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Buying a Rabbit Hutch

A hutch will keep your bunny comfortable, safe and warm. But you need to know whether you want an indoor cage, an outdoor hutch or both. In order to help you decide what is best for you and your pet we will describe them for you.

Indoor Cages

Advantages:

    • One of the biggest advantages of an indoor rabbit cage is that the animal is safe from predators, such as foxes and cats, and is also safe from pests, such as rats and mice.
    • The rabbit can live in an environment where the temperature is constant (similar to that of a warm burrow). Rabbits cannot handle temperatures that are too hot or too cold, and a stable temperature is easier to maintain indoors.
    • Rabbits are sociable animals and when they are indoors it allows them to feel closer to the family.
    • When your rabbit is indoors it is easier to notice a change in behaviour or an on-coming illness. Signs to look out for include not eating and excessive digging in their hutch.

Disadvantages:

  • The major downside of using an indoor rabbit cage is the smell. The rabbit will have to be cleaned out a lot more frequently indoors because of the smell of the rabbit’s waste.
  • Another issue is the mess. Often bedding, food and wood-shavings will be thrown through the cage bars if the rabbit is hopping about or digging. The bedding can also be very dusty and this may create problems with people who have allergies to dust.
  • If your rabbit has some behavioural problems like digging and chewing, you may find holes in your carpets or furniture.

Outdoor Hutches

Advantages:

    • The mess stays outside. This will mean all the dirt and bad smells will be outdoors and aerated so you won’t need to clean the hutch out as often as the cage.
    • There may be more room for a longer and wider hutch outside than inside.
    • Droppings can easily be collected easily and used as fertiliser.
    • Your rabbit will never be hungry if it is able to reach grass or weeds in your garden. This will save you money too, as you won’t need to buy as much hay, veggies or pellets.
    • Living outdoors is a more natural setting. Some rabbits aren’t used to human interaction 24/7, so an outdoor hutch is a great way to let your rabbit live a normal life.

Disadvantages:

  • Outdoor hutches tend to be more expensive than indoor cages.
  • Predators pose a threat to outdoor rabbits. Even if a predator does not break into the hutch, the rabbit may still suffer a heart attack from fright if it notices the predator trying to break in.
  • Temperature can be a problem in Ireland, usually during winter. Your hutch must be able to protect your rabbits from heat, cold, rain, snow, hail, and ice. Extra expense will have to be incurred as more bedding and blankets will be necessary. A separate cage for indoors may even be necessary.

Whether you go for an outdoor hutch or an indoor cage, the most important thing to remember is that it should be sturdy and of good quality. See our range of rabbit homes, bedding etc.

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