What to Feed Your Bunny
|General guidelines for a healthy bunny...|
|A healthy rabbit's diet is divided into three basic food groups: vegetables, hay and pellets.|
|Click here to find out why you should avoid commercial rabbit treats.|
|Consider these important points...|
|Fibre is your rabbit's friend. Fibre is an exceedingly important part of your rabbit's diet.|
|Just because it is sold in the pet shop doesn't mean it is good for your rabbit. Be careful of all those enticingly packaged treats. Remember grocery stores sell chocolate bars and chips, but that doesn't mean they are good for you.|
|Variety helps add enjoyment to your rabbit's day. There is a plethora of vegetables acceptable for rabbits, don't slip into the lettuce rut. How would you like to eat the same thing day after day?|
|The Importance of Hay...|
|Perhaps the single most
important element in your rabbit's diet is hay. Your rabbit should be
provided with an UNLIMITED supply of hay. Hay does lots of wonderful
things for your rabbit. It provides essential nutrients necessary to
your rabbit's diet, while being low in calories; Its course stalks help
keep your rabbit's teeth ground down; and most importantly the fibers
helps keep your rabbit's digestive tract working normally.
The primary type of hay your rabbit should have is Oat Hay. Good oat hay should be nice and green with very little to no brown mixed in. Very rarely do pet stores sell good quality oat hay. Instead you may have to purchase from a local farm or feed store. If you purchase a bale from a local farm be very careful to keep it dry. Mould can be very toxic to rabbits. It is also important that your hay has been protected from rodents - rodent droppings can carry a bug that causes an untreatable disease in rabbits.
You will find many overseas sites recommend Timothy Hay - we have
searched far and wide, and found that oat hay is the closest equivalent
that is available in Australia, as customs prevents us from importing
timothy hay. If you have trouble finding oat hay, contact us, and we
will do what we can to help. Or if you have a better alternative,
please let us know.
|Vegetables - a Bunny Salad|
next most important items in a healthy rabbit's diet are fresh
vegetables. Your rabbit should eat on tightly packed cup of greens per
four pounds of body weight. And yet again variety is important. If your
rabbit has never eaten greens you may want to introduce then slowly to
avoid soft stools. The same holds true for introducing a new type of
green to your rabbit. If soft stools do result simply reduce the amount
or remove the new vegetable for a while.
beet tops, Bok choy, Broccoli (mostly the leaves), Brussels sprouts,
cabbage, chickweed, cilantro, clover, collard greens, dandelion flowers
(be careful of pesticides), endive, escarole, mint, mustard greens,
parsley, peppermint leaves, radicchio, radish tops, raspberry leaves,
romaine lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, watercress, wheat grass
but give in limited quantities because of high levels of calcium:
tops, dandelion greens, kale
give Iceberg lettuce
green peppers, Snow peas, turnip
feed raw beans, corn, rhubarb, or potato peels
small animal aisle of your local pet food store can be just as tempting
for your rabbit as the candy aisle of a grocery is to you. But just like
the candy aisle, most of the treats sold for rabbits are not good for
them. You should especially stay away from anything with corn, seeds and
processed sugar. The good news is there are lots of other things your
rabbit will love to have as a treat.
banana, blueberries, Craisins (dried sweetened cranberries), carrots,
grapes (limited quantities), mango, papaya, peach, pear, persimmon,
pineapple, raisins, raspberries, strawberries and tomatoes.
are acceptable as an occasional treat.
cereals, chocolate, salty or sugary human snacks
supplements and salt/mineral licks are not necessary when feeding a