If you’re like me and live in a country with a hot climate (e.g. South Africa) or experience hot summers, then you may be wondering how to keep your bunnies cool in summer. In this post, I’ll show you 3 really easy ways to keep your bunnies cool in summer.
Bunnies can get heatstroke
Like humans, rabbits can overheat and even get heatstroke, which is serious and can even be life threatening. Bunnies differ from other pets like dogs who pant to cool themselves down. In the wild, they would disappear into the bush and burrow to keep cool, but most pet bunnies don’t have that option.
Signs to watch out for
If your bunny shows any of the following signs, please take steps to cool them down immediately or take them to a bunny savvy vet straight away.
- Hot ears
- Wetness around the nose
- Breathing rapidly from an open mouth
- Fast and shallow breathing
Wiki-how has a great article on how to treat heatstroke in rabbits, which you can take a look at if you’re interested in further reading. Read the article here.
You know the old saying, prevention is better than cure, so when you know the temperature is going to start rising, or during a heatwave, why not take the following actions to ensure you have a cool, and happy bunny.
So, here are my 3 easy tips on how to keep your bunny cool
1. Make frozen “bunny coolers”
This one is probably the easiest, and Clover absolutely loves this! All you need to do is take a 2L Coke bottle or smaller 500ml or even regular 250ml plastic water bottle, remove the label which you don’t want your buns nibbling on, fill about ¾ full of water and pop into the freezer.
Once the water bottles are frozen, put them into the bunny hutch or enclosure or even scatter them around the house and garden for the bunnies to lie against.
I normally freeze a variety of different sizes and scatter them around. Clover especially loves the 2L Coke bottles which I like to put in the hutch both during the day and overnight on very hot nights.
As an added bonus, your buns can lick the water precipitation that forms on the outside of the bottles which will assist with keeping them hydrated.
2. Ice ice baby
Ok, so number two on the list may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s so simple and is really effective. I do this all the time. Pop ice cubes into your bunny’s drinking water, you can put ice cubes in their water bowls and also the water bottles attached to the cage.
This one is great for any pet, as I do this to all of the water bowls around the house and it helps keep the cats cool too.
3. Frozen treat ice cubes
This is one of my absolute favourites and I use frozen treat cubes all the time in summer. It’s a really simple, yet effective way to keep your bunnies cool.
Cut up your bunny’s favourite fruit (I use apple the most), but you can basically use any fruit/veggies/herbs that your buns love, for example:
- Herbs (parsley, mint etc)
Place the fruit pieces/cubes into an empty ice tray, like the above image, fill with water and then freeze! Voila – frozen treat ice cubes. Pop one or two of them out on hot days and your buns will lick the ice cubes which are flavoured with their favourite treat and this will help keep them hydrated, and it’s a great boredom buster as your bun will push it around and lick it until they get to the yum piece in the middle.
So basically ensure that your bunnies are kept hydrated, and are in well-ventilated areas where they can catch a bit of a breeze.
Do you have any ideas, tips or tricks of your own that helps your bunnies keep cool? If so, please share them with me, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Leave a comment below or follow me on Facebook.
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Bye for now.