Determining cage size for rabbits

Ensuring your rabbit has adequate living space is essential to its well-being.

Purchasing a rabbit for the first time is a mixed bag of emotions, ranging from exciting and scary to overwhelming. One of the most overlooked details of bringing home a new rabbit is the living space it requires. Depending on the breed, the space requirements may vary greatly.

The minimum space requirements for one rabbit are based on the rabbit’s weight. The cage space is calculated by multiplying the cage width by length and subtracting the space occupied by feed and water dishes that may be inside the cage.

The American Rabbit Breeders Association adapted the following chart from the Animal Welfare Act (Title 7, Chapter 54, Sections 2131-2159) to help rabbit owners determine appropriate cage size for their animal.

Appropriate cage size for rabbits

Individual weights

Minimum floor space

Minimum interior height

Pounds

Kilograms

Square feet

Square meters

Inches

Centimeters

Less than 4.4

Less than 2.0

1.5

0.14

14

35.5

4.4-8.8

2.0-4.0

3

0.28

14

35.5

8.8-11.9

4-5.4

4

0.37

14

35.5

Greater than 11.9

Greater than 5.4

5

0.46

14

35.5

Nursing does have different cage size requirements than a single rabbit. This increase in cage size allows for additional space for the kits. Based on the Animal Welfare Act, the American Rabbit Breeders Association has recommended the following cage sizes be utilized for nursing rabbits.

Appropriate cage size for nursing rabbits

Weight of nursing female

Minimum floor space per rabbit

Minimum interior height

Pounds

Kilograms

Square feet

Square meter

Inches

Centimeters

Less than 4.4

Less than 2.0

430

0.37

14

35.5

4.4-8.8

2.0-4.0

5

0.46

14

35.5

8.8-11.9

4-5.4

6

0.56

14

35.5

Greater than 11.9

Greater than 5.4

7.5

0.7

14

35.5

Providing proper cage space will allow your rabbits to grow and develop appropriately. As your rabbit grows, Michigan State University Extension advises to make sure your rabbit has enough space in its cage to accommodate its size. Consistently weighing your rabbit will help you determine what size cage it should be in.

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