Ferrets, Rabbits, Rats, Mice, Guinea Pigs, Birds, Fish and even pet Snakes are all welcome at Murwillumbah Veterinary Clinic, where our team are happy to treat your exotic pet for any issues.
We carry a wide range of preventative medicines for these exotic pets, and also stock high quality foods that will keep them in tip top condition.
We perform surgeries such as de-sexing, tumour removal and dentistry for many of these animals.
Diet and Nutrition
To prevent diet related problems in rabbits our clinic recommends changing the diet to a more natural one.
Rabbits should be feed mainly grasses, or grass hay. This is the single most important part of a rabbits diet.
Lucerne hay is too rich for rabbits and straw hay will not provide the benefits that grass hay does. Remember providing grass hay in the diet is a major key in preventing many diseases in the pet rabbit.
In addition to grass, some leafy greens are required, when selecting and using green foods follow these guidelines:
- Buy (or grow) organic if possible.
- Wash any green foods first
- Feed a variety of green foods daily-a minimum would be three varieties-variety provides a wider range of micronutrients as well as mental stimulation for your pet.
- Feed a minimum of 250g of green food per kilogram of body weight at least once a day-feed more if your pet is eating grass hay as well, there is no real upper limit.
Fruits and Other Vegetables (treat foods)
Depending on the time of year, rabbits in the wild would have access to additional foods such as fruits, vegetables and flowers. Since these items do not make up the majority of the diet, we recommend feeding these special items in a limited quantity. Another reason for limiting the amount is because some rabbits like these foods so much they’ll eat them to the exclusion of all others, creating a potential for health problems.
Foods from this list can be fed daily and you may even wish to use them as a part of a reward training system. These treat foods are far healthier (and less expensive) then the commercial treat foods sold for rabbits.
Commercial treat foods should be totally avoided because they are loaded with starch and fat and if feed in quantity can cause serious health problems. Stick to “natural” and healthy treats for your pets. Follow the same guidelines as listed for selecting and using green foods with the exception of the amount. A rabbit can be fed a heaped teaspoon (40g) per kilogram of body weight a day of any combination of foods in the table.
Dried fruit can be used as well, but since it is so concentrated, use only half the amount of fresh. We do not recommend feeding bananas and grapes as rabbits sometimes become “addicted” to these foods. If you do choose to feed them, watch the animal carefully to ensure it is eating sufficient quantities of green foods and hay.
Our recommendation is to completely avoid starch and/or fatty foods for rabbits. In this way you will avoid any potential problems these foods can cause including obesity and serious gastrointestinal disease.
Finally any pellet food may be nutritionally sound for rabbits, but their physical structure will not keep a rabbit healthy for the entire length of its life- pellet foods are to be avoided.
- Broccoli (leaves and stem) Brussels sprouts Bok choy lettuce
- Cabbage (red,green,chinese) Celery(leaves are good) chickory
- Chickory Collard greens Dock
- Dandelion greens(and flower) Romaine lettuce Basil
- Swiss chard(any colour) Endive Water cress
- Parsley (italian or flat leaf best) Mustard greens Kale
- Carrot/Beet tops Leaf lettuce Baby greens
- Kiwi fruit Strawberries Blueberries
- Raspberries Blackberries Apple
- Pear Peach Papaya
- Pineapple Cactus fruit Melons
- Bean or alfalfa sprouts Green/Red bell peppers Mango
- Pea pods(no Peas) Cherries Cranberries
- Edible flowers from the garden (organically grown and not from a florist) such as roses, nasturtiums, day lilies, pansies, snap dragons Carrots Squash
HIGH FAT AND/OR STARCH FOODS
- Beans (of any kind) Peas Corn
- Breads Cereals Nuts
- Seeds Oats Wheat
- Chocolate Refined sugar Any other grain