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Rabbit Diet: Pellets

All you need to know about rabbit diet: hay pellets.


While every bunny should have access to hay, adding pellets might be a way to ensure your bun is getting the full nutritional content needed, especially if you are unable to give a mixture of hay and grasses.


ALWAYS read the bag to ensure you are giving a good quality pellet. Make sure the first ingredient is either Timothy Hay or Alfalfa (depending on the age of your rabbit). Look at the bag; there shouldn't be any carrots, oats, or other high-value goodies in there. Your rabbit will pick them out and not eat the pellets they should. Pellets can lead to obesity in buns; always check with your vet if you think your bunny is gaining weight.



What quantity of pellets should you feed your rabbit?


Depending on the age and health of your rabbit will depend on the amount of pellets you should be feeding your bun.


  1. As a baby, your bun should be on mother's milk, but at around 7-8 weeks they should be starting to wean off and should have access to an unlimited supply of Alfalfa Hay pellets.

  2. Up to 6 months, you should give unlimited alfalfa hay pellets and/ or alfalfa hay.

  3. At 6 months, you can wean them off alfalfa pellets and switch to timothy pellets. Some people start weaning earlier. As long as you have alfalfa available in either a pellet or hay form, this is just fine.

  4. After 6 months, they should have access to timothy hay pellets. A good rule of thumb is 1/4 cup per 4lbs, but check with your vet if you have any questions.

  5. Pregnant or Lactating bunnies should have unlimited access to either an alfalfa hay or pellet until babies are weaned.

  6. If your bunny is chunky, reduce the amount of pellets per your vet's instructions.

  7. Senior bunnies may be on a regular diet unless they are underweight, then your vet may recommend adding Alfalfa back into their diet, but regular blood tests are recommended.


 

How to feed pellets?


Most people use a heavy ceramic bowl. This is because some bunnies will find the bowl a fun toy to throw around. If your bun does this, don't fret. Switch to another style of feeding.


Place pellets spread out on a timothy mat or forage mat. This helps promote foraging, which is a healthy behavior for rabbits.


Use a toy; there are several toys like the treat ball, puzzles, or stacking cups that might help a voracious eater slow down, and it's great for mental acuity.


Hide pellets around their enclosure to encourage your bun to search for the goodies! Place on top of boxes, in a tunnel, wherever you can think. Again this is a great technique to encourage foraging and mental acuity.



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