Obesity in Rabbits – Symptoms and Diet

Rabbits or Oryctolagus cuniculus are, within small mammals, the most likely to gain weight. So it is not surprising that a domestic rabbit ends up having obesity.

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In fact, many people with pets usually show their affection for them with excesses that often manifest themselves in the form of food. But we must take into account that the excess of food is never healthy and much less if it is a type of food different from the basic one.

If you have a rabbit or are planning on adopting one, inquire about obesity in rabbits, its symptoms and diet we should offer you to improve your health.

You may also interest you: Diet for obese cats

What is obesity?

Obesity is the excess weight in the form of fat in the body. It occurs in animals that are genetically prone to it and / or by their lifestyle.

Aside from being a problem in itself, it aggravates or accelerates other possible diseases over time. Other more direct effects of obesity are loss of agility, joint wear, fatigue and increased sleep, among many others.

Symptoms of Obesity in Rabbits

As we mentioned earlier, rabbits are pets that are prone to obesity , especially if they spend most of the day in the cage sleeping, eating and with little running space. An unhealthy diet and a lack of exercise quite a lot of weight gain.

Some problems derived from obesity in rabbits are poor hygiene, since the animal will not be able to reach all areas of the body to clean properly and the reduction or impossibility to carry out the coprophagy that they need to perform to get all the vitamins of food. In addition, there is the appearance of mycosis, which is an infection that occurs in the anal area, among other infections that may appear as dermatitis, which occurs in the skin due to the folds of this produced by being overweight. Early arthritis and foot pododermatitis are more diseases that occur as a result of excessive weight. Therefore, it is advisable to know how you can prevent and detect this problem as soon as possible in our little furry ones.

When we see that our partner is very tired with little effort, eats and sleeps more than normal, his volume is higher and touching his loin costs us to palpate the ribs, we can begin to suspect obesity or, at least, overweight. It is advisable that at every visit to the specialist veterinarian in small mammals our rabbit is heavy and follow its evolution. The specialist will tell us if it is overweight , problem that is easier to solve, or if we are already faced with obesity we should start fighting for our pet’s health.

As for any other living being, the best way to prevent and fight obesity in rabbits is to eat healthy and exercise.


Feeding the rabbit should rely on abundant hay freely available all the time because they need large amounts of fiber. To complement the proper diet we must offer you special food for them of the best quality that we can and in the daily quantities suitable for your weight. Then, we give you a general table of recommended feed amounts according to the weight of the rabbit:

  • Rabbits less than 500 grams – 30 grams of food per day
  • Rabbits from 500 gr to 1000 gr – 60 gr of food per day
  • Rabbits from 1000 gr to 1500 gr – 100 gr of food per day
  • Rabbits from 1500 gr to 2000 gr – 120 gr of food per day
  • Rabbits over 2000 gr – 150 gr of food per day

In addition to the more basic nutrition, we can give them other foods high in fiber , but we must have them as a treat that we offer you from time to time, never as the basis of your food. For example, some of these natural high-fiber treats are leafy greens and alfalfa. We must think that roots like carrots contain high levels of sugar, so we can give our rabbit some as long as we allow enough exercise to spend the energetic contribution and not accumulate it. With fruits happens the same as with roots, due to its high sugar content should be an occasional premium.

Finally, we have the goodies that are sold already prepared in the stores, but these have much more sugar than the natural ones previously mentioned, so if we choose to buy some of these delicacies we must give it with a large space of time and in small portions . Lastly, we must not forget that they must always have fresh water in abundance at their disposal.

In case you have your little hairy overweight or obesity detected we should start reducing the amount of food gradually and eliminate the goodies. In addition, we should maximize your exercise hours.


As a complement to proper and healthy diet, we should add daily exercise to prevent or treat obesity in rabbits. We must bear in mind that they are living beings and need to move and relate to others of their species so we should let them go out, run, jump and play, thus providing their health, as this will strengthen their muscles, your skeleton and it will also burn calories. In this way, we managed to help you lose excess weight and further to maintain the optimum weight in each copy.

If our partner lives in semi-freedom and has plenty of free space to run and jump, but still has obesity, it is clear that the problem is eating.

We should play with it to make sure we do the daily exercise we need. Most domestic rabbits are usually in the cages where they have food and water, but we should be aware that getting them out of the cage a few minutes a day to run through a room in the house is not enough.

For this reason we recommend that you take the rabbit out of the cage for as long as possible and play with it to make it move and do not stand still in some corner. In addition, there are ways to make these races more entertaining, you can for example build a circuit and hide things in it for them to look for.

By following these tips, you will be able to see that your rabbit stays healthy and in case you are obese, you will lose weight in a very short time in a very healthy way. In this way, you will regain vitality, agility, the desire to play and above all the health of your friend with long ears and legs, something that will allow us to enjoy more years of your company.

This article is purely informative, in YourCatCareguide.com.br we do not have the capacity to prescribe veterinary treatments nor to make any type of diagnosis. We suggest that you bring your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or malaise.

If you would like to read more articles the description of the Obesity in rabbits – Symptoms and Diet , we recommend that you come to our section on Other health problems .

Emily Harris

Hi Guys, Girls, and Cats:-p I am Emily Harris, and you can see in above pic. She loves me I swear. I saved her from a dumpster a few weeks back.

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