Rabbits are wonderful creatures that love to hop around, explore new places, and create mischief.
If you’re a rabbit owner, you are probably really glad that your pets don’t require long walks and complicated diets. However, rabbits are prey animals and hence require additional safety measures.
If you keep your pet rabbits in an outdoor hutch, their health could be in danger due to bad weather or even predators.
Today, let’s find out if rabbits attract snakes and what can be done about it.
Do Pet Rabbits Attract Snakes?
Yes, pet rabbits can attract snakes.
If you have been finding snakes slithering away near your rabbits’ hutch, it is probably your pets that attracted them.
Rabbit owners often think that their pets are well-protected in the outdoor hutch. They don’t realize that the presence of snakes around their hutch is a clear warning sign.
If attention isn’t paid to the snakes loitering about, it is highly likely that you will find one or more rabbits missing in the next few days.
Snakes are one of many rabbit predators. You might think that rabbits are too big for snakes to eat, but that isn’t true.
Snakes have a rather impressive ability to eat prey of different sizes.
Let’s find out more about why rabbits attract snakes and what you can do to protect your precious furry pets.
Also read: What Kills Rabbits at Night?
How to Keep Pet Rabbits Safe from Snakes
Now that you know why pet rabbits end up attracting snakes let’s see what we can do about it.
Here are some highly effective ways of keeping your pet bunnies safe from these predatory snakes.
Keep Them Indoors
The very best way to keep your pet rabbits safe is by bringing their hutch indoors.
Pet rabbits are generally kept outdoors in a hutch. This is mostly because we are so used to seeing wild rabbits outdoors, and we end up thinking our pets would be safe in a similar space.
However, it is important to understand that the living temperaments of wild and pet rabbits are vastly different.
Wild rabbits have numerous tricks up their sleeves to keep themselves safe against predators like snakes.
They have an innate sense of danger and can get themselves to safety quickly.
Since pet rabbits have always stayed in enclosed and protected spaces, they lack this sense of danger.
A snake could be attacking your pet bunnies, and they might not even move from their spot!
Therefore, the best way to protect your rabbits is by bringing them indoors. You can move their hutch to a garage or any large space where they could live comfortably.
Close Off Openings in the Hutch
If you do not have the space to bring your rabbits’ hutch indoors, that’s okay!
You can instead make sure that their hutch is well protected and has no openings for any snakes to enter.
The first thing you should do is closely examine the hutch for any openings or gaps. Try to identify any openings that are smaller than 1/4th of an inch. These spaces are too small for a snake to enter.
However, all of the bigger openings need to be mended ASAP, especially if you have already spotted a snake or two in your yard.
Get to work on repairing the hutch right away. You can patch up the gaps and hopes using wood putty or hardware cloth. Be sure to follow the instructions properly and apply them well.
You should also install hardware cloth over any windows or ventilation gaps that are bigger than 1/4th of an inch.
Reinforce Hutch with Wooden Floor
You can also work on making your hutch stronger and more resilient to any snake attacks.
A great way to do this is by creating solid bedding and floor.
You can use wooden planks that are specially designed to keep small animals warm and protected since that is your main aim here.
Wooden rabbit hutches don’t just ward off snake attacks; they also keep your pets safe against temperature fluctuations.
These hutches are designed to withstand harsh weather conditions too.
Keep Them off Ground Level
Now that your rabbits’ hutch is stronger than ever with all of the gaps and openings sealed let’s determine the right placement.
Snakes can climb vertically using their slithering motion. However, they mostly look for prey at ground level.
So, leaving the hutch on the ground could still be putting your pets at risk.
What you can do to prevent this raises the hutch a few feet above ground level.
This ensures that the snakes will have to put more effort into getting to your precious pets, which they probably won’t.
You should also bolt the hutch well to the ground so snakes and other predators can’t knock it down.
Use Safe Snake Deterrents
Your hutch may be well-protected, but as a pet owner, you would prefer not to have to worry about snakes in your yard at all.
The best way to get rid of any snakes in your front lawn or the backyard is by using a non-toxic snake deterrent. You can find them at your local gardening shop.
You can also use numerous panty items like vinegar, clove, or cinnamon oil. All of these items work as natural snake deterrents and will keep these predators off your property.
It ensures that your pet bunnies are safe against a snake’s vicious attack.
Using these deterrents also keeps your family members and any other pets safe from snake bites as they can be venomous.
Just be sure to use detergents that are non-toxic; otherwise, any of your other pets could swallow them. Chemical-based deterrents can be a health risk for pets and small children.
Why Do Rabbits Attract Snakes?
There are many reasons why snakes could be attracted to your rabbits’ hutch.
By understanding why snakes are attracted to your pet rabbits, you can work on keeping your bunnies safe and sound.
Snakes are Obligate Carnivores
The first and foremost thing to remember is that snakes are obligate carnivores. This means that they need animal meat to survive.
Most people mistakenly think that snakes are herbivores or omnivores due to their unique body structure.
People can’t fathom how a snake’s body could ever fit an animal. Moreover, their lack of teeth means they can’t bite or chew on live animals as most other carnivores do.
That is where things get interesting. Snakes swallow whole prey live and then slowly digest it to nourish themselves.
Rabbits are prey animals, and as horrible as it sounds, snakes aren’t picky when it comes to their prey.
So, the snakes in your garden could very well be trying to eat your pet rabbits for lunch.
Fitting Jaw Gape
The next thing to consider is the snake’s jaw.
While snakes will eat nearly any prey animal, their bodies are still limited by the laws of physics.
This means that snakes can only ingest animals that are sized appropriately as per their jaw gape.
No matter how delicious a meal may look, a snake can only have it if it will fit through its jaws. This might have you breathing a sigh of relief, but hold on.
Snakes have some truly amazing jaw abilities. They can easily swallow prey animals that are several sizes larger than their own heads.
This is because a snake’s jaw isn’t connected. The upper and lower jaws work on their own and can expand to truly alarming widths if needed.
This allows the snake to swallow whole rodents, mice, frogs, and even rabbits.
Small Sizes of Kits
Now that you know that snakes are capable of swallowing live rabbits, we have some good news for you.
If your rabbits are mostly adults and large in size, it is highly likely that a snake will not try to attack them.
This puts your rabbits in a safety bubble as they can use their size to their advantage.
However, if you have baby rabbits (also called kits), or a rabbit species that stay small in size like the Netherland Dwarf, Polish rabbits, or English Angoras, then they might be in trouble.
When the opportunity strikes, any snakes in your garden could end up making your pet rabbits their meal.
That is why you need to be extra careful to drive them away as soon as possible.
You should also reinforce your rabbit’s hutch so that the snakes aren’t able to gain access to them.
Presence of Food and Shelter
The presence of food and shelter around your rabbits’ hutch is one of the biggest attractive factors for snakes.
This is because they get free access to food, a warm place to stay, and plenty of areas to hide in.
Even if the snakes aren’t looking to eat your rabbits, they might just be rounding up to attack their food.
Moreover, the snakes could also try to gain access to the hutch and make it their home.
All the best in protecting your bunnies against snakes!
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