Rabbit Awareness Week

This year, we're teaming up to raise awareness of the dangers of muesli-based diets for your rabbits.

Each year, a team of charities and experts arrange 'Rabbit Awareness Week'. The aim is to highlight an important welfare issue to improve the lives of rabbits across the UK.

During Rabbit Awareness Week (RAW), PDSA's Pet Hospitals are also offering free rabbit health checks to eligible clients. Get in touch with your local Pet Hospital for more details, or if you aren't eligible, you can check out other vets participating in RAW on their website.

Move away from muesli

This year, bad diet is the key issue for rabbits and rabbit owners. Across the UK many rabbits are being fed a muesli-style mix as part of their daily diet. Because rabbit muesli contains a mix of high-sugar flakes and grains, it can encourage selective feeding. This can lead to many illnesses and even death.

This is why many vets and charities want rabbit owners to move away from muesli and change their rabbits' diets to a healthy hay-based one.

PDSA's animal welfare (PAW) report has shown that bad diet has been a problem ever since the report started in 2011. The latest report shows that 25% of owners still feed muesli to their rabbits every day. This means that '280,000 rabbits are being fed a potentially harmful diet'.

If you are a rabbit owner, or just love rabbits, sign the pledge to move away from muesli.

 

Rabbit awareness week is 2-10 June

Move away from muesli

Help improve the health and welfare of rabbits across the UK

 

So what's the problem with muesli?

The different flakes, seeds and grains in muesli make it seem like a balanced food. But muesli-based diets can lead to many harmful illnesses for rabbits. Muesli encourages rabbits to be picky with what they eat. This is known as selective feeding – where rabbits eat the sugary bits and pieces and leave the less tasty pellets behind.

Selective feeding can lead to your rabbits developing serious health problems:

  • Teeth problems. Rabbit’s teeth grow all the time. Without proper feeding hay to wear them down, rabbits can develop several painful dental diseases.
  • Obesity. Selective feeding can make your rabbits fat, which can cause all sorts of nasty health problems.
  • Tummy trouble. Fibre helps keep a rabbit’s gut moving. Not eating enough fibre can give a rabbit deadly illnesses like gut stasis and bloat.
  • Dirty bottoms. Uneaten caecotrophs (sticky droppings) can stick to a rabbit’s fur, leading to issues like flystrike.

How can you help?

If your rabbits have a muesli-based diet, you should slowly change their food to high-quality rabbit nuggets over a period of four weeks.

You should also make sure your rabbits have access to unlimited good-quality feeding hay to keep their teeth and tummy in tip-top condition.

Whether you are taking the step to move away from muesli or have already taken it, show your support and...

sign the pledge

Your rabbit's diet

Take up the pledge and 'move away from muesli'. Find out more about what sort of food your rabbit should be eating

Help them eat right

Your rabbit's teeth

Rabbit's teeth are constantly growing, and it's important to make sure that they eat the right diet to keep them worn down.

Find out more

Your rabbit's health

Bunny basics - learn all the simple tips and tricks you need to know to keep your furry friend in tip-top shape,

Keep them healthy