How to make Halloween a safe & happy time for your rabbit

Halloween can be a stressful and even dangerous time for your rabbit. Find out what bunny proofing you can do to make your home safer so you can both enjoy this special time of year.
Rabbit dressed up  at Halloween

Make Halloween fun for you & your rabbit

Halloween can be a scary and dangerous time for pets, especially rabbits. Normal routines in your home suddenly change with the putting out of decoration, kids dressing up and running around and the doorbell ringing.
These changes to your routines can affect your rabbit’s behaviour, often negatively making it timid and even aggressive. You can unwittingly introduce dangers into your home which can lead to harm, worry for you and costly vet bills.
If you want to avoid as much of this stress as possible follow the simple rabbit proofing tips here to make sure you and your bunny can enjoy a stress free and fun Halloween together.
Electric lights, ornaments and decoration
Electric Halloween lights
Any electrical devices can be extremely danger to an unsuspecting rabbit. The soft insulation of power cords offer little protection from a rabbits razor sharp teeth and if chewed through resulting in burns to your rabbits mouth and a serious electric shock which can be fatal. You can keep the power cords hidden away by leading them into the room from a plug that is behind furniture where they cannot be accessed and trailing them out of reach. If you can’t hide the power cords you could cover them with tough plastic piping. This can be split along its length and slipped over the cable to save removing the plug. Remember you rabbits are going to be curious so don’t underestimate their determination to climb and reach these exciting new things.
Other Halloween decorations
Halloween decorations
It’s best to move decorations and ornaments out of reach before your rabbit can take an interest in them. Once their curiosity is sparked is likely they will keep returning to an object no matter how many times you say NO! You only have to turn you back for a second for them to come to harm. Halloween decorations are often made of synthetic materials that can be easily chewed and ingested which can cause gastrointestinal problems. Even some of the natural looking materials can be poisonous for rabbits, they can be treated with fire retardant materials the can make you bunny unwell if ingested. It’s best to plan ahead and set the decorations out in a way that keeps them out of harm’s way.
Candles
Halloween candles
Remember to keep candles out of reach as your rabbit could either burn its whiskers off or worse burn itself if it hops over an exposed flame. Don’t place candles on anything that can be knocked over or on something that can be tugged at by your rabbit resulting in the candle toppling over. Be mindful of ornaments that candles go inside as these can also get hot.
Visitors
Trick or treat
If you have guests especially children it may be best to keep your rabbit out of sight as you rabbit may not appreciate becoming the centre of attention. Guests that may not be used to rabbits won’t understand that they may not want to be picked up and played with and clumsy handling can make them timid and skittish and lead to some nasty bites and scratches. Rabbits also have fragile backs and can be injured easily if handled improperly or dropped. If you do to introduce guests and especially children to you rabbit make sure you go through some simple rules at the start.

Simple rules for people new to rabbits

  • Don’t shout or scream as loud noises can cause distress as rabbits have very sensitive ears
  • Take your shoes off to avoid harm from stepping on the rabbit
  • Only give the rabbit its normal food, don’t feed it sweets or chocolate
  • Remember rabbit can scratch and bite so be careful
  • Let the rabbit come to you, it may not like being picked up stroked or cuddled
Chocolate and sweets
Trick or treat sweets
It is important to keep chocolate out of reach from your rabbit. If your rabbit only eats a small piece then you could be lucky and no harm may come of it. But if your rabbit eats a large amount of chocolate, then this could be quite serious and result in an emergency visit to the vets. Sugary sweets are also no good for rabbits and if left out may cause harm if the wrappers are also ingested.
Can rabbits eat Pumpkin?
Halloween rabbit in pumpkin patch
Rabbits are typically interested in anything that looks like food, be it theirs or yours and with all the fun to be had this time of year scooping out Pumpkins to turn them into lanterns as well as seasonal food being prepared an important question becomes… can my rabbit eat pumpkin and if so what parts and how much?
The answer is yes they can eat raw pumpkin flesh and skin however it is very important not to give them too much. Consider it to be like other surgery treats such as carrot or fruit and only give your rabbit about a teaspoon per 2 lbs of body weight a day. If they do eat too much this may upset their tummies. Avoid any cooked pumpkin and pumpkin seeds as these are not recommended.
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