Rabbits make lovely pets. They possess very caring and loving natures and really thrive on human interaction. Rabbits are very sociable animals and prefer living in pairs, but if you ar e looking to house your rabbit indoors, then they can enjoy an equally happy life on their own with lots of attention from their new family. Owning and caring for a rabbit can be a very rewarding experience, but it is important to realise that they are a big commitment and will require a lot of time and care. The average life span of a rabbit can range anywhere from 8 to 12 years, although the oldest rabbit to date was recorded as 18 years old. Once you are certain that you and your family can provide a loving and long lasting home for your rabbit, you must consider the following issues. Rabbits are a long-term commitment and will require a lot of time spent on them throughout their life.
Selecting your Rabbit
Which breed of rabbit?
There are actually over 45 breeds of rabbit that you can choose from. Rabbits come with all types of personalities and certain breeds have specific characteristics. Do your research and know the breed that will suit you and your family.
Rehoming a rabbit?
It is worth considering adopting your rabbit, as there are many rabbits that require a loving home. Rabbits from re-homing sanctuaries are usually vaccinated and neutered.
What to look out for?
You should always ensure that you buy your rabbit from a reputable pet shop or breeder. Make sure that your rabbit looks healthy and has no signs of sickness such as a runny nose or diarrhoea
Spay or neuter?
Spaying and neutering have been known to extend a rabbit’s life and it can eliminate bad behaviour such as spraying and defensive tendencies. Neutered pairs are better when you have a male and female mix.
When is the best time to buy a rabbit?
The best time to buy a rabbit is when they are about 8 weeks old and have been fully weaned.
Male or female rabbit?
A male rabbit is known as a buck and a female a doe. Both are great pets to have, though males are known to be more attentive and affectionate.
All rabbits should be vaccinated against myxomatosis and viral haemorrhagic disease (VHD or HVD). Your local vet will advise you on ages and frequency of these vaccinations.