Tuesday, 5 March 2013

#Bringing #Home the #Bunny: #Proper #Care & #Socialization

Bringing Home the Bunny

By Stacey Gonzalez


Photo by Cloudtail Foter.com CC BY-NC-ND
Bringing Home the Bunny is a seven-part blog series about what to expect when becoming a new rabbit owner.

Proper care and socializing 



The first thing you will need to do is get your rabbit used to you. Start by feeding your rabbit treats by hand. Let the pet smell you then slowly pet the rabbit going with the fur- never against it.
Remember all pets can bite. Rabbits are not known to bite but they can when they feel threatened, insecure or are suffering from hormonal issues. Once the bunny feels comfortable with you slowly, but confidently pick it up. Be gentle, but also make sure that the rabbit is secure in your arms by supporting its whole body. Support its hind end and hold its body against yours. Be very careful with the rabbit's hind end- holding a rabbit wrong can give it severe back issues that can be painful and expensive to treat.
Some rabbits like their lower jaw stroked. They will want to play with objects by pushing, tugging and flipping them. Most rabbits will flip a food dish with a ridge around the edge. Rabbits often play alone, but can be very interactive with their owners and will often run circles around them. It is important to supervise and playtime rabbits have with children, dogs, and cats.
The fear of injury isn’t the only concern- rabbits are prey animals and can be ‘scared to death’ by loud noises or any extremely threatening actions made towards them. Rabbits communicate with their pet parents using ear placement and body language so getting to know your bunny is key. Rabbits should never under any circumstances be picked up by their ears.

Taking precautions when handling rabbits is just the first step in making sure your rabbit lives a healthy lifestyle. Even the healthiest of pets can get sick or develop cancer. Some issues and symptoms are more common than others. To learn more read on to the next article Bringing Home the Bunny: Common Illnesses and Symptoms.

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