Date: 02/07/18
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How to train your rabbit

GETTING STARTED

Rabbits are very intelligent animals but are also instinctively frightened of anything new or unknown. This trait helps help to survive in the wild as it is essential for them to react to any dangers nearby. With this in mind, it is very important that you have built a strong bond with your rabbit before attempting to train them.

Rabbits are very social and while it is best to keep rabbits in pairs they will also enjoy spending time with you. Training is most effective if done on a one to one basis, so you should allow time with each rabbit on an individual basis.

If your rabbit is timid or new to you, it is likely that they will hide and be reluctant to come over. Patience is very important at this stage of training and you should start by sitting next to the hutch and every time your rabbit moves towards you gently lay a treat on the ground, this will help them realise you will not chase or grab him if he comes close.

TRAINING TIME

Once your rabbit feels comfortable to sit near and explore you, you can start the next stage of training.

You can drop treats all around you and even on you, so your rabbit must come closer in order to get the treat. Every time you drop the treat and the rabbit takes it say their name in a gentle clam voice. They will associate their name with a treat and before long they will come to call even if you don’t have anything for them.

This will require patience and should be repeated at least two times a day but only for around 2 minutes at a time.

HEALTHY SNACKS

Remember your rabbit will require a healthy balance diet so try to avoid packaged treats and feed natural healthy fruits and vegetables such as:

  • Basil
  • Dandelions
  • Broccoli leaves
  • Carrot tops
  • Celery (leaves are good)
  • Mint
  • Water cress
  • Bananas
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Kale

There are many more things you can teach your rabbit, for example toilet training, high fives, jumping and you can even do rabbit agility!

The most important thing however is to make sure your rabbit has a healthy and happy life with other rabbits and yourself.

 

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