A is for Angora. Angora is a wool type of coat on bunnies, and this requires frequent brushing so as to prevent matting. It’s recommended to have angora coats clipped short(but not too close to the skin) so as to maintain general cleanliness.
B is for Binky. A binky is your bun’s way of showing happiness. When you spot your rabbit jumping about wildly and leaping into the air, that’s her way of saying she’s overjoyed. If you mimic her actions and dance together with her, she’ll know the feeling is mutual.
C is for Cecals. Pronounced as “see-cals” and also known as cecotropes, cecals are often mistaken for bunny poop. In fact, they are partially digested foods that are passed from the rabbit then re-ingested. You may not see Thumper doing this, but when he appears to be bathing his belly and he comes up chewing, he’s probably just eaten a cecal pellet. These pellets give your bun the majority of its nutrition and are essential for its good health.
D is for Dewlap. The dewlap is the extra flap of skin and fatty tissue under the chin of your bunny. Though it typically appears on does (female rabbits) during pregnancy, males have been found to wear them too. Overweight buns tend to develop dewlaps and thus must be groomed more frequently to prevent bacteria or dirt from getting trapped between the folds.
E is for Ears. Never hold a rabbit up by its ears. When picking up your bun, you have to fully support him so that he feels secure. Bunnies tend to kick and struggle when they try to escape your grasp, and this may fracture or seriously injure their delicate skeletons, so it’s important to learn how your bunny prefers being carried and get him accustomed to the sensation.
F is for Fighting. Bunnies are very territorial animals and any interactions with new additions have to be supervised. They can be ferocious fighters and cause serious injury to one another, thus introducing rabbits to each other have to take place in strictly neutral ground.
G is for Grunt. Rabbits grunt for various reasons. Sometimes they grunt while playing to show contentedness, other times they grunt loudly when they are being cornered to warn you they might attack. Soft grunting or grinding of the teeth typically indicates happiness; you may notice this when you’re giving Thumper a back rub.
H is for Hay. Unlimited hay should be the basis of a healthy rabbit diet. Bunnies are born with digestive tracts that are specially adapted to break down fibrous vegetation. Hay provides the necessary fibre to keep a bun’s gastrointestinal system healthy and motile, and it also wears down their teeth, which grow continuously as they age.
For more bunny care facts, check out the How-to Guide in our August/ September 2014 issue.
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