Hey guys, it’s time for the second installment of this little series, documenting my journey of adopting a rabbit. In yesterday’s post I introduced Gizmo and talked about the buildup to deciding to adopt him – you can read part one here!
Now onto part two: the preparation. Before I’d had it confirmed that I could adopt him, before I even had permission from my parents to bring a rabbit into their home, I began to get everything ready, and prepare myself with all the necessary rabbit knowledge. From the beginning, I had a feeling that this was all meant to be – around the time I was going to counselling last year, I realised that having a pet to care for would do my mental health a lot of good. That idea of having such a special responsibility and commitment was something I’ve felt I’ve needed in my life for a long time. Also…he’s cute. I thought that Gizmo would end up being mine because he is cute and completely irresistible.
So I began the physical preparation by giving my room a big tidy. From small everyday (or at least every-whenever-I-can-be-bothered-to-tidy) things like putting items back where they belong, and putting the massive pile of clothes that had been growing into my wardrobe…to more bunny-proofing specific tasks like rearranging furniture, unplugging any devices that weren’t in use and making sure no leads were left exposed, and organising the plastic boxes under my bed so that he couldn’t cause any trouble under there.
I also went on to help tidy the rest of the house, and I even went outside for a bit one day and disposed of any rubbish that had mysteriously floated into our back garden from elsewhere.
After meeting Gizmo, I began to buy him some things that would be his own. My god he’s one spoilt rabbit. I think I’ve probably spent close to half of last month’s wages on him already, and at the time of writing this I’ve barely even had him a day!
I spent a lot of time researching, finding out what bunnies like and need, and looking at examples of house rabbit set ups so that I could provide a suitable home for him. First I bought him a nice pen with lots of room, and used a wooden furniture board from B&Q just to cover up my carpet within the area. On top of that is a layer of squishy cardboard, and some newspaper. Finally, he has a nice soft layer of Vetbed to make it all comfortable (although right now I’m looking over at him and he’s pushed the bedding away and is lying on top of the newspaper, again…).
In one corner is a litter tray, filled with newspaper and hay. Next to that is his food bowl (the boy loves his pellets…we’re putting you back on that egg cup diet today, mister!), and nearby he has a hay feeder hung up (but the stray bits of hay on the floor are more appealing, apparently). His water bowl is on the other side of his pen. He seems to prefer it there rather than next to his tray. Next to this bowl is a little wooden tunnel/bridge type thing, lined with hay for him to hide in. This is something he’s shown absolutely no interest in though. Perhaps he’s worried he’ll get stuck. He is quite large.
I bought him a few toys to chew, which I was hesitant about due to his malocclusion. I wasn’t sure if he’d go out of his way to chew things – and so far, he hasn’t even attempted to chew anything other than hay and pellets. He has a ball which releases pellets when rolled, which he has a bit more interest in! I also put some hay in an old kitchen roll tube for him, as a little toy, which I’d seen online and thought was a sweet idea.
Also in my room, Gizmo has a larger litter tray that came from the adoption centre which he can dig in, poop in, and eat in. Or sleep in, apparently. Full of newspaper and hay, this old small animal cage base is perfect for a house bunny to adapt to a new environment, and suits all of Gizmo’s needs.
Finally, we have his carrier. Gizmo loves his carrier. Currently, I’ve left it out with the door off and some Vetbed in so he can hide inside it whenever he likes. This is also a great way for him to feel more at ease when he has to travel to the vets every few months for his dental. This one is from Ferplast, I believe it’s the Atlas 10, I paid around £30 for it in Pets Corner, and I highly recommend it. It has a lovely patterned, removable & washable, soft cushion inside and a detachable food bowl.
Thanks for reading; I’ll be back with another update soon!