Bribe Your Way to Your Bunny’s Heart

bunnyA bunny rabbit may be more cute and cuddly than a cat or dog, but less easy to train. When you are getting a rabbit, buy its cage before you buy it, or at least before sundown on the day that your rabbit enters your house. It is not very safe to sleep leaving your rabbit to sleep on your drawing room rug.

It will take some time for a rabbit to accept your authority and to follow your simple commands. In the beginning at least, keep the rabbit’s cage outside, if you are living in a home that has a yard. A two level cage is best for a rabbit with a ramp connecting the two stories because the ramp will give it some exercise. The cage bottom should be a wooden or plastic board because wire grate, seen in some rabbit cages, will make it hard for the rabbit to walk inside the cage.

Make the cage as big as possible, depending upon space availability in your home. It will be ideal if the cage has a top door besides the side door for the rabbit to come in and go out.  To befriend it in its early stages of adaptation, you can touch it or hold out treats to it through the top door without the risk of it jumping out. A top door will also make it easy for you to clean the bunny and to clean the cage. Some amount of grass should be inside the cage, for it to rest upon and to chew.

If you do not have enough time to train your rabbit, it is better not to go in for a pet rabbit. And when you start befriending it, remember that it is not much deterred by the threat of punishment. On the other hand, it can be bribed with edible goodies to do your command. So give a command like ‘sit’, ‘stand’, ‘jump’, or ‘go to your cage’, and once the bunny understands your command and does what you say, give it a little of its favorite food.

You should give it its special treat the moment it accomplishes what it is told, so that it connects the act with the reward. As to what foods can be used to bribe your rabbit, you will have to decide it the trial and error way. Many rabbits seem to be fond of human foods like sweet yogurt, candies, or chips, but these are not very good for them, and should be given only sparingly. You will have to check with your vet what foods and what amounts of it you can give to your bunny without damaging its health.

Fruits like cherries, peaches, strawberries, and apples can be given to a rabbit with less risk, so far as your rabbit loves them. But their quantity needs to be controlled, since too much sugar is not good for rabbits. Vegetables like basil, cilantro, celery, carrots, and tomatoes are foods that can be given to a bunny. There are, however, quantity restrictions on these also, based upon the rabbit’s weight.