Rabbits are excellent family additions.
They’re affectionate and easy-going. Yet they have different personalities compared to cats and dogs.
So, before you get a rabbit, there’s one question you have to ask yourself.
“Is owning a rabbit right for me?”
Well, you have to see if having a rabbit would suit your lifestyle and taste.
Continue reading to learn more about:
- Why rabbits don’t stink as pets.
- If you should give your rabbit a partner.
- The 17 biggest pros and cons of having a rabbit.
- And more…
9 pros of rabbits as pets
#1:Rabbits are low on allergens
Your rabbits are built differently from cats and dogs.
Though they may have fluffy coats, it’s rare to have a reaction to them.
“How come they can’t cause allergies?”
Well, some rabbit breeds are considered hypoallergenic.
“Does that mean they don’t shed at all?”
They still do, but it’s less compared to other animals.
Also, there still are traces of allergens in their body.
“Where are their allergens produced?”
A study says that they’re found in your rabbit’s:
- And dander.
With that, you should choose between a Silver Marten or the Tan rabbit breed. So, mild allergy sufferers can certainly live a happy and healthy life with these adorable furry babies.
#2: Rabbits don’t stink
Healthy rabbits don’t stink.
In fact, they don’t have any body odor. They’re natural groomers and clean freaks, after all.
This is also factored in by what they eat.
When you splurge and let your rabbit have a feast of healthy foods, their poop won’t smell.
And their body seems to cooperate as long as they’re pampered nicely.
But it’s a different story when it comes to their urine. When a doe gets rid of their body waste, an ammonia smell can tingle your nose.
Aside from that, the rest of the cage is odor-free.
“But why does my rabbit smell so bad then?”
If your efforts don’t work, it’s time to bring your rabbit to the vet.
If it isn’t about the cage or your rabbit’s hygiene, then it might be something else.
#3: Rabbits are quiet
Rabbits are known to be demanding. They are good at communicating their feelings.
But the thing is, they do it uniquely.
When they have something to tell you, they wag their tail. And they would also wiggle their nose to indicate curiosity.
Also, though they are not loud and vocal, their actions keep up for it.
And you definitely can’t ignore these little signs. Especially since bunnies can take things personally.
When they’re mad, they’ll give you that dreadful stare. Or the silent treatment.
It’s redundant since they already don’t make a lot of noise. But when this happens, the house will get even quieter.
#4: Rabbits take up less space
Rabbits are small creatures that love to hop around.
Sure they need a yard to do their investigations. But they don’t demand it to be large.
This is something owners find delightful in owning bunnies. Since they won’t require a space as big as a dog would need.
As long as there’s an area a rabbit can roam around in, they’re content and happy.
And it’s like giving your rabbit a gift. Though they can ask for something grand, they only wish for something small but meaningful.
“Do rabbits need constant exercise?”
Well, yes, they do. Because they can’t do that well inside their hutches or runs.
So, you have to let them out in your garden occasionally.
And it doesn’t have to be big and wide. As long as there are interesting objects in it, your rabbit would still be grinning. Although not literally.
#5: Rabbits live long
What animal lover wouldn’t want a companion that lives long?
Your rabbit is set to grow old with you. And the RSPCA tells us that domestic rabbits can live from 8 to 12 years.
Also, though some of them grow gray or white hair, they’re full of zest.
To add, having a long lifespan is possible if you properly take care of your little friend.
“How do I do that?”
All you have to do is to follow these simple things:
- Give them lots of love.
- Provide them with exercise.
- Prepare healthy rabbit meals.
- Regularly bring them to the vet.
Of course, your rabbit may also feel sick or end up getting injured. Which is why you have to monitor their every action.
This way, you’ll save yourself from the expensive vet bills. And it’s also one way of providing your rabbit with a life filled with positive experiences.
#6: Rabbits are trainable
You might think rabbits only obey themselves. But, good news, they can be trained.
These are smart animals. And they’ve been a familiar face in a magician’s hat.
They would need patience during the entire training process, though.
And it’s no surprise as they love to do things their way.
Tired of having to deal with their scattered poop?
Train your little friend on how to use the litter box.
Not that you’ll make them clean up their present mess. But just teach them where to squat next time.
“Is there something I can do to avoid getting bunny scratches?”
Yes, and here’s a tip. Start trimming their nails while they’re young. Get them used to it.
Use treats, too, as a reward for being good the entire nail trimming.
But, do so in moderation, or you’ll end up having a chubby bunny.
If you want to learn more on how to train your rabbit, watch this video:
#7: Rabbits can bond
Rabbits are not the most expressive appearance-wise.
They can’t make a lot of noise. Like a cat that can meow or a dog that can bark.
Instead, your rabbit communicates through something else.
Your furry friend believes that actions speak louder than words.
Just look at how they extend their tail and body. Especially when they rest on your lap.
“What are they trying to tell me?”
Well, in your rabbit’s world, that means they feel safe with you.
I know how flattering that is. If your rabbit is a new family addition, they’d also wiggle their nose intensely.
It’s their way of smelling all the information they need about you.
“Do I have to smell good to make an impression?”
Well, you can’t fool your rabbit’s nose. They’re incredibly good at knowing you to the core.
#8: Rabbits are stress-relievers
Having a rabbit is one of the best decisions you made.
After all, there are lots of problems in this world. Yet your haven is nowhere else but being beside your furry home companion.
Why? Well, they’re the happy pill you need when you’re down. Or the energy you need when you’re feeling unmotivated.
In fact, one study shows that having a rabbit can have the following effects:
- Reduced stress.
- Lower anxiety levels.
- Enhanced human health.
Knowing these things, you might be prompted to bring home more bunnies. But take it easy.
This is because a pair is enough to light up your gloomy days.
#9: Rabbits come in varieties
The ARBA recognizes 49 rabbit breeds. To name a few, you can choose from:
- Belgian hare.
- Argente brun.
- Blanc de hotot.
- Britannia petite.
- American sable.
- American chinchilla.
- And champagne d’argent.
“How is this a pro in having rabbits as pets?”
Well, come to think of it. Every rabbit is an individual.
And that means you’re getting to know bunnies with different personalities.
You can also include the diversity in their looks.
Also, since there are lots of choices, you’ll have higher chances of getting one that suits you the best.
Pro tip: Before you bring home a bunny, make sure you’ve bonded with them first. This helps in checking how compatible you both are.
8 cons of rabbits as pets
#1: Rabbits need partners
You can’t leave your rabbit alone in a corner. Especially if you’re cuddling with your partner.
Just like you, your adorable little snowball would need someone in life.
Or else they’ll feel very lonely.
This is because companionship is very important. And, it’s not that hard to give them a partner.
Your rabbit would love to have someone to interact with. Or someone that can show them love by grooming.
Or even perhaps have baby bunnies together.
So, if you’re keeping one rabbit at home, it’s time to look for the love of their lives.
#2: Rabbits need to be active daily
The worst match for any rabbit is a human parent that’s busy.
Though rabbits are not like human babies, they still need a chunk of your time. Include as well your:
- And attention.
But, the most important part of their day is exercise. They need to be able to hop around or run and dig on the ground.
In other words, your rabbit shouldn’t be treated as a couch potato.
To add, exercise will keep them happy.
Note: PDSA suggests that rabbit parents should give their rabbits at least 3 hours of exercise daily.
#3: Rabbits are fast runners
Oh, every rabbit parent will agree on this one.
Though your rabbit can always win a race against a turtle, it’s going to be a hassle if you yourself are part of the contest.
And admit it or not, it’s hard to catch a fleeing rabbit.
They have something on their legs that make them escape before you get them.
Actually, their look can be completed with a pair of Nike shoes on.
These fluffy athletic companions may dash out of their cage before you know it.
And that means you have to keep an eye on them.
Also, if they were able to get out of the yard, it could be worrisome.
So, before anything bad happens, ensure that your place is rabbit-proof.
#4: Rabbits poop loads
Poop here and poop there.
You may start thinking if this is an activity your rabbits love doing.
Anyhow, it shouldn’t be too surprising. After all, rabbits poop a lot.
As Dr. Dana Krempels says, you have to expect your rabbit to poo at any time of the day, such as:
- At night.
- Late in the morning.
- Or late in the afternoon.
Sometimes, your rabbit will even hold themselves back from excreting if you’re around.
As silly as it sounds, this is your rabbit’s way of showing politeness to you.
So, as long as you litterbox train your rabbit, dealing with their poop won’t be a challenge.
You may also want to check out: 15 Alarming Reasons Why Your Rabbit Poops So Much + 11 Tips
#5: Rabbits are fragile
Though they seem to look athletic, your rabbit needs delicate care.
These aren’t your regular household companion whom you can play roughly with.
I advise you not to place them in very high places. More so if they’re still too young.
This is because if they fall, they may end up injuring their feet.
But, out of all the rabbit parts, nothing is more fragile than their tail.
“But I don’t see any tail.”
Well, look closely. Their rear end shows a pom-pom-shaped fur. And beneath that dense coat is a tapered little tail called a scut.
“How sensitive are their scut?”
To answer, it’s so tender that you can easily pull it off.
Also, rabbits can even accidentally bite off their tail while grooming.
Now, knowing about this, your kids should learn about it too.
Teach them not to play hard with your rabbit.
Warning: Don’t attempt to check out your rabbit’s tail for any unnecessary reasons. This can lead to serious injuries that would require your vet’s attention.
#6: Rabbits love to chew
There’s a reason why rabbits love to chew hay or anything they have in their mouth. It’s not just a mere hobby.
As a matter of fact, your rabbit loves to move their mouth since their teeth continuously grow, according to VCA Hospitals.
That means rabbits have to have a supply of hay every day to keep their teeth from overgrowing.
“What happens if there’s nothing for them to munch on?”
Well, your rabbit will resort to eating cardboards or nibbling metal wires.
Warning: Keep your electric cables and wires away from your rabbit. They can be accidentally electrocuted when they happen to munch on any hot wire.
#7: Rabbits vets are hard to find
Rabbits are now common household companions. Sadly, they’re still labeled as exotic.
And that they’re seen to be not on the same level as cats and dogs.
That means when your rabbit needs professional care, vets can be hard to find.
I know. It’s definitely concerning since rabbits are delicate animals.
They might have their tails accidentally stepped on. Or exhibit some type of injury.
And surely, no rabbit parent wants to see their little fur-ball in pain.
So, before anything happens, make sure you check the vets near you. Ask for their number and other details in case of emergency, too.
#8: Rabbits can be high maintenance
Though rabbits only eat hay and fruits, taking care of them can be overwhelming. Well, to those who are unprepared.
These animals should have their bowls filled with timothy hay. And don’t forget the bits and pieces of fruits and vegetables.
All these have to be done every single day, in a week, and in their entire lifespan.
Also, to avoid painful scratches, their nails have to be regularly trimmed.
Don’t forget to invest in toys too. Rabbits love to play and chew on them.
“What toys should I buy for my rabbits?”
Well, you have to choose only those that are chemical-free.
There are available wooden toys that are made of:
- And willow.
“Are they expensive?”
No, not really. These toys can be purchased for $14.99 or less. Add that price to the list of other things your rabbit needs like:
- Litter box.
- Food bowl.
- Water bottle.
- Rabbit carrier.
- Grooming tools.
So, rabbit parents, keep in mind that your sociable hopping friends are like kids. They can be costly to have. But, they’re fun to keep.