If you’re an avid animal lover, it is likely that you will want more than one pet. That’s great; there should be more people who are willing to take on animals and provide them with a happy home.
However, there are some animals that will live together better than others, for example rabbits and ducks.
While rabbits and ducks are both happy living outdoors, this doesn’t necessarily mean they will cohabit happily. Each animal has its own set of specific needs which could be counterproductive to the other’s survival. For this reason, we wouldn’t recommend keeping ducks and bunnies in the same enclosure.
Although keeping ducks and rabbits together in the same pen might not be realistic, it is still possible to have both animals provided that they are given their own space.
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Should Ducks And Rabbits Cohabit?
In the case of any animal, extreme care should be taken when placing them with another species. It can often be difficult enough to get two rabbits to successfully share an enclosure, especially unneutered males that tend to fight over territory.
Therefore, expecting two completely different species to cohabit is a bit of a stretch.
There are many problems that could ensue relating to all aspects of the animals’ lives so while you might be able to keep ducks and bunnies in the same yard or building, they should have their own space.
Ducks must be able to access water; this goes without saying. However, having a large open body of water, whether that be a pond or a man made bath, can be incredibly dangerous for a rabbit.
While rabbits can swim, they prefer not to and there is a potential that they could become very ill if they are left wet for long periods of time.
Furthermore, ducks love to have free range over the land whereas rabbits are typically penned in. Most responsible rabbit owners know that their pets need a good amount of space to exercise but this is almost always enclosed other the rabbit may make a run for it.
Living in a restricted space like this could cause a duck a lot of stress, which can eventually lead to more serious health problems.
Ducks aren’t too fussy about the state of their environment. While they aren’t incredibly dirty animals, they certainly don’t require the level of hygiene that is expected by a rabbit.
Rabbits like their home to be clean and they tend not to make large amounts of mess. They will toilet in one area and other than throwing a bit of hay and bedding around, they’re relatively easy to keep clean.
But since ducks will often defecate around the enclosure without much care for where their droppings land, this can be difficult for a rabbit who may take refuge in its own clean corner of the cage.
Moreover, the wet droppings of a duck may contain bacteria that could be harmful to a bunny.
Rabbits are curious and they will eat pretty much anything they can get their paws on. This means that they will be very tempted by the duck feed in the pen.
However, if the rabbit ingests these pellets, it could cause serious problems in the gut.
Moreover, ducks can cause high levels of damage to the grass which rabbits will feed on leaving them with far fewer options when it comes to food.
If there are stacks of hay or rabbit feed placed around the cage, the ducks won’t have any issue in messing these up. It’s not that they will do this maliciously, it’s just in their nature.
Ducks And Rabbits Won’t Get On
In the wild, rabbits are prey animals and they will instinctively hide from anything that is larger than them. If you attempt to place a rabbit in with a duck, or several ducks, this will result in a lot of fear.
Rabbits are susceptible to heart attacks and going into shock from things that humans might not deem to be a threat at all. But to a rabbit, these things are incredibly serious.
What’s more, if you are placing adult animals in the same enclosure, regardless of the species, they are going to want to fight for dominance. In rabbit colonies, there is always a dominant male and the same can be said for ducks.
Drakes will readily fight for dominance and for both animals, this aggressive behavior will be obvious when they are housed together.
While fights among the same species will usually end peacefully with a winner emerging victorious, fights between ducks and rabbits could result in one animal seriously harming the other.
How To Keep Ducks And Bunnies Together
It might not be possible to keep ducks and rabbits in the same enclosure but you can still have both animals living in your home or garden. The most important thing to do, if you don’t already have your pets, is to introduce them while they are still young.
Animals are much more receptive to meeting new friends when they are babies. If a pecking order has been established as adults, they won’t take so kindly to a new member regardless of its species.
While the ducks and rabbits will have their own private enclosure, you may want them to have free access to a communal area and this is OK provided they are supervised.
However, we would suggest making sure that any food is kept as far apart as possible. This will prevent the animals from interfering with each other’s supply.
You might also notice that they animals simply do not get along and this is OK. Provided that they aren’t regularly fighting, you cannot expect them to become best friends.
Unfortunately, social media has a lot to answer for and thanks to a wealth of photos featuring inter-species friendships, pet owners think that this is the norm.
The ducks and rabbits might not cozy up and groom each other, they may exist peacefully alongside each other and that’s the best you could ask for.
But even if the animals do appear to be getting along, don’t be tempted to move them into the same space. They will still need their own shelter to take refuge if things get a little too much.
Rabbits and ducks are both popular pets and while it might seem like a good idea to house them together, they won’t get along and the set up could be stressful for both animals.
Your pets may enjoy a common social space but it is important that they have their own enclosures for sleeping, eating and quiet time.