All seasons impact differently on every living being, and your rabbit is no exception. Pet owners end up worrying about how do keep rabbits stay warm in winter. When the weather gets either too cold or too hot, you need to do the needful to keep your rabbit away from trouble. Remember, not all rabbits are the same, and they can face diverse difficulties during extreme cold and hot weather. You may see some changes in your pet’s health when the temperature drops and the wind is icy. Keeping a rabbit outside isn’t a good idea as it can make their health vulnerable.
That’s why it is important to keep them safe and warm during winters. If you have no idea how to keep rabbits warm in winter, we will discuss the same further in this article. Stay tuned and keep reading to keep your rabbit healthy and safe in winter.
What temperature can a Rabbit tolerate in winter?
The optimal body temperature should be 102° – 103° F. So, whenever there are changes in the normal body temperature of a rabbit, you should be worried. If the temperature goes below 20° Fahrenheit, it may be too cold for your rabbit. When winter arrives, you should constantly check the body temperature of your rabbit, and it will give you an idea of whether your pet is doing good or not. Remember, if the body temperature drops, then you should immediately consult the rabbit.
Should I keep my Rabbit out in the winter?
Keeping your rabbit out in the winters is risky. Those icy winds and snow would make your rabbit vulnerable. If they continue to live in the same environment, they may lose its life. So, keeping a rabbit outside in winters is a bad idea. Remember, if the temperature drops drastically, you should move your rabbit’s hutch inside the house. It will keep the rabbit warm and comfortable inside the house.
However, if you don’t have enough space inside the house, a shed or a garage would be more than enough. You are requested to keep it inside until the weather becomes bearable or normal. While shifting your rabbit to a secure place, you should provide everything necessary. You can also use the tips we have mentioned further in this article to keep your pet away from any trouble.
Can Rabbits survive in the cold?
Yes, rabbit’s can survive in the cold if you keep them warm. Rabbits may look fragile, but they can surprisingly tolerate the cold weather. It doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t do the needful. Remember, an adult and healthy would be comfortable in a temperature below 40° Fahrenheit. If a rabbit gets Hyperthermia in too cold weather, it can lead him to death or severe health conditions. So, you still need to do the preparations before winter arrives. If the temperature goes down to 20° Fahrenheit, it may be too cold for you. So, the bottom line is if you want to keep your pet away from sudden death or severe health conditions, then make sure to provide a warm environment.
How do keep Rabbits stay warm in winters?
If you have a pet animal, you would understand how difficult it is to keep the pets away and safe in extreme weather conditions. Rabbit’s fur coat protects them from too cold, but that too to a certain extent. Don’t mistake leaving the rabbits on their own during winters. Rather you should make an effort to keep them warm. If you have no idea how to keep rabbits warm in winters, read the following points carefully.
Bring your rabbit indoors
The worst mistake you can make during winter is leaving your rabbit outdoors. Some owners keep their pets outside by placing their hutch or cage there, but you can do that when favourable weather. Doing so in extreme winters and summers wouldn’t be a good idea. Bring your rabbit inside to keep it away from icy wind and snow. Suppose you don’t want to bring it inside the house then a garage or other appropriate place. Make sure it isn’t too far from the house. Along with that, provide all the basic things your pet needs to survive. But never leave a pet outside in winters, whether it’s rabbit, cat, or dog.
Provide cosy bedroom and hutch
Once you find an appropriate place for your rabbit to live, you need to hover over to prepare a hutch and bed. Uncomfortable places can lead the rabbits to stressful conditions. That’s why it is better to provide a warm and comfy environment. As mentioned earlier, rabbits can bear somewhat cold weather, but it becomes unbearable for your pet when it gets too cold. So, it would be best if you made the rabbit’s bedding comfortable and warm as well. You can stuff their bed with straw and hay to keep them warm. Mixing the straw with hay would give them the advantage to have access to hay all the time.
Cover the hutch
After placing the hutch inside, you should cover it with a blanket. Don’t make the mistake of covering the whole hutch from a blanket. Instead, you can cover the upper, left, and right sides. Leave the front of the hutch or cage open. Otherwise, your rabbit will feel suffocated. It is best to give enough room to your rabbit to play and roam around. Make sure the place is enclosed but big enough for the rabbit. Check the place twice to see if there is any space to pass the wind and if there is, then close it. All you have to do is ensure that the rabbit is safe during extreme winters.
Check their Body temperature
During winters or summers, you need to keep track of the body temperature of your pet rabbit. Remember, the optimal body temperature of a rabbit is 102° – 103° F. If their body temperature drops or rises from the optimal level, then they are likely to get health diseases. That’s why it is better to constantly check your pets’ body temperature to keep them away from trouble. It is better to consult the veterinary doctor if you see any changes in your rabbit’s health due to weather.
Animals adapt to nature faster than human beings, but it is necessary to be on the safe side. While preparing the hutch, don’t forget that congested places make them uncomfortable and stressed. It would be better if the rabbit had enough space around their hutch so that they could play, jump, and hop.
Check Water and food
Food and water are the main sources of energy for rabbits, and if it is compromised, your pet will become weak and vulnerable. When the weather is too cold, then the rabbit’s drinking water may get frizzed. That’s why you need to check the water if it is drinkable or not. If the water is icy or frizzed, you should change it and fill the bowl with lukewarm water. Along with that, keep track of your rabbit’s diet as well. Make sure they are eating enough or not skipping it at all. Not eating properly would make them weak, and not drinking enough water would make them dehydrated. Both the conditions are not favourable to make your rabbit happy and healthy.
Heat lamps for cage
Heating lamps is a good option to keep the area around the hutch warm, but it is also risky. So, if you want to place a heat lamp around the hutch, you need to make sure that your rabbit is safe. The rabbits have an unstoppable habit of gnawing and chewing on things. When you connect the heat lamp through the wire, it would be risky for the rabbit, and the rabbit may chew on the cable and get in trouble. Another problem with this option is that your rabbit may get overheated. But if you are willing to pay undivided attention to the time the heat lamps are on, then you don’t have to worry.
Make sure your Rabbit is doing exercise
Keeping your rabbits healthy requires both a proper diet and exercise. Improper portions of either of them would adversely affect your pet’s health. That’s why your rabbit must play and do exercise regularly. If you aren’t spending enough time with your rabbit, they would feel left out or alone. So, spend enough time with your rabbit and encourage them to exercise. To appreciate them, you can give them treats and toys, making your pet happy and healthy.
Do Rabbits like blankets?
Yes, rabbits would love to roll around in blankets and towels in your home. The blanket would also keep the rabbit warm with its soft fabric. But while covering your rabbit in a blanket, make sure they aren’t covered from face to back end. Rather than that, put the blanket on their back and leave the face uncovered. Other than that, you should know that rabbits gnaw and chew a lot, and there are chances that they may chew the blanket as well. So, if you want to hand over a blanket to your pet, you need to supervise them. Otherwise, they might end up tearing the blankets and towels too.
How do wild Rabbits stay warm in winters?
Rabbits are way more competent than you can think. So, it is not a big deal for a rabbit to stay in cold weather. However, they may face several difficulties to survive as they don’t have similar privileges like a pet or domestic rabbit. Apparently, wild rabbits can survive the extreme cold as long as they have enough food to build a layer of insulating fat in its body. Along with that, their fur coats also contribute to keeping them warm during winters. Wild animals don’t need human help when it comes to survival, and they can take care of them even in extreme weather.
Wild rabbits live in groups, and they are there to share body heat when required. It is common to be worried when you see rabbits around your home during snowfall, but you shouldn’t bother them with your actions. You must know that rabbits build underground warrens, protecting them from severe weather conditions. So, wild rabbits can take care of themselves from any condition, but if you see a pet animal in a vulnerable situation, you should help by consulting a vet.
Do Rabbits need extra warmth in winters?
As we discussed earlier, rabbits are more likely to tolerate winters than summer. But it isn’t true for every rabbit. Some rabbits are thin and small; however, the others are large and fat. Apparently, healthy and heavyweight rabbits are more likely to bear the low temperature. But if the rabbit is too thin or has less fur on its body, it might face some challenges in extreme winters. Such rabbits would certainly need your help, and for the same, you can use the tips mentioned earlier. Don’t leave your pet outside in snowfall and icy wind, as it would make them sick. Rabbits can cope up with low temperatures but just not with too low.
How do I know if my Rabbit is cold?
It is crucial to know how your rabbit is doing as it tells us whether they are healthy or sick. The rabbits can’t speak to us, but the signs help us conclude what is bothering them. So, whenever you see any changes in your pet’s behaviour, then immediately consult the vet. If you want to check if your rabbit is cold or not, then you can feel it through their ears. Touch the ears gently and see if it’s hot or cold. If they are excessively hot or cold, take the rabbit to the vet. However, if the rabbit’s ears have a normal temperature, you don’t have to worry about anything. If you have recently adopted a rabbit, you should remember a couple of tips while taking care of it.
Rabbit winter care tips
- Shift the hutch of a rabbit somewhere safe according to the season. It will protect the pet from stress, anxiety, and other diseases.
- Make sure the place is safe from any predators; otherwise, your pet may feel threatened.
- Provide a box filled with fresh hay, and you can also stuff the bed of your rabbit with hay during winters to keep your pet warm.
- Along with the food, check the water you have placed nearby your rabbit. Sometimes, in winters, the water freezes, and the pets cannot drink.
- Don’t forget the regular veterinary visits to ensure that your rabbit is healthy and safe.
- You can also place a heat lamp to keep the place warm in winters. But be careful as rabbits can chew the cables.
- Keep the hutch and space around it clean, so your rabbit won’t get sick because of the unclean environment.
- Don’t let your other pets get near your rabbit if it is uncomfortable. Because if you do that, your rabbit would be stressed and scared.
What is Hyperthermia in Rabbits?
Hyperthermia refers to abnormally high body temperature. You should know that your pets are also likely to suffer from Hyperthermia. Keeping them in an appropriate environment is crucial, so they don’t get overheated. Therefore, if your rabbit gets Hyperthermia, you should try to keep its body temperature down. You can also consult the vet regarding the situation. In an attempt to keep the rabbit warm during winters, you need to make sure Hyperthermia doesn’t catch it. Do not ignore any signs of sick health and consult the vet. Here are some symptoms that indicate your rabbit might have Hyperthermia.
Symptoms of Hyperthermia in Rabbits
Noticing the early symptoms of Hyperthermia in rabbits can avoid a worse scenario. Pay attention to your rabbit’s health and look for the following symptoms –
- The rabbits’ ears may get red when their body temperature increases drastically.
- Your rabbit may experience heavy panting if it has Hyperthermia.
- Rabbit may seem a little confused, stressed and anxious.
- It may also experience weakness and slow movement.
You should immediately consult the vet whenever you notice any of such symptoms. Avoid doing anything on your own because such critical situations need expert advice. You can also prevent Hyperthermia in your pet by knowing the causes.
Causes of Hyperthermia in Rabbits
As we discussed earlier, Hyperthermia is the inability to regulate body temperature in the presence of an extremely hot environment. So, if you keep your rabbit in an environment that is too hot to bear, then your rabbit may suffer from Hyperthermia. Direct sunlight, poor ventilation, high humidity, the excessive temperature of the heater, and dehydration are the common causes of Hyperthermia.
Do Rabbits suffer from Hyperthermia in winters?
Yes, rabbits can also suffer from Hyperthermia in winters. Pet owners also use heat lamps or heaters to keep the environment warm. If it gets too hot, then there are chances that your rabbit may suffer from Hyperthermia. That’s why you shouldn’t avoid keeping a check on your rabbit’s body temperature. You need to ensure that your rabbit doesn’t suffer from this severe health condition.
Can Rabbits survive Hyperthermia?
If you only recognise the symptoms early, there are chances to save your pet from such a disease. But consulting the vet would be the best thing in such a critical situation. Other than that, there are chances of losing the life of your pet due to Hyperthermia. So, be attentive and careful while dealing with such health conditions.
That was all about how to keep rabbits stay warm in winters. We understand that it is difficult to take care of pets during extreme winters, but negligence isn’t the option. You need to ensure that your rabbit is safe and secure during poor weather conditions. I hope you find the points we have mentioned informative and helpful. Any individual who has anything to add can drop it in the comment section. We would like to hear from our fellow readers to help us do better.