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Have you just brought a rabbit into the house? Wondering what the best rabbit food is to buy? While they can be cute they can be a lot of maintenance when it comes to their diets. They need feed that’s high-fiber, as well as fresh vegetables, and protein.
Each bunny also needs varying amounts depending on their age. You’ll have to do a little research to decide what’s best for your new furry friend. Lucky for you, we’ve done a little bit of the leg work for you.
Keep reading to find out what your bunny needs for its diet as well as get a feeling for some of the best food to feed rabbits.
Ingredients All Healthy Bunnies Need
Rabbits need a well-rounded diet of grass hay, fresh vegetables, and dry food. Grass hay will make up a majority of what you’ll give them followed by vegetables and then dry food. You can also fit in healthy snacks if you so wish.
We’re going to go over each one of these in a little bit more detail so you get a basic understanding of what you’ll be looking for.
1. Grass Hay
There is a good chance that you don’t have meadows of fresh grass just laying around so grass hay is going to be your best alternative. The best hay for rabbits has a lot of nutritional content like:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin D
- and Calcium
All these are perfect for any small animal.
When buying the hay do make sure you pay attention to this nutritional content, however. Your rabbit will have different nutritional needs depending on their age so you can go overboard and accidentally kill them.
For example, baby bunnies don’t need too much protein- so one of the best food for baby rabbits would be alfalfa.
2. Fresh Veggies
Grass hay is a little dry so they will welcome fresh vegetables when given the opportunity. Not only do they think they’re delicious but vegetables also do wonders for their kidneys and bladder.
Make sure that the vegetables you give them are leafy greens. While you probably associate rabbits and carrots together they aren’t all that great for them in large quantities due to sugar.
Also, when choosing the best vegetables for rabbits, you should vary the greens from time to time to give them different tastes and textures to enjoy.
Remember when we said it’s okay to give your bunny healthy treats if you so wish? Fruit is going to be that snack. While fruit is loaded with antioxidants that can help your rabbit the sugar that’s found in them counteracts the good.
If you give your rabbit too much fruit it can lead to obesity and several other health issues. The thing about fruit is that it’s in limited supply in the wild, so when you give it to your rabbit they will instinctively eat as much as they can of it because they don’t know when they will get it again. They love the stuff.
Knowing this, you can use it the same way you use dog treats with a puppy to motivate it to do things like exercise.
4. Dry Food
Other than hay, dry food is going to make up the most of your rabbit’s diet. While dry food has nutritional value for them, it also lacks the fiber they need in their diet. Even so, it’s a good way to get other vitamins and minerals into their little systems.
The main two dry foods you’ll run into are mixed foods and pellets.
- Mixed foods are a little healthier than pellets and more often than not come with dried vegetables that are great for a rabbit or guinea pig. You might want to get mixed food that isn’t really colorful though. If you don’t, your rabbit might pick out and eat all the colorful food and leave the other nutritional bits.
- Pellets are mostly composed of dried grass and there are a ton of them to choose from. You have to be a little careful some manufacturers will advertise that they are made with all natural ingredients when they’re really not.
What is the Best Food For Rabbits? Top 7 Options
Now that you know what ingredients you should be looking for when it comes to your rabbit’s diet now we’re going to go over a few products that are rich in them.
Kaytee Natural Timothy Hay is made out of natural ingredients that have been harvested from the Columbian River. It’s low in protein and calcium but rich in fiber so it makes a great compliment for the other foods in your rabbit’s diet.
The leaf to stem ratio of the packaging is well balanced. Speaking of, during the packaging process it’s protected from the elements so it retains all of its nutritional value.
Hay should make up a good portion of your rabbit’s diet as stated above. Oxbow’s Western Timothy Hay comes vet recommended for this purpose. It’s low in protein and calcium and high in fiber which helps keep their kidney and bladders healthy.
This hay goes the extra mile by helping your rabbit trim their teeth and also keeps obesity away. Making it some of the best food for rabbits teeth. There are no extra chemicals in this product and it is specifically woven by hand to move in a way that will make your bunny curious about it when touched.
Adult rabbits need more protein than younger ones. Oxbow Essential Bunny Basics is made with this in mind. It’s specifically created to aid digestion in adult rabbits. It contains plenty of protein and calcium that they will need while also not skimping on fiber.
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t give this product to pregnant or nursing rabbits. It’s also not intended for rabbits who are still growing. They do make a formula for young bunnies, too.
To transition this food into their diet when they reach the point of adulthood, slowly replace it with their other food. You don’t want to just throw it on them.
While rabbits don’t need as much protein as other animals, they still have to have some for their health and for a shiny coat. Kaytee Supreme Fortified Daily Diet Rabbit Food has this protein while also having a nice balance of the other vitamins and minerals your rabbit needs.
It’s easy for them to digest, counts towards their daily dose of hay, and the crunchiness of the food will help the rabbit give into its cravings for chewing. It’s easy for them to eat, and will allow them to keep their teeth trimmed.
These alfalfa cubes are a tasty treat that can be given in addition to your rabbit’s other food. On top of being sweet and desirable, it also aids in digestion. The cubes are tightly compressed which will give your rabbit a fun challenge that it won’t want to pass up.
Due to the fact that they will want to chew it, they will unknowingly be working on trimming their teeth down. They may also play with it further by stacking the cubes to use as a bed or nest.
It’s a more nutritious treat to give them than fruit and you can give it to them several times a day instead of only a few times a week.
Brown’s Tropical Carnival is a nice balance of everything that your rabbit needs in their diet. The benefit of this is, you save money because you won’t really need any other food. It tastes good so they’ll love it and it’s also it’s good for them.
They’ll be able to get their daily fiber and it contains the bacteria needed to promote good digestive health. The pieces are just the right size so your rabbit won’t become overwhelmed with trying to figure out how to eat it.
It contains chunks of pineapple and papaya which controls the hairballs that tend to clog their gastrointestinal tracts. The only problem that you might run into is that because this food is so colorful, your rabbit might try to pick out those parts and eat just them.
Like the Bunny Basic’s food listed above the Garden Select is the best rabbit food for adults and shouldn’t be given to pregnant, nursing, or growing bunnies. That being said, it’s part of a balanced diet that adult rabbits will absolutely love.
It contains the hay that they need while also incorporating fresh vegetables and contains herbs such as rosemary and thyme. This not only makes the food flavorful but gives their little tastebuds a bit of variety.
These garden ingredients do a little bit more than just add taste though. They also mimic their natural foraging grounds which will cause their instincts to kick in and make things feel a little more like home.