Rabbits can also live in rabbit hutches outside of your house and as long as they are kept warm and dry, and you give them lots of company every day, then that will not affect the quality of life. If they are lonely, cold or wet, they won’t be expected to live a long fulfilled life and general well being will be much reduced.
Accommodating Your Rabbit
If your rabbit is to live outside, you should keep it in a secure hutch. The rabbit hutch should be large enough for your rabbit to take several hops in any direction, and should have an outdoor run and a smaller enclosed sleeping area. The outdoor run should have a solid floor and wire mesh on at least one side to let plenty of light in. The enclosed sleeping area should have a small entrance from the run and should be enclosed by solid walls on all sides. The entire hutch should have a solid roof to keep the rain off, the roof can hinge upwards to give you easy access for cleaning. Cover the whole floor of the hutch with suitable bedding, such as wood shavings, hay or newspaper. Make the layer of bedding thicker in the sleeping area. Your rabbit will choose a section of the hutch to use as its toilet area; you should clean this area each day and clean the whole hutch around once a week. Use an animal safe disinfectant when cleaning. You should also provide a supply of hay and water, see our feeding section for more information about this.
The pleasures of being outdoors include fresh air, sunshine, and freedom to run, chew and dig. For a prey animal such as a rabbit, your garden can also be a place of danger from predators, theft, poisoning plants so a suitable rabbit hutch would be a more secure means of keeping them safe.
Outdoor Rabbit Hutches
The advantage of having an outdoor rabbit hutch is that they’re easier to clean, and generally the rabbit will have more space to run around. Outdoor rabbit houses should not be placed in direct sunlight or direct drafts. They should also be away from areas of dampness, humidity, and not subject to extreme temperature conditions or loud noises. Do make sure to put them in well ventilated areas. Ensure that the bunny house has a roof so that the bunny will be sufficiently protected should it start to rain. The cage should also be secure enough that predators such as cats and dogs are unable to attack the bunny.
Constructing a rabbit hutch is not quite a straightforward task. So there are a few things to consider when thinking about constructing one.
5 Things You Should Remember for your Rabbit Hutch
Hutches, although not always the first choice for rabbit housing due to a higher amount of maintenance, are still effective at keeping your rabbits safe while also being easy to construct yourself. Other pets are not always friendly with rabbits and can become aggressive in their presence, and you also need to protect them from wild animals which may be predators. Any attack could result in injury so it is important for them to have a safe place to live in. Sometimes, even something as small as a mouse can stress your rabbits out.
Here are five things that you need to consider when you decide to build your own rabbit hutch:
Hutch legs – The legs of your hutch not only dictate how far down you have to bend to get at your rabbits (and the less you have to maneuver to access them the better), but also can provide protection for your rabbits from predators. Higher legs will keep many small predators from snooping in your hutches, which can frighten your rabbits. And it also makes the rabbits harder to access because they will have to climb up or onto the hutch instead of just getting through the wire. You can even wrap chicken wire around the legs just to make sure that nothing goes beneath to pick on them from below.
Design– The design of the rabbit hutch directly reflects the level of comfort and safety of your per rabbit. The main consideration in making the hutch is the rabbits because obviously they are the ones that are going to be living in it. If you want to keep them safe and secure, you have to have a plan and design that is more convenient for your rabbit. One big challenge with building hutches is cleaning them, so be sure to take that in consideration with the design you choose as well.
Tray – Because we mentioned that clean up might be difficult with a hutch, a tray in the bottom to easy cleanup of wastes is a good idea. It should be removable by sliding it out to the front so it goes in and out quickly for cleaning.
Hutch Base – Your base needs to be solid, especially if you have large animals around the house. It is always better to reinforce the base just to be on the safe side of things. A reinforced base can provide strength to the hutch and safety for your rabbits. These additional precautions will prove to be at you and your rabbit’s advantage as it can give them safety from other dangerous animals. Finalize your design before you take the next step of buying the materials that you are going to need. Keep in mind that if you do multiple layers (say metal over wood) to increase longevity, you’re also going to increase the amount of cleaning necessary to get bacteria out from between the layers.
Indoor and Outdoor Hutches – There are a lot of available designs that you can choose from when building hutches and there are two types in particular, the indoor and the outdoor type hutches. Make sure that your hutches designed for outdoors are constructed of materials that will hold up for at least a year so that you don’t spend all of your time replacing and repairing things. Outdoor hutches should designed to withstand and sustain the outdoor environment and weather.
You have to know that rabbits are prey animals and the only thing that can protect them from other animals when you are not around would be their hutch so it has to be built to last. Click the following link for a list of free rabbit housing plans.