Thursday, June 5, 2014

How to Build a Rabbitry

 

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SHAPE Eco Farm was in need for a safe and secure habit for our pet and meat rabbits. Our rabbitry ended up becoming more like a bunny palace than a rabbit habitat. I now understand how easy it is to spoil pets and give them a luxurious life style.

I write this blog entry with the goal of showing how our rabbitry was made and giving you some how to instructions. This entry is for the rabbit enthusiasts and anyone who enjoys DIY projects.

Here is a list of the materials we used:

Suntuf 26” x 8’ Solar Gray Poly Panels from Lowes
Six 8-foot 2 x 4 pressure treated wood
Four 10-foot 2 x 4 pressure treated wood
Five 8-foot 2 x 4 pressure treated wood
Two 10 foot 4 x 4 pressure treated posts
Six skew joist hangers
3 inch deck screws
One hundred screws with neoprene washers
Galvanized rabbit wire fencing 48” x 50’
Pea gravel

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Dig a hole at least 3 feet deep for the 4x4 posts. Place about 2 inches of gravel in the hole (pea gravel works well). Bury the post in the hole and ensure that it is level.  Attach a pressure treated 2' x 4' to the top of the posts to build a frame for the roof. 2’ x 4’s on the barn will provide support for the other side of the roof joists.

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Install joist hangers to the header attached to the barn. The 2’ x 4’s attach to the joist hangers with deck screws. Cut notches out of the joists so that they fit snugly on top of the 2’ x 4’ that is sitting on the posts.

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Construct a frame around the bottom to hold pea gravel. The gravel allows water to pass through to keep the floor dry. Wood chips will be added on top of the pebbles for bedding and to provide a softer surface for the rabbits.

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Pre-paint or stain the framework before installing screen and wire.

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Adding pea gravel to the floor of the rabbitry.

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Screening keeps out the bees and wasps and adds UV protection.

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The door to the rabbitry is custom built to fit. You can attach an adjustable tension rod to the door to add stability. Add hinges, handle and locking latch to the door.

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Add rabbit fencing to the outside of the frame using staples. A compressor and staple gun is a quick way to attach the fence to the frame.

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The roof was made with polycarbonate panels sold at Lowes or Home Depot. If your rabbitry receives too much sunlight use a solid color roof panel.

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We also added a sand box for our rabbits to dig in. My mom calls it a “Bunny House”, my brother calls it a “Bunny Palace”, and my dad calls it Fort Knox!

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