Rabbit pellets: info and facts

Rabbit pellets are highly nutritious and are considered one of the best food for underweight, young, or bunnies that are picky eaters. More so, dry pellets are the most ideal. However, it’s worth mentioning that rabbit pellets should be served sparingly along with fruits and veggies.

Rabbits should essentially have a balanced diet that comprises mainly of hay and a sizeable amount of pellets if they’re to live a healthier and longer life. This article talks about the best pellets for bunnies and the quantity you need to feed them. It also expounds on the quantity and number of times you need to feed your bunny, among other frequently asked questions.

What makes a good quality pellet?

High-quality pellets are highly nutritious and rich in fiber. Additionally, they should be fresh, at least three to four weeks before consumption. Rabbit pellets should comprise 14% protein,22% fiber, 1% calcium, and 1 % fat. It should also have a neutral and uniform color with plant and grain ingredients.

Are pellets good for rabbits?

Yes, pellets are good for your bunnies since they supplement their diet. However, it’s not always advisable to feed your rabbits colored dried fruits, nuts, or seeds. By nature, rabbits are herbivores that rarely eat food rich in starch and low in fiber. In other words, an adult rabbit’s diet should comprise mainly of timothy hay and a limited amount of veggies and pellets.

Which pellets are best for rabbits?

There are quite a lot of pellet varieties to choose from in the market which is often overwhelming for most bunny owners. If you want to choose the best pellets for your bunnies, then you should consider your rabbit’s age. For example, alfalfa pellets are more suitable for young bunnies while timothy pellets are a great food choice for adult or older rabbits.

How many times a day should I give my rabbit pellets?

You should feed your bunnies with pellets twice per day, however, the quantity to feed them depends entirely on their weight. Feed a rabbit that weighs between 2 to 4pounds 1/8 cup per day. A 5 to 7-pound weighing rabbit should consume ¼ cup, while those weighing between 8 to 10 pounds should consume ½ a cup. Lastly, 11 to 15-pound bunnies should eat ¾ cup of loosely packed pellets.

It’s worth pointing out that the amounts mentioned above should be fed to mature bunnies. However, rabbits that are nursing, pregnant, weaned kittens or those below 8 months should have an adequate supply of alfalfa pellets to help them grow healthier quicker.

Types of Rabbit pellets

  1. Timothy hay pellets

These particular pellets consist of pure timothy hay that’s grown, harvested, and turned into pellets. Timothy hay is a perennial grass that’s high in fiber and low on nutrients. Lastly, avoid pellets that comprise seeds, nuts, or corn.

Can rabbits survive on timothy hay pellets?

Yes, wild rabbits naturally survive eating mostly hay and grass. In other words, they can live on water and timothy hay pellets alone. Additionally, this particular hay is not only essential for its nutritional value but also trims overgrown teeth, thus keeping them in check. It is, therefore, advisable to supply your rabbits with a diet that comprises mainly of timothy hay. You can also add leafy greens and veggies sparingly to give them a balanced diet.

Is Timothy grass the same as Timothy hay pellets?

Although both are technically the same product, timothy grass has a slightly greener look and is also a little bit high on protein. Timothy hay pellets, on the other hand, are a mixture of stems and leaves from timothy grass. The pellets are also low on protein and high on fiber which makes them healthy food for rabbits. Additionally, the term “timothy grass hay” is used to differentiate legume hay such as peanut or alfalfa hay pellets.

Can a bunny eat too many timothy hay pellets?

Yes, as a matter of fact, excessive consumption of pellets not only causes digestive tract problems but also causes obesity. It’s therefore ideal to give your bunnies a balanced diet comprising of not only timothy hay pellets but a mixture of fresh veggies and fruits. Rabbits tend to overeat timothy hay pellets if the supply is unlimited.

Why are timothy hay pellets recommended for rabbits?

These particular pellets are a healthy rabbit diet since they help in preventing obesity. Timothy hay pellets are essentially rich in fiber and low on proteins which makes them easily digestible. Lastly, the pellets also comprise vitamins and minerals that provide nutritional value in a bunny’s diet.

  1. Alfalfa pellets for rabbits

These particular pellets come from legume hay unlike timothy with comes from grass hay. Alfalfa hay is grown in the field and after maturing, it’s then cut and allowed to dry. It’s then harvested and stored in a dry, well-ventilated place.

Alfalfa pellets are great for rabbits that are five months old and below. They’re packed with calcium and protein which provides nutritional value for developing kittens. On the other hand, it’s not advisable to feed adult bunnies alfalfa hay pellets. This is because, quite often, it leads to obesity, kidney failure, or urine thickening from calcium salts.

Are alfalfa pellets good for a rabbit’s dental health?

Only those pellets with a hard texture play a pivotal role when it comes to a bunny’s dental health. Overgrown or uneven teeth often lead to poor feeding habits which causes malnutrition in the long run. In other words, purchase coarse or hard alfalfa pellets to keep your rabbit’s teeth in shape.

What quantity of alfalfa pellets should you feed your young rabbit?

On average, feed your kittens with around 1/8 to 1/4 cup of alfalfa pellets per day. Additionally, also look for pellets that are high on fiber and always avoid those with nuts, seeds, or dried corn, which are usually unhealthy.

Should baby rabbits have unlimited pellets?

Although kittens need high-quality alfalfa pellets to grow quicker, excessive or unlimited pellets aren’t necessary. It’s worth pointing out that the young bunnies survive pretty well in the wild with a plant material diet. It is therefore advisable to feed kittens limited pellets to a certain extent, however, not to the level of timothy hay for adult bunnies.

How long does a bag of rabbit pellets last?

 

If you want to get the full nutritional value from a bag of pellets, then use it within two months after opening the bag. For instance, a 10-pound bag is expected to last 30 days if you have a pair of bunnies. For a single rabbit, expect a 10-pound pellet bag to last for two months or roughly 60 days. When it comes to storage place the pellets in a closed bag or container in a cool and dry place.

 

Why is my rabbit not eating pellets?

Loss of appetite could simply imply that your rabbit wants a diet change. This is usually the case especially if you’ve been feeding them the same type of pellets for months on end. It’s therefore pivotal to provide your rabbits with a balanced diet.

Also, ensure that their pellets are fresh since some bunnies tend to be picky eaters especially when their pellets are stale. Lastly, lack of feeding can also be a result of dental problems such as overgrown teeth.

How do you get rabbits to eat their pellets?

Below are some of the ways you can encourage your rabbits to eat their pellets. Regardless of whether it’s the first time or after they’ve lost interest without any health conditions.

  • Slowly transition from alfalfa to timothy pellets

One of the ways you can properly introduce your young rabbits to timothy hay is by feeding them small quantities of timothy hay. Eventually, they’ll adapt and transition fully to their new diet.

  • Limit pellet quantity

In case your bunny is bored eating its pellets, reduce the quantity or limit it according to the overall weight. Providing a constant supply of hay pellets is ideally one way to promote appetite loss.

  • Offer them fresh pellets

In order to keep your pellets fresh, store them in an air-tight sealed container. Additionally, replace any stale leftovers with fresh pellets on a daily basis.

  • Change the pellet brand

There are numerous rabbit pellet brands, each with different ingredients and tastes. At times switching to a different brand is the best solution for bunnies who’ve lost their pellet appetite.

  • Balance diet

Another way to get your rabbits to eat their pellets again is to introduce leafy greens or fruits sparingly to their alfalfa or timothy hay menu. The key is to provide them with a balanced diet.

Final remarks

Since some bunnies are picky eaters, it’s always advisable to feed them high-quality pellets rich in nutrients. Also always ensure that your pellets are fresh when serving your rabbits or else they won’t eat. Lastly, always limit the number of pellets you feed your bunnies regardless of age since excessive consumption is unhealthy for them.

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What vegetables can baby rabbits eat?

 

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A complete rabbit diet guide: What you need to know

 

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