Rabbits/Rabbits

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Question
Hello
Would like to know if its possible to walk pet rabbits on a harness?
e.g. To the park or garden

Answer
Helana,

The answer to this question is both yes and no, and here's why (sorry it's not more simple, but I hope the information helps you).

Yes - you can put them in a harness and take them outside. You can also look into outdoor play gates (only with supervision as predatory birds and other species may take advantage otherwise). If you want to actually take them out and about somewhere, I can recommend a pet stroller.
I take my bunny out for a walk in one, and he absolutely loves it. Mine is fully enclosed by a zipper which connects a canvas material to a thick coated mesh panel - great for fresh air and sunshine but still feeling safe and enclosed. Extra bonus - everyone stops to coo at your bunny when they realize it's not a kid in there.

No - I wouldn't recommend a harness specifically, for several reasons:
- Not all bunnies like a harness, and you may end up with upset bunnies as a result. I had one girl, Jessica, that just looked MISERABLE the few times I tried to put one on her.
- You could end up unintentionally injuring your bun. I've not experienced it myself, but unexpected binkies have caused injury in a harness. One jerk or jump in the wrong direction could leave your bun with a broken limb or torn muscle.
- They don't really... "walk". They sniff, they roam, they might even take a flop. Walking a bunny is not like walking a dog, or even seeing how cats peruse an area. Frankly, a harness is a bit boring - it's like you keep waiting for something awesome to happen.

If you wanted to take them to the park, I'd recommend the combo of stroller and play gate. If you have a garden, a play gate surrounding the area and some close supervision should be fine, but again, with supervision.
I loved giving Jessica outside playtime because she would binky and dance and wiggle her tail everywhere. Clyde, however, was my escape artist and there was one occasion - I'll never forget - where he almost got out... like, had to take a diving leap to catch him because he was on his way, out. I urge you to be vigilant. You'll see fun bunny behavior, but if your bun is a problem solver like Clyde is, they will see this as a challenge.

Hope this helps and I'd love to see what you come up with. :)

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Christine Whetstone

Expertise

I am not an expert on wild rabbits, only domesticated rabbits. I can answer questions regarding habitats, behavior, diet, health, pairing/bonding - pretty much anything having to do with owning a rabbit.

Experience

I've owned indoor rabbits for the last 10 years. During that time I've gained experience in areas like bonding exercises, understanding behavior, warning signs of sick bunnies, how to handle more serious illnesses (GI stasis, abscesses, eye problems, etc.) and more. It's rare that I come across an inquiry that I do not already know the answer to.

Organizations
House Rabbit Society, supporter of local rabbit rescues

Publications
http://ilovemyhouserabbit.com/

Education/Credentials
Personal experience beats the pants off of a degree, in my opinion.

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