Welcome to Ask the Vet, a new regular feature here on The Animal Store Blog. We have teamed up with the great veterinarians at Chicago Exotics Animal Hospital, who will answer your most pressing pet questions right here! Do you want to see your question answered on the blog? Leave a comment below or submit it here on our contact form.

This edition of Ask the Vet is about bunnies.

Leila w/Netherland Dwarf Bunny 6/10You asked: This is my first pet rabbit. What should I feed it?


Excellent question!  Depending on your rabbit’s age, they may require different foods. A good rule of thumb is that rabbits under six months of age should be fed alfalfa hay and alfalfa hay-based pellets, and offered leafy greens only sparingly in small amounts, if at all (to prevent soft stool; the high water content of greens can cause diarrhea). As a rabbit ages beyond six months, we recommend feeding timothy hay freely for life, as well as leafy greens twice daily (the quantity depends on the size of the rabbit). Pellets are not needed for adult rabbits. Some breeds, especially larger rabbit breeds, may need pellets for a little while past six months of age. If you’re unsure, ask the staff at The Animal Store, Chicago Exotics Animal Hospital, or your veterinarian. NoCarrot-icon

Do not offer your rabbit:

  • carrots, broccoli (or any gas causing vegetables)
  • greens high in calcium (kale, collard greens, and swiss chard for example)
  • fruit to your rabbit

Despite what you might have learned from Bugs Bunny, carrots and the types of fruits and vegetables mentioned above can cause gut upset, which could become a serious problem in your rabbit.

You had more questions about rabbits, so tune in for the next edition of Ask the Vet for more answers. Enter your email address to the left so you don’t miss a single post. Stop in any time and our expert staff at The Animal Store is happy to answer questions in person and help you find the supplies you need to keep your pet happy and healthy. See you soon!