|There will be times in your rabbit's life that they will need treatment by a vet and it is your duty as a rabbit owner to ensure your rabbit is treated. This can sometimes be expensive but to help cover these costs, insurance companies offer a range of policies with different levels of cover. |
There are various aspects of routine care that you need to ensure you provide your rabbit. Some of these are monthly, every 6 months, annually or one off treatments, find out more below.
Below are the average statistics of a healthy rabbit:
Life span: 5 - 10 years
Temperature: 101.3 to 104°F
Heart Rate: 180 - 250 beats/min
Respiration Rate: 30 to 60 breaths/min
Gestation Period: 29 - 35 days
Weight: Up to 7 Kgs (15.4 lbs)
Rabbits are natural prey animals and they usually hide any signs of suffering. You need to keep an eye on your rabbit and watch closely for any signs of illness. Signs that there could be a problem include a runny nose, coldness, your rabbit being unusually inactive, or digestive problems. If you are in any doubt about the health of your rabbit, take it to your vet immediately as poorly rabbits can deteriorate quickly.
Your rabbit's teeth will never stop growing so they need something to gnaw on to keep their teeth healthy. Sometimes this isn't enough and your rabbit's teeth may need trimmed. Your vet will be able to carry out this procedure.
Likewise, their claws can become overgrown and uncomfortable for your rabbit if they are too long. Your vet will easily be able to trim your rabbit's claws.
Rabbits can get worm-type parasites, although they are not as common as they are in dogs. If you suspect your rabbit has worms, take a fresh fecal sample to your vet and he/she will be able to diagnose the problem. Your vet will then administer the appropriate medication for your rabbit.
Your rabbit will need to be vaccinated against myxomatosis every six months and annually against Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (VHD). Vaccinations can begin when rabbits reach 10 weeks old.
Fleas & Ticks
You need to check your rabbit regularly for fleas and mites. A range of flea and mite sprays are available that are easy to apply and effective in getting rid of infestations. Ensure you read the instructions on the label before you apply to your rabbit.
Spay or Neuter
If you do not intend to use your rabbit for breeding purposes you may wish to have them spayed or neutered. Spaying a female rabbit (doe) will prevent unwanted litters and neutering a male rabbit (buck) reduces the likelihood of them being aggressive and should make them easier to tame. Spaying or neutering may also reduce the risk of certain health problems in the future.
A licensed veterinarian will perform the surgery under anesthesia and they will be able to fully explain the procedure to you. If you are thinking of spaying or newtering a pet, getting it done at an early age is safe and effective so have a chat with your vet at your rabbit's first visit.
You may consider having your pet chipped. This involves a microchip being inserted under the skin on the back of your rabbit's neck. This procedure is carried out by a vet and is quick and relatively painless.
If your rabbit goes missing and is handed in to a police station they can scan the chip using a special scanner and it displays your name and address so you can be contacted to come and collect your pet.