What Can I Feed my Pet Rabbit?
- posted: Dec. 19, 2016
What Can I Feed my Pet Rabbit? Tips From Your Phoenix Veterinarian
Rabbits are the third most common pet in America, behind only cats and dogs in popularity. Here at North Central Animal Hospital in Phoenix, that's easy for us to believe! Bunnies are also adorable, independent, intelligent, hygienic pets who can learn tricks, use a litter box, and live as long as a decade. Unfortunately, they're also very misunderstood. There's still a lot of myths about rabbits' diet, exercise, and habitat requirements, and pet rabbits suffer from a variety of preventable health problems as a result.
Our veterinarians are committed to giving Phoenix rabbits the quality of life they deserve. Follow these steps to enrich your rabbit's diet and make sure their nutritional needs are covered.
Supply Unlimited Timothy Hay
The cornerstone of a healthy adult rabbit's diet is hay. Unlimited access to fresh hay will keep your rabbit's digestive tract in working order, fulfill their natural instincts to chew, and prevent their teeth from overgrowth. Timothy hay is the ideal choice for rabbits because it's firm and flavorful with the right balance of vitamins, but other acceptable hays include orchard grass and oat hay.
Serve Fortified Rabbit Pellets Every Day
Fortified rabbit pellets should be the smallest part of your pet's daily diet, but they're still a very important component. Ask your veterinarian which brands are best, but stay away from any pellets with dried fruits, seeds, or artificial fillers. Oxbow is one of our favorite brands.
Feed Fresh Greens (But Check the List First)
Every day, your rabbit needs at least one cup of green vegetables per 4 pounds of body weight. These veggies can include lots of parsley, cilantro, Romaine lettuce, basil, and spinach. Just make sure you read up on veggies that can be harmful to rabbits, and only give certain fruits as treats in small quantities. Prop-tip: most rabbits can't resist a slice of banana or a baby carrot!
Schedule Regular Wellness Exams with Our Veterinarian in Phoenix
Of course, a crucial component in proper rabbit care is finding an experienced rabbit vet in Phoenix. Your rabbit's Phoenix veterinarian should have extensive experience with veterinary care for exotic pets, including rabbits, and they should examine your rabbit thoroughly at least once a year. One of our three talented veterinarians, Dr. Ivy Thomas, is actually in the process of earning her board certification for exotic pet care with the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners. Her ABVP credential will include a Specialty in Exotic Companion Mammal Practice.
Here at North Central Animal Hospital, we accept rabbits for routine and emergency care, including regular check-ups. Dr. Thomas will help you adjust your rabbit's diet if necessary and anticipate any herbivore-specific risks, such as sharp or overgrown teeth. Call today to schedule a wellness exam in Phoenix for your pet rabbit.