If you happen to follow me on instagram, more than likely you have seen this fuzzy little loaf of a bun that I proudly call my child. Mononoke – Momo for short – has been my pride and joy for the past year since I adopted her. Since then, I have received a lot of questions about the ins and outs of owning a bunny. I am always happy to provide information but I thought it would be easier to condense everything I know into one single blog post. Thus, read on for my comprehensive guide for everything rabbit related!
Do Your Research
I have been watching Weylie on YouTube for years and she would always vlog her rabbits. I fell so in love with her little buns and this is one of the main reasons why I adopted Momo in the first place. Through the years, I have done a ton of research on everything that goes into adopting your first rabbit. I suggest going beyond this blog post and indulge on as much information as possible. Looking back, some of the most helpful resources have been Lenon the Bunny, My House Rabbit and House Rabbit Society. Make sure you invest the time to learn their needs, diet, living conditions and so forth.
Is a rabbit high maintenance?
Typically, a rabbit requires a lot more maintenance than people think. They are a lot more work than a hamster or a guinea pig. When people ask me, I say raising a bunny is more similar to a cat or a dog. In order to provide the most happy, fulfilling life for your bun, it does require time, money and commitment. After all, a house rabbit’s average lifespan is 10 years so know that this little guy is going to be part of your life for a long time.
How much does it cost to own a rabbit?
In order to get a good idea of what it costs to take care of your bunny, I broke down my monthly expenses which just consists of their food. This doesn’t take in account the initial purchases of buying their litter box, water bowl, play pen, etc.
– Timothy Hay: $29.99
– Weekly fresh vegetables: $12.00
Monthly Total: $42
Additional costs that last longer than just one month include:
– Timothy hay pellets: $11.49
– Carefresh (bedding): $6.87
– Vitamins: $9.35
– Treats: $6.56
– Various rabbit toys: $3+
Do rabbits live in a cage?
NO. A lot of people are misconstrued that it is okay to crate their rabbit all day in a tiny habitat or leave them outside in a hutch. Many pet stores sell these rabbit start kits and this is certainly an okay environment for your bun. Initially, I did crate Mononoke in a 42×18 crate but I knew this was going to only be a temporary fix and it provided enough space for her to walk around and stretch out. I kept her in this because she was still a baby and I was in the process of litter training her.
As she got older, I removed the top of the cage from her crate but I continued to use the bottom half to house her litter box and water bowl to make clean ups easier. Her space literally takes up the majority of my bedroom! I do keep her within this pen, but only when I go to work because she has a tendency of marking on my bed from time to time. Other than that, I made sure to bunny proof my room so she can free roam.
Do rabbits shed?
Yes, rabbits do shed. They actually molt every couple of months and in this period, they require a lot of grooming as they make way for their new coat. I always have a lint roller on deck!
Do rabbits have personalities?
Do they ever! Mononoke is one of the sassiest buns I have ever seen. She loves throwing her toys around and nudging me when I am in her way. Plus, I can’t tell you how many times she has knocked my drink over or snipped my phone charger. But I love her spunky little personality. When I first adopted her, I was so lucky because she warmed up to me relatively quickly. Some buns can take months to be comfortable enough with their owner, so it definitely requires someone with patience.
Can rabbits learn tricks?
Yes! Rabbits can learn a plethora of tricks as long as you are patient with them. Momo knows how to sit pretty, spin around and give her paw! She also comes when I call her name (well, if she feels like it..)!
Rabbits can be litter trained?
Yes! Momo is fully litter trained. I use a cat litter box with a plastic egg crate I customized to fit overtop. This ensures she doesn’t get her paws dirty with her pee or poop. I line the bottom of the box with care fresh which does a really good job of eliminated smell (rabbit pee is very strong).
To train her, I would continually place her pee and poop in the box. Whenever she would go, I would pick her up and place her there until eventually she got the idea down. Additionally, I used conditioning and whenever I caught her going in the right place I would shower her with praise and give her a treat.
Do they get along with other pets?
I have a 5 year old golden retriever and I was not worried at all when I brought Momo home. I knew my dog, Kono, was so gentle and wouldn’t harm a fly. They got along right away and now their best buddies. Oftentimes, they both take naps together in my room! However, I would not say this is the case for every pet. Before adopting a bun, really consider the personalities of the pets you already have at home. The last thing you would want to do is to stress either of them out.
Do rabbits like to cuddle?
All rabbits are different when it comes to “cuddling”. However, Momo hates being picked up no matter how many times I tried. She gets all squirmy and jumps out of my arms. That being said, she loves her pets. Oftentimes, she comes over to me and continually nudges me until I give her some good head scratches.
I also took to my Instagram stories to ask you guys if you had any specific questions about raising a bunny. Here are some of the ones I received!
Q: Where did you adopt Momo?
I found a breeder about 45 minutes away from my house on Hoobly Classifieds. From there, I contacted the owner and asked her questions regarding how long she has been raising bunnies, the living condition, etc. However, looking back, I wish I went to a local adoption center before going to a breeder! There are so many buns put up for adoption that could really use another change in a forever home. 🙂
Q: How do you bond with your bunny? And how do you odor control?
I feel blessed that Mononoke was really quick to bond with me. A lot of people online said it could takes weeks to sometimes months to form a bond with your rabbit. I think my bunny was just innately outgoing and it only took a day or so for her to be comfortable around me!
A few bonding tricks I read online is to hand feed them in the beginning because this can really build up trust. Additionally, to just let them get used to their presence. It helps to sit on the floor near them but make sure to do your own thing. I would often read books and let Momo sniff around and get her used to her environment.
As far as odor control, everyone who comes over to my room is shocked by how it doesn’t smell!Let me just say from the get-go, rabbit pee is some of the strongest things I have ever experienced. To combat this, I line the bottom of her litterbox with Carefresh (paper bedding) and this really absorbs the odor. Additionally, I make sure I am on top of cleaning out the litterbox. Typically, every 3 days or so.
Q: How is she so cute?
I ask myself that everyday! It’s honestly unfair how everything she does is so cute.
Q: Does Momo wake you up every morning?
Almost every morning! Rabbits are really routine animals and once they have a schedule down, they adhere to it. Every morning around 6 AM, Momo knows it is time for her breakfast and so she always jumps up on me when I am sleeping. Cutest alarm clock!