General information

Feeding rabbits with pellets


Depending on the conditions of maintenance and provision of farms with feed in rabbit farms, two main types of feeding are used:

  • combined (mixed)
  • dry (full-granules).

With the combined type of feeding, the main feeds for rabbits are green mass, hay, hay cutting, silage, haylage, potatoes, carrots. The best of the green fodder are alfalfa, clover, wicker-oatmeal mixture, kale, from natural herbs - meadowsweet, wormwood, plantain, nettle, wheatgrass, etc. In addition, the root crops, cabbage leaves, oat straw, twig food from deciduous trees, pine needles.

In addition to the main feeds, mixtures of cereals, legumes, bran, cake, meal, as well as protein-mineral-vitamin supplements or special feed of industrial production are used. In feeding rabbits, you can effectively use various fats (pork, lard, lard). The level of fat in the diet, especially of growing young, should be at least 5%.

To increase the biological value of protein in the rations of rabbits, it is necessary to introduce small amounts of animal feed - cow's milk, buttermilk, whey, meat, meat and bone, fish and blood meal.

Depending on the saturation of the concentrates, the rations of feeding of rabbits are divided into concentrate, semi-concentrate and low-concentrate.

Low-concentration diets (20-30%) in terms of nutritional value are ineffective, therefore in most rabbit farms semi-concentrate rations are common. In the summer, they include feed or grain forage (up to 65% nutritionally), legume-cereal grasses (up to 20%), and succulent feed (up to 15%).

With intensive methods of rabbit breeding, from 60 to 80% of concentrates and 20-40% of grass meal or grass briquette are introduced into the ration of rabbit and growing young stock from the time of jigging to sale. Such a diet is considered to be concentrated, digestible protein contains 13-16g per 100g of feed units. It provides a fairly high growth rate of young and good reproductive ability of rabbits.

The feed consumption and the efficiency of its use by rabbits are influenced by the physical properties given by the feed. Rabbits, like rodents, prefer feeds that have a solid structure. Therefore, the most effective granulated factory-made complete feed, that is, the so-called dry type of feeding. The diameter of the granules should be 205mm, length not more than 10-12mm. If the granules are large, they are pre-crushed. In addition to the granules of the main herd of rabbits during the period of sukololnost and lactation give from 7 to 15%, and the replacement of youngsters from 15 to 30% of hay or grass briquettes (on energy nutritional value).

Full-scale granulated feed mixtures on industrial-type farms and, in particular, in the production of broiler meat, are particularly widely used. The composition of such feed mixtures includes highly nutritious food: grass meal, concentrates, protein and vitamin-mineral supplements. 100g of such granules should contain 85-90g of feed units, 0.85-0.91 MJ of exchangeable energy, 17.6-18.3% of raw material, 13.4-14.1% of digestible protein.

The meat production of broiler rabbits is economically justified only at high fecundity and milkiness of the early rabbit breeds (chinchilla, New Zealand whites and Californians). During the year at least three okrols should be obtained from the female and 20-25 young rabbits should be fed.

When fully fed, rabbits at 10 weeks of age can have a live weight of 2-2.5 kg. When feeding rabbits with pellets, they should have free access to drinking water at any time of the day.

The advantage of feeding rabbits with complete granulated feeds (dry type of feeding) compared with the combined (mixed) is the best balance in energy, protein, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, more efficient use of all nutrients and lower feed costs per unit of production.

Separate feed, such as rice waste, chopped oats, wheat germ and peanut meal is not recommended in the feed. In the composition of feed grain feed should be 20-30%, grass meal - up to 40%, fish meal and flax meal - up to 8%, meat and bone meal and dry yeast - up to 5%. Toasted soybean meal is introduced into the feed without restrictions.

Rabbits are fed 2-3 times a day, at the same time. Rabbits are given most of the feed in the evening, since by nature they are nocturnal animals. In the morning they give half the daily norm of concentrates, in the afternoon hay or grass, in the evening the rest of the concentrates and silage or roots. When using complete granulated feed, bunker self-feeders are filled every 2-5 days. Fine-grained mealy feeds are fed to the rabbits when wet.

Rabbits in the first two weeks after jigging should be given the same feed, which they received, being under the rabbit. Replacing one feed with another is recommended gradually over a period of 5-7 days. Especially carefully you need to replace dry feed juicy and vice versa.

Grass is fed to rabbits only after wilting. Root vegetables give washed and crushed raw. Silo and root vegetables are best mixed with concentrates. When using tops of root crops, fodder cabbage in the rations of rabbits must include hay.

Cereal feed before the distribution of rabbits, it is desirable to crush or flatten. Cakes and pulses must be crushed, mixed with bran and fed in a moist form. Bean grains are soaked for 3-4 hours before feeding, then crushed and mixed with other feeds.

Rabbits should be provided with clean fresh water. When feeding with dry food, adult rabbits drink from 0.3 to 0.5 liters of water per day.

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There is a wide variety of rabbit meat breeds. Rabbits of meat breeds are bred on our farm, namely such a breed as the White Giant rabbit. Breeding rabbits for meat is one of the most economically profitable areas of animal husbandry because of the high rate of payback of funds spent, which is determined by the rapid reproduction of rabbits. Rabbit meat is a dietary meat rich in vitamins and other beneficial substances. Rabbits giants give dietary meat, which is rich in nutrients and vitamins. This product is not only palatable, but also quickly absorbed by the human body. Rabbit meat has no contraindications: it can be used in food for both young children and the elderly, without fear of the onset of adverse effects.

We can buy a mini-farm for breeding meat rabbits

Rabbit breeding farms appear in many parts of the country. Rabbit breeding is handled by a large number of both industrial farms and private entrepreneurs. There is an increasing need to provide new farms with reproductive material, therefore, the sale of meat breed rabbits is as important for the company as the supply of rabbit meat. You can buy giant rabbits from our company, which provides such services. Sale of meat rabbits is made not only to organizations.

Individuals can also buy from us rabbits of meat breeds for breeding and keeping rabbits in country houses or garden plots. Rabbits are recommended giants - breeding them is not only very exciting, but also a profitable occupation, since you end up with an extremely tasty and healthy delicacy - rabbit meat. Young and adult breeding rabbits are always on sale; their sale is made on a farm.

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Feeding of children

Recently, more and more widespread feeding rabbits complete granulated feeds, which contain about 40% grass meal and at least 15% digestible protein based on dry weight. Table 6 summarizes the approximate feeding rates of such feeds, when they are given without the addition of grass, hay and succulent fodder.


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Hello, I hasten to share experiences and ask knowledgeable people. I keep Rex rabbits from spring, I feed granules TEST + hay alfalfa + vegetables. I bought rabbits in Moscow, they come to me excellent, but in 2-3 months they lose weight. The first round was almost successful, in the litter from 6 to 8 rabbits, 2 out of 6 rabbits threw rabbits. second okrol 2 rabbit rabbit and went offspring, the rest did not even tear down. the third is okol - one threw 8 pieces, didn’t tear down, there was no milk, one gave birth to two pieces, everything was also the same, one gave birth to 6 pieces - five came out and another one had to crawl.

Features of digestion in rabbits

The stomach in rabbits is single-chamber. Gastric juice in rabbits is secreted continuously and has a higher acidity. Of great importance in the digestion of rabbits are colon, the volume of which exceeds the volume of the stomach in 7 & 8 times. Under the influence of enzymes of microorganisms in the large intestines, partial digestion of cellulose occurs and biosynthesis of a number of vital substances, including water-soluble vitamins.

Rabbits, unlike other animals, have caprhagia: they eat their own nocturnal soft feces, the dry matter of which contains 28% protein. Kaprofagiya is not a disease, but an integral part of digestion, contributing to better digestion of feed and increase the usefulness of vitamin nutrition.

It should be noted that rabbits are somewhat better than chickens, but worse than other farm animals they digest the fiber of roughage. Hay cellulose is digested by them only by 19 & 26%, leaves of green meadow plants, cabbage and root crops by 40-60%. Carbohydrates are digested by rabbits much better: from cereals by 75–85%, from potatoes by 90%, from green fodder by 85–95%. The protein of various feeds is digested in different ways: hay - 50-75%, herbs- 60-85%, bran- 75%, grain -70-80%.

Rabbit nutritional and feeding requirements

The need for energy, nutrition and biological active substances in rabbits is more dependent on age and physiological state. According to the All-Russia Research Institute of Fur Production and Rabbit Breeding, during the period of mating and suckering, the exchange rate increases by 8–14% per unit of body weight, and by 43–46% at the beginning of lactation compared with a non-irradiated period. These changes in metabolism are explained by the activity of the sex glands, increased oxygen consumption due to the development of the fetus and lactation.

Energy is normalized in grams of feed units and in MJ of exchangeable energy. The need for digestible protein in the diet of rabbits per 100 g of feed units is, g: for rabbits during the period of rest and repairing young animals older than 4 months - 12-16, for suckers and lactating rabbits-15-18 g, for young animals up to 4 months-16 - 17

Table 1

Daily standards of energy nutrition of rabbits.


Pros and cons of pelleted feed

Feeding domestic animals with high-quality compound feeds is a convenient and correct solution, because such a diet is enriched with all the necessary vitamins and trace elements, and not only.

The main advantages of such food are:

  • saving time and effort on feeding,
  • convenient use: giving the rabbits a certain daily rate (indicated on the package), you provide the animal with the necessary substances for the normal functioning of the body, in addition, such feeding eliminates the risk of obesity,
  • suitable for fattening rabbits, because the combined food gives the maximum result in a minimum of time,
  • the use of such food eliminates the need to make stocks of cereals,
  • the necessary vitamins are contained in the granules in sufficient quantity in order to maintain the immunity of the animal.

But despite the huge number of positives, feeding the feed has certain disadvantages:

  • any kind of feed is relatively expensive, so this food is quite expensive,
  • unscrupulous manufacturers: some feed companies use substandard products, which significantly reduces the usefulness of such nutrition.

The composition of the feed in granules for rabbits

All feeds are conventionally divided into 2 groups:

  • full-length - with the addition of herbs and other essential trace elements, which allows you to maintain all the necessary balance in the animal's body,
  • concentrated - granules, which are used as a basis, and when fed to them add coarse and juicy additional components (hay, straw, grass, etc.).

Main components

Both the first and second types of granular nutrition have a similar basic composition, which necessarily includes:

  • grain (oats, barley, corn, millet),
  • bran,
  • a piece of chalk,
  • salt,
  • yeast,
  • bone flour,
  • sunflower and soybean meal.


As additional food units also add:

  • meat and fish meal,
  • vitamins and minerals,
  • dry and fresh grass
  • antibiotics (rarely).

How to choose high-quality food when buying

To be sure that your favorite rabbits eat a quality product, you need to pay attention to several very important details when buying pellets:

  1. Food must be well packaged: plastic packaging must be tight.
  2. Look at the composition: nutrition in no case should not contain chemical additives and preservatives - only natural ingredients.
  3. Granules should have a glossy finish. Old grain has a matte unattractive color.
  4. The composition should be diverse: the more grain and other types of components it contains, the richer and more useful the feed will be.
  5. Fruits and vegetables should be well dried. It is advisable to look closely at them to identify mold.

Compound feed of own production

To start your own mini-production at home, you need to purchase special equipment:

  • mill-crusher or grinder for cereals,
  • grass drying machine
  • Straw cutter (hay and straw chopper),
  • mixer,
  • device for granulation (granulator).

As practice shows, only a granulator will become an obligatory acquisition, although some craftsmen manage to assemble this unit themselves. The power of the device affects the performance, and the principle of operation is the heat treatment and pressing of raw materials. The size of the granules depends on the diameter of the holes, which can be adjusted using different nozzles.

The rest of the devices are designed to prepare the raw materials, and every owner who has not yet practiced feeding rabbits with their own production of feed, will appreciate the functionality of the crusher and dryer.

In a large farm, the granulator pays off quickly, and the excess ready-made feed can be put up for sale.

For their own needs, the amount of feed is determined by the weekly need of animals, because when stored for more than 1 month, the quality of the prepared food deteriorates significantly.

Vegetable platter

Rabbit breeders prefer to pellet feed with their own hands, because the composition of the mash, the origin and properties of raw materials can not be controlled by buying finished products. You can only distinguish good from bad food by throwing a few pellets into the water. Edible and safe mixture when wet will begin to break down into its constituent elements, without changing the volume.

Low-quality raw materials in the water swell, a similar process will occur in the animal's digestive tract, which threatens to bloat and obstruction.

Making food in pellets from their products, each owner can use standard recipes or come up with their own version of the composition, which will include the following components:

  • hay and silage
  • corn,
  • green herbs,
  • tops of garden plants,
  • vegetables,
  • cake and bran,
  • minerals,
  • animal supplements
  • vitamins.

Сено и силос вводят в гранулированный комбикорм для кроликов в любое время года, свежескошенную траву из-за высокого содержания влаги лучше не использовать.

Основным компонентом гранул должны быть различные травянистые растения, богатые полезными и питательными веществами:

Люцерна для кроликов особенно полезна, недаром ее называют царь-травой. This fodder plant contains a mass of valuable substances that satisfy the body’s need for essential vitamins and trace elements, and is safe to feed animals of any age. Fresh grass causes intestinal bloating, but granulated alfalfa will be an indispensable source of food and energy for animals.

Grass granules contain at least 35% ground hay or grass.

The second main component of the feed will be various cereals and legumes:

Granules for rabbits with grain - an important source of protein, fiber, vitamins E and group B, a valuable nutritional component that improves metabolism and promotes rapid weight gain.

The content of cereals and legumes in the feed is not less than 25%.

In addition to hay and legumes, it is recommended to granulate dried vegetables (carrots, fodder beet), as well as tops of garden plants.

Features of the diet

Granulated food as the basis for feeding adults ranges from 180 to 200 g for one rabbit per day; during the mating period, the norm increases to 230 - 250 g.

The females bearing the offspring, give 180 g of feed and add at least 70 g of hay. Lactating rabbits need at least 330 g of feed in pellets, plus 110 g of dry grass. 10 days after okrol, the daily feed rate is increased to 440 g, and the portion of hay is doubled. Mommies experience the greatest need for nutritive elements a month after ca. Then the amount of concentrate increases to 700 g, and hay to 230 g, and this ration is maintained for another 2 weeks.

Young animals should not be fed with pelleted feed of enhanced nutritional value, where the amount of grass and cereals exceeds 40%. For baby rabbits, it is recommended to granulate herbal mixtures with the addition of dry acidophilus or milk and start feeding from the age of 1.5 - 2 months at the rate of 140 g per individual.

High-quality granulated feed rabbits eat with pleasure and without residue, while receiving a complete set of essential nutrients. It has been proven in practice: mixed feed is better absorbed, gives high results of growth, nullifies the loss of young stock and contributes to the lactation of lactating females.

Its granular feed is a significant savings, allowing to reduce or completely eliminate the consumption of other food, as well as a rational way of feeding rabbits and confidence in the health of their pets.

Benefits of feeding with feed

Feed for rabbits

If you feed the rabbits incorrectly, that is, what gets under the arm, then it will be impossible to get tasty meat and high-quality skin. Detailed information on how and how to feed rabbits at home can be found in this article.

A full-fledged diet for these animals should contain all the useful vitamins and trace elements that are contained not only in fresh and green feed, but also in feed.

Among the advantages of feeding feed should be highlighted:

  • simple transportation and storage
  • the right amount of nutrients
  • optimal balance of energy-protein ratio,
  • quick weight gain
  • saving time on farm maintenance,
  • minimization of funds for the purchase of feed.

In addition, the introduction of a combined feed into the diet reduces the risk of gastrointestinal diseases in animals, which develop as a result of ingestion of toxins affecting many vegetable and cereal crops.

What is better - grain or feed

Grain is one of the main food of rabbits. The best product for them is oats, it contains many nutrients.

In addition, oats are dietary, and taking it as a basis for feeding the animals can not be afraid of the development of obesity.

Rabbits can eat only grain. But, firstly, it will increase the cost of the feeding process, and secondly, it will complicate this procedure. In addition, the farmer will be difficult to obtain high-quality meat and skin.

And the next article tells about how to make a drinking bowl for rabbits.

Is it possible to feed rabbits with one feed?

The recipe for proper nutrition of the rabbit - quality feed

The composition of the granulated feed includes all types of concentrated feed, vitamins and mineral supplements..

Many farmers translate rabbits to feed only feed. To improve its composition, probiotics and coccidiostats (medicinal substances) are added to prevent the animals from developing coccidiosis (the liver and the intestines of the rabbit are affected).

Types and composition of feed

There is a lot of feed for rabbits. Some are used for fattening meat breeds of animals, others are acquired for young individuals, and still others for females on demolitions or during lactation. Feed concentrates are the main type of feed for rabbits.

Rabbit feed recipes

The specific weight of concentrated feed in annual consumption reaches 50%. The group of concentrated combined feed includes the following grains:

Daily allowance of feed

The daily feeding rate of rabbits depends on the breed, season, and physiological characteristics of the animals. When mixed feeding in the normal state, females and males per day should:

  1. In summer: green food 450-550 g., Concentrated feed 50-60 g.
  2. In winter: fresh food 200-250 g., Concentrated 60-70 g. And hay 110-160 g.

When feeding with complete granulated feed, adults are fed 3-4 times a day. Consumption rate - 250 g per head. In the diet of pregnant rabbits should be present:

  • fresh feed 600-750 g., concentrated feed 70-90 g.,
  • during lactation: green fodder 1200-1500 g., concentrated feed 130-160 g., hay 250-300 g.

From the following video You will learn how to make feed for rabbits at home:

But most of the valuable substances to be absorbed must be returned to the small intestine. To solve this problem, a special maneuver is carried out in the body of rabbits - fermented fiber is enveloped in a mucous film and removed from the intestine through the anus in the form of a special litter - cecotroph.

Rabbits eat these soft balls immediately after they appear, which happens mostly at night, and thus valuable nutrients are reintroduced into the intestine, where they penetrate through the wall into the bloodstream.

Below: large cecotroph balls, rich in nutrients, vitamins and fiber, at the bottom - small dark feces balls

Improper feeding of ornamental rabbits, lack of fiber feeds in the diet, can lead to suspension or complete collapse of the digestive processes, which becomes critical for the rabbit and to save the pet's life, the owner has to resort to forced feeding.

Selection of too many feeds with a high content of proteins, carbohydrates and excessive feeding with these feeds for an ornamental rabbit (of course, from the best of intentions and great love for a pet) totally unacceptable!

This will speed up the bowels and lead to indigestion, the formation of viscous or liquid stool, kidney disease, the emergence of excess weight and a host of other health problems caused by banal improper feeding.

The owner of the decorative rabbit must choose the optimal combination of feed so that the digestive system works constantly and without failures. And it is not as difficult as it may seem!

Feeding decorative rabbits: we select the diet

The main food for home decorative rabbits - QUALITY HAY!

It is dried aromatic grass that is exceptionally useful for the ornamental rabbit, will fill the need for fiber, will be a source of nutrients and will stimulate the work of the gastrointestinal tract.

In addition, the ornamental rabbit, when fed with coarse hay and twigs, regularly grinds off ever-growing teeth, which can cause problems in the mouth or even create a situation where the pet cannot eat.

The lack of nutrients - protein (including essential amino acids), fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals is replenished by giving concentrated feed, most often full-fledged granules.

Part of the need for protein can be blocked by careful entry into the diet of hay legumes. In the form of a source of carbohydrates and as a treat, decorative rabbits are offered juicy food - fresh fruits and vegetables in small quantities.

In the minimum volumes and only as encouragement, but not high-grade forage, give dried fruits, nuts, sunflower seeds.

Fresh grass, erroneously revered as the basis for feeding ornamental rabbits, should be given in limited portions, paying small attention to the species composition, and in a dried state.

On feeding with succulent and green feed, read in detail in the second part of the material. Feeding ornamental rabbits: vegetables, fruits and grass.

So, decorative rabbit feeding ration formed as follows:

  • 80% - hay
  • 10% - concentrated feed
  • 10% - vegetables, fruits, grass
  • plenty of fresh water

Each type of feed for ornamental rabbits has its own characteristics and approaches to feeding. In this and the next article we will take a closer look at the main components of feeding in order.

Feeding ornamental rabbits: concentrated feed

Ready mixed dry food may seem like a very convenient way to feed a domestic decorative rabbit, but it should be only a small part of the diet (up to 10%).

The problem with dry food is that it is concentrated - a lot of nutrients are contained in a small amount of it. As we found out above, this is the complete opposite of the rabbit's natural diet, which is represented by bulk fiber foods with a minimum of nutrients.

Such a discrepancy during long-term feeding with concentrated feed generates serious problems with the health of the pet:

  • digestive disorders
  • overweight and chronic diseases
  • dental growth and inflammation of the oral cavity
  • lack of activity and boredom

There are two main types of ready-made concentrated feed for ornamental rabbits: muesli and granules.

Mixes of the type of muesli are based on hammer and whole grains - wheat, barley, corn, oats, peas, soybeans, sunflowers. Additionally, they include pieces of dried fruits and vegetables - dried apricots, raisins, prunes, apples, carrots and nuts - walnuts or peanuts.

Granulated feed for ornamental rabbits often made on a grassy basis, introducing into the mixture in the manufacture of grass meal flour. The need of protein is filled with cereal crops - soy, barley, oats, wheat, and in addition, vitamins and minerals.

From left to right: muesli-type mixture, granulated feed, grass meal granules

Bright variety of muesli with well-marked, catchy inclusions of pieces of fruit seem to be the best food for your favorite decorative rabbit.

But just unattractive externally granular feed is the most suitable choice for a domestic rabbit - they are nutritious, complete and uniform.

Composition based on high-fiber grass meal is more beneficial for the health of an ornamental rabbit than feeding whole grains to proteins and carbohydrates, not to mention sweets that are more harmful than beneficial.

Therefore, in order not to spoil a healthy appetite, during feeding you do not need to give a lot of treats and dry food such as muesli, from which an intelligent rabbit can choose tasty pieces, leaving everything healthy intact and waiting for the next feeding. This is similar to the situation if the child is offered a choice of cake or porridge. Want to pamper your pet - offer a treat between feedings, in the form of a game or promotion.

So, for feeding a decorative domestic rabbit it is better to get high-quality granulated feed.

But here there are some precautions. Decorative rabbits love granulated feed and eat them well, but this is not a reason to immediately fill the additive - let's not more than expected. The balance of calories pet compensates for the expense of hay, vegetables or grass.

By carefully observing the development and condition of the rabbit, one can always understand whether feeding is complete, whether there are enough nutrients in it. If the decorative rabbit is active, it corresponds to the parameters of the weight and the appearance of its breed, then the feeding is OK. If it seems a little thin, you can slightly increase the portion of the feed or hay bean.

Remember, it is better to underfeed a little pet and then replenish the diet than to overfeed and treat the effects of obesity for a long time!

When purchasing granulated feed for an ornamental rabbit, pay attention to the amount in the composition of fiber (minimum 16–18%) and protein (12–14%). These are the main indicators by which you can judge the quality of the feed. For young animals (up to 6 months), let's say a higher level of protein is about 16%.

Granulated food is given in a small amount, at the rate of 25-30 g per 1 kg of weight of an adult rabbit. When feeding hay legumes, a variety of vegetables and grass, the volume can be reduced to 10 g per 1 kg.

Growing rabbit offer more concentrated feed, initially give plenty, but it is important not to get carried away and in time to teach kids to hay.

The transfer of the decorative rabbit to a new dry food is done gradually, mixing the new mixture with the usual one throughout the week. An abrupt change of feeding can cause a serious disorder of the gastrointestinal tract, therefore, they begin by introducing no more than 10% of the new feed.

It is important that you always have an inviolable feed reserve in your home so that in the absence of the usual variety there is no need for a sharp transition.

Our pets decorative rabbits usually consider dry food very tasty and this is a reason to once again encourage them to physical activity during feeding. One of these methods is the use of feeder toys.

A special ball with holes in which granulated fodder is poured will be an excellent toy-feeder for a decorative rabbit. The granules wake up through the hole of the ball, when he pushes it with his nose or paws. The pet will gradually figure out how it works, and then the ball with snacks will become his favorite fun, and feeding will turn into an exciting game.

A similar principle is implemented in the toy, consisting of a crossbar with cylinders movably attached to it, closed with openings. Granulated feed and rabbit are poured into the cylinders, pushing them with their noses, turning containers over, receiving a tasty reward.

Now you know enough to organize the proper, healthy feeding of an ornamental rabbit that has settled in your home.

To complete the picture, be sure to read the second part of the material. Feeding decorative rabbits: vegetables, fruits, grass.

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