How long Does a Domestic Rabbit Live?

By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: September 20, 2017
How long Does a Domestic Rabbit Live?

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In this article, we will focus on all the things you need to know about these little furry fluff balls with long ears that never cease to amaze. The rabbit is a common pet known for its docility and affection. Still, those who decide to adopt a rabbit cannot find as much information on the internet as might be the case for cats or dogs. Many owners of rabbits might wonder: how long does a domestic rabbit live? And what can we do to extend its longevity?

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What determines the life expectancy of a rabbit

A pet rabbit is a quiet companion that is manageable and friendly and each rabbit has their own character and personality. Some rabbits tend to be more reserved, timid and even hostile whilst others enjoy plenty of human company and human contact. How they are treated from a young age will greatly influence their character: being gentle and caring will help the rabbit to trust you and enjoy being in your company. This will directly affect the happiness and welfare of the rabbit.

You could even take your rabbit or a gentle stroll on the grass using a rabbit lead. Of course, you mustn't drag them along, the lead is more to prevent them from running away than for walking them as you would a dog. Every little caring thing you do for your cute pet will be rewarded in heaps and bounds and strengthen the bond you have. This means you'll have a happy and radiant rabbit.

The reality of the life expectancy of these mammals is very different and varied as there are up to 50 different types of rabbits. As a guide, a wild rabbit lives to around 3 or 4 years due to circumstances such as weather, predators and food availability. Conversely, a domestic rabbit lives from 6 to 8 years.

But this is not all. The happiness and well-being that you can bring your rabbit will have a bearing on how long it will live. Teach it tricks, offer it its favorite food and devote time and love to your furry little friend. All of these factors will help them live a long and happy life. Rabbits with a rewarding life can live up to 10 years. However, one lucky rabbit lived to a remarkable 19 years old!

Read our other articles do rabbits sleep? and recommended fruits and vegetables for rabbits.

How long Does a Domestic Rabbit Live? - What determines the life expectancy of a rabbit

Other factors to boost rabbit welfare

The truth is that rabbits are a more complex pet than they seem and they require a lot of care. Of course, good health is crucial in helping these lovely creatures live a long life.

  • Hygiene: It is very important to keep the rabbit's cage nice and clean. Failure to do so leads to parasites, diseases and depression. Discover whether you can bathe your rabbit on AnimalWised.
  • Vaccination: If you are thinking of taking our rabbit to the forest or grassland, talk to your vet about vaccination. Curiosity is a strong trait in rabbits and we should encourage it without any risk.
  • Grooming: Essential for long-haired breeds, brushing is very important to maintain healthy skin and detangled hair.
  • Exercise: In the morning and evening are best moments for exercise. In nature they tend to exercise constantly. Let them jump about around the house (make sure nothing is left around that could be dangerous) or prepare some tubes and boxes they can scamper about in.
  • Playing: You can also play with your rabbit to encourage interaction with him and brighten up its day. Do not chase it. Give it a ball or other soft object (designed for rabbits)to play with.

Having a pet rabbit does not mean simply caring for it for a while; it is about having a companion in the home. You could enjoy at least 6 or 7 years with your fluffy friend, so provide it with lots of love and care.

How long Does a Domestic Rabbit Live? - Other factors to boost rabbit welfare

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