Do rabbits eat mice? Do rabbits attract mice? Do rabbits keep mice away?
These questions, along others, are inevitably pondered by most pet rabbit owners.
Because rabbits are such common household pets and because rodents are such common pests, it’s extra important for pet rabbit owners to be well-versed on the rabbit-mouse relationship. This article will hopefully answer your questions and clear things up for you.
Do rabbits eat mice?
First and foremost, rabbits do not eat mice, and that goes for both pet and wild rabbits. All rabbits are herbivores (vegetarians), meaning they only eat plants, so there is no place for mice in their diets.
Therefore, you will not observe your rabbit drooling over a little mousy that enters your home. In fact, your rabbit probably won’t even pay him any attention at all.
Even if your rabbit comes across a dead one, he will not even think about touching it. All types of rabbits have evolved to be herbivores, so do not worry about your rabbit occasionally or even accidentally eating any type of meat.
S0, do rabbits eat mice? Again, just to accentuate this point, no rabbits eat mice. Only omnivores and carnivores will eat mice and other animals.
Do rabbits attract mice?
Rabbits do in fact attract mice, and this is mainly due to improper cage maintenance.
A rabbit’s cage left uncleaned and neglected will accumulate uneaten rabbit food, scattered rabbit pellets, and rabbit droppings. All of these things are appealing to mice and increase your risk of enticing them into your home. And because they have an incredibly strong sense of smell (they can smell traces of food from miles away), it’s crucial to keep your rabbit’s cage clean and tidy, which should involve at least a daily clean and a monthly deep clean.
At a bare minimum, your daily cleaning should incorporate the following actions:
- Discard all uneaten pet food
- Remove their droppings
- Place all garbage in an airtight bag and throw it into a garbage can with a tightly sealed lid
For your monthly deep clean, try to follow these actions:
- Replace all stained shavings and old bedding
- Scrub down all floors and surfaces
Also, while it should go without saying, it’s vital to store all rabbit food in an airtight, rodent-proof container. Like all other food in your kitchen, rabbit food will attract rats and mice if not stored away securely and properly.
Now, what to do with your pungent rabbit smell. Unfortunately, it’s basically impossible to eliminate the smell of rabbits without getting rid of the rabbits themselves, but you can try using different air fresheners and purifiers to try and mask the scent. The important thing to note is that if you are diligent about keeping your rabbit’s set up clean, you will decrease your risk of attracting mice and rats to your home.
Can rabbits keep mice away?
Unfortunately, rabbits are more likely to attract rats and mice than keep them away.
Mice are small prey animals and risk their lives every day to get food. And so, as you may already know, mice are incredibly timid. Any animal larger than a mouse will initial scare him and cause a flee response. But, because most rabbits are not aggressive, over time, mice may learn that the rabbit is not a threat. Most rabbits will actually be completely unbothered by mice in its enclosure, and many won’t even mind sharing their food with them.
Can rabbits and mice live together?
In short, yes, rabbits and mice can live together. Rabbits are herbivores and usually not aggressive, so mice and rabbits typically feel comfortable in each other’s presence. To the best of my knowledge, there also have not been any cases of mice attacking rabbits (or baby rabbits).
But, should they live together? No, they absolutely should not. Just because mice and rabbits may get along does not mean that you should let them. As soon as you let mice get comfortable in your home, you will almost certainly face an infestation. By allowing your rabbit to live in harmony with mice, you are inviting them to nest in your home and eventually breed.
Mice and rats can also spread diseases to your rabbit. That alone should be a good enough reason to actively keep mice and rats away from you, your rabbits, and your home…Some of the diseases they spread can even be fatal.
Therefore, it’s so important to do your best to prevent the first mouse from even getting into your home, which is why you must regularly clean your rabbit’s cage/hutch. If you take all the right precautions and regularly clean and STILL see a mouse, it’s time to go on the offensive. Use traps and poisons to try to catch the little pest.
On the other hand, rabbits and rats are not as compatible…they cannot live together. Sadly, it’s widely known that rats can kill rabbits babies as they are tiny and vulnerable. So, you should make sure that that the wires in your rabbit’s hutch are not wide enough for rodents (rats) to go through. There are also a variety of rodent-proof hutches and cages available to buy in pet stores and online.
Can rabbits get diseases from mice?
Yes, rabbits can get disease from both rats and mice. Rodents are known carriers of numerous diseases and parasites. Parasites can be carriers for bacteria and viruses, including internal parasites. Mice can spread fleas, mites, and ticks, among others, which can infest the rabbit’s hutch, the rabbit itself, and even you and other people in your home.
Both mice and rats can carry hantavirus and salmonella. Not only are both hantavirus and salmonella highly dangerous (even fatal in some cases), they can be spread very easily. Mice and rats carry and spread them through their urine and droppings and most commonly contaminate rabbit hutches with their droppings. And even when old rodent droppings dry up, they will crumble into dust. The dust can still contain live hantavirus cultures and be inhaled by both rabbits and humans.
Mice are also known to carry lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCM), which is a dangerous, rodent-borne viral infectious disease that can come on as aseptic meningitis, encephalitis or meningoencephalitis. If left untreated, LCM causes inflammation around the brain and spinal cord. Rabbits (and humans) can be infected with LCM through exposure to rodent droppings, urine, saliva, or nesting material.
What do rabbits eat?
Both wild and pet rabbits eat plants and plant-based food.
Wild rabbits live in many different locations around the world which include, woodlands, grasslands, gardens, and even in cities. And so, their natural diet varies depending on the location and season they’re in.
In the colder months, wild rabbits eat leafy greens, seeds, woody shoots, etc. In the warmer months, they eat clovers, grasses, and flowers.
Similarly, pet rabbits need to be fed a diet that is similar to those of wild rabbits. They need to be fed a lot of hay but also need a diet that includes lots of vegetables, fruits in moderation, and a formulated pellet feed (especially when they are young). Variety is key. A varied diet provides them with all of the proper nutrition they need to be healthy.
Pet and wild rabbits also need to eat foods high in fiber and must have a diet low in overall calories and calcium for optimal health. So keep this in mind when feeding your rabbit.