Traveling with a rabbit can be an easy task if you are prepared. As long as you follow these simple steps for your rabbit care routine, you and your furry friend can both be comfortable while traveling on the road.
Placing your rabbit in something for the duration of your road trip is one of the strategies you can use. It will aid in not only their comfort, but yours as well knowing they are safe within your car. A carrier is a great thing to place them in.
Type: We highly recommend a two-door carrier; it will make getting your rabbit in an out much easier.
Size: You will want to find the right sized carrier for your rabbit, generally a small dog carrier will work fine, but multiple rabbits or extremely large rabbits may require different sizing. You will want your rabbit to be able to sit up and stretch out in the carrier. Those two dimensions are good indicators of the right sized carrier.
Cave-Like: Rabbits feel safe and secure in cave-like environments, so do not be too concerned if it looks dark inside. They will feel safer, especially as odd sights, smells, and sounds all whizz by.
What Not To Buy
Plastic Door: Do not buy a carrier with a plastic door; this is easy prey for your rabbit’s teeth, and many rabbits will be able to significantly damage the carrier door while they sit around with nothing else to do
Cardboard Carrier: They will just chew right through it.
Soft Fabric Carrier: Again, your pet likes to chew. While collapsibility may be an attractive feature it is not worth it for the trade-off of constantly replacing it because they have chewed through it.
Wire Pet Carrier: While sturdy enough to withstand any gnawing it may receive, it will not provide the cave-like experience that most rabbits will need to stay calm while traveling.
Wicker or Basket Carrier: Building a carrier out of the material that they most like to chew is a rabbit care recipe for disaster.
You will basically want to set up a little mini house for your rabbit to travel in. They will need all of their basic rabbit care needs met.
Bathroom: If your carrier is large enough a litter box on one end can make clean up much easier. If you don't place a litter box then you will want to put absorbent material on the bottom of the kennel to absorb urine.
Food: Giving your rabbit small amounts of food is perfect for traveling in a car because it is usually easy to add food during stops. Giving them plenty to do is the key, for many rabbits this will involve food.
Water: Carriers with wire doors can make mounting a water bottle easy and relatively mess free. If you must use a bowl of some kind you will probably want to make more frequent stops to give your rabbit water.
Air Flow: Rabbits can overheat very easily, make sure they are not sitting in the direct sun on a hot day, even if the car is moving with the A/C running. They will not be able to move from the discomfort and can get heat stroke.
Slowing down and taking it easy will greatly reduce the amount of stress that you and your rabbit feel on the car ride, especially if you're traveling a long distance. Avoiding bumps, sudden stops, and fast acceleration will not only make you a safer driver but will provide better rabbit care and keep your rabbit happier while they travel with you.
Make sure that you have placed your rabbit carrier in a secured location within your car. If the car is moving and your rabbit carrier is not secured in some way it can go flying around the car, which is very dangerous for both you and your rabbit.
Here's a list of some less obvious cautions that must not be forgotten or ignored when it comes to rabbit care in the car:
Free Roaming: It is important that rabbits are not left to roam free in the car. There are a lot of different surfaces in a car where an unsuspecting rabbit could be thrown off balance by an unexpected stop or turn and be sent flying. This would be very dangerous for your rabbit and possibly dangerous for you.
Halter and Leash: A halter and leash are not antiquate restraint systems for your rabbit. If an accident occurred a misplaced leash could severely injure or kill your rabbit.
Left in the Car: There has been a lot of talk about this subject from over the summer pertaining to children and dogs; rabbits are no different. DO NOT leave your rabbit in the car on even a moderate day. The sun can heat the car up to dangerous levels very quickly!
Getting to take your rabbit with you is sometimes required, and sometimes done for the simple joy of getting to have your furry friend with you. Either way following these steps for proper rabbit care can greatly enhance the experience for you and your pet.
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