Before the term “house rabbit” came into being some 25 years ago, pet rabbits often lived in outdoor hutches in a far corner of the yard, away from the family, with little or no chance for interaction. Sadly, these bunnies were not allowed to develop their full personalities and often led lonely lives. And their owners did not get the chance to see how intelligent and social rabbits can be.
You’ve come a long way, bunny. Today, the sky is the limit when it comes to providing the ideal living quarters for a pet rabbit. While some rabbits are lucky enough to have free roam of an entire house, such options as multi-storied bunny “condos” and large exercise pens give rabbits and their owners a wide range of comfortable choices. And, thanks to the wisdom gained from experience, even rabbits that must live outdoors can do so in a safe, healthy way.
One of the most popular choices for housing indoor rabbits is the use of large exercise pens. “These provide a lot of space, they’re safe and rabbits can see out and see what’s going on,” said Jennifer Johannsen, owner of Bunny Bytes in Seattle. She has lived with rabbits for 14 years and has done rabbit rescue since 1998.
Large exercise pens contain eight panels, ranging in height from 24 to 36 to 48 inches, and they can be arranged in a number of shapes. “It’s ideal if you can offer partially free range; I think it’s more appropriate to confine rabbits. I don’t think free range is the safest unless you have absolutely bunny-proofed your home,” Johannsen said. **For the full article, pick up the 2008 issue of Rabbits USA or click here to buy the issue.**