Rabbit Accommodation Ideas
The traditional solution for rabbit accommodation is of course, a hutch. However, as rabbits require a good deal of space in order to have a fulfilling life, even a large hutch may not be enough. This page is designed to give you ideas if you do want to ‘think outside the box’ in order to give you and your rabbit the best pet experience possible.
The Traditional Hutch
Hutches should be as large as possible, bigger really is better and if you can afford a 5 or 6 foot hutch, your bunny will be happier for it. The RWAF society promote a minimum sized hutch of 6ftx2ftx2ft. More information can be obtained from www.rabbitwelfare.co.uk Even if you are adopting or buying a baby bunny don’t be tempted to buy a hutch suitable for their current size. It sounds obvious but rabbits grow quickly and your small bundle will soon out-grow a smaller hutch meaning more expense for you. It really is better to start out with as large a hutch as you can afford as this will save you money in the long run.
There are also tiered hutches on the market with 2 or 3 floors. These can be good but bear in mind the internal ‘ladder’ does use up floor space, effectively making the hutch smaller. Bunnies also occasionally have accidents and slip from the ladder, injuring themselves. So a 6 foot hutch would probably be better than a 4 foot tiered hutch as it gives the rabbit more room on one level.
House rabbits are now becoming a lot more popular. Most rabbits adapt very well to using a litter tray and a neutered male is a must for a house rabbit, as an unneutered male will also spray urine. Obviously neutering is beneficial for their health also. Even the best litter trained rabbit will drop the occasional dropping around when exploring their environment. It is very important to remember that they will still act like rabbits as a house pet and one of their favourite pastimes is to chew things. Specific favourites include laptop chargers, mobile chargers and skirting boards. All wires should be suitably housed to avoid this issue and obviously more importantly any injury to rabbits. Please do your research before committing to a house rabbit, i.e. do you have suitable space to accommodate an indoor rabbit, the size set up that is required, etc.
Larger sized rabbits (i.e giant breeds), pairs and also larger bonded mates will benefit from a more suitably sized set up such as a shed/converted playhouse. The set up should allow access for them to binky and explore like they naturally would in the wild. A suitable sized run can also be attached to the shed to aloe extra space and also give access to sunlight as well. Many sheds/playhouses can be purchased for a similar price to a traditional hutch, although may well take up more room in your garden. With this kind of accommodation it is important to have ventilation so stable doors are an excellent idea. If this could be an option for you and your rabbits yet you’re not good at DIY, there are plenty of companies who will also erect the shed for you. This then leaves you to arrange the inside with suitable forage options, hidey holes, climbing structures, etc. This link will help advise of this sort of set up www.rabbitwelfare.co.uk/shedconversion.htm
Runaround is a new rabbit run for rabbits and guinea pigs that attaches any hutch to an ever extendable run system. This is quite useful in providing an environment which is as similar to their natural warren of tunnels as we can provide. It can attach to any existing hutch or run and can be added onto as desired. Many of our adoptees have this set up for their rabbits. The only downside is getting an uncooperative rabbit out of it on an evening to be put to bed! For more information on runaround set ups visit their website www.runaround.co.uk
For great advice on suitable rabbit accommodation visit http://forums.rabbitrehome.org.uk/forumdisplay.php?58-Housing and www.rabbitwelfare.co.uk/pdfs/AHUTCHISNOTENOUGH-makeitrightfinal.pdf
Please feel free to get in contact with us for any housing enquiries that you may have and we are always happy to help and advise.