Rabbits are very often chosen as pets, they are very pretty, fluffy, children love them. Rabbits are kept in apartments and in private houses. Animals are unpretentious in care, they do not need to be walked outside, it is enough to clean the cage and feed them properly. In order for their health and development to be harmonious, it is necessary to correctly organize the nutrition of the pets. The basis of the diet is hay, but this is not enough, additional feeding is necessary. Very often there are questions about that? whether all vegetables and fruits can be given to the decorative rabbit, whether he eats cucumbers, beets, pumpkin. These questions need to be answered before starting animals, as many foods can cause gastrointestinal upset.
The benefits of feeding
In order not to experience health problems and to develop normally, to feel good, rabbits need to get water, hay and food. However, fruits and vegetables allow you to diversify the diet and give your pet an additional source of nutrients and vitamins. They have a beneficial effect on the work of internal organs, normalize stool, affect the strengthening of muscles, make the animal stronger and more resistant to infections.
Berries are very useful for animals, they have a beneficial effect on immunity, increase appetite, and remove toxins.
Despite the fact that there is a list of vegetables recommended for consumption, when introducing complementary foods, it is imperative to monitor the reaction and condition of the pet. Vegetables include the most different, boiled potatoes without a peel are perfectly digestible. But it should be remembered that it is quite high in calories, so follow to alternate it with cabbage, carrots. Top dressing should be varied. Sugar beet is a favorite delicacy of rabbits, you need to include only ripe fruits in the diet, without the peel.
It is important not to overdo it and not to give too much beetroot, monitor the reaction, as it can cause loose stools in large quantities.
Cucumbers are another useful product, you can even start giving it to babies. These vegetables are good for feeding and mother-rabbits, as they increase the amount of milk. Due to the fact that there are a minimum of calories in cucumbers, they can be given almost all year round, and in summer, in hot weather, this vegetable is especially relevant, because it contains a lot of water. The same can be said for tomatoes. Of course, there is an advantage over products grown in our own garden or purchased from trusted farmers, in mass production there is a large percentage of processing vegetables with chemical compositions, nitrates for storage duration. They can harm the rabbit and its health, therefore it is necessary to reduce their consumption to a minimum.
Be sure to feed the animal with stalks of chard, celery, broccoli. Corn is good both fresh and processed. Rabbits are very fond of Jerusalem artichoke, moreover, they are ready to give up other vegetable delicacies for it. Be careful, if this happens, you will have to exclude Jerusalem artichoke from the diet, since a variety of feeding is very important for the harmonious development of the animal.
Be sure to include pumpkin in your diet.
When it comes to fruit feeding, an individual approach is very important here, since the tastes of pets may vary. In general, almost all fruits that people most often eat, rabbits love and eat with great appetite. Pears, apples are very useful, if you do not overfeed them, they have almost all the necessary elements, substances, vitamins that rabbits need. A peeled banana can be given occasionally, but no more than once every 7 days. It is not recommended to do this more often, despite the love of rabbits for bananas, these fruits have too many calories, which is quite unhealthy for the rabbit.
In addition to bananas, you need to carefully feed them with watermelons and melons. It is necessary to remove the peel completely, remove the seeds. Observe the measure, do not give too much, the main thing is, do not feed these products to rabbits that are carrying a baby. You can give berries without any restrictions: strawberries, raspberries and others. Kiwi fruit is pre-peeled and pitted.
Dried fruits, for example, prunes, dried apricots, have a beneficial effect on the body. They perfectly improve the functioning of the intestines and are especially useful when animals shed, allowing them to get rid of hair more actively.
What cannot be given?
Many vegetables can harm a pet's health, so the following foods must be excluded from the diet :
- raw potatoes;
- white cabbage, if given a lot;
- leaf salad;
White cabbage can be used in very small doses, otherwise it will spoil the intestines, provoke gas and other problems. To prevent cabbage from harming your pet, follow these steps:
- give only those leaves that are on top;
- it is better if they tighten, you can weld them;
- the amount of cabbage should be kept to a minimum.
It is very important to eliminate nuts from the rabbit's diet, despite all their usefulness. Nuts negatively affect the functioning of the rabbit's liver, disrupt digestion.
You can not give nutmeg, peanuts and hazelnuts, as they contain poison and can provoke pet poisoning. There is a high probability of an allergic reaction, nausea, vomiting, disruption of the heart system. In addition, they are very fatty and not suitable for feeding rabbits. The least harmful is the walnut, but it is also better to exclude it from the diet. In any case, obesity in rabbits is a very common problem, therefore high-calorie nuts are contraindicated for them, especially during the period of gestation.
This type of food is a welcome treat for rabbits, they are actively used in training, with encouragement. The biggest danger is too much and overfeeding. You should be careful with high-calorie foods: potatoes, bananas. Neatness will not hurt with those products that have a laxative effect, increase peristalsis, increase gas formation.
For example, zucchini does not contain many calories, but it is very weak, so it can only be given in small quantities. There are a number of fruits that can negatively affect the health of rabbits, such as plums and apricots. The pleasant taste does not compensate for the subsequent torment of the pet, so it is better not to give such products at all.
Citrus fruits should also be treated with great care as they can destroy the stomach lining. You can pamper your baby with tangerines for the season, but limit consumption to 1 wedge 2 times a week.
How to feed properly?
It is necessary to follow the rules when introducing this type of feeding, the products must be properly prepared:
- rinse thoroughly;
- wipe very well;
- if necessary, get rid of the peel, bones;
- cut into small pieces;
- some foods need to be dried.
The product must be dry and not cold before use. If it is stored in the refrigerator, take care ahead of time, take out the fruit or vegetable and let it warm up. Such feeding is introduced upon reaching the age of two months, or later. Complementary foods are added to the diet gradually, limiting the use to any one species. After you check the reaction to each product separately, you can start combining them.
At the same time, the amount of the main feed must be reduced. Remember that the individual tolerance of food applies to almost all types, so it is very important to track the reaction. If even a harmless product has caused a negative reaction, it should be excluded.
Fruit and vegetable dressing cannot be used as a basis for nutrition, if the rabbit is spoiled and refuses the main food, turn off the feeding for a while and return to it later, after restoring normal food.
Use feeding as an encouragement and encouragement to physical activity, for this do the following manipulations:
- hang tidbits above the floor so that the rabbit can reach for them;
- spread out in different corners of the aviary or cage;
- throw in pieces of paper and hide the product there.
This will motivate the rabbit to move, he will start looking for them and for a while will be involved in a kind of game that the baby needs in order not to get bored. Out of boredom, pets are able to start eating more than necessary and gnaw on everything that comes to hand.
Decorative rabbits need a balanced diet, quality products, and competent feeding organization. If you approach this issue deliberately, be careful, then it is quite easy to form a high-quality and rich in nutrients diet. The main thing is to follow all the recommendations, do not overfeed individuals, exclude harmful foods, feed only natural and fresh vegetables and fruits.
About what fruits and vegetables you can feed your decorative rabbit, see below.