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New Rabbit

Useful advice for your new rabbit

Providing essential routine care for your pet is all part of being a responsible pet owner. Remember that you can save money on the cost of treatments and services that keep your pet healthy and happy. Not only that but budget and spread the cost of routine care across the year by paying with direct debit. Check out our Pet Health Club page for more information.

Looking After Your Rabbit

It is important to remember that rabbits are highly social, burrowing herbivores. They have adapted to digest a low-quality, high-fibre diet which consists mainly of grass. They spend most of the time eating and it is best to feed a diet of vegetable matter, a selection of grasses leaves and roots. Hay should be given if they are not outside on grass. Pellet foods should only be used as a supplement to fresh foods.

Rabbits need to be checked daily and handled as often as possible to keep them tame. They need to be kept in a safe and secure environment and allowed out of their hutch for exercise, grooming and feeding. Outside runs should either have a wire base or the fence should go down into the ground so the rabbit cannot burrow out.

Rabbits need a stress-free life, which will help to keep them healthy. The hutch should be kept clean, with plenty of hay, food and water available. 

Signs to look for that indicate illness:

  • Not passing faeces
  • Loss of weight
  • Depression – your rabbit is more subdued than normal
  • Diarrhoea/urine soaking into back legs
  • Skin problems – these can be best identified as the rabbit is handled and groomed
  • Loss of appetite – your rabbit should immediately be examined by a vet, as this could indicate a potentially life-threatening blockage in the guts

Rabbit owners are also advised to regularly check their pet’s nails and teeth, as clipping may be required. Please contact the surgery for advice or if you have any concerns whatsoever about your rabbit.

Rabbits should have vaccinations against Myxomatosis and Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (VHD). These vaccinations are given two weeks apart and can be started at any time after six weeks of age. The VHD vaccine requires a booster annually, whilst the Myxomatosis vaccine should be given every 6 months.

Practice information

Winchester Road Surgery

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  • Mon
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Tue
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Wed
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Thu
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Fri
    9:00am - 6:00pm
  • Sat
    9:00am -12:00pm
  • Sun
    Closed

Emergency Details

Please call:

023 80779388
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Find us here:

224 Winchester Road Shirley Southampton SO16 6TL
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Please call this number for emergencies:

023 80779388