Rabbit – Diet

Diet

There are three main aspects to a rabbits diet

  • Hay
  • Nuggets
  • Fresh Grass, Vegetables, Herbs

Hay is the most important factor in domestic rabbits diet, it has many nutritional benefits, including being the main source of fibre in their diet helping to keep your rabbits guts happy and healthy. As well as nutritional benefits, it helps to keep rabbits teeth in order. Rabbits teeth constantly grow, and hay is one of the factors that help to keep them down, rabbits without any access to hay develop spurs, they cut into gums, and are extremely painful, they can even lead to a rabbit not eating. There are many different hays available on the market today, including meadow hay, timothy hay, hay that has been mixed with dandelion leaves etc…. Its best to see what takes your buns fancy, which hay they prefer and eat most of.

Nuggets. Whilst a rabbits diet should consist of mostly hay, it is advisable to provide them with a ‘commerical’ food also. Small quantities of good quality nuggets can be fed to your rabbit, the guidelines suggest that a medium rabbit should have no more than an egg cup full, twice a day. A nugget based commercial food is the best, you can get a muesli style food, which appears cheaper, however in the long run comes more expensive as the rabbits pick out the bits they like and tend to leave the rest. There are many different providers of rabbit nuggets such as Burgess Excel and Supreme Science Selective. It is important to note that a rabbits diet should never be suddenly changed, if they are currently on muesli and  you would prefer to change them to nuggets, they should be introduced slowly and mixed in. Sudden changes can cause digestive problems.

Fresh Grass, Vegetables & Herbs are viewed as treats for our buns. They should be fed in small quantities and varied on a daily basis. Huge amounts of vegetables can cause your rabbit stomach upset. There is an extensive range of different vegetables, herbs, and fresh greens you can feed your rabbits some examples are:

Vegetables:

  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower (and the leaves)
  • Celery leaves
  • Cucumber
  • Curly Kale
  • Peppers (red, green and yellow)
  • Pumpkin
  • Rocket
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Spring Greens

Herbs:

(It is always best to introduce new foods to your rabbit slowly and in small quantities)

  • Basil
  • Coriander
  • Dill
  • Mint (peppermint)
  • Parsley – not too much as high in calcium
  • Oregano
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Thyme

 

It is important to note that it is not advisable to feed your rabbit with Iceberg Lettuce, there is very little nutritional value to it as its main content is water, and again can cause digestive problems.

Rabbits see all kinds of greens as treat, whether that be fresh grass, dandelion leaves or shop bought vegetables, and herbs.

 

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