Rabbits are easy to recognize. Their long ears help them detect predators and their long legs help them run for safety. Rabbits live in many regions of the world. They are herbivores, meaning they eat plant matter like hay.
Rabbits live in social groups, and they often dig burrows underground. A system of rabbit burrows is called a warren. A male rabbit is called a buck, and a female rabbit is called a doe. A baby rabbit is called a kitten or kit. Although some rabbits are small, they are not rodents.
Rabbits are often raised by humans as pets. A cage for a rabbit is called a hutch. In many parts of the world, rabbits are also raised for their meat and fur. Rabbit skins are warm and are used as clothing in some regions.
Rabbits are known for having a fast rate of reproduction. Normal gestation for rabbits is about 30 days. Because of this short interval between generations, rabbits have been able to quickly colonize new areas. In Australia and New Zealand, rabbits introduced by early colonists have become invasive species.
When picking a brand of food for your bunny you want to pay attention to the following components: fiber (minimum of 18%), protein (12-14% for adults), and fat (2-5%). Usually forages (timothy, alfalfa) should be listed prior to grains (wheat, oats, corn).
Rabbits can also have fruits and vegetables! You should avoid feeding your rabbit things like: iceberg lettuce, potato, and tomato leaves. It is especially important to avoid feeding flowers or weeds as some species of these plants can be fatal.
Rabbits even enjoy eating their own droppings! This may sound disgusting to you, but for rabbits it is essential to life. This behavior is known as “coprophagy.” This occurs so that the rabbit is able to ingest nutrients they did not previously absorb.
Always make sure your rabbit has access to clean food and make fresh water available at all times.
Check out this video on how the digestive tract of a rabbit works!
Video is part of the Purina Mills Video channel on YouTube.
Through the Jr. Animal Scientist magazine and special online resources, kids can learn about pets, farm animals and zoo animals. Scientific information is tailored for kids ages 5 to 9 (K-3rd grades). Eye-catching photos and exciting animal activities add to the fun! Plus, all Jr. Animal Scientists get special prizes just for joining.