll learn more about what makes a good rabbit hutch, as well as getting the answers to common doubts and questions of rabbit owners.
Should my rabbit leave its hutch?
There are rabbits who like a quiet routine, and may not be keen to go out of their cage. On the other hand, you may have an adventurous pet who wants to explore new places and if this is the case, you should make sure it can spend time each day visiting different spots.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of having a rabbit as a pet?
How do I keep my rabbit hutch clean?
This tray and the surrounding area should be lightly cleaned pretty much every day and cleaned thoroughly once a week. Not only do rabbits enjoy a clean and hygienic home, but this is also important for you. Droppings and urine are the main cause of bad odour, so the box or tray should be cleaned regularly.
How can I disinfect my rabbit hutch?
It's important that you completely submerge the drinking bottle in boiling water, as well as all other objects which your rabbit uses. You should also remove all stains from the tray, which can be done with vinegar, in order to eliminate odours.
How big should a rabbit hutch be?
It's advisable to divide the hutch into different spaces for eating, playing and resting. These areas do not need to be separated with walls, but should have distinct elements to differentiate them. For your rabbit's comfort, you can pad the sleeping area with hay, wood shavings or newspaper.
Where should I put my rabbit hutch?
This is because rabbits like human contact, and will become bored and even depressed if they are left in an isolated area. At the same time, you should avoid placing it somewhere where there is a lot of traffic, or you may keep tripping over it.
Can I keep a rabbit hutch in my bedroom?
Rabbits are often very active between midnight and 2am. They also generally like to play in the hour before dawn, from around 5 to 6 in the morning.
What should I feed my pet rabbit?
Another important part of your rabbit's diet is hay, and it should be given in unlimited quantities. The long hay fibres are essential to keep its intestine healthy as well as stopping hairballs from forming in the stomach. Finally, make sure that your rabbit doesn't start eating vegetables until it is at least 3 months old.
Is a rabbit hutch suitable for a hare?
In a nutshell, while a rabbit makes an excellent pet, a hare would be very unhappy inside the house and even more so inside a cage.
In fact, most species of hare are not even suitable as farm animals. While rabbits are happy to be around people, hares will always be cautious and reluctant to get close to humans.
What kind of floor should my rabbit hutch have?
It is also common to use woodchips to cover the floor, as they are great for absorbing urine odours while being comfortable for your rabbit. In your pet's sleeping area you can place something soft like newspaper or a soft, fluffy blanket.
Can I put a pregnant rabbit in the same hutch as a male rabbit?
Giving birth is arduous and can even be harmful to a rabbit's health, so it's not advisable to let them give birth more than twice a year. Vets tell us that rabbits are ok to breed between the ages of eight months and four years. It's also advisable to wait for the rabbits to be in season.
If you get your pet rabbit as a baby, you'll need to know how big it is going to be before you buy its hutch. Rabbits need to have adequate space to stretch and move around so you want to ensure they have adequate space. The size will also depend on the space you have available in your house or your garden, though of course, it is best to have the biggest cage possible.
Even if your pet is let out of his hutch for a few hours a day, it also needs space to move around in its little house. It needs to be able to run around and play in order to be happy.
If you are concerned about keeping your rabbit hutch clean, skip ones which are entirely made of wood, as this material will absorb and retain urine and makes it very difficult to get the smell out. Plastic and metal materials are easiest to keep clean. On the other hand, wood is comfortable for the sleeping areas and also helps to keep the hutch warm.
If you are planning to keep your pet's home outside, it must be waterproof, especially the roof. You'll also need to make sure that the materials and paint are not toxic, especially considering rabbits like to gnaw at parts of their hutch.
As already mentioned, a rabbit hutch should have different spaces to suit your pet's different activities. You can buy a hutch which already has separate areas, or alternatively, you can buy a more simple cage and make partitions to divide it up. Here are the most common designs for rabbit hutches:
- Wire cage: This design gives you many possibilities to come up with your own design and create the perfect space for your rabbit, using different wire cages and connectors. You can also buy cages which are pre-assembled, and join more than one cage together.
- Stable style: This is usually the most spacious and deluxe style of rabbit hutch. They are divided into separate areas and usually some open areas for the rabbit to play in, and other sheltered zones for sleeping. Many models have multiple levels, connected by steps or a ramp.
- Simple style: Many rabbit hutches are a simple wide rectangle with an opening on the top or the side. These are most often made of plastic and metal and can be divided up by placing partitions inside.
A good rabbit hutch should have various accessories to make it pleasant and comfortable for your pet. It must have different areas for your pet to eat, play and sleep. It should also have the elements your rabbit needs on a daily basis. The key ones are:
- Water bottle. Rather than a bowl for water, you should give your pet rabbit a drinking bottle which keeps the water fresh and clean. An open bowl risks pieces of hay or even droppings falling into it. The bottle should be fixes surely to the bars or side of the hutch.
- Hay rack. Rabbits always need plenty of hay on hand. It is a critical part of their diet and you can buy hay racks to neatly put the hay all in the same spot.
- Feed bowl. This is where you can put the food pellets or vegetables you will be giving to your rabbit daily.
- Litter tray. This hygienic tray is designed for your rabbit to do your business so that it can be easily cleaned up.
- Toys. To keep your rabbit happy in its hutch be sure to give it toy to chew him, as well as provide ramps or stairs for exercise.
- Brush. You need to brush your rabbit from time to time to remove dead hair.
- Blanket. The perfect way to create a comfy spot for your pet to sleep is by putting down a fluffy blanket.
- Hut or box. Your pet will appreciate a quiet and safe place to rest, so having a little hut or enclosed box as part of your rabbit hutch is ideal.
The bottom of your rabbit hutch is very important as it is where your pet sits for most of the day. As we've already covered, these animals' hind legs are very sensitive. Often, the hutch's own floor will be perfectly adequate, but in other cases, you'll need to put something down to ensure your pet's comfort.
A hutch with a metal or smooth plastic base will be easiest to clean, but less comfortable for your pet. This is where newspaper or woodchips come in handy. These materials will absorb urine and will need to be regularly changed for hygienic purposes, but are also much better for your pet.
Rabbits are sweet and affectionate animals that because of this have become very popular pets. A rabbit hutch is essential for anyone wanting to have a rabbit as a pet. It's therefore important to make a well-informed choice when buying one.
Before deciding on a rabbit hutch, consider the size of your pet, its needs, and where in your house, garden or patio you are planning to put it. These are the three main concerns which will help you make the right choice. Once you buy one, fill it with the little accessories which will give your pet a happy life.
(Source of the featured image: Hamdi Zainal: 100291176/ 123rf.com)