Choose the right hutch

A large weatherproof home that is raised off the ground provides the ideal rabbit environment.

Their hutch should be big enough to allow them to lie down and stretch out comfortably in all directions, tall enough for them to stand up on their back legs without their ears touching the top, and long enough to allow at least three hops. A suggested minimum size for most rabbits is 6ft x 2ft x 2ft high.

Do my rabbits need an exercise run as well as a hutch?

Yes. In the wild, rabbits have a home territory the size of 30 tennis courts! So, to get enough exercise, pet rabbits should have as much space as possible.

A large run on a grassy area will help ensure they get enough exercise. This must be escape-proof, safe from predators and offer some shade for maximum rabbit safety. They need an indoor run in cold weather. Ideally, their run should be attached to the hutch so that the rabbits can exercise whenever they want to.

How big should an exercise run for rabbits be?

A run should be tall enough to allow the rabbits to stretch up to full height and they should be able to run, rather than just hop. A suggested minimum size of run for most rabbits is 8ft x 4ft x 2ft high.

Where should I put my rabbit hutch and run?

The hutch should be positioned out of direct sunlight and strong winds.

Should I move the hutch if the weather gets very hot or very cold?

In the winter, if it gets very cold, the hutch may have to be moved into an outhouse or car-free garage (car-free because exhaust fumes can be fatal). Rabbits can suffer from heatstroke, so in hot weather move the hutch and run into shaded areas.

What type of bedding should I give my rabbits?

The hutch should be lined with newspaper or clean woodshavings, with soft hay or straw on top. The sleeping area should contain clean, dry hay or straw as bedding.

How often do I need to clean my rabbit hutch?

For the ideal rabbit environment, the hutch should be cleaned at least once a day, by removing any shavings or bedding that are wet and dirty, removing any uneaten fresh food and cleaning the food and water containers before refilling them. You also need to clean the hutch more thoroughly to keep it clean and hygienic – once a week is usually adequate.

From time-to-time the hutch should be completely stripped out and scrubbed, with your rabbits only being allowed back into the hutch when it is completely dry.