Acquired: Rescue / shelter organization
Posted Dec 05, 2015
Hocus (and her sister Pocus) were two rescue rabbits. They came from a home where they were not loved at all. The previous owner's didn't even know what gender the two rabbits were. We realised they were girls when we put them in with the boys and they started making nests! (I'll focus on Hocus for this review)
Hocus was a lively rabbit when we first got her, but after a few weeks of fussing over her and giving her affection, she started to become more tame. After a few months, she was like a dog. You would walk out into the garden and she would come bounding towards you for a cuddle.
Training the rabbit may be an issue. Luckily, Hocus (and Pocus) were litter trained, to an extent, at the start. They just seemed to prefer to be hygienic, and went to the toilet in a specific place in the hutch every time. Rabbits tend to be clean animals anyway, but it is relatively easy to train them to go to the toilet in a specific place.We had a big hutch for our two rabbits, and cleaned the hutch out twice a week, replacing the newspaper and hay. We found that the rabbits enjoyed hay rather than straw, just because the straw was a bit too harsh for them.
Rabbits need space. I have known some people to keep their rabbits in a cage most of the time, with the owners fussing over them through the cage and occasionally letting them out in the garden. I believe this alienates the rabbit and causes them to be unsocial, scared animals. We let our rabbits run around the garden all the time. This is safe for the rabbits as long as your garden is rabbit-proof, i.e. Regularly check for holes in the fence, and make sure the fence goes quite far down into the ground. Because of the freedom that was available to Hocus, including letting her run inside the house on occasions, Hocus learnt to be very friendly and sociable rabbit, which in turn enabled a strong bond to form between her and us. If you're thinking about getting a rabbit, I would take into consideration the fact that if you want a friendly, sociable and cuddley rabbit, then you need to really dedicate time to them, so they can become comfortable around you. I would also recommend getting two rabbits together, as rabbit's can get really lonely and depressed when they're on their own.