Decorative rabbits today have become just as common pets as cats and dogs. This is not surprising, since the animals have a charming appearance, and at the first glance at them, most people are eager to have such a four-legged friend at home. Unfortunately, due to the frivolous attitude to the content of decorative rabbits at home, most of the animals die prematurely, without receiving proper care; or they begin to pass from hand to hand, which seriously affects the psyche of rabbits. In order for the rabbit to feel comfortable at home and the owner not to be disappointed in anything, the choice of such a pet should be well thought out.
What you need to know
Feeling the desire to settle such a pet in your home, you must first learn about what the main directions of the breeds exist, what living conditions are required for the animal, how to care for it and how long it will live. The mistaken belief that a dwarf ornamental rabbit will live only 3-4 years is not true and applies only to cases of poor pet care.
Homemade decorative rabbits
How many years live domestic rabbits, largely depends on their owners. With a competent and caring attitude, these attractive four-legged live from 7 to 12 years, depending on the breed. For keeping in a small apartment, one should not choose a rabbit belonging to a large decorative appearance, since it needs a lot of space for walking; and it is optimal to give preference to animals of a miniature size with short hair, which will not remain everywhere. Also, it is much easier to care for short-haired animals, since they do not require daily combing.
Most ornamental breeds were bred in the middle of the 20th century and its second half, when rabbits were perceived not only as farm animals. Mostly decorative breeds were obtained in Europe, and quite a few species were bred in the USA. Most rabbits of ornamental breeds were imported into Russia after the 90s.
The most popular among breeders are 5 types of decorative rabbits, which are distinguished by a particularly attractive appearance and ease of maintenance. However, one of them (gremlins), due to the nature of the characters of the females, is recommended only for experienced rabbit breeders, unless, of course, it is planned to buy a male who will not cause problems.
The most common breed, weighing up to one and a half kilograms and shiny, pleasant to the touch coat, which in healthy animals shines as if coated with varnish. They, according to many, have the most decorative external data. The disadvantage of the breed is instability of character. Some individuals are very friendly and affectionate, while others show serious aggression towards the owner and can cause serious injury if they are not handled carefully.
When buying a rabbit, you need to choose an individual that does not show even the slightest aggression, but at the same time is active and inquisitive.
A breed of rabbits with an exquisite physique and very soft ivy wool. The color resembles a beaver. The character of the animal is particularly pleasant and friendly. The animal will be an excellent companion for the owner of any age.
An animal with an unusual appearance and ears down, which, due to its massive head with prominent cheeks and forehead, resembles a ram. The lop-eared sheep looks more like a cute toy. The breed was bred by the Dutch breeder from large ram rabbits intended for meat production.
Dwarf ram rabbit
This fold rabbit has a very attractive character. The animals are affectionate, affectionate, distinguished by friendliness not only in relation to humans, but also to pets, with whom they easily establish contacts if they do not show aggression. The animals willingly play outdoor games, but they must be monitored all the time so that they do not get injured in excitement.
Rabbits, characterized by unusually long and soft hair, which requires constant competent care and daily combing. Otherwise, they are not whimsical. Their character, like that of color ones, is unpredictable, even among rabbits from one brood. The Angora animal is not for beginners.
White short-haired rabbit, which, due to its very thick coat, cannot tolerate heat. Females of animals are complex in nature with aggressive tricks, which is why it is recommended to start them only an experienced owner. Males are very calm and peaceful. They spend most of the day resting in various poses, which makes them little suitable for children. This is the best option for those who just want to watch the animal, but not play outdoor games with it.
There are other types of decorative rabbits, but they are found on sale much less often, which is why their popularity is not great. These rabbits are mainly interested in amateurs who are willing to spend quite a lot of time searching for the animal and pay a decent amount for it. Such breeds are of greater interest for breeding, rather than simple maintenance.
Subtleties of content
First of all, it must be taken into account that overheating and drafts by the rabbit are not tolerated. The optimum temperature for them is from 18 to 20 degrees. Keeping pets in damp and stagnant air is unacceptable. If it is noticed that the animal has overheated, in order to restore its good condition, it is necessary to wipe its ears with a cloth napkin moistened with cool water, which will cool the whole body, since the ears in which several veins pass at once are responsible for heat transfer.
A cage for pets should be bought in sizes from 50 cm to 70 cm or more. Position it optimally on the floor, away from heat and direct sunlight. Cleaning in the cage is carried out daily, because otherwise an unpleasant smell will appear from the secretions of the animal.
Vaccinations for rabbits are mandatory, as they are susceptible to the same diseases as their large counterparts, and can become very ill if the pathogen is brought on the soles of shoes, which happens quite often. A number of diseases cannot be cured, and the animal, if not vaccinated on time, dies.
Decorative rabbits are distinguished by their cleanliness, and in the cage they need to install a tray that needs to be washed daily. A dirty pet will not be used and will start to be arranged for a toilet nearby on a litter.
Whether the decorative rabbits contained in the house stink depends solely on the quality of their owner’s care.
Rabbits for a walk
The animal needs regular walks around the apartment, without which he will fall ill from a lack of movement. The minimum duration of a walk around the apartment is 30 minutes, and the optimum is 2 hours. At this time, the pet should be closely monitored, as he will willingly try everything that gets on his tooth, not excluding wires, furniture and a bottle of detergents. It is impossible to close the cage during the walk of the animal, since it should be able to immediately go home if necessary.
If mating of decorative rabbits for breeding is not planned, males should be neutered at a young age, since this operation solves many problems with their health. It has also been observed that castrated males live significantly longer.
Feeding decorative rabbits should be varied. The basis of the diet is grass or hay. They also give pets special feed for dwarf rabbits. In addition, their menu should include:
- Branches cut from fruit trees in summer, and coniferous branches in winter;
- Germinated grains.
Food and water in animals should be constantly. If in the morning the rabbit’s feeder is empty, it will make a loud noise, causing the owner to get out from under the blanket and feed him.
Rabbit feasts fresh grass
As a treat, domestic rabbits are allowed to give dried fruits and crackers from white bread, which they gnaw with special desire. It is important to know exactly what decorative rabbits eat, so as not to feed pets with inappropriate food.
Water in the drinking bowl is changed daily, and if necessary, several times a day. It is better to give not boiled water, but well-settled raw.
How to choose
When buying a rabbit, he must choose the right animal so that in the future he will not have problems. A healthy animal has no external defects, it is active and inquisitive, and also does not show aggression. In addition, it is unacceptable to buy an animal that does not have a pedigree and documents about vaccination and treatment from worms. Rabbits should be selected at the age of one and a half months, since they already correspond to the exterior of the breed, and there will be no difficulties in distinguishing a decorative rabbit from an ordinary one.
Video: How to care for decorative rabbits
Decorative rabbits are charming pets that need a loving and caring owner.