Rabbit Feeding and Treats Guide

Clicker training is a terrific way to train your rabbit, but it does involve the use of food. The results can be so fast and almost magical and the rabbit can be having so much fun, that it is tempting to get carried away and give the rabbit far too much of a food treat that it really likes. Over-feeding a rabbit can lead to obesity and even to death if too much of a new food is given all at once. The best way to use food in rabbit training is to measure out the ration of pellets, fruits vegetables and small amount of treats for the day and use these in training.

When they are used up, the training is over for the day. This way the rabbit is not getting more food than it needs. Any of the day's ration not used for training can be just given to the rabbit at the usual feeding time. If there is no training session, the rabbit would still get its allotment of veggies, but would not get any training treats for free. It is critical that rabbits have free access to hay at all times. Never withhold food from a rabbit to make it hungry for training. A rabbit's digestive tract must be operating at all times and the rabbit must always have hay in its cage.

Refer to the House Rabbit Society website at www.rabbit.org for additional feeding information and recommendations for baby, juvenile and senior rabbits and to www.carrotcafe.com for detailed information about what to feed, how much to feed and why.

Healthy, recommended food (can be used as training treats)

  • Fresh veggies,(2 cups per 6 lbs body weight per day):
  • Carrots (2-4 inches of carrot maximum per day)
  • Carrot, beet, and radish tops
  • Celery (remove the strings)
  • Mustard or collard greens
  • Cilantro
  • Clover
  • Dandelion flowers and leaves
  • Parsley
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Green peppers
  • Broccoli (leaves and stems)
  • Alfalfa, radish and clover sprouts
  • Romaine lettuce (not iceberg)
  • Rabbit food timothy pellets (1/4-1/2 cup per 6 lbs body weight per day)

Okay in small amounts

  • Raisins (two or three per day)
  • Fresh fruit (up to 2 oz per 6 lbs body weight per day):
  • Apple
  • Banana
  • Peach
  • Grapes
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Blueberries
  • Melon
  • Orange rind
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Shredded wheat or other whole grain breakfast cereal with no sugar added

Not recommended for rabbits

  • Processed crackers or cookies
  • Treats with meat
  • Seeds and nuts, including apple seeds
  • Chocolate
  • High sugar, high fat breakfast cereal
  • Peas
  • Potatoes
  • Corn
  • Iceberg lettuce
  • Commercial rabbit treats (high in fat and sugar)