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You are here: myPetSmart.com > Care Guides > Rabbit Nutrition and Maintenance

Rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus)

Experience Level: Beginner

rabbit in habitat

Nutrition & Maintenance

Nutrition and Maintenance
• Rabbits are herbivores and the largest portion of their diet should be hay.

• Seeds like millet and sunflower can be added to pellets but are higher in fat than pellets. For optimum nutrition, seeds should be an additive or treat, not the primary food.

• Food should always be placed in a bowl and not directly on the bedding to avoid accidental ingestion of the bedding.

• Fresh fruits and vegetables should be removed after four hours to prevent spoilage.

• Mineral wheels should be provided in the habitat.

• Water must be available in the cage at all times.

• Food and water bowls/bottles should be cleaned once daily.

 

Dietary Options
  Examples Feeding Frequency
Hay Timothy hay or oat grass Hay should be the largest part of the diet and should always be available.
Prepared Diets* Commercially prepared pelleted diets Refresh food daily, keeping the bowl approximately 3/4 full. 
Vegetables Dark, leafy greens (kale, collard, mustard, dandelion, escarole) and vegetables (zucchini, broccoli, squash, shredded carrots) Every other day; should constitute 20% of diet. Offer only enough to be consumed in four hours. 
Fruits Papaya, banana, melon

Once weekly; should only constitute 5% of diet. 

Offer only enough to be consumed in four hours. 

Treats Raisins, seed and alfalfa hay Treats should be offered sparingly ; once to twice weekly.
*Pelleted diets are commonly made from timothy hay or alfalfa and are fortified with optimal levels of vitamins and minerals like calcium and vitamin D3. Pelleted diets may also have additives to support digestive health. 

 

Use caution when handling pets and remember that all pets may bite or scratch especially when
stressed. Remember to never grab your Rabbit by the fur or tail, the hair will pull out. Supervise
children around pets.

Pets may transmit disease to humans; be sure to wash your hands before and after handling your
pet or cleaning their home.