Are you worried about traveling with your bunny? You’re not alone. Traveling with rabbits is no easy task. It’s always best to leave your bunny at home if you can. Yet, there are many reasons why you may need to take your bunny on a road trip – moving, vet visits, or the pet sitter. Here are a few simple guidelines to follow when traveling in a car with your rabbit.
By Salena Joseph
Transportation is stressful for rabbits. This stress can lead to health problems such as GI stasis, withdrawal, and refusing to eat. Rabbits are sensitive to changes in their surroundings and routine.
Your rabbit may be overwhelmed by things like:
New and unfamiliar environment
The noise and vibration of the car
Different smells in the carrier and car
Changes in temperature and air pressure
To make the trip easy for your bun, plan ahead to lower stress. Do not travel with a sick bunny – the stress may aggravate their illness or lead to new problems.
Choose a Proper Carrier
It is important to choose a high-quality carrier for your rabbit. It should be large enough for the rabbit to fit comfortably, but not so large that they have room to bounce around. You can find a selection of carriers here.
The motion of the car may make it difficult for your bunny to stabilize itself in the carrier. You should always place a towel on the bottom for support.
Rabbits rarely eat in the car, but you should pack cold water, hay, and their normal feed along with a few treats. These familiar tastes and smells may help them with the stress.
Place the carrier in the backseat, and make sure to secure it so that it does not shift during sudden stops.
Cool the Car
An important safety concern for car travel with rabbits is overheating. Rabbits are sensitive to changes in temperature and easily become overheated. Signs of overheating in rabbits include:
Panting and rapid breathing
Wetness around the nose and mouth
Lethargy and confusion
Create a cool environment in the car for your rabbit. Turn on the car and let the air conditioner flow before bringing your rabbit out into the vehicle. Keep the temperature low for the duration of the car ride.
You can also make your rabbit cool and comfortable by placing a frozen water bottle in their carrier. Many rabbits find this comforting and will rest against it or lick it.
Remember that cars can become too hot in just a few minutes, especially if it is warm and sunny outside. Never leave your rabbit in the car without supervision.
For more information and tips on how to care for your rabbit visit the Best4Bunny care pages here
Salena Joseph is a professional writer living in Florida. When she isn’t writing, you can find her blogging about her urban vegetable garden at tropicalvictorygarden.com and snuggling her golden lionhead bunny, Aslan.