Pets For Children – Rabbits

Most children, love animals and rabbits, along, with hamsters and guinea pigs, are firm favourites.

Rabbits are cute and cuddly, however, they don’t always like to feel that all four feet are off the ground and therefore, sometimes, will scratch,.at that, I’m not suggesting that they are not a good choice of pet for a child, just that children should ALWAYS be supervised around any animal, not just pets. If they are handled correctly, by holding securely and having their legs supported, they will tolerate a small cuddle.

 

My two sisters and I, kept rabbits, when we were growing up and we looked after them extremely well, even if I do say so myself! However, I recall a time when we were very irresponsible, we often let our rabbits have a run around our secure garden and our parents, told us one numerous occasions, “NEVER,let them out together,”( they were housed in three separate hutches) but being children, we didn’t listen and did let them out together, to see what would happen really and you can guess what did happen,yes, they mated and several weeks later, we had babies, when we were questioned by our mum, I am ashamed to admit that we denied everything!

The main problem, with allowing your child, to have any pet, not just a rabbit, is that it may be just a novelty and they soon get bored with it, leaving their parents to feed and clean out the cage, or worse, the poor thing is left forgotten and neglected, living in a dirty hutch at the bottom of the garden, getting fat.

As an adult, I have owned several different rabbits, the most memorable being Billy, our giant continental bunny, He was huge in personality as well as stature and was even known to sunbath on the patio with our German Shepherd dog.

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At the present time, we have two Cornish Rex rabbits, Fudge and Smudge, who live happily together.  They go out on the lawn, in a run, as often, as the weather allows, ensuring they get plenty  of exercise, we even give them’toys’ to keep them fit. They will jump into an empty cardboard box together, my husband has also come up with an idea of stuffing hay into an empty toilet roll tube to make them work for  food, he has made a hay net from sacking too and hangs it just out of reach to encourage them to stretch.

Several years ago, my husband decided he would like to breed rabbits. I was working as a child minder, at the time and the children loved the babies, a few of them, even managed to persuade their parents into letting them have one. Another time I was looking at baby rabbits in a local pet shop, to see how much they were selling them for. I noticed a family were also looking at them. I whispered, to the mother, “I have baby rabbits for sale, which are half the price and have been handled by children.” She asked if she could have my phone number, so I gave her one of my child minding business cards. She rang later that day and ended up buying two from us. Sorry to the owner of the pet store!

Rabbits teeth never stop growing, so it is important that they are given hard substances to gnaw on, we give ours apple wood, hay and bird seed, which they love. but make sure you don’t overfeed your rabbits, a fat rabbit will not be able to clean it’s self and will be  vulnerable to fly strike .

Another tip, from my husband again, is to keep an area in the hutch to use as a toilet. He has sectioned off an area with wood batons, see in photo,

but you could even use a cat litter tray, for really easy cleaning. Encourage the rabbits to use this area by  moving their droppings into it, hopefully the scent will do the rest.

If reading this, has made you decide that a rabbit is the correct pet for you, or your child, please consider  obtaining one from a rescue centre, North Devon animal ambulance is my local re homing centre,but there are several across the country, including some pets at home stores, who do an adoption for pets scheme, they usually ask for a £10 donation, which is still cheaper than a lot of pet stores.

As always, questions/comments are welcome.

karen

24 Comments on “Pets For Children – Rabbits

  1. Your rabbits have been so lucky and had wonderful lives. Nobody should take on any pet without giving it a great deal of thought in order to look after them . It’s a lovely way to teach children how to care for animals. Rabbits can be so unlucky and neglected. As usual another lovely blog.

  2. Your rabbits are very cute! We have pets that we had before kids so our girls are growing up familiar with animals. It will be a long time before we let them have their own pets as they are not old enough to over come the novelty wearing off. I suspect when the time comes their choice would ideally be rabbits. #coolmumclub

  3. Having a pet is a huge commitment! My daughter is constantly asking for various pets and I tell her not until she is old enough to take continued responsibility for them. Your rabbits are lovely though! Thanks so much for linking up to #coolmumclub x

  4. I read this post with my 7 year old daughter, she has often asked for a rabbit and we really enjoyed learning a lot about the the time and care a rabbit needs-thank you! #thesatsesh

    1. That’s wonderful, I hope she has many fantastic years with her new friend and takes good care of her pet, thanks for sharing your experience x

  5. What happy rabbits you have (and you did make me chuckle with your story of the rabbits mating when you let them out together as kids!) We never had pets as kids, so I was determined that WB would have some (especially as he adores all animals). Last year we got two guinea pigs who live inside with us 🙂 they are so lovely. I’ve never had rabbits, but will bookmark this post in case we ever decide to expand our family in future! Thanks for linking up with #sharethejoylinky

  6. Ooooh I love the picture of Billy with your German Shepherd dog – how cute! I do agree pets are good for children. We have 2 cats at the moment. My eldest is desperate for a dog but I think we have a house full at the moment, but maybe one day! #thesatsesh

  7. My girls want a pet but I refuse until they understand the commitment Thank you for linking to #ThatFridayLinky Please come back next week

  8. Aww to the Rabbits. We’ve not got a massive house and are leaning on the no pets rule… one day maybe. I also think kids need to be responsible for the pets that live in the house. Great post! ‪Thank you for linking up to the #familyfunlinky‬

  9. My neices have rabbits and while I know that all pets are a responsibility, rabbits sound particularly ‘sensitive’ in that if they overfeed they get strike fly. It’s lovely to see them hopping around the garden though. Saying that I’ll think we’ll stick to a cat for now… #sharethejoylinky

  10. Rabbits are lovely, we had one growing up. Now my kids have guinea pigs and they love them.
    #fortheloveofBLOG

  11. We had a rabbit but we found we didn’t have enough time to commit so we made sure we found it another home that had the time to look after it the way it deserved. The cat is enough for us for now. Thanks for joining in at #TriumphantTales. Hope to see you back on Tuesday.

  12. I never realised it was so complicated to keep rabbits and hadn’t thought of many of the points you listed here. Thanks so much for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x

  13. Hi Karen, we’ve had a couple of large rabbits as pets. They were totally spoiled and had the run of the garden and house, they were surprisingly easy to litter train too. Your photo of your giant rabbit with your German shepherd reminds me of a photo I have somewhere of one of our rabbits snuggled up to our now departed German shepherd. The dogs got on with the rabbits, but we never left them alone together, just in case. Unfortunately one of our rabbits had a nibble on a Poinsettia leaf. which killed it in matter of hours. I was gutted.

    Popped over from #AnimalTales

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