Cover image source: Helena Lopes on Pexels
It’s hard to disagree that rabbits are simply cutest. With their fluffy coats, adorable tails, and tiny noses, they seem like the perfect companion to have by your side — but as with every other animal, they have their unique characteristics and needs that may or may not be a good fit with your personality and lifestyle.
To know if a bunny is a suitable addition to your household, here are some considerations to mull over!
1. Rabbits can live up to 10 years old
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It’s a common misconception that rabbits do not live long lives. If well-taken care of, rabbits can live till 10 years of age (or even longer) on average, which means that they are a long-term commitment. If you think that you might not be able to commit to such a long period of time, we recommend looking for another pet!
2. Rabbits need space indoors
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Domestic rabbits cannot be kept outdoors. If you’re comfortable with having your furry friend stay indoors with you, read on — contrary to popular belief, it should not be kept in a wired cage as well!
That’s right, rabbits may seem tiny when compared to us humans, but they do require quite a large amount of space for roaming about to get their daily dose of exercise. Most cages in pet shops in Singapore are not big enough for a rabbit and wire bottom floors can severely damage their feet, so it’s better to rabbit-proof a room instead or set up a large pen (with room for a litter tray, feeding station, sleeping corner, and space to stretch) for your bunny to live in!
3. Rabbits can be messy
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In a sense, rabbits are rather easy to clean up after because they do not frolic outdoors or bring you dead ‘prizes’, but be prepared to have a bit of mess in your home if you have a bunny! This is because the majority of a bunny’s diet is hay, which means that hay will be everywhere. Bunnies also shed quite a fair bit, with a heavy shed happening 3 to 4 times a year, so there will be dust bunnies to clear. Additionally, before sterilisation, rabbits tend to mark their territory with urine!
Apart from those points though, all you need to do on a daily basis is to ensure that your rabbit has access to clean water, fresh hay, a clean litter box, sufficient space to hop around, and of course, plenty of love.
4. Rabbits do not fit well with young children
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Rabbits are prey animals, which means that they can be easily startled and stressed by loud noises and fast movements, which are often second nature to young children. Instead, rabbits require safe, gentle handling, a quiet environment, and will not appreciate being picked up all the time if they have not bonded with you. Unless your child understands that and is able to act accordingly, it is better to wait a few years before getting a pet rabbit!
5. Rabbits enjoy peace and quiet
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As mentioned before, rabbits do well in quiet environments. If you’re someone who prefers a pet that will not make much noise, these fluffy furkids are for you! They are also crepuscular, which means that they are at their most active at dawn and dusk — perfect for busy, working adults because they’ll be lively early in the morning when you get up, and will greet you happily when you come home at night-time.
6. Rabbits have specific needs
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Just like any other cat, dog, or pet, rabbits need to be treated with plenty of love and care tailored to their needs. From the litter box set-up and dietary requirements to physical and mental stimulation, there are do’s and don’ts, which you can read more about here.
7. Rabbits have distinct personalities
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These fluffy bunnies may all share the same endearing aesthetic, but be aware that they are capable of developing strikingly different personalities like you and me. Intelligent, sociable, and passionate animals, some can be cheeky and playful, some can be easy-going and affectionate, while others may be more independent and selective with their company.
Ultimately, all bunnies love attention and affection once they have bonded with you. They may ask for a head scratch, lick your hand, or simply sit next to you for company. Just make sure to spend some time with a bunny before you decide to bring it home to understand its personality better so that you can find the right fit for you!
Note: At clubpets, we always advocate adoption. Small animals like rabbits are often mistreated and forced into deplorable conditions when they are unethically bred for sale. If possible, you may consider adopting a bunny and make its precious time on Earth that much better!