Rabbits are one of the most popular pets, but they’re also the least happy. This is partly due to the fact that many caregivers are unaware of the needs of their new pet. For example, rabbits need a large living area, preferably in the house or a safe outdoor building. Hutches are too small and they do not protect rabbits from the elements and predators such as foxes. Rabbits also need a big run for daytime exercise, plenty of fresh food, water, bedding and toys to keep them entertained.

One of the most important elements is companionship. Rabbits are social creatures and enjoy living with others of the same species. “Rabbits in pairs are happier than single ones,” says Lulu James, Director of the Cottontails. “Unfortunately, many people feel one is enough and the poor creature ends up living alone at the bottom of the garden.”

Rabbit rescue centres encourage caregivers to have two rabbits, provided they have both been neutered. The rabbits should be introduced on neutral territory for a few weeks – like humans, they need a little time to get to know each other. For more information visit Cottontails’ website at

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