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The Estimated Costs of Owning a Rabbit

Adoption Fee $75.00 per rabbit
This covers the cost of spaying and neutering. Spaying or neutering pet rabbits not only keeps them healthy longer, but also helps prevent such troubling behaviors as urine spraying and aggression. Experienced rabbit veterinarians in the metro area usually charge anywhere from $150 to $500.

Veterinarian Visits $100.00 approximately
We recommend you take your rabbit to the veterinarian for a wellness check once every six months. Prices may vary fro $30.00 – $50.00 for a check up with fecal check to higher prices if bunny needs a molar trim, medicine, etc..

Pen $30.00 up to $100.00
(we recommend a pen, rather than a cage, please speak with a Missouri House Rabbit volunteer, we can offer suggestions on saving money)

Litter Box $1.99 up to $9.99
Depending on size of litter box. You do not want to get a litter box that is too small for bunny, and even small bunnies like larger litter boxes which also makes litter training easier and leaves room for fresh hay.

Water Crocks $2.50 up to $5.00 ea.
(we recommend a crock, rather than a water bottle, please speak with a Missouri House Rabbit volunteer, we can give you businesses that sell crocks inexpensively.)

Food Crocks $2.50 up to $5.00 ea.
(please speak with a Missouri House Rabbit volunteer, we can give you businesses that sell crocks inexpensively.)

Treat/Veggie/Salad plate $.99 up to $2.99
This is an optional expenses, many discount stores sell very inexpensive plates which you can serve bunny their “dinner” on.

Throw Rugs $4.00 up to $11.00
These are great for placing in bunny’s pen to cover floors or give the bunny a “non slippery” place to be. They’re also great for putting under food and water crocks and they’re easily washed and reused. We recommend 100% cotton rugs, with no rubber backing.

Toys $1.99 up to $ 15.99 ea.
You can purchase hard plastic toys from Petsmart, or a children’s consignment shop, you can also purchase bunny toys online. Hard plastic toys and some wood toys for parrots work well. (Ask a Missouri House Rabbit volunteer for the web site addresses for bunny related toys.)

Bunny Proofing $10.00 up to $45.00 approximately
You can purchase the needed supplies at most local hardware stores to properly bunny proof your home. Cardboard concrete forms and plastic tubing can be very inexpensive. (Speak with a Missouri House Rabbit volunteer for how to properly bunny proof your home.)

Cardboard Boxes Free
These are great play areas for bunny. Find one large enough to cut doorways and watch bunny run in and out. Use for naps, hiding spots, etc… They’re also great for chewing and digging and helping with bunny proofing.

Pellets $4.99 up to $10.99 per bag
Be sure to purchase a quality pellet. (For a suggested list of quality pellets, please talk with one of the Missouri House Rabbit volunteers.)

Hay $10.00 to $65.00 – The Missouri House Rabbit Society sells KMS Hayloft hay in larger quantities at our monthly Bunny Briefings! See our products page for more details. Some local pet stores sell small amounts of timothy hay, but generally the quality is very poor. Remember, your bunny should be fed unlimited amounts of Timothy hay; a good rule of thumb is that a bunny ahould eat the equivalent of their body size in hay daily. So, if a bunny is the size of a football, they should eat a football-sized amount of hay each day.

Veggies & Fresh Fruit $10.00 up to $20 per week
This depends on how many bunnies you have. Please talk with a Missouri House Rabbit Volunteer for a suggested veggie and salad listing.

Nail Clippers $5.00
You can purchase “nippy cutters” from Radio Shack. They aren’t listed as nail clippers but they do a great job, and don’t forget to get “Kwik Stop” at the pet store in case you cut too short and make the nail bleed.

Litter $7.99 up to $19.99
We recommend the following for litter

  • Feline Pine $7.99 up to $9.99 depending on store for a 30 lb. bag
  • Yesterday’s news $7.99 up to $9.99 depending on store for a 30lb. bag
  • CareFresh $5.99 up to $19.99 depending on store and for size of bag.
  • Critter Litter – from American Pet Diner $10.99 for a 15 lb. of soft litter and $14.99 for a 30lb. bag
  • Good Mews Litter
  • Some types of horse bedding can also be used

No matter what you use remember to always use “dust free” litter as litter with dust can cause respitory problems.

Pooper Scooper $3.99
We recommend you purchase the dust pan with brush combo, these can be purchased at most grocery stores.

White Vinegar $.99 up to $2.99 depending on size of bottle
Used for urine accidents and cleaning litterbox.

Newspapers Free
Most people subscribe to their local newspapers, after you have read them, let bunny tear them up or they can be used in a litterbox.

10 Things To Consider Before Adopting a Rabbit

Rabbits can come in many different colors and sizes, from a 2 pound dwarf, to the 20 pound Flemish Giant. Rabbits also come in a variety of hair length like these Angora rabbits which require hair trimming a minimum of once a month.

1. Do you want a long-term relationship with a pet? Rabbits can live 10 years or even longer. Don’t get a rabbit if you aren’t willing to make a long term commitment.

2. Rabbits are happiest and healthiest as house pets. Summer and winter’s extreme temperatures and spring and fall’s sudden, drastic temperature changes make survival difficult for outdoor rabbits. Natural predators including dogs, cats, raccoons, hawks, owls, and snakes are also a serious threat to rabbits left outdoors at night.

3. If someone in your family has allergies, think carefully before adopting a rabbit. Many people who are allergic to dogs/cats are not allergic to rabbits. Be aware that hay, an important part of a rabbit’s diet, can irritate allergies. If you want a rabbit and are concerned about allergies, check with your doctor or contact the House Rabbit Society and arrange to visit one of our foster homes.

4. In addition to food and water, rabbits need daily exercise, affection, and companionship. They should not be caged 24 hours a day. If your rabbit will spend a lot of time in a cage, be sure it is at least 4′ x 4′ x 2′.

5. Be aware that all baby rabbits are small but not all breeds stay small. Most adult domestic rabbits are larger than wild rabbits you may be used to seeing. Do research on breeds before you decide, and do not rely on a pet store to provide accurate information.

6. If you have small children, a larger rabbit is a better choice for several reasons. Most rabbits do not like to be picked up and all rabbits can be seriously injured if handled improperly. A child is less likely to be able to pick up a large rabbit against its will. Many larger breeds have especially gentle, mellow personalities that make them good with children.

7. Rabbits can coexist happily with other pets, including dogs and cats. However, if you have an aggressive dog or cat, don’t get a rabbit. No matter how gentle your dog or cat is, careful supervision is critical.

8. Unless you are willing to tolerate dramatic personality changes at puberty, don’t get a rabbit less than a year old. Adolescent rabbits are every bit as difficult as teenage children. Older rabbits that have been neutered/ spayed are easier to litter train, are more social, and chew less than younger, unaltered rabbits.

9. Consider adopting a pair of rabbits. Single rabbits are more likely to be bored and get into trouble. Two rabbits who have not been raised together need to introduced slowly and should be carefully supervised at first. A neutered male and female will normally accept each other more easily than will neutered same-sex pairs. A bonded pair of rabbits will entertain and provide companionship for each other.

10. Remember that domestic rabbits are completely dependent on humans for survival. If you discover you can’t care for your pet rabbit, do not turn it loose – it will not survive. Domestic rabbits do not know how to hunt for food or to protect themselves from predators. If you decide you must get rid of your pet rabbit, please contact the Missouri House Rabbit Society at 816-356-3900 for information on how to find a home for your rabbit.

Analgesia – Pain relief

The number of rabbits kept as pets has increased dramatically over the last decade. The veterinary profession has made huge strides in knowledge over this same period of time and now an abundance of published and lecture material available to the practitioner. We now have veterinarians who have established themselves as “rabbit specialists”, however, there is still confusion regarding the use of analgesia (pain relief) in the rabbit. Read More

Rabbit Eye Health

By: Susan Keil, DVM, MS, DACVO

Pet rabbits may experience a variety of ophthalmic diseases. These ophthalmic conditions are often different than eye diseases of the dog, cat, or other pet rodents. The more common etiologies (causes) of eye problems in the rabbit include nutritional deficiencies, infections, environmental and management problems, genetic influences, and congenital malformations.Read More

Behavior – The Things They Do and Why

By Joy Gioia

First of all, it is crucial to have your bunny spayed or neutered at around 5-6 months of age, prior to him entering “puberty”. Rabbits behavior after their hormones change is often unacceptable for household living. Both males and females can spray urine to mark and claim items as their own and that includes their humans. Males are often attracted to the feet, arms and legs of their humans, in the same way as an un-neutered dog. Both spraying and overt affection can be stopped by spaying or neutering. Sterilization will also cause your rabbit to be a little less territorial, but bunnies, by nature, are territorial. In addition, although this paper is not on litter training, adult rabbits are easier to litter train than babies, and spayed/ neutered bunnies are the easiest to litter train. OK, so what else are they doing and why?Read More

Fur and Ear Mite

By Robin Rysavy, DMA, in consultation with Noella Allan, DVM

A common problem often seen in rabbits is the presence of Psoroptes cuniculi (ear mites). These tiny parasites, a member of the arachnid family (includes spiders and scorpions), can cause intense suffering and illness if left untreated. Their life span is approximately 21 days. Psoroptes cuniculi are non-burrowing, and chew and pierce the skin in the ear canal. Sometimes a rabbit caretaker will notice the accumulation of multiple layers of a thin, brown flaky crust on the inside ear of a rabbit. This crust is generally composed of mites, mites feces, skin cells, and inflammatory cells. Read More

Food and Diet

Rabbits make intelligent, friendly and quiet house pets. The average life span for a bunny is 7 to 10 years with records of up to 15 years of age reported. The following information is provided to help you enjoy a happy, healthy relationship with your little friend. In addition to this handout there are a number of excellent books on the topic of rabbit health care that you may wish to consult.Read More

Maple & Roscoe

Maple (white with brown spots) and Roscoe are a bonded pair of bunnies looking for their forever home and happy ending. They have been adopted out then came back when there was a landlord change with their adoptive family and the family could no longer keep them. Maple is a busy girl and has definite opinions about where she wants her things. Roscoe is more laid back and says ‘Whatever, Maple!’


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