Rabbit At Home Good Or Bad?

By Susan Curtiss

A lot of work. A lot of joy. Not for everyone. But for those who get hooked, they often have more than one.

Where do I begin? Most house rabbit owners besides myself can talk for hours about our beloved pets. They make us laugh. They make us cry. They remind us about the true meaning of life. I guess I will just talk about my family’s experience with our rabbits. We currently have six rabbits.

They are three bonded pairs. A bonded pair lives in the same cage, cuddles together sleep together, and plays and eats together. Not all rabbits will bond and although I have three pairs, all six rabbits would never be able to be together. That means for out-of-the-cage time, we have to be creative and let one bonded pair out at a time. Rabbits need out-of-the-cage exercise time every day and you quickly learn how to bunny proof.

In the morning before I feed myself and around here the humans often fend for themselves as the spoiled pets often come first, we have to do the breakfast rounds. That means freshwater for all, veggies, food pellets, and hay rounds. Later on, we do the cleaning litter box rounds. Once a week we do a thorough cage cleaning. In the evening, it is food rounds again. During the day when we get a chance, it is extra hay rounds.

You can have a rabbit whether or not you work outside the home. They often sleep during the day and like to play at dawn and dusk. Often we do cage time in the evening. We have learned to observe normal behavior and know abnormal behavior and other signs will usually warrant a vet exam. The scariest part of owning a rabbit is if he does not eat, a vet check is needed as soon as possible since a rabbit can actually die quickly if he does not eat and his body shuts down. Yes, there are the health issues and vet bills just like any other pet.

So, let’s see, we talked a little bit about the work involved and the health and vet bills. Now let’s talk about the fun stuff. I have witnessed two of my rabbits getting tail fanned by our cat and dog. The rabbits just love staying still while the dog or cat happens to wag its tail in their face like a fan! A true kodak moment.

Let’s not forget how quickly rabbits learn to beg just like a dog. I grab a jar of papaya treats, shake it and whichever pair of rabbits are running around the house at the time will come running over to get this yummy treat.

All rabbits have their own individual personalities just like everyone else. Tabitha is my queen diva bun who owns this house. She is bonded with timid Pumpkin Pie. Cuddly, flirt Lolita is bonded with my timid big guy Jordan and little brave Drifter is bonded to timid Six. They range from four pounds to twelve pounds in size.

All of them love to run into my son’s room if the door was left open and play with his toys. We caught a rabbit grabbing a matchbox car and eating the wheels. Mind you, we learned very quickly to be more cautious and bunny proof better. They also like to chew buttons off of tv and other remotes. Yes, things have gotten destroyed around here and sometimes you have to run them to a vet if they got into anything life-threatening, but that is why you learn to supervise and bunnyproof.

If I lay down on the floor on my stomach, my bunnies will come and play king of the hill on my back. If I get on the floor and call Jordan, come give Mommy a kiss, he will. They will jump on the couch and hang out or investigate. They will try to go where they know you don’t want them too. They will rattle their toys and bang their dishes if I am late in feeding them. They like schedules.

Your house will get a bit ruined, sometimes they even chew woodwork and carpets. They will stretch out and sleep and look so cute. Sometimes they lay on their side like a dog. Sometimes they scare you because they sleep so still that you watch to make sure their little bodies are still breathing. To me, they are not much different than any other pet or toddler. They need proper care, love, and attention. Just like other pets and children, no matter what they do, you will still love them. I would rather have a happy, lived-in house including pets, than a perfect house with no pets and no life experiences. They make me laugh every day and always make me forget about everyday stress. They are wonderful souls in little furry bodies. I have learned a lot about life from them. They are a wonderful part of our family.

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