Angora rabbits can seem intimidating with all that fluff, but if you are willing to put in the time they can be great companions and pay for their upkeep in wool.
Just how much time? Check out these basic rabbit keeping chores
Daily Chores (5-10 minutes for chores + play time)
Quick clean of hutch – Every hutch set up is different, but my hutch has two levels, an upper “sleeping” floor, and the bottom “living” floor. The lower level has a tile floor, every day I quickly sweep up any poop, straw or feed that is on the tile and dump it in the litter box (also on the lower level). I keep a small hand broom & dust pan right by the hutch to make this a quick one minute job.
Tend feed, hay, water levels & feed fresh greens – Every day I check to make sure the water bottle has water (it needs to be filled every 2-3 days). I add fresh hay to the hay bin and I add their daily feed pellets to their feed bin (1/2 cup per rabbit). The feed bin will hold several days of pellets, but my bunnies are little piggies and will eat up all their pellets ignoring their hay & greens which they need to stay healthy. When I head out to the rabbit yard, I bring fresh greens or herbs, or I pick them fresh from the garden when in season. Each rabbit should have 1 1/2 -2 cups of fresh greens/herbs/veggies every day.
Health Check – take a few moments to check over the rabbit’s coat, skin, ears, eyes & mouth. Observe their behavior, are they acting lethargic, nervous, itchy, etc?
Play time – This one is hardly a “chore” but every day you should spend time bonding with your bunny. Sit on the ground while they hop about, give them special snuggles & ear scratches. Let them get used to affection and handling that isn’t related to grooming. How much time is going to vary based on your schedule, but at minimum try to be with your bunny at least 15-20 minutes a day (obviously if you can do more, do more!).
Keep in mind, your rabbit needs time outside of his hutch/cage no matter what your schedule is. If you can only spare 15 minutes that day, they need a safe place to exercise & explore without you. Exercise time is important for your rabbit’s emotional & physical well being. A rabbit that is confined to only his cage for days on end is a sad bunny and at risk of becoming overweight. Your rabbit should have access to a safe exercise area with at least 35 square feet per rabbit every day. Ideally, exercise time would be at least 3-4 hours daily, but at minimum let them have an hour per day to play outside of their cage or hutch. My rabbits are allowed out in their exercise area nearly all day. In their play area provide objects for them to climb on and hide in, such as tunnels or boxes. Rabbits are really smart animals and they need variety & challenges to keep them from being bored. Click here for my post on playing with your bunny
(15 minutes cleaning + 30 minutes grooming per week, per rabbit during non shedding times, about 1 hour per week during shedding per rabbit)
In depth cleaning of hutch – Twice a week I empty the litter box into the compost bin and fill it with fresh litter. Once a week I do a complete clean out. I scrap off any caked on poop or greens with a metal scrapper, then spray down the tile floor with my homemade, safe cleaning solution to sanitize. I take the rug out of their sleeping area, shake it out and spray down that floor. I do a quick raking in the rabbit yard. Cleaning the hutch & run takes about 15 minutes, once a week
Grooming – This is obviously a HUGE part of keeping Angora Rabbits happy & healthy. When the rabbits are NOT in a shedding period, I brush them once a week, taking about 30 minutes per rabbit. Every 2-3 months Angoras will shed their coat. You will not be able to miss it, the fur will come off in chunks just petting them. There are three methods for removing the coat at this time – either shearing (using scissors or clippers to cut the fur off), plucking (basically just removing the loose fur with your hands) or combing (brushing the loose hair out). I brush the loose fur out, and during shedding periods the weekly grooming ends up taking about an hour per rabbit. Keep in mind, if you are planning on showing your Angora, you can expect the grooming to be more involved. Click here to check out my grooming how to!
And that’s it – not too horrible right? About an hour a week (plus fun play time!). Angoras are definitely not a pet to take lightly, I would say similarly high maintenance as a dog and more work than a cat. BUT they are super sweet and worth every moment of it! In addition to entertainment & companionship they provide you with wool you can use in crafts, spin into yarn or sell raw plus all the rich compost you could ask for.