Rabbits

Dwarf Rabbits Diet



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A true dwarf rabbit is usually only around 3 lbs at maturity. Therefore they have tiny stomachs, but the silly little character will often try to convince you they have much larger appetites. And as is often the case we will spoil them with too many treats. But a healthy dwarf should only consume about an ounce of pellets for each pound of rabbit a day. The most important food item in the dwarfs diet however, is clean water. It's vital to your pet's health to make sure they have fresh clean water to drink all day long. You can use a water bottle mounted on the cage or bowls, but if you use bowls always be sure the bowl is clean.

Rabbits can spray urine that gets into the water in a bowl or may spill the water leaving them without any water at all. A good sized water bottle is your best bet to make sure your rabbit will have plenty of clean water every day. Otherwise you must check it often, especially in hot weather. Rabbits can go a day or so without food but never water.

In addition to pellets you should offer your rabbit hay for roughage. We feed our dwarfs a little Timothy hay from a trough on the side of their hutch. It gives them something to nibble different from the straw they sleep on. They also like an occasional dandelion leaves or yogurt bite treat. But one must take caution not to give them too many treats a week or they will have digestion problems.

Dwarfs like most rabbits have a unique digestive system where the hard pellet is quickly chewed and passes through the alimentary canal. It's then excreted and then re-ingested as a soft pellet while the hard part is left as waste. Technically this is called coprophagy. This is why the protein content of your rabbits pellets should range from 15 -20%. They will use this protein to develop strong healthy bodies.

Sometimes show rabbits will have extra requirements of protein and ash to maintain their coats and develop skeletal design, like round heads and lean hind quarters. But your dwarf will do fine with a good rabbit pellet in the lower range.

Dwarfs are intelligent little critters and often learn their names as well as who brings the food, even who to tease for more food. But they have delicate systems that need to be maintained with diligence.

It's a good idea to have a routine of exercise along with your feeding schedule too especially if you keep them in a small hutch. The key to a healthy dwarf is a good diet of fiber, protein some exercise and most importantly fresh clean water. And of course lots of love mixed in.

 

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