Do rats eat rabbits? Yes, rats can attack and eat rabbits, especially the smaller ones.
Rats are sly animals that would do what it takes to get what they want. The smell of rabbits and their droppings, uneaten foods, and old bedding can attract rats. Initially, they want those things.
However, if your rabbit gets on their way, they might attack them or their offspring. In some cases, hungry rats tend to break into nursery boxes and cages to kill and eventually eat baby rabbits or any other vulnerable creatures.
This requires them lesser effort, and they can also acquire warm shelter and food if they do this.
But if your rabbit has fully grown up, rats can be intimidated by their larger size, so I think they are safe from rats.
Not unless they would fight with sneaky rats as they use dirty tactics when they fight, including tearing, scratching, and biting.
How Do Rabbits Attract Rats?
Food is the biggest attraction to rats. If you see them loitering or lingering around your house, they are probably searching for food.
And if you have rabbits as your pet at home, this can also be a great factor in attracting rats to come to visit your house.
Rats knew very well that a rabbit is a docile animal; they tend to just ignore any rodent that enters and roam around for food. For that reason, they become the favorite target of rats. Initially, not to eat them but to eat their food.
But, do rats eat rabbits? When they get really hungry, they might as well attack and eat baby rabbits.
Aside from that, rats also like to feed on rabbit pellets. This can be an excellent source of their feast for the entire day. Another factor attracting rats is the feces of rabbits or any other animals you have at home.
Not only that, but the shelter of rabbits can also attract rats, especially when it is not cleaned or when there is a gap or space between the hatch and the wall.
They also would love to breed in the coop of rabbits as it is usually dark and warm.
Hazards That Rats Can Bring
Rats can bring harm to rabbits. Rodents are a carrier of parasites such as mites and fleas. These parasites can frighten and stress your little furry friend.
Now, if you are wondering whether or not a rat can make rabbits sick, the answer is yes, they do. In fact, they can carry various diseases.
But this varies depending on what kind of pests attacks the cage of your pet. For instance, a deer mouse can cause Hantavirus as it gets in contact with rabbit droppings.
Apart from that, Leptospirosis can also be a great hazard if you get in contact with the urine of rats.
Some other diseases that rats can bring include Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis, Tularemia, and Salmonella. If the rat bites them in terms of your rabbits, it can lead to rat-bite fever.
Another hazard that rats can bring is that they can damage your property by chewing on structures and wires at home.
How To Keep Rats Away From Your Pet Rabbits?
As a responsible pet owner, there are some things that you need to do to ensure the safety of your rabbits. Here are just some necessary precautions that you have to include:
Step #1. Create a cleaning routine
First things first. Establishing a cleaning routine wherein you make sure to allot a time to clean your bunny cage every day is a must.
For cleaning the rabbit cage, you need to remove all the toys and accessories from the cage. If you have fabric bedding, you need to wash it.
Use any disinfectant to disinfect your cage thoroughly.
If you don’t have time, then make sure you have appointed someone to do it. This includes disposing of any uneaten food, droppings, and soiled bedding as this usually attracts rats.
Step #2. Place your pet’s food in a container
Also, make sure to store your rabbits’ foods such as pellets away and in a rodent-proof container.
The rabbit pellets have a certain smell that can also easily attract rats.
Step #3. Make a rat-proof hutch
If you intend to get a hutch for your rabbits, it is also ideal that you acquire a rat-proof one.
Ensure that its wires are narrow so that a mouse or a rat cannot go through them. Conversely, make sure that the hutch’s base is solid enough to prevent its fecal from dropping on the ground.
Step #4. Place a slide-out tray for a wired mesh
If you are using wired mesh, you can put a slide-out tray that will trap the droppings, urine, and pellets.
This way, you could prevent the rats from eating them. Furthermore, you have to make sure that the wire has no holes or gaps where a rat could crawl through.
Step #5. Use rat deterrents
In addition to this, you might as well use some rat deterrents in order to keep the rats away from your bunnies and away from your property as well. There are different indoor and outdoor repellents that you can try.
You can start by putting rat traps in your rabbit’s coops to make it fully rat-proof.
If their coops’ enclosure is raised, you can also add some rat guards surrounding its legs to prevent rats from ascending onto your pet rabbit.
This is what I did with the cage of my pet, Thumper.
His cage is custom-made; I intentionally want it to be half a meter up the ground to keep him safe from rats or any other possible pest attack. And to further ensure his safety, I set up some rat traps on each leg of the cage.
Do rats eat rabbits? Yes, but only the smaller rabbits as well as their offspring. Larger rabbits can be safe from rats as their bigger size can intimidate them.
However, there is also a tendency that rats will attack rabbits if they get on their way.
Although rabbits have specific traits, including their scent, which is the greatest factor that can attract rats, you can still keep them away if you routinely clean their cage. Ideally, you have to do the cleaning daily.
The best thing to do to deter rats from causing damages to your property and from killing your baby rabbits is to lay traps along with cleaning thoroughly.
As a responsible pet owner, you should never neglect your duty to keep your pet safe.
Make sure to change their bedding, remove fecal droppings and uneaten foods as it can easily attract rats who are actively searching for food. Also, keep the rabbit pellets away and in a secured container.
Rats might be small, but they are sneaky animals that can bring a great deal of harm to your beloved furry pets.
They do not just feed on their food or attack them, but they can also transmit various infectious diseases to your rabbits.
As a pet owner myself, I fear that this case can happen to my lovely Thumper. So no matter how busy I am, I find time to clean his cage and secure his food.
If I couldn’t do it, I am sending someone to do it on my behalf.
Maria Schultz is a talented writer and a passionate animal lover who brings her expertise in the pet industry to the Petcosset team. With a degree in English and years of experience writing for various pet-related publications, Maria deeply understands the latest news and products in the pet industry. She is dedicated to providing pet owners with the most accurate and up-to-date information to help them take the best possible care of their small friends. When she’s not writing about pets, Maria can often spend time with her beloved pets, including a rescue dog and several cats.