Wild Rabbit hanging around meat rabbit cages? Help!

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by xanthin1, Feb 11, 2016.

  1. xanthin1

    xanthin1 New Egg

    Aug 18, 2012
    I am fairly new to meat rabbit raising, we've only had our rabbits for 8 months. We raise satins, and have them in all wire cages suspended from a wooden roof with legs. We live on the Oregon Coast in a fairly rural area, (we have chickens too), and have in the past seen some evidence of wild rabbits in the area (the cat usually eats parts of one or two a year and leaves me the rest). Yesterday morning, I went out to feed the rabbits, with my three wild and loud kids 9ages 4, 8, 10) and there was a wild rabbit out there by the hutches. I thought he would startle and run away very fast. He didn't. He seemed very curious and kept bounding up near us, then scampering away. It looked like he had started to dig two holes about a foot away from one of the hutches. Later when the kids were playing on the swing set the rabbit was out on the lawn with them only a few feet away as they were playing. Then this morning, the kids went out to feed our rabbits without me, and came running back in saying the wild rabbit was back and he let them pet it. I thought no way, and went out to investigate, and sure enough saw my 8 year old petting it on the ground a few feet from my hutches. I told them not to touch it, and to go wash their hands, since I have no idea what kind of diseases a wild rabbit might have or could pass on to our rabbits/us. But can't help thinking if this were really a wild rabbit, would he feel so comfortable around humans? Would he let my loud children pet him? Help! Advice please!
  2. cassie

    cassie Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 19, 2009
    This seems like a non problem to me. In all liklihood this rabbit was someone's pet and they turned it loose. I once ended up with a ground squirrel that had obviously been raised by people and released. He stuck around for years and he was a lot of fun. While washing your hands is a good idea, if I were you I would quit stressing about it and just enjoy its company.
  3. Bunnylady

    Bunnylady POOF Goes the Pooka

    Nov 27, 2009
    Wilmington, NC
    I'd give you any odds you like that this isn't a native rabbit, but a domestic rabbit that has been turned loose. As far as I know,North American native rabbits don't dig burrows; even their nests are just shallow scrapes on the surface.
  4. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ

    Agreed! It was probably someone's pet at some point. if it is acting normally otherwise, it shouldnt cause any issues.
  5. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    Absolutely agree that it isn't a wild rabbit. Rabbits run from you, they'll never come up to you unless they are already tame.
  6. KDOGG331

    KDOGG331 Flock Master

    Jan 18, 2008
    If it was me I'd catch it and set it up a nice area and keep it as a pet haha or at least offer it some food

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by