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What's a good size for a rabbit cage?

The right size for a rabbit's cage depends on the size of the rabbit and who you talk to. However, there are some basic differences to keep in mind.

You need a larger cage to house a doe and her litter than you need for a buck. Also, more active breeds like the Checkered Giants, Belgian Hares and English Spots will need more space than less active breeds of the same size.

Giant breeds such as Chinchillas and Flemish can use 36 x 30 x 18 inch cages at the minimum, or the larger 42 x 30 x 18 size. Other rabbit suppliers suggest 48 x 30 x 18 or larger for the Giant breed does and their litters.

It's recommended 36 x 30 x 18 cages are used for New Zealand sized rabbits. (This would include American Chinchillas, Beverens, Palominos, Silver Fox, Satins and Champagnes--rabbits in the nine to 10 pound range.) Bass Equipment suggests the same size for does and their litters, but recommends smaller cages for bucks and replacement stock. For rabbits weighing around four to five pounds, a cage size of 24 x 30 x 16 is suggested. Bass Equipment recommends a cage of similar size (24 x 24 x 18) for the does and their litters, as well as bucks.

Netherland Dwarfs, Polish and Britannia Petites would do well in 24 x 24 x 14 cages or the "MiniHutch"--18 x 24 x 14--carried by most supply houses.

Rabbitry equipment dealers generally carry standard sized cages. More variation is possible if you build your own cages, of course.

Glenn and Dacie Dettmer, commercial New Zealand raisers in Michigan, build 24 x 42 x 15 inch cages. These are large enough for a New Zealand doe and her litter, they say. New Zealands are not too active and this still allows room for the doe to get in and out of the nest box.

Talk to other breeders who have experience in housing your breed. Their advice, along with rabbitry supply house guidelines, should help you make a good choice in rabbit housing.

Reprinted from Rabbits, May 1979
COPYRIGHT 2006 Countryside Publications Ltd.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:The rabbitry
Publication:Countryside & Small Stock Journal
Article Type:Reprint
Date:Jan 1, 2006
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