Monday, January 02, 2006

Insects can kill!

For anyone that houses their rabbit outside and you haven't already insect-proofed their housing, here are some reasons why you might want to rush on down to your local hardware store for some insect mesh & a staple gun.

1. Myxo - it's still around & killing off rabbits daily. Forget that you live in the city & it's not going to get your bunny as it's running rampant now in the suburbs. There's no cure or vaccination and your bunny will die a painful death within days. It's spread by mozzies, fleas (common & spanish flea) and your bunny will be even more at risk if you live near wild rabbits populations.

2. Calici - another one that's passed on from biting insects (fleas & mozzies). There is a yearly vaccination but it kicks in after 4 weeks so hurry up & get your bunny to the vet now.

3. Flystrike - ordinary old flies can kill your bunny by laying their eggs on their host. It's a hideous & disgusting way to die.

Please insect proof your bunny's outdoor housing or bring your bunny indoors to live with you. After all, you avoid biting insects so why shouldn't they.

Keeping your bunny cool

To keep your bunny cool on very hot days:

1. move outside hutch into full shade for the whole day

2. provide a frozen water bottle wrapped in a towel for your bunny to sit next to

3. place a wet towel over outside enclosure and let the evaporation cool your bunny

4. bring bunny inside on hot days - your house will always be cooler during the heat of the day

5. mist spray carefully on your bunny's ears & dampen their fur

6. when inside, place a pedestal fan at a safe distance from your bunny to allow breezes to circulate (covering up cord so bunny will not be in danger)

***Please note that metal hutches are not appropriate housing for rabbits. They heat up to intense temperatures in summer, freeze your bunny in winter and are too small. This summer, chuck out the metal cage & try a new approach.