Who wouldn’t want to care for a dwarf rabbit? With its cute and adorable face, for sure, anyone who sees it would immediately decide to adopt one. However, raising one can be tough, especially for first time pet owners.
If you are planning to get a pet dwarf rabbit, then here is a useful maintenance and care guide you can use:
Familiarizing the Characteristics of a Dwarf Rabbit
Dwarf rabbits are among the smallest hare species on Earth that can live up to ten years. Although they have three common breeds, the largest among all is called the Dwarf Hotot, which is noted for its upright ears and vivid colors surrounding the eyes.
These bunnies are believed to have originated in Europe. And since their discovery, they have become very popular house pets all over the world. While they share the same characteristics with larger hares, what makes them very adorable is that they have tiny fuzzy bodies.
Another thing that sets dwarf rabbits apart from the rest is their intelligence level. Not only can they be trained to use the litter box, they can also understand simple commands.
As people try to breed them with other rabbit types, more species are created. So in the succeeding years, it is expected that we can see other new types of dwarf rabbits.
Checking Your First Dwarf Rabbit
Before you decide to purchase a dwarf rabbit as a pet, you need to have a checklist of hygienic things. These should include the following:
When getting a dwarf rabbit, you need to check the ears. Any brown discoloring in this area may signify the presence of mites.
In case you notice any discharge in the eyes of the rabbit, this may mean that it is blind.
The rabbit’s nose must be dry and clean all the time. If its nose appears to be wet, it possibly is suffering colds or a serious disease, such as snuffles.
Redness at the bottom of the feet may signify a sore hock, which is brought about by poor sanitation.
A healthy dwarf rabbit must have a set of teeth that slightly overlaps at the end. If one is abnormally long, it might have difficulties in chewing.
Caring for Your Pet Dwarf Rabbit
Just like any other pets, dwarf rabbits must feel loved and cared for. But how do you ensure you have given them the what they deserve? Here’s what you should do:
1. Provide them with a comfortable shelter.
If you do not know how to build a comfortable rabbit hutch, you can always purchase one that is ready-made. These days, there are many durable rabbit shelters available on the market, and you can choose from a variety of styles and colors.
Once you have a comfortable hutch, you need to fill it with all the needs of the rabbit, such as a litter box, a food bowl, a water bottle, and a play area.
2. Feed them with the right food.
Dwarf rabbits must always have access to fresh hay. But if you can’t find this at home, you can always prepare an excellent brand of rabbit food. Also, they need to eat at least 2 cups of fruits and veggies each day like apples, bananas, strawberries, and carrots.
Since they have small stomachs, they can be very sensitive to other types of food. Hence, you need to be careful when feeding them. Do not ever overfeed them because this will result in diarrhea, or worse, death.
Here is another important fact to note. Rabbits cannot digest nuts of all kinds, therefore, these must never be included in their diet.
3. Make sure they have fun.
As a responsible pet owner, you must allow them to have fun. If possible, give them keys, plastic toys, or rattles to keep them chewing.
4. Let them exercise.
These creatures also need lots of exercise and some thorough training sessions. It isn’t enough to just provide them with toys. While ramps and branches may suffice, you can also use empty toilet paper rolls. This way, you don’t have to spend much.
5. Give them freedom.
To keep them safe, it is advised to keep your pet rabbits in cages. However, they still need to have freedom. So allow them to at least roam around your house once in a while. But make sure you check on them and give them some toys to play with.
With the popularity of dwarf rabbits, they have become the center of the world’s attention. Though this is good news, sometimes, others take advantage of it. Sellers just sell unhealthy rabbits for the sake of generating revenue and buyers purchase them immediately only to find out they got a weak rabbit. If you don’t want this to happen, know your seller and do some research ahead of time.