If you want to decide for one or more rabbits of good origin, you should consider the following:
Inform yourself beforehand!
- If you don’t have a rabbit at home yet, you should decide for two rabbits, single keeping is cruelty to animals!
- Find out in advance what rabbits need (basic needs, keeping, nutrition…) on this and other rabbit sites. You should never keep rabbits in a stable or cage or feed them normal dry food.
- Many housing and feeding errors lead to illness, high veterinary costs, behavioural problems and problems. All this can be avoided.
- The origin decides about later problems (e.g. diseases) and you have the possibility to prevent cruelty to animals by the origin.
Which rabbit to choose?
- Choose a rabbit that fits to the existing rabbits (character, age, sex…) and make sure you find out beforehand about the process of socialization so that it works to get the rabbits used to each other. Discuss that you can bring the rabbits back if the socialization fails.
- In addition to the good origin, it is also important which rabbit breed suits you best.
- Find out beforehand about the character traits and susceptibility to disease of the desired breeds and also of mixed breeds.
- Large rabbit breeds are usually calmer and become more tame than small breeds, especially small breeds are often very active and careful rabbits. Aries often have a rather comfortable and calm character. Some rabbits do not correspond to their breed.
- See if the rabbit is healthy. Is the anus clean? Are the eyes healthy or do they water? Is the coat and skin normal or does the rabbit have scales, bald spots or wounds? What does it look like? Does it eat? Are siblings and parents healthy? Are sick animals treated by veterinarians? In case of doubt, go to a veterinarian after the purchase or choose another rabbit.
- What has the rabbit eaten so far? Is it accustomed to indoor or outdoor keeping?
- Observe the rabbits longer, contact them to see which animal and which character suits you best.
- Which requirements should the rabbit fulfil (e.g. house-cleanness, child suitability…). Ask about these topics beforehand and select the appropriate animals. Older rabbits are often house-trained, with babies it is not yet clear whether they will ever be. Large breeds are especially suitable for children because they are tamer and calmer. However, they can only be kept in the garden.
- Never buy rabbit babies that have been separated from their mother too early (before the 12th week of life) or have not grown up in a species-appropriate way!
- Before moving in, build a species-appropriate indoor or outdoor enclosure.
- Provide species-appropriate equipment (shelters, employment, bowls, toilet boxes…).
- Make at least one room rabbit-proof (for daily exercise).
- If you are already holding rabbits: Prepare a separate enclosure without visual contact for the new arrival.
The move in
- The rabbit needs some time to settle in. You can sit down and watch it. In the beginning you should not constantly change everything or take the rabbit out.
- Many rabbits carry hidden diseases. If other rabbits are present, you should collect a faecal sample of 2-3 days and have it examined by the veterinarian in the laboratory for parasites, in order not to introduce these into your group. Also have the rabbit thoroughly examined or quarantine it for about two weeks.
- Slowly change your diet if the rabbit has eaten something else before.
- Have the sex determined by two independent people before you put the rabbit with other rabbits!