When a person starts a dog or cat, he rarely has questions about the specifics of their feeding. Another thing - a rabbit. Of course, veterinary stores can offer a large selection of different feeds, but it has been proven that natural food should prevail in the diet of these animals. So what can and can not feed the domestic rabbit?
What can feed rabbits: a list of useful feeds
Breeders use several types of feed for feeding rabbits: concentrated, green and succulent, as well as coarse.
Concentrated feed should make up the majority of the rabbit diet. These feeds include cereals, legumes and seeds of Shrovetide plants. In cereals there are a lot of carbohydrates, in legumes there is protein, and in oil crops there is fat.
Oats, barley, and maize are suitable cereals for feeding rabbits.
Oats carry a lot of nutrients, while not conducive to animal obesity. The proportion of oats in concentrated feed can be up to 50%.
Barley is also nutritious, moreover, it surpasses oats in this indicator by 20%. Barley contains the essential amino acids lysine and choline. In addition, this cereal helps to improve digestion. This culture is recommended for feeding rabbits during lactation and young animals. The disadvantages of barley can be attributed only to the film shell, which is difficult to digest, therefore, before feeding the animal, it is better to crush the barley.
Corn can be safely attributed to energy-intensive feed. It contains a large amount of carbohydrates, carotene and fats. Because of its properties, corn can cause obesity of an animal, therefore in a concentrated feed it should be no more than 25%.
Wheat carries less energy, but it contains a lot of vitamins and protein. As part of the concentrated feed for animals, feed wheat is used (no more than 25%). The use of this cereal as a mono forage can cause intestinal swelling and impaired mineral metabolism.
Bean foods contain many proteins, vitamins, phosphorus and calcium. A rabbit is recommended to give vetch, peas, soybeans and lentils.
Peas - a source of the amino acid lysine. It is well digested and has a high energy value. Peas rabbits should be fed in a hammer form (10% in the composition of concentrated feed).
Soy contains a lot of protein and a useful combination of amino acids. Before adding it to the feed, soybeans must be subjected to moisture and heat treatment.
From the oil crops in the feeding of rabbits used flax seeds. It is also necessary to give the animals chestnuts and acorns. They can be mixed with bran or cake, as well as with succulent feed.
Green food for rabbits is represented by grasses, silage, haylage, root crops and melons. Grasses can be divided into forest, meadow, steppe and weeds. Good forest grasses can be found in well-lit wastelands and glades. Rabbits are very fond of clover, alfalfa, wheat grass, sainfoin, dandelions, plantain. Among the steppe grasses for rabbits, wormwood and yarrow will become a delicacy.
When choosing meadow grasses, pay attention to the fact that rabbits do not like plants from swampy or flooded meadows. That is, they do not need to give, for example, sedge or horsetails. These herbs have a sour taste. Well these animals eat tansy, sorrel, sow thistle, coltsfoot, etc.
In summer, green fodder should be basic. It is better to mow the grass before lunch, when the weather is still not hot. It is not recommended to give rabbits grass after rain or dew.
Silo is chopped and canned fresh greens. For the manufacture of silage is best to use the stems of Jerusalem artichoke, corn and sunflower, carrot tops and cabbage leaves. To prevent the putrefaction of bacteria in the silo, in its manufacture components must be carefully tamped and ensure the tightness of the tank.
Haylage is made of dried grass, which must be crushed to 2-4 cm, then tamped tightly into a container and close the film, while maintaining tightness.
Roots contain a lot of water, carbohydrates and vitamin C and a small amount of protein, fat, fiber and minerals.
Rabbits can be given fodder and sugar beets, fodder cabbage, carrots and potato tubers. Before feeding the rabbits, you need to wash the vegetables and boil the potatoes.
Gourds in their composition have various vitamins, carbohydrates and trace elements useful for animals. Gourds can be used both in pure form and in combination with other feed in the fall, when there is no access to green feed.
In winter, the main type of food for the rabbit becomes coarse feed. They are nutritious and able to provide a sufficient amount of diet. Rough feed includes: hay, straw, twig food, grass and hay flour, chaff, as well as corn stalks and rods.
Among the roughage is the main hay. It contains many vitamins and minerals. The best food will be legumes and legume-grass hay, mown before the flowering of plants and dried in the shade.
What should not be given to the finger?
So that your animal does not get into trouble, you should know not only the list of necessary feeds, but also those that you can feed the rabbits in no case.
Feeding domestic rabbits with nuts, red beets, or unprocessed potatoes can lead to digestive problems in the animal. Legumes should not be used as monocorm, otherwise meteorisms may begin in a rabbit. Undesirable consequences may result in feeding of red, white and cauliflower.
When harvesting hay, be careful, among the plants there may be poisonous, for example, celandine, dope, buttercup, hemlock, ramson, bindweed.
When feeding ornamental rabbits, avoid confectionery, pasta, cereal, and bread.
In addition, rabbits should not be given "human" food such as sausage, cookies and sweets. If you want to please your pet, better buy special treats at the pet store.
And if the rabbit - decorative?
It would seem that a rich selection of factory feed at pet stores can solve this problem. However, such ornamental rabbit food is recommended to be given in limited quantities, since its constant consumption may provoke obesity of the animal. The best option - the use of factory feed in the form of a treat.
When buying feed, pay attention to its composition. Qualitative options suitable for a rabbit should contain at least 20% crude fiber, less than 15% protein, and fat and calcium up to 1%. Small rabbits during the growth period should be given a greater amount of dry food, since they need a lot of protein and calcium.
Fresh grass hay is the best food for ornamental rabbits. It helps to improve digestion, relieves hair from lumps in the stomach and nourishes the body of animals with vitamins and protein. Hay rabbits can be fed in unlimited quantities and year round. It is very important to ensure that the hay has a pleasant smell and is not wet. The largest amount of vitamins and protein is contained in nettle hay. It can be harvested before the flowering of the plant to dry in the shade.
- In addition to hay, rabbit can be fed with a mixture of herbs and dried stems of asparagus, hops and calendula.
- Do not forget to give the rabbit twigs. Their use is not only in the obvious nutritional value (especially if the branches with leaves), but also to help in grinding the teeth. You can use the branches of willow, linden, aspen, Canadian maple, ash, acacia, currant, pear and apple trees.
- As for succulent fodder, green grass will suit the decorative rabbit. You can give him leaves of quinoa, wheat grass, dandelion, burdock, as well as rhubarb, chicory and clover.
- Vegetables rabbit can eat tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers (without seeds), carrots and turnips.
- From garden crops suitable tops of radish, turnip, carrot, spinach, basil, parsley, lettuce, strawberry leaves, sunflower and Jerusalem artichoke.
- Watermelon, cantaloupe, apples, pears, bananas, green beans and peas can be given in small quantities.
See also:Breeding rabbits at home
Choosing a diet for a rabbit is not as difficult as it seems at first glance. The main thing is to ensure that among his food was not products intended for humans and poisonous plants. If you follow all the rules, your animal will be healthy and beautiful.