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post #16 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-08-2006, 01:03 AM
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I live in MN and my rabbits live outside all year around because of my allergies. My rabbits have a double dog kennel, 24ft X 14ft to play and graze in, complete with stools to lay under and cardboard tunnels to run through and they just love it. Although I have gotten a lot of bad comments from HRS members (who have no interest in checking out my set up), an animal behaviorist has looked at my set up and said that it is the perfect habitat for rabbits. I custom made their hutch, which is more like a cross between a hutch and a shed, 8ft long and 3 levels high which is mounted to a chain link fence for stability. My rabbit play outside, even in the winter and I don't think they would be happy in the house. Rabbits are not children even though many people like to think of them as such. They were born with the ability to adapt to weather changes for a reason and keeping them outside allows them to do the things rabbits love to do most. However, I do have to treat them with a flee preventative.

Judging from my experience, most people that are adament against putting rabbits outside are involved with rabbit rescue organization that rescue a large number of neglected hutch rabbits, and have no experience with caring outdoor rabbit owners!
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post #17 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-08-2006, 11:49 AM
 
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that's true. and i also think that if your rabbits are happy, safe, and healthy that no one's set up is better than anybody elses. we all love our bunnies and house them the way we are most comfortable with. like i said, i believe that as long as they are safe and contented any set up would be great some people don't have a lot of money for huge set-ups but love and care for their rabbits just as much as anyone, and if an animal feels loved and safe and secure whose to say anyone else's rabbits are happier or better cared-for? so in the end, as long as the bunnies are happy it's all good
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post #18 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-10-2006, 12:04 AM
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Fane81, I agree with you. I have seen so many rabbits at the shelter with a note "allergies to pet" and I think it is so sad when people have to get rid of their beloved rabbits when there are other options.
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post #19 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-13-2006, 12:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sasami
I'm just curious...have you tried just putting the hay in the litterboxes? Rabbits will usually not eat the hay they've soiled and this will keep it in one place. You'll have to change it more often, though.

That's what I do and I've never had problems with the hay being messy...and I have OCD too so I totally know what you mean.
Isnt the hay for the rabbits to eat??
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post #20 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-13-2006, 10:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleggy
Isnt the hay for the rabbits to eat??
Yes....I don't understand what you're asking, sorry.




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post #21 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-14-2006, 12:49 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moonchild
Fane81, I agree with you. I have seen so many rabbits at the shelter with a note "allergies to pet" and I think it is so sad when people have to get rid of their beloved rabbits when there are other options.
Being a Volunteer for an small animal rescue group, we hear the allergy line more then anyone.
What I think is sad is many people just assume they are allergic to the animal but don't get tested, when in fact it's the hay they are allergic too.

As for rabbits adapting to the weather, I'm sure many can. But being these are domestic bred animals and to me not native to my area it can be a rough life trying to survive the cold/wind/snow/heat. And then there are the other animals lurking about. I really think it's very important to take all those issues into concideration before even thinking of getting an animal. It's to bad many don't and we end up with more unwated critters.
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post #22 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2006, 12:26 PM
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Unwanted and neglected house pets often go undetected because they are out of site of neighbors, but neglected outdoor pets are often seen by others and so they get turned in to Animal Control. I rescued my rabbits from a basement and I had to put one to sleep because of a broken back.

Just as people need to rabbit proof the inside of their homes, people need to weather proof and preditor proof their outdoor hutches and rabbit runs. Shelters give out information on how to take care of house rabbits, but it is hard to find information on keeping rabbits outside, except for negative information. Many rabbits die each year from digesting carpet fibers and so the inside of the house isn't all that safe either. Keeping my rabbits outside allows me to provide my rabbits unlimited amounts of hay, which many house rabbits sadly lack. Keeping my rabbits outside also alows me to spend MORE TIME with them than I would spend with them if they were in the house because they don't have to compete with the house pets and I like to spend a good deal of time outside. You can't judge all outdoor rabbit owners by what you see at the shelters because outdoor rabbit owners are discouraged from joining organization like the HRS and so the only side shelters see is the sad cases of outdoor rabbits. There is also a lot of politics involved as the HRS has formed partnerships with shelters, Animal Control, ASPCA and the Humane Society.

As for hay in the litter boxes, rabbits like hay for bedding and covering a litter box with hay encourages the rabbit to use it.
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post #23 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2006, 12:32 PM Thread Starter
 
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thats so true moonchild. only info on outdoor buns i can find is all negitive. i love my pets, and i take care of them to the best of my ability and wouldnt settle for less.
yes id love to keep my rabbits outside, and that doesnt make me a bad person. they woud get just as much attention out there as in here.

if i didnt live in kentucky there is no doubt these buns would be outside. to have them outside here i would need heating and cooling. i am sure its not good from buns to be in weather 48 degress in the morning and night, and 85 degress in the afternoon, etc.

(im still looking for ways to keep the hay off my floor, if anyone pops up with an idea.)
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post #24 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2006, 01:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moonchild
Keeping my rabbits outside allows me to provide my rabbits unlimited amounts of hay, which many house rabbits sadly lack.
When I read this I couldn't help but reply. I don't understand why where you keep your rabbits would affect how much hay they get. My rabbits are indoors and have unlimited timothy hay.... And the majority of outdoor rabbits I've seen didn't have any hay at all (obviously these were the rabbits of irresponsible owners).




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post #25 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-18-2006, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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i thought this too.
maybe because of space issues or being so messy
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post #26 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-19-2006, 01:04 AM
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I live in Minnesota where temps can range form the upper 90's in the summer to -20F in the winter and the only time I bring my rabbits in the house is when it gets above 80 in the summer. Then they sit in a pet carrier in the basement and I put them outside in the evening until it cools down.

Domestic rabbits are genetically so close to our native Cottontails that they can crossbreed. Domestic rabbits first came to the U.S. as livestock, along with other social prey animals such as cattle, horses and chickens, so I don't understand why it is only rabbits that people make such a fuss about being outdoor pets.

There are plenty of house rabbit rescue organizations that have so many rabbits (especially in CA) that they keep them outside because they feel they "have no choice." I don't understand why they don't give out information on keeping rabbits outside so that people who feel their only choice is to keep their rabbits outside or dump them in a shelter can give their outdoor rabbits the best possible life.

It could be a matter of ignorance that many outdoor rabbits that don't have hay. If rescue organizations know how to improve the lives of outdoor rabbits, isn't it kind of irresponcible for them not to provide that information to the public? An educated rabbit owner can do a better job of taking care of their rabbits than an uneducated rabbit owner.
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animal control, animal rescue, dog bed, hay rack, house rabbit, house rabbits, humane society, litter box, litter boxes, litter train, litter trained, timothy hay


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