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Rabbits/Using weed killer with rabbits


Hi Dana,
I have 2 gorgeous bunnies whom I love very much. I have a massive hutch for my babies but I still let them out every day for 6 to 8 hours in the back yard for a good run and play. I live with a girlfriend and she wants to Weed n Feed her lawn. How long do I need to keep my babies locked up before letting them out for a run again? I am worried because while they are out playing they are constantly grazing on the grass. I don't want my babies getting poisoned or sick.


Dear Joanne,

NO Weed 'n Feed on the lawn where rabbits graze!  Nasty toxic, and has a very long "half life" once it's out there.

I would recommend you simply mulch the lawn with good, organic compost soil and use a flame-based weed killer (fun!).  You can get them at Home Depot:  a propane tank with a nozzle.  You point at the weed and burn it.  No chance of evolving resistance, and completely nontoxic to the bunnies.

If you treat with Weed 'n Feed it can take weeks and weeks and weeks before the lawn might be safe to graze again, depending on how much rain, etc.

I would not risk it.  Go organic.  It's better for the bunnies, for you, and the water table, too.



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Dana Krempels, Ph.D.


I've lived with companion rabbits for more than 35 years, and consider them members of my family. I can answer any questions about the biology and health of rabbits, from the commonplace to the unusual. But please note:

RULE #1:

Find a rabbit vet at for immediate help, and don't risk your bunny's life by spending time asking questions online! If you can't get in touch with your vet, read these Emergency Sick Bunny Instructions.

If you have found a wild baby rabbit, please read these EMERGENCY INSTRUCTIONS FOR WILD BABY RABBITS and then use this link to FIND A LOCAL WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR who can give you the right advice.

RULE #2:
Help me help you! Please make your subject line informative if you have an urgent question. then LET ME KNOW IN THE SUBJECT LINE so I can give your question highest priority over non-urgent questions. If you don't do this, then I can't guarantee timely assistance!

For all the best, most accurate rabbit health, care and behavior information, visit The House Rabbit Society.


I have been rescuing and rehabilitating domestic and wild rabbits for about 30 years. I have written articles for many rabbit rescue publications, as well as for the veterinary journal, Exotic DVM. I own EtherBun, the internet's largest listserve dedicated to health, care, and behavior of domestic rabbits.

Houserabbit Adoption, Rescue, and Education, Inc. (H.A.R.E., Inc.) president National House Rabbit Society (Board member)

Exotic DVM
Warren Peace (Journal of the House Rabbit Society of Miami)
Various newsletters of the House Rabbit Society, nationwide

Ph.D - Biology
B.S. - Biology
B.A. - English

Awards and Honors
Lightspan Academic Excellence Award for web site on rabbit health and biology

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