Video: Top 10 things to Consider Before Buying A Rabbit

Anyone considering bringing home a rabbit should know:

  • Rabbits have an average lifespan of 8-14 years.
  • Rabbits need to be spayed/neutered to prevent cancer and unwanted litters. Up to 80% of female rabbits will develop uterine cancer by age 4-6 if not spayed.
  • Rabbits require a diet of hay, pellets, and fresh vegetables.
  • Rabbits need to live indoors, inside a family’s home for their safety and health, with 2-4 hours of exercise time in a bunny-proofed environment each day.
  • Rabbits need regular veterinary care by a vet with additional training in exotics, which can be expensive.
  • Rabbits need an annual RHDV2 vaccine
  • Rabbits are not “low-maintenance” pets — they need as much care and attention as dogs and cats. It can also take longer to bond with them since they are prey animals and can be more fearful.
  • Most children lose interest in a live rabbit after only a few weeks. Rabbits must have an adult as their primary caregiver.
  • Rabbits are the third most frequently surrendered animal at shelters and the third most euthanized.
  • According to an ASPCA study, rabbits are more expensive to own than cats or guinea pigs — coming just after dogs in expense.
  • Mary Cotter

    Mary E. Cotter, M.A., Ed.D., LVT is the founder of the NY-based Rabbit Rescue & Rehab. Involved with rabbit rescue since 1982, she speaks and writes frequently on rabbit-related topics, addressing owners, veterinary professionals and shelter workers.

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