Rabbits are herbivores (plant-eaters) and are considered grazers, thus they eat continuously. They have complex digestive systems and are very skillful at processing food. They even have very specific dietary needs. If you introduce new foods too quickly or feed inappropriate food choices, the rabbit’s normal digestive flora (normal bacteria) is going to be disturbed, gas- and toxin-producing bacteria can overgrow, and therefore the rabbit may become very sick and possibly die.

If you have a pet rabbit and are wondering about the types of food best for your rabbit, keep on reading this article until the end as we share the best food to feed them and some tips for their diet and health too.

What Do Rabbits Eat?

Rabbits must have a daily diet of mostly hay, plenty of fresh vegetables, and some pellets. Hay is the most vital part of a rabbit’s daily intake. Unlimited, high-quality grass hay, like Timothy, orchard, or brome, should structure the majority of a rabbit’s diet. Grass hay is high in fibre, which is critical to maintaining a rabbit’s healthy alimentary canal. While young, growing rabbits can eat any sort of grass hay, alfalfa hay isn’t recommended for adult rabbits, because it is just too rich in protein and too high in calcium.

Timothy pellets are often offered at approximately 1/8-1/4 cup per 5 lbs (2.25 kg) of body weight. Over-feeding pellets to adult rabbits may be a common explanation for obesity and soft stool (caused by an overgrowth of abnormal bacteria within the gastrointestinal (GI) tract), as pellets are generally low in fibre and high in carbohydrates. Additionally to hay, wild rabbits eat tons of other fresh vegetation.

A pet rabbit’s diet should be supplemented with a spread of leafy green vegetables a day. Rabbits can consume as many vegetables as they need to every day as long as they do not get diarrhea and as long because the vegetables aren’t high in carbohydrates, as carrots and potatoes are. Variety is vital. Introduce new vegetables slowly and in small quantities, and monitor for soft faeces, diarrhea, or signs of gas pain.

Particularly good vegetables include dark leafy greens such as romaine lettuce, bok choy, mustard, carrot tops, cilantro, watercress, basil, kohlrabi, beet greens, broccoli greens, and cilantro.

Some leafy greens, like collard and dandelion greens, parsley, kale, Swiss chard, and escarole, should be fed in limited quantities, as they’re high in calcium and should contribute to the event of calcium-based bladder stones if fed in excess. Other acceptable vegetables are such as broccoli, green peppers, Brussel sprouts, endive, wheatgrass, radicchio, and squash. Iceberg or Lactuca sativa capitata shouldn’t be fed, because it is especially water and contains few nutrients.

Carrots should be fed moderately, as they’re very high in carbohydrates and may upset GI bacterial flora. A little amount of the many different vegetables is far better than an outsized amount of 1 food item.

Young rabbits, under approximately 7-8 months old, should be fed alfalfa pellets and alfalfa hay free-choice; they have the additional protein and calcium as they grow. They, too, can have a spread of vegetables. At approximately 7 months, they need to be weaned onto an adult diet, as described above, since their growth slows down.

How Often Should I Feed My Rabbit?

Rabbits should be fed and given water daily; hay should be available. As nibblers, they ought to have food available at the least times.

Do I Need To Give My Rabbit Vitamins?

No, rabbits don’t require extra vitamins. They only need a varied, high-fibre diet.

Can I Offer My Rabbit Treats?

Yes, but first make certain to see together with your veterinarian about the kinds of treats that are recommended. Rabbits can easily become overweight if fed an abundance of high-calorie treats. Cookies, nuts, seeds, grains, and bread shouldn’t be fed to rabbits.

Fruits are often fed in very limited quantities – no quite 1-2 tablespoons of high-fibre fresh fruit (such as apple, pear, or berries) every 1-2 days. The high sugar content in fruits (and even carrots) may upset the traditional alimentary canal bacteria if given in excess.

 

What Are The Water Requirements Of Rabbits?

Freshwater should be available 24 hours each day. Some rabbits prefer water bowls, while some prefer sipper bottles. If you offer water using a sipper bottle, make certain to examine it for clogs and fill it with clean water daily. If you offer your rabbit water using a bowl, confirm the rabbit doesn’t spill it in its cage or soil it with faeces.

Is There Anything Else I Should Know?

Rabbits got to chew to take care of the health of their continuously growing teeth. Chew toys should be available; hard wooden chew toys (blocks and sticks) and cardboard are best.

Rabbits engage in coprophagy, which suggests they eat their own faeces. This happens in the dark, and these faecal pellets are different from those normally excreted and seen by the owners. They’re known as cecotropes, cecal droppings, nocturnal droppings, or night droppings. They’re usually small, soft or pasty, darker, and have a robust fermented or sweet smell. These pellets function as an upscale source of nutrients for the rabbit, specifically protein and vitamins B and K. Most owners never observe this behaviour, because it happens within the early hours of the morning. If you do, remember that it’s normal and necessary for the health of your rabbit.

All in all, we hope that this article has helped you a lot in gaining new information and knowledge for your pet rabbit’s diet and health. Remember to feed them properly, avoid feeding them cookies and nuts, provide them plenty of water all the time, and do not be afraid if you saw your pet rabbit eating their own faeces in the early morning or at night. Let’s always follow these tips and make sure that our pet rabbit can live longer and happy.

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