Last Updated on June 22, 2023 by Admin
If you’re keeping both rabbits and chickens, you may probably wonder if the two can get along. If so, can rabbits and chickens share a run? The short answer is yes. However, certain factors need to be considered beforehand as we shall discuss in this article.
Can rabbits and chickens share a run?
Surprisingly enough, besides your rabbits and chickens sharing a run, they can also coexist. Firstly ensure that the two species are gradually introduced at a young age if they’re to share a run. If not there’s likely going to be fights or animosity between your bunnies and chickens. The best way to introduce adult rabbits and chickens is by placing a barrier between them. With time, they’ll eventually start getting acquainted with each other without physical contact. Only remove the barriers when both animals are tolerant of each other’s presence.
Both rabbits and chickens need to have their own personal space they can retreat to when need be. In other words, the shared run needs to be spacious enough to allow both animals to freely forage or wonder without intruding on each other’s personal space. Also, the rabbit’s section in the run needs to be extra clean.
Finally, in order for rabbits and chickens to share a run, you’ll also need to neuter or spay your rabbit. In other words, desexing a bunny makes them less aggressive to chickens and tames unwanted territorial and sexual behavior.
Can rabbits get sick from sharing a run with chickens?
Yes, chickens tend to carry diseases that may affect a rabbit’s health. For instance, a rabbit may get sick from ingesting chicken poop which contains coccidiosis. This is an infectious bacterium contained in a chicken’s intestinal tract. Some of the symptoms of infected rabbits include diarrhea, rapid breathing, conjunctivitis, and loss of weight. Although this disease is curable, it can be deadly if left untreated. Nevertheless, proper hygiene and personal space are therefore of paramount importance when keeping both rabbits and chickens.
Rabbit and chicken run plans
First and foremost, you need to ensure that your run is spacious enough to provide both your rabbit’s and chicken’s personal space. The ideal run size should be at least 31 square feet, the bigger the better. Furthermore, since both are prey animals, they both prefer a safe haven where they can hide whenever they feel threatened or want personal space. In other words, let them share a run or playpen but have a separate coop or hutch where each animal can rest, sleep or eat. This should essentially be separate and inaccessible from the other species.
The run should also be secure enough to protect your rabbits and chickens from escaping or falling prey to lurking outdoor predators. In other words, you also need to ensure that the run is safe more so during the night if it’s not attached to a hutch. A shared run with a covered roof is recommended especially if it’s a permanent enclosure for your rabbits and chickens.
Besides offering safety, a covered run provides shade and also protects your rabbits and chickens from extreme weather. Finally, this particular run should also have cement blocks or sinking fences around its perimeter. This is especially true bearing in mind that bunnies are inherent diggers.
Although rabbits and chickens can share a run, in some circumstances, they may fail to get along. As a preventative measure, it’s always advisable separating the two or rather create a barrier beforehand, if the two animals have no option but to share a run.