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Creating an Ideal Home for Rabbits: Safe and Stimulating Enclosures

rabbit in a cage

Rabbits make great pets, and keeping them healthy and happy starts with ensuring they have a comfortable place to call home. Here are a few tips for designing a secure and stimulating enclosure that caters to your rabbit’s natural behaviours.


1. Hutch size

It’s essential to give your rabbit enough room to move around. Your rabbit’s habitat should be at least three metres long, 1.5 metres wide and 0.75 metres tall. This allows them to take several hops in a row. If you have multiple rabbits, a bigger hutch will ensure they have plenty of space to move around. After all, the more space they have, the happier they’ll be.


2. Ventilation and temperature

Whether you keep your rabbit indoors or outdoors, ensure the enclosure is well-ventilated, dry and free from drafts. A damp, poorly ventilated, hot or dirty environment can cause illness. If you’re keeping your rabbit outdoors, ensure the hutch is in a shaded area to keep them cool on hot summer days and provide them with added insulation in the winter.


3. Predator and escape-proofing

If your rabbit lives outdoors, the hutch must be predator-proof, as dogs, cats, rats and birds of prey can hurt or kill them. Consider burying wire mesh around the enclosure or placing the hutch on a concrete slab or raised platform to prevent predators from digging underneath. Additionally, some predators, like raccoons, can undo simple locks. Therefore, having two different latches is an excellent idea to ensure nothing gets in.


4. Exercise area

It’s crucial to provide your rabbit with an exercise area. The hutch should connect to, or be contained within, a run to allow your rabbits to hop, run, jump and stand fully upright without their ears touching the top. This will allow your rabbits to stretch their legs and engage in physical activity.


Rabbits need at least four hours each day outside of a cage. Adding ramps, tunnels, rocks, logs, boxes, climbable objects and toys to your rabbits’ run will keep them entertained and help them maintain their bone and muscle strength.


5. Hiding places

Rabbits are prey species and naturally live underground, so it’s a good idea to provide them with protected areas and hiding holes where they feel safe and secure. Cardboard or wooden boxes, wicker baskets, tunnels and paper stacks are all great options. These will give your rabbit a place to hide and feel secure if they feel afraid, stressed or want to be alone for a while.


6. Mental stimulation

Rabbits need lots of enrichment to relieve boredom and promote positive mental health: puzzle feeders and toys for your rabbits to manipulate and investigate to keep them entertained for hours. You can even use paper bags, old towels and flowerpots. Ensure everything in the enclosure is made from rabbit-safe materials, such as untreated wood, cardboard, coconut shell or hay. Remember to let your rabbits destroy their toys if they want to. It’s part of the fun for them.

7. Chewing and digging materials

Rabbits need to chew to wear down their constantly growing teeth. Grass mats, untreated willow or apple tree branches and other chew toys can allow your rabbit to use their teeth. You can also add pits filled with soil or sand. Pushing sand and digging encourage their natural behaviours.


8. Water and bedding

Your rabbit needs at least one water bowl, which should be kept clean and filled with fresh water daily. Use comfortable, absorbent, clean and dust-free materials such as newspaper, wood-based cat litter pellets or soft straw for bedding. Wood shavings aren’t suitable as bedding material and can cause respiratory problems.


By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to creating a happy and healthy home for your fluffy little friend.


Fencing for rabbit enclosures in Hamilton, Richmond Hill, London and Peterborough

At Ontario Wholesale Farm Direct, we carry everything you need to make the perfect space for your pet rabbit. We carry wire rabbit fencing, so you can make a custom-size hutch and run. Our 30-inch high by 100-inch-long galvanized steel wire fencing is available in ½-inch x 1-inch or 1-inch x 1-inch hole structure, ensuring the perfect fit for your needs. We also have a pre-made galvanized steel enclosure. With a convenient front latch door, accessing your rabbits is a breeze. Contact us today to learn how we can help you make the perfect enclosure for your bunny.


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