On behalf of my sister, who I wants to get a holland lop for her birthday, can you feed them alfalfa pellets, and no grain?Cause we're switching our goat to no grain, and she was going to feed the rabbit the goat grain, so we were just wondering.
Hmm... Well thanks! I really know nothing about rabbits. I think that I heard they could eat goat grain from some people we know that have goats and were raising rabbits for meat. Not sure if that's where I heard it, but I think so. We haven't seen them in ages though, so it's not like we can just ask them for advice.
If the rabbits were just going into the freezer, then it wouldn't matter what you are feeding them. They also may not have cared about losses. If this is a pet rabbit, then I would feed it the regular rabbit feed.
I raised american blues for over 5 years for meat and pet quality. And I would have to say that if the people were loading their rabbits up on grain it was most likely to fatten them up before slaughter just like what you would see in any other meat industry.
However, more often than not-- people who raise rabbits for meat DO care about what their rabbits eat, and that it is premium quality. Poor quality diet, or the wrong diet ruins the meat, and can kill your rabbits. Which are expensive to replace, and it takes a lot of time to get a return on a replacement breeder. Also, any rabbits that are surplus are often sold as pets or breeding stock.
It is not uncommon to see people that raise meat rabbits for their own dinner table, showing and winning grand champion at rabbit shows. This is because they are breeding for the same quality that the judges are looking for. And if the rabbits they breed don't make the cut, they are removed from the gene pool thus strengthening the quality of the breed, and the rabbits/meat produced.
Over all, grain is not good for the long term health of your rabbit.. Too much sugar, protein, and fat. Alfalfa is okay as an occasional treat in small quantities. Too much alfalfa an cause kidney stones, bladder stones, and a whole host of other problems.
Bermuda or Timothy hay is best, along with high quality pellets. Rabbits are like goats, they love treats and can easily be spoiled to the point they will refuse their regular diet in preference of treats. Also you will want to give your bun plenty of chew toys, and a nest...
They love to burrow and having a soft place to sleep makes them very happy. The edible tunnels and baskets in pet stores are also favorites amongst pet rabbits.
And depending on the cage you use (and with a little patience) you can potty train your bunny to use a litter box in its cage reducing the risk of fly strike from being in close contact with their droppings. They can also be trained to use a harness All rabbits enjoy a romp on a fenced in portion of a grassy, shaded, yard, the harness makes it that much safer.
Grass hay and a small amount of rabbit food is usallay best (IMHO).
But, i do have one older guy that gets free choice pellets. Pregnant does and growing babies need some alfalfa hay. But i wouldn't ever feed that as a whole diet.
I hope you find a nice rabbit and your sister enjoys him/her
Just feed it Timothy hay and rabbit pellets. Free choice all it wants to eat. If it starts getting huge, cut back on the pellets. Mine love the yogurt treats from Walmart. I give them when I refill the hay or pellets. Hop this helps
They NEED rabbit pellets specifically and NOT alfalfa. I hardly ever feed alfalfa. It is too rich and they can develop enteritis and die from it. I would never feed them for then 5 pellets a day, and that is only for my 12 pound does!
Also, petstore anything is usually a big no-no. So is free choice food. Pet rabbits are just like any other animal. You wouldn't feed your goats free choice pellets so don't feed your rabbit that. You wouldn't feed your goat plain sugar, so don't give your rabbit any of that. Country Crazy suggested the "Yogies" treats from the petstore. Frankly, I have to disagree. Those things are chocked full of sugar, and TONS of people don't recognize that. You will be doing your rabbit a favor by not feeding it treats like that. Your rabbit could die at a young age from "overdosing" on petstore treats when you didn't even know it. I have a recipe for oat treats I made up if you want it.
Hey everybody, thanks for the input! She actually did get her Holland day before yeterday. Her birthday's still a couple days away, but we were going to be so busy the next week, that we went ahead and got her one. It's too cute; about 8 weeks old, broken orange female. She's so little, she looks like a toy!
Baby bunnies- 8mos. old should have unlimited alfalfa hay and unlimited pellets. Then you can switch to unlimited timothy hay, 1/2 cup pellets a day, and 1 cup of fresh greens, herbs, fruit a day. don't start fresh veggies till 5 mos. old. and introduce slowly!! congrats and best wishes!!!