Having a rabbit as a pet can be a fun and rewarding experience for you and your family. The care and maintenance of rabbits, however, differ a bit from the care and maintenance of a cat or a dog or even smaller caged pets, such as hamsters or gerbils.

Rabbits become stressed very easily. It is important to give them an area that is safe, quiet and comfortable. Unlike their wild relatives, pet rabbits don't do well outdoors, where they may face the dangers of excessive heat and predators. Indoors, they are easily litter-box trained. If confined to a cage, it should be at least five times your rabbit's size, with plenty of room to stretch, play and sit. The bottom should be solid rather than wired to protect your bunny's feet. Put the litter box in the corner. Some cages are multilevel with ramps to allow greater freedom of movement. 

Play and interaction

Once potty trained, your bunny can enjoy time out of its cage to interact and explore. Make sure the area is bunny-proofed and supervised. Rabbits love to chew, and you don't want your carpet or furniture to become favorite chew toys. Keep your new pet away from any wires or cords.

Be sure to provide a variety of items that stimulate both mind and body. Some suggestions are cardboard boxes, natural-fiber containers for climbing and hiding, oatmeal boxes, paper towel cylinders, hard plastic balls and lots of organic materials to shred for burying toys and treasures.

Food and health

Your rabbit will love variety in its meals, from fresh greens to nutritious pellet food. Think kale, lettuce, carrots and sweet potatoes, along with tasty apple slices for treats. Fresh alfalfa, timothy and oat hay are essential for roughage and the elimination of hairballs.  A diverse diet, regular baths and grooming will keep your rabbit happy and healthy.

For more information about caring for your rabbit and other pet care tips, contact the professionals at Smart Pet Guide.