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Thread: Is it 'Wrong' to Keep House Rabbits ?

  1. #21
    Forum Buddy Glingle's Avatar
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    I do think it depends on the buns too. I’m sure that Herb wouldn’t cope with all the human interaction of being a house bunny, but Willow seemed to enjoy the human contact when she was inside in quarantine before being introduced to Parsley. That said, she used to crave a fuss when you went into the shed, but since she was matched with Herb as opposed to Parsley she doesn’t usually hang about for a fuss now.
    My colleague was a huge bunny lover (he introduced me to bunnies). He had a house bunny, but had a cat flap into the garden that bun would come in and out of as he pleased during the day to free range in the garden. Apart from the possible predator risk, I think that was the ideal setup.
    I do feel guilty about Pickle and Beans being indoors and not having a big run that wears down their nails that they can freely binky in and sunbathe in when I see Willow and Herb doing that. That’s definitely something on my to get sorted list ASAP as finances allow. Then again, I feel guilty that especially in the winter I don’t interact much with Willow and Herb. I don’t think they’re overly fussed though as long as I keep turning up with food, water and toys!
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  2. #22
    Moderator Graciee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glingle View Post
    I do think it depends on the buns too. Iím sure that Herb wouldnít cope with all the human interaction of being a house bunny, but Willow seemed to enjoy the human contact when she was inside in quarantine before being introduced to Parsley. That said, she used to crave a fuss when you went into the shed, but since she was matched with Herb as opposed to Parsley she doesnít usually hang about for a fuss now.
    My colleague was a huge bunny lover (he introduced me to bunnies). He had a house bunny, but had a cat flap into the garden that bun would come in and out of as he pleased during the day to free range in the garden. Apart from the possible predator risk, I think that was the ideal setup.
    I do feel guilty about Pickle and Beans being indoors and not having a big run that wears down their nails that they can freely binky in and sunbathe in when I see Willow and Herb doing that. Thatís definitely something on my to get sorted list ASAP as finances allow. Then again, I feel guilty that especially in the winter I donít interact much with Willow and Herb. I donít think theyíre overly fussed though as long as I keep turning up with food, water and toys!
    Yea it's definitely more difficult in the winter with outside buns, I used to spend ages with the white buns outside any chance I got - I seriously cannot do without them, they're such joy and if I could have them with me constantly I would I love having them inside just because it's nicer for me and Apricot has snuggles every evening. Outside it was more pets for ages and treats gunna miss them when they go out, but I think they're gunna adore their new set up. I think with the white buns, it took some time but there's zero fear or skittishness - whereas the velvets are very bold too and definitely trust me and will climb all over me but they're just different in their personalities, I guess they're more typical bunnies

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  3. #23
    Mama Doe binkyCodie's Avatar
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    in america its honestly frowned upon to have rabbits outside, and many rescues won't rehome to people wanting to keep them outside. I have a few rabbity american friends and one who works in a rescue and its uncommon, and often they see it as cruel. they, of course, have far more extreme weather but also predators. many people have houses backing onto woodlands and seeing wolves, bears, coyotes, hawks and so fourth is not uncommon, and all would make a tasty snack out of a rabbit. plus, they have extreme weather. people often being in tornado areas, flooding, extreme heat (such as in texas it often gets way over 100F, 37 celcius). they would have to quickly yank their rabbits inside in such weather which poses issues in itself as rabbits shouldn't have extreme temperature differences. on the contrary, many people seem to keep their dogs strictly outside in comparison...

    but for me personally, I see no benefit for having rabbits outside and I would personally never have them outside, again.

    its not nice having to go out in extremely hot weather, or cold weather, or when its chucking it down with rain or snowing, to clean them out.

    plus, its far harder to pick up on illness. many times Snoopy became sick and it had been hours before I noticed. at least inside I can see them, and they're right next to me, so I instantly pretty much pick up on anything. outside, I'm not going to see that. I also feel more bonded with them as a whole, as I get to spend more time with them.

    then fireworks and BBQ's.. thunderstorms, lawn mowers.

    along with that it saves the whole worrying should it be winter and somebunny is sick of having to bring them inside or somehow having to monitor them from the inside to keep them outside. I don't have a room I can keep cold so in all honesty, I'm stuffed if this situation arises.

    for me at least, my pets are family, almost like children (but they do not replace my want for having human children in the future). they tiny stupid dependant things that need my care. I couldn't keep pets outside, for me at least that would be like keeping my child outside in a shed 24/7. I think pets are family and should be inside, where they are safer.

    I am however not saying that those that keep their rabbits outside don't see them as family or love them, its my own personal thoughts on the matter.

    almost every day I hear reports of rabbits that are in outside accommodation being stolen or killed by other sick humans that risk is far too great for me. one post I saw recently that a lady had been on holiday and somebody broke into her house, through the house to the back yard, and let all her rabbits out of their pens. thankfully neighbours jumped into action and return them. but my worry is, would that be me? yes you can put locks on pens and so fourth but then I start to think, it shouldn't really be necessary. there are far to many sick people in this world.

    I feel the same way about cats, while a different matter, I do not think they should be left to 'free roam' outside. but that is all I will say on that matter.

    but me there is no benefit to my rabbits being outside and only causes me thus more concern and stress, are they sick, will they get killed while I'm asleep, will somebody steal them. as far as I'm concerned they're far safer inside of my home, and I'm closer to them, and I like to think they're 'close' to me too.
    Last edited by binkyCodie; 26-06-2019 at 12:20 PM.
    rabbits are like angels; they have a way of finding people that need them, and filling an emptiness they didn't even know they had.

  4. #24
    Wise Old Thumper SarahP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by binkyCodie View Post
    but me there is no benefit to my rabbits being outside and only causes me thus more concern and stress, are they sick, will they get killed while I'm asleep, will somebody steal them. as far as I'm concerned they're far safer inside of my home, and I'm closer to them, and I like to think they're 'close' to me too.
    Yes, it's definitely a mind shift having outdoor pets. I've almost exclusively had indoor pets, and it feels a lot less of a worry!
    Sarah.

    RIP Dusty and Clover bunnies xxx
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  5. #25
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    My first two lived indoors in hutches (I was young teenager when I first got rabbits and the accommodation has evolved over the years...) and it was fun to let them run around the house. The rest have been primarily outdoors, originally in a shed and run combination that I made myself and, last year, replaced with a large aviary. I still live at home with my parents (who wouldn't want house rabbits) and a cat (who would probably be a bit too happy about house rabbits...) so having them indoors isn't an option at this time, but if I'm ever able to move out I like the idea of a conservatory or something leading into a garden area for them. Where my current rabbits are concerned Pandora hates being inside and Bailey has megacolon syndrome and no great concept of litter training so he'd just pebbledash the entire carpet. Sadly, while he wasn't pooping during his recent stasis, I did let him run around the house and he managed that like an expert.
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  6. #26
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    This whole "nature is best" approach really doesn't apply to rabbits since they live underground.
    I can't see any safe way to keep rabbits in underground warrens.
    Forcing them to live outdoors above ground in a cage isn't natural
    Indoors has got to be best because at least they will feel free and be warm and safe.
    My rabbits never felt safe enough to sleep properly when they were outdoors
    Tim

  7. #27
    Wise Old Thumper Jack's-Jane's Avatar
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    The thing that sort of worries me re the Run-a Round out door set ups is what if a poorly Rabbit hides away in one of the tunnels. How long would it be before it was noticed ? I am NOT dissing the Run-a Round set ups, but I am not sure I could cope with the management of an outdoor set up using them.

    Some people on here have provided underground 'burrows' for their outdoor Rabbits. Cant find the links to the info though


    Links to information about various health problems that can affect Rabbits :
    http://forums.rabbitrehome.org.uk/sh...ealth-Problems
    NB- If you think your Rabbit is unwell it is essential to seek immediate veterinary attention.

    The Rabbit Welfare Association and Fund- a fantastic source of information about Rabbits

    https://rabbitwelfare.co.uk/

  8. #28
    Forum Buddy Liz47's Avatar
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    I would prefer my rabbits to be outdoors, but have a very specific set up in mind which as of yet none of my gardens have been big enough to do, and it's too permanent to do in a rented property. But I would also look at the individual rabbits needs/wants. Beano much preferred outdoor life compared to indoor, she spent the last few years indoors due to me moving to my own flat. But regardless her last year would've had to be indoors as she lost the use of her hind legs. Gordon I don't think had a preference for either. Jake hates being outside and is very much an indoor rabbit, I think Jasmine would probably prefer it outdoors but she is quite prone to stasis following stressful events so wouldn't be good during unusual weather/noises/predators. Bigwig I think would love it outside but would need a very secure set up as she is a demon for chewing/digging and generally getting into places you wouldn't have thought possible. She actually climbs the dog crate/pens/mesh!

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  9. #29
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    I agree with most of what has been said. I've never had rabbits actually living indoors, although some have spent some time with us inside.

    I think there are pros and cons with either set-up. The most important benefits of indoor would be the ability of picking up illnesses more quickly, safety against predators and just getting closer to the rabbits. Benefits for outdoors are that the rabbits are able to experience the natural world outside and have a territory of their own.

  10. #30
    Wise Old Thumper MimzMum's Avatar
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    Most folks who keep rabbits outdoors in America are breeders/4H people. If we're talking strictly rescues then yes, it's considered much better to house indoors. That's for pretty much any pet that you have the space to do so unless circumstances dictate otherwise.

    I do believe it should be a judgement based on the temperament of the individual rabbit. For instance, Mimzy probably would've been happier with a high class setup outdoors as long as it offered plenty of stimulation, good food and water, was heated well in winter/cooled well in summer and protected to the nines from predators...but then, that kind of describes the house.

    Neither Pip nor Fiver enjoyed being outdoors. You could tell they felt exposed. And once we moved from Alaska to Oregon they had a whole foyer to themselves but hated it. They missed being in my bedroom but I was prohibited from putting them there. (Not my house so not my rules.) I longed to get them all out in the grassy garden, but again we had skunks, raccoons, opossums and there's the occasional puma that shows up here and these were all just as dangerous to them as grizzlies, foxes, wolves and eagles...not to mention other predatory domestic animals and, omg the FLIES are terrible here in summer around horses/cows/rabbits. I don't know whose nerves would've taken more stress damage in that situation: mine or the bunnies.

    The general health of an animal is a question as well. My bunnies were all seniors by the time I got them to more temperate climate and better living conditions, and they only survived the first year and a half after the move. Did I shorten their lives keeping them inside? Was 3,000 miles too far to come by plane/car when we had to leave our beloved Alaskan home? I definitely think finally having to take a job when I'd been with them 24/7 up to that point was a factor in their demises because I couldn't be there for them when they became ill as much. But then I get folks telling me that I gave them much longer than they would've had otherwise. I still have to ask myself if what time they had was entirely happy? The general consensus often is: less time but more quality over the reverse.

    I think we do the best we can with the cards we are dealt. If we can give any animal the most happy days possible in whatever way we can, that's a win. Sure we'll still be left with regrets regarding them, but that's life. Nothing is perfect because this is an imperfect world. Maybe the next will be more like.

    (went a little long and OT there, sorry)

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