Written by Dr. Esther Praag, Founder of MediRabbit.com
A rabbit pen needs to cover an area of at least 12 square feet (1.1 square meters). This measurement is based on the average size of rabbits and will vary depending upon the breed or number of rabbits you are parenting.
The pen additionally needs to have a run of a minimum of 27 square feet (2.5 square meters). To put it simply, the longest part of your pen should easily be able to accommodate two bunnies lying down end-to-end.
To better calculate the width of your rabbit’s enclosure, take a note of your pet’s length when it is fully stretched out and resting. Your pen should allow your rabbit enough space to stretch its limbs and turn around.
The length of the pen, on the other hand, needs to be long enough for the rabbit to easily take 3-4 hops without bumping into the ends.
Rabbits also stand on their hind legs, often to assess whether their environment is safe. Your rabbit’s pen should therefore be tall enough for it to stand without folding its ears.
It is also recommended that you have an exercise space (or run) designated specifically for your pet which is a minimum of 32 square feet. You can even consider adding a little extra height to the run so there is enough space to jump. Add a fun touch to the run by installing ledges and rabbit-safe objects that the rabbit can jump on to exercise its muscles. You can even consider joining your rabbit for an hour of playtime every day – this will boost your relationship with your furry companion to a significant extent.
How Do I Make The Space More Comfortable?
Once your rabbit is accustomed to its space, add a little personal touch with fun toys. Rabbits are inquisitive animals that can get bored very easily hence giving them fun and interesting toys will keep the rabbit stimulated and active. You can even consider getting another rabbit at a later stage to give your pet company, but read up on bonding rabbits before you initiate the introduction.
Add a little fun to their routine by getting a large litter tray that is filled with soil, given how bunnies enjoy digging.
Demarcate specific spaces of the pen for food, water, and the litter box. Ensure that the space for each of these essentials is kept separate and is easily accessible, otherwise, the rabbit might start getting anxious.
Also, beware! Bunnies love chewing on things and will be curious enough to try anything available to them in your house. Remove cleaning products, small ornaments, house plants, and cables and wires from your bunny’s sight, to make the place significantly safer for them.
Can My Bunny Be Left Loose 24/7?
When you first bring your new family member home, you will have to keep it in an enclosure especially when you are not around to supervise what it does. Rabbits are generally more active and enthusiastic during twilight and dawn, as opposed to mornings and nights which they enjoy spending asleep.
After you wrap up the work for the day by evening, spend your evenings with your rabbit, playing with it and using a wide range of pet-friendly toys available at pet stores. Give the rabbit a little bit of time to get adjusted to your home.
In a couple of weeks, once your rabbit feels safer and more secure, consider doing a thorough rabbit-proofing of the house before giving your pet the run of the place. Rabbit proofing involves providing safer and more enjoyable chewing alternatives to protect your property and companion from any harm whatsoever.
And remember to be patient and loving with the new addition to your family. Rabbits make for lifelong trustworthy and fun-loving pets, so take care of their needs and enjoy their curious and unwavering companionship for a long time to come!