The majority of rabbits diets should be grass/hay and wild plants. Pellets should be viewed as an optional supplement, not a main food.
-Golden-brown short strand hay
-Broccoli/chard/kale/cabbage - brassicas are gassy and can lead to bloat, also bladder sludge
-Fruit & root veg - high in sugar and starch
-Extruded pellets - contain wheat, soya, oats which aren't good for rabbits
Rabbits need to be provided with a variety of safe wild plants. Here are a few places that have great info:
-Green long strand hay
-Herbs, dried (or fresh) wild plant mixes, flowers, roots, twigs & bark
-Small amount of cold pressed grain-free pellets, an optional extra that are easy on their digestive systems
The vast majority of pellets on the market have poor quality ingredients that contribute to gut problems and obesity. Pellets should not have ingredients like soybean hulls, wheat feed, soybean meal or molasses.
We recommend cold pressed forage pellets such as Bunny Nature, Hay Box (same as Bunny Nature but cheaper) or Meadow Menu or to feed pellet-free. Grass pellets like Emerald Green can be a good supplement for outdoor buns in the winter
Wild plants - the natural diet of rabbits
Some of our rabbits enjoying fresh forage!
Fresh is always best but depending on the time of year there might not be much around. There are quite a few websites that sell dried wild plants such as Nature's Grub/Bunny Bistro, Meathop Fell Forage, Twig & Nibble, Just4Rabbits, Hay Experts, Hay Box etc. Alternatively you could have a go at drying your own forage in the bountiful season ready for winter which is great for saving money.
Some of our rabbits enjoying dried forage!
The only supermarket fresh food that suits rabbits are herbs such as coriander, dill, mint, parsley, fenugreek. They're easy on their digestive systems, unlike brassicas or root vegetables. Often the best place to buy fresh herbs are Asian supermarkets, those are the only shops we've found to sell fenugreek. Most other supermarkets will still sell dill/mint/parsley/coriander though. Why not have a go at growing your own at home too!
Some of our rabbits enjoying fresh herbs!
Our rabbits love having a handful of Readigrass mixed in with their hay.
It's also worth finding out if you have a local farm shop that sells bales of good quality hay (usually £6-8 for a big bale), this is much cheaper than buying small bags from pet shops. They'll also likely sell big bales of Readigrass/Graze On
Look for nice greenish sweet-smelling hay.
Plastic wrapped bags of hay from pet shops are usually not good enough for rabbits to eat, they're often soft, chopped too short, brownish and the plastic wrap causes them to sweat and mould.
Rabbits shouldn't eat shop treats, even if they're marketed as being 'suitable'. They usually contain wheat/corn/oats and sometimes seeds. Besides, rabbits enjoy whole plants so much that those should be considered all the 'treats' they need!
Make sure to provide a bowl of water not just a bottle. Rabbits need to be able to drink in a natural position lapping from a bowl. A bottle should also be provided though as a back up in case the bowl gets knocked while you aren't around.