Find Out What to Feed Your Pet Rabbit to Make Them Happy and Healthy

When thinking about what rabbit foods to feed your pet, carrot always comes first in mind. That is because when we’re little, we get used to watching cartoons that show how rabbits drool for carrots. Rabbits do really love this kind of veggie because bunny rabbits like to munch their food with their strong big teeth and they really love it when they are eating food as crunchy and sweet as carrots. But do you know what else rabbits love? Feed your pet rabbit a combination of different types of fruits and vegetables, grass hay, pellets, and of course, always provide them with clean water to drink.

rabbit eating carrot

Photo: vijay chennupati / flickr

Fruits and Vegetables Your Pet Rabbit Would Love

Just like humans, fruits and vegetables, particularly those freshly picked ones, are the best source of nutrients for your furry little pets. Fruits and veggies provide vitamins and minerals to keep your pet healthy and active. Green and leafy vegetables are the best rabbit foods to give them not only because these are easy to digest but it will also boost their immune system to keep them away from diseases. You can actually feed your rabbit any vegetables available like:

• radish
• celery
• cabbage
• spinach
• parsley
• chayote
• turnip
• basil
• zucchini and more.

Be cautious when feeding them flower vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower because these contain higher starch than the normal veggies. So make it a habit to always include more leafy greens in your rabbit’s diet. Most pet owners would give fruits to their rabbits as treats and in small portions only. These fruits as rabbit foods include:

• apples
• pears
• berries
• melon
• peach
• pineapple
• strawberries
• oranges (even unpeeled)

Just always remember that you have to wash these fruits and veggies first before you give any of them to your pet. Bear in mind that these days, veggies and fruit crops contain poisonous elements due to the pesticides sprayed on them at the farm to keep them away from insects and pests as they grow. As much as possible wash these rabbit foods thoroughly to make sure they are clean and safe to eat. If the fruit has too many seeds like orange, apple, or watermelon, remove the seeds first because it could pose choking hazard to your pet rabbit. Avoid apple seeds too because it could be poisonous if your pet ingests too much of it.

rabbits feeding on fresh hay

Photo: Sean Winters / Flickr

Vitamin Rich Rabbit Foods

Vitamins A and D are very well present in grass hay that is why this is very good healthy rabbit food. It contains a lot of nutrients and is also a great source of protein and calcium. Your pet will surely benefit from this by having stronger bones and teeth. Fresh grass hay also makes their gastrointestinal tract healthy. Highly digestive, rabbits tend to poop immediately just after eating a few of these so make sure to have this present at all times and as fresh as possible. Aside from the smell of a freshly cut grass, you can also identify if the grass hay is fresh by looking at its color— brownish and moldy looking grass hay means they are no longer fresh and it is best not to give them to your pets.

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Limit the Pellets

Some groups of rabbit pet owners advise to limit or to totally remove pellets from a pet rabbit’s diet for several reasons which are mostly medical. A lot of them would agree that rabbit pellets cause obesity, stool problems, and other health related issues. Dry pet foods for rabbits such as pellets are manufactured by combining different ingredients that will complete your pet’s nutritional needs. However, since pellets are not purely natural food for pets, other ingredients added to it may not be advisable to consume on a regular basis. Fresh and natural food for your pets is still the best but due to the fact that hay grass and vegetables are not readily accessible particularly in urbanized areas, and that these foods could easily spoil, pet owners use pellets as alternative. If you decide to include pellets in your pet’s diet, limit the amount as much as possible. Also, consider in mind that just like other pet foods choose fresh pellets so that the nutrients are still intact.

What Not to Feed Your Pet Rabbit?

It is better if you avoid giving them any kind of lettuce. Though green and leafy, lettuce contains lactucarium that can cause severe diarrhea to your pet. Romaine lettuce has the least content of lactucarium so it’s okay to feed them this with small amount. Do not feed rabbits wild plants or flowers you just see on your garden because some of them could be poisonous. It is always best to stay on the safe side when it comes to pet food.

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Now that you have good ideas on what to feed your pet rabbit, you’ll notice that their diet will be composed mostly of easy to digest food. Also, the fact that these animals are very active, it’s normal that they starve from time to time, so always keep them with healthy rabbit foods readily available any time they get hungry. Furthermore, keep your pets hydrated at all times. Change their water regularly and make sure that it is always fresh and clean. Keep in mind that clean and nutritious food makes a happy and healthy pet rabbit.

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