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CHOOSING A PET

Is a Rabbit Right for Me?

 

As with ANY animal this decision should never a spur of the moment decision. You are dealing with another life that requires consistency and not to be passed around. Rabbits need to have ONE owner. All aspects of having this pet should be thought through, researched, and budgeted out.

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Is Rabbit Ownership Right for You?

While rabbit ownership is a very unique and rewarding experience, there are many factors involved in keeping your furry companion healthy and happy.  Rabbits are complex and inquisitive creatures, who require a strong understanding of diet, behavior, and recognition of common illnesses. If you are considering a rabbit as a pet, we encourage you to take the following steps prior to acquiring your new family member:

  1. Find a rabbit savvy veterinarian in your area and obtain pricing for medical costs. Rabbits are considered exotic and therefore, medical costs will reflect that. >> FIND A RABBIT VET
  2. Do your research. You will find a host of information with reference to rabbit ownership here at Rabbit Savior Society, as well the many reputable resources on the Internet. You may also wish to contact a rescue in your area for more information on sourcing and ownership.
  3. Consider fostering or volunteering through your local rescue for hands on experience in caring for and understanding a rabbit. >> FIND A RESCUE
  4. Seek out rabbit groups online. These groups and forums are an excellent source of information while touching base on many topics with other rabbit enthusiasts.
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Average Costs Associated with Rabbit Ownership

    • In addition to adoption fees, initial setup costs usually average approximately $75.00 to $150.00. Note that prices range greatly from rural areas to expensive urban centers.
    • Ongoing expenses will range from a minimum of $20.00 to $60.00 per month.
    • Vet exams average between $35.00 – $110.00 per visit. We recommend taking your rabbit in for an annual check up.
    • Emergency vet exams can range from $200.00 to $500.00 per visit.
    • Neutering – average cost $150.00 to $400.00.
    • Spaying – average cost $250.00 to $600.00.
    • Common medical diagnosis and treatment can vary from a minimum of $100.00 to several hundreds of dollars, even more depending on severity of condition and hospitalization.

Where Can I Find a Rabbit?

A simplified answer to this question, adopt from a rescue organization.  While there are many breeders and private sellers marketing rabbits, a rescue is by far the best way to ease into rabbit ownership. Rescues are often times over-capacitated with rabbits needing forever homes.  Many of these rabbits are a result of irresponsible rabbit ownership, or life changing events and have been abandoned outside where they have little chance of survival or dropped off at shelters where they may end up being euthanized. When adopting from a reputable rescue, you will acquire a rabbit who is, or will be neutered or spayed, examined and treated for medical conditions, will have had any behavioral issues addressed and most importantly, you will receive unlimited guidance from the rescue organization throughout the lifetime of your rabbit. In almost all cases, a rescue rabbit has been conditioned to live coactively in a family environment. Please see our list of reputable rescues in your area to inquire about adopting.

Factors to Consider

      • More often than not, rabbits are abandoned because they were bought as children’s pets. As mentioned earlier in this section, rabbits are complex creatures who require a delicate understanding. We do not recommend rabbits as children’s pets. Ideally, at least one adult in the household should have a good foundation of knowledge and maintain responsibility in order to provide the rabbit with a quality and happy life. The average lifespan for a rabbit is 10-12 years.
      • Rabbits are highly sociable animals and require companionship. Will you be able to interact with your rabbit for a minimum of 2-4 hours per day?  If not, you may want to consider bonding your rabbit with another rabbit to avoid loneliness and depression.
      • Rabbits are not like cats or dogs. They can be affectionate like dogs, yet aloof and independent like cats.
      • Do you have a budget set aside for medical costs and general care?
      • Do you have other animals in the household that could potentially be a threat to your rabbit? Rabbits are prey animals and require a peaceful environment as well as positive interaction with other household pets while being supervised.
      • Do you have a knowledgeable pet sitter who will properly care for your rabbit while you’re away? Rabbits should not be left alone for a 24 hour period or more.
      • Do you have enough space to house your rabbit and have you bunny-proofed your home prior to acquiring a rabbit? Here is a list of bunny-proofing tips:
      • Wire covers and flex tubing. Rabbits love electrical cords and may cause damage to the cords or even electrocute themselves.
      • Readily available toys for chewing and stimulation to prevent destruction of furniture and other household items.
      • Pet gates or pens in order to block off hazardous areas of the household, as well as keep safe from small children and other pets.
      • Do you have any toxic houseplants that the rabbit may have access to? You can find more information on our website regarding toxic plants.
      • The best place to house your pet rabbit is indoors. Harsh climate changes, insects, risk of escape and wildlife can all jeopardize the health and safety of your rabbit. Additionally, your rabbit may lack vital companionship and interaction in an outdoor setting therefore, we encourage owners to take all measures in keeping their rabbit as an interactive member of the indoor family household.  Depending on your location, your rabbit may be at risk of RHDV2 which is a deadly hemorrhagic virus. Housing your rabbit indoors will lessen the risk of contracting RHDV2.
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