How Much Should Your Bunny Eat?
When it comes to feeding your bunny, it can be a little overwhelming knowing what to feed and how much. There is so much information available out there and much of it can be contradictory depending on the sources. While you can find lists of what your bunny should be eating, knowing how much is often overlooked. Since bunnies are by nature foragers, it’s easy to overfeed. Having not only a proper diet but feeding the proper proportions is essential to your bunny’s health. We have put together a little guide on exactly how much your bunny should be taking in daily.
Let’s start with the number ONE ingredient of your bun’s diet, hay. Hay is absolutely essential for their GI tract and teeth. The fiber in the hay will regulate their digestive system and keep their gut flowing. Hay will also help file down their ever-growing teeth. Your bunny should get at least a handful of hay that is equal to the size of your bunny. Hay is the one item that you can never give too much of. While there are certain types of hay you should avoid, giving unlimited amounts of timothy or orchard hay is perfectly fine. You should be cautious when giving Alfalfa hay. While it may be acceptable for bunnies under 5 months old, it can lead to health issues in older bunnies.
A high-quality pellet feed should be offered to your bunny daily. Depending on the age of the bunny and the brand, your bunny should be getting ⅓ cup to ½ cup a day. Younger bunnies are growing so you will want to offer them up to ½ cup of pellets daily until 6 months of age. Once they reach 6 months, you will want to cut them down to ⅓ cup of pellets per day. You should also switch your bunny from a young rabbit pellet to an adult pellet around 6 months old. Our pellets of choice are Oxbow Essential.
There is nothing more exciting than when your bunny reaches 4 months and you can finally start introducing fresh greens and fresh fruit. Fresh greens are not essential for their diet, but they will love you for it! If you choose to introduce your bunny to fresh foods (you really should), then keep reading. Your bunny can have a loosely packed cup of greens per day. When it comes to fruit, one small piece per day is more than enough. You do have to be mindful of what items you are feeding. Knowing the calcium, sugar, and carbohydrates is important to maintain a healthy bunny gut.
Bunnies love treats! However, it isn’t always easy to find wholesome treats. You want to select treats that have a hay base with added natural ingredients. Stay away from anything with a lot of corn or legumes high up in the ingredient list. Those tend to be fillers and are not good for their GI tract. If it isn’t natural or you can’t pronounce an ingredient, it probably should be going in their system. You can offer your bunny 2-3 small treats per day.
Herbal blends are a great way to spice up your bunnies hay or to use for foraging activities. Natural herbs and edible flowers can provide your bunny with extra nutrients and vitamins. We use our herbal medleys daily for our bunnies. We have specific blends for different buns. Giving your bunny up to 1 tablespoon a day of our herbal medley can make for a very happy bunny.
Digestive support tabs are not a necessary part of your bunny's daily diet. We are including them because it can be beneficial to your bunnies health. Much like us taking a daily vitamin, a digestive support tab can be a boost to their system. Bunnies are susceptible to GI issues and when their gut flow is off, it can go downhill quickly. Offering a digestive support tab once or twice a week can help ensure their little bellies stay happy.
Your bunny will need fresh water daily. You can offer water in a bowl (more natural for bunnies) or a water bottle. We offer our bunnies both bowls and bottles. We change out the water in the morning and in the evening. It is important to make sure the water is served fresh each day. No one wants to drink water that has been sitting for a couple of days. Dwarf bunnies will drink between 4-8 ounces of water a day. Younger buns normally take in about 2-4 ounces of water a day.
At the end of the day, we all want our bunnies to be happy and healthy. Providing your bunny a proper and well-balanced diet will ensure just that.
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