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Anyone keep rabbits?

Crysta

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
Joined
Feb 18, 2005
Messages
1,475
Hey everyone.
I am thinking of getting a Flemish Giant, or a contenental if I come accross them. I was wondering if there is any other big friendly bunnies around? I am looking for a litter trainable companion. Maybe tell me your experiences with them?
And of course I will neuter. (i'd like a buck as I hear they are more friendly and less territorial.)

Also can they be leash trained to go on walks or are they more like... OUU GRASS...time to eat! or Oh look a car, run! ?
 

sharpfang

Arachnoangel
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 20, 2009
Messages
913
I need 2 upload New Pics of Hunter's bunny: "Rex"

The most Easy-Going rabbit we have met, and boy is he getting BIG now! He just hangs out w/ ya, on the Bed - and sure does love Carrots! :razz:
 

odiakkoh

Arachnosquire
Joined
Sep 8, 2010
Messages
57
Aww I used to have 2 flemmies. They are the best breed ever. I had a brother and sister pair. They were both equally affectionate and neither were the territorial sort (unless you count the boy being protective over his sister). Very easy to litterbox train but man can they poop.

ETA: They can be trained to use a harness but it's not like walking a dog. It's more like walking an iguana or bearded dragon. It's on there so they don't run off as they explore, not so you can guide where they will go. They wont walk along with you (unless you happen to have treats in your hand coaxing them the whole time lol)
 

pouchedrat

Arachnolord
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 17, 2008
Messages
614
They'll use a leash and harness, but it's not like a dog like someone else said (my pouched rat used to walk on a leash and harness exactly like a dog. Used to freak the neighbors out when we went out walking on the bike trails near our place, lol.. I don't know too many "small mammal" pets who do the same). Rabbits tend to just do what they do while on a leash... hop here, eat, hop there, eat some more.

Only thing I can really recommend is to make sure that you get them spayed/neutered, because it dramatically increases their life expectancy as well as help their litter box habits. We had a male/female mini rex (which we think were actually a cross breed, they weighed more than mini rex were supposed to), the male's still alive but the female passed away a month or two ago from heart disease.. she was only 6.

Also despite all your best efforts to litter box train, they'll never be completely 100% trained, there's still bound to be an accident every once in a while. And as far as rabbit-proofing the house? It's an ongoing process... Mine suddenly decided that carpet was delicious one day, and they also thought the corner of our walls was tasty as well. It seems like no matter how much you prepare, they'll always find something to get into.

I learned I'm not a rabbit person from our two buns. They've been great pets, but they're not really the brightest thing, and not the cuddliest pet in the world. Some people do great with rabbits, I just like pets who are a bit more interactive like rats and our prairie dogs.... With rabbits, it's more like they come to YOU for attention, you can't force it on them.

I'll also say that making their cage is far more fun and cheaper than purchasing one, especially since our two rabbits were the size of cats and I could never imagine a cat in a cage like they sell in pet stores... If you're getting a flemmish giant, best to build one. It's not a permanent cage they can never leave, it's for security and safety, while you're not home or guests are over, etc.

Our old cage looked like this:


Then when we moved, I changed it to one level:


No new updated pics of it, but our second move, I just made it 7 panels long instead of 6, nothing new.

 

Crysta

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
Joined
Feb 18, 2005
Messages
1,475
Thanks for the replies. Since I want a flemish, I was thinking of creating something out of a large dog kenel crate, but we will see if I decide to get a flemish, I just might stick with the smaller breeds.
Thanks for all the info and pictures! I wouldn't mind a prarie dog, but I've never seen something liek that for sale here, so it would be quite hard.

Thanks
 

zonbonzovi

Creeping beneath you
Staff member
Joined
Oct 20, 2008
Messages
3,346
Hey Chrysta, my wife & I keep a pair of mini-Rexes. Our male is much more skittish while the female is the overseer of their territory. They're pretty good about keeping poo in their enclosed area, but they were trained by the original owners. They also stick to the one room when out of the enclosure, but only because they don't like the way the hardwoods feel that are bordering the room. Mostly easy to keep, with the exception that they're big eaters. I would imagine a Flemmy would need a lot more grub. Also, definitely keep an eye on non-food consumption, esp. carpet & electrical cords. I could go on, but these folks can probably answer much more in depth & they're in your area:

http://www.vrra.org/wp-beta1/
 

pouchedrat

Arachnolord
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 17, 2008
Messages
614
From my experience our male is the friendlier of the two, the female was a jerk and when we first got her (she was a rescue... lived in a 29 gallon tank all her life and was never handled) she would lunge at us and GROWL and try biting. I didn't even know rabbits could make the noises she would make at us! Our boy bunny will come to us seeking attention, though, and the female eventually got to the point where she followed our son around the house because he would feed her veggies and herbs from our fridge constantly. Try petting her and she would bolt, though. At least the male will jump onto the couch to hang out with you. Pay too much attention though, he'll jump off and hide

Oh, and I don't recommend prairie dogs to anyone, really... I have a bit of experience with exotic rodents, but I think they're far more work and far more destructive than most people can handle. Then again, most people I meet can't even figure out hamsters, so...
 

Crysta

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
Joined
Feb 18, 2005
Messages
1,475
Thanks everyone for the replies! I got my bunny! He is allergic to hay, and gets hay fever if exposed to it. So yay I dont need hay.. lol

He's a tiny bit irritated to aspen bedding, what would you reccomend instead of that? I think I am irritated to the aspen bedding as well...
Would a cocofiber work?(lol t experience) or will that stink? I was thinking pellets...

Thanks :)
 

pouchedrat

Arachnolord
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 17, 2008
Messages
614
I wouldn't use cocofiber bedding, oh man, the smell from urine alone would be pretty bad after a while. plus you'll have to clean it, it'd be horribly heavy I'd think, but I don't know. they shed twice a year and you will be absolutely amazed how much fur a rabbit will shed.. even a short-hair breed! I grew up with long haired cats, and I don't think I've ever had so much fur cleanup before until we got mini rex rabbits! I'm talking, will get in the AC ducts and on top of book shelves and light fixtures!! won't even mention how much poop there will be. litter boxes inside the cage should be changed pretty much daily

I personally use either yesterdays news (cat litter section, it's paper based), or carefresh. Honestly, yesterdays news has been one of the best beddings I've used for small mammals so far. It holds odor the best, IMO, and when you keep a lot of rodents as pets, holding odor and ease of cleaning are what you're looking for. Plus, yesterdays news seems to vaccum up better than carefresh (once again, in my experience).

yesterdays news seems to last longer and smell less, just be sure to get unscented because the scented stuff stinks. I have an issue with odors, so ANY smell bothers me, and I get obsessive with cleaning sometimes because of it. Ever since having kids, my sense of smell is over 9000
 

Crysta

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
Joined
Feb 18, 2005
Messages
1,475
yesterdays news? haha I thought you where talking about newspaper xD!
thanks for the info its appreciate :D
Since he can't eat hay, and hasn't for 2 years will that pose a problem for his teeth?
 

odiakkoh

Arachnosquire
Joined
Sep 8, 2010
Messages
57
I would personally not use the bedding except in his litterbox. I like wood pellets the best since it's cheap at the feed store but I know people who love Yesterday's News too.

As for his teeth, as long as he's getting regular things to munch on he should be fine. Worst case scenario you'd have to take him to the vet to have his teeth filed but if he's already gone 2 years without hay and doing fine, I wouldn't expect a problem.
 
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