Enrichment and handling for rabbits

We all need to run and play to keep our minds and bodies healthy and rabbits are no exception. Make sure you provide a variety of environmental enrichment such as:

  • Wooden toys to chew. These keep teeth healthy and stop them growing too long.
  • Hiding boxes, even a cardboard box can be great!
  • Tunnels to play and hide in.
  • Treat toys, such as grass/hay balls. This is a great form of enrichment as your bunny will work to get all the yummy food inside.
  • Hay/grass tubes, which you can purchase as a toy or make by stuffing some hay or grass into a cardboard tube.
  • Platforms will allow your rabbits to scan their environment for threats and can help them to feel safe. They can also help to build up your rabbit’s physical fitness and bone strength, as jumping on and off a platform is an important exercise.
  • Telephone books (with the glossy covers removed), boxes, cat tunnels, and blocks of untreated wood are excellent for stretching up on, climbing through or sitting on.
  • Wrap your rabbits’ favourite food in brown paper for them to find and unwrap.
  • Solid plastic baby toys e.g. ‘key rings’/rattles/stacking cups, and some strong cat and parrot toys can make good rabbit toys.
  • Provide digging and pushing opportunities for your rabbits with some type of ‘digging box’. Safe places for rabbits to dig include large plant pots or litter trays filled with earth, cardboard boxes filled with shredded paper or sandpits filled with soil or child-friendly sand.

Handling your rabbit

Rabbits are naturally sociable animals and enjoy lots of attention and company. Many rabbits don’t like to be picked up but there are times you will need to pick up your rabbit, a trip to the vet for example. As rabbits’ spines are fragile, make sure their hind legs are secure so they cannot kick out and damage their spine. Make sure children sit quietly and allow the rabbit to come to them first before interacting. 

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