Tuesday, October 19, 2010

5 Things You Should Look For In A Rabbit Cage

By: Christopher Lunsford

A pet rabbit in a rabbit cage is a lot different from the wild rabbits we see sometimes in the woods or in a documentary of National Geographic. You see, pet rabbits are not wild rabbits caught and eventually domesticated. They are the product of thorough and long breeding process with the aim of developing in them the characteristics that would make them suitable as pets.

Wild rabbits live in the woods, forests, underground burrows, like the European rabbits, in wetlands and deserts, in thickets, meadows and grasslands. Pet rabbits live with their owners, a place quite different from their natural habitat. They have been perfectly adopted to the environment of a home and are used to being around with people, after they have been trained.

Although they have been bred and some of their characteristics have been modified through training, they still behave like rabbits because rabbits they are. In other words, you expect them to love to move around, chew, bite, kick, jump and hop and many other things.

As such, when you bring home a pet rabbit, there are at least five things you have to look for to make your pet live happily, comfortably and safely.

Five things to look for in a Rabbit cage

1. Comfort. The rabbit cage that you will have for your pet rabbit must be comfortable for it. It must be big enough to allow the rabbit to move around and high enough for it to be able stand on two hind legs. It could be bigger if you have enough space in you house.

To address this particular aspect of the living space of rabbits, the best thing to do is build your rabbit a fox proof run outdoors where you can let your rabbit have more space without being bothered or harmed by presumed predators like possums and foxes.

It must have the necessary "facilities" like a place where it can comfortably lie down to sleep, a litter box and water and food containers.

Rabbits are social animals and if properly trained and housebroken, they must be allowed to socialize with the occupants of the house who must also be "rabbit-broken," which means they are able to relate to and treat, and handle the rabbit properly. Rabbits can also be trained to mingle with other pets in the house. It is therefore necessary that the cage allows the rabbit to go in and out when it wants to do so.

Other cages are built like condos where it has a "second floor" and a ramp where it can run through up and down. This allows them some exercise.

2. Health and Safety. Cages with wire floors can cause the nails of the rabbit to be broken or the feet to be injured, or else sores that are painful can develop. To prevent these from happening, floors must be lined with towel or mat.

3. Maintenance. The rabbit cage must be easy to clean. Rabbits thrive well in a neat and clean place. If the cage has a plastic mat on the floor, it is easier to clean. A cage with the top that can lifted will be helpful when you clean the cage. A tray, at the bottom to catch the urine and other dirt, that is can easily be pulled out for cleaning, will be good.

4. Durability. For instance, rabbits love to chew. Aside for the toys you give them where they can spend their time chewing and playing, the cage must be constructed of materials that are cannot be or hard to chew. The mat on the floor must also be more or less chew proof by fastening the edges with a secure metal or by any means so that not any part of the edge would curl upward so the rabbit can chew it.

What's more, cages also costs money. A durable one that will last the lifetime of the rabbit and probably that of the one following would be a good one to have.

5. Mobility. Since cages are most usually inside the house, there are instances when they have to be moved from the area it is situated like for example when the house itself is being cleaned.

Most pet rabbit experts prescribe one that is at least four to five times the length of your pet and since rabbits expect to grow fully, it should approximate the length of your pet when full grown. An ideal one is 3 feet by 2 feet by 20 inches.

However, a rabbit cage must be viewed from the point of the rabbit only but also from the position of the pet owner, it must not only consider the size but from the other points just discussed.

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