BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > HABITATS AND TOYS > Living Large: A Flemish Giants Home
Last Post by Sarita at 12/29/2013 10:14 AM (30 Replies)
|
Author Messages

User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/07/2012 2:57 AM
Hello, new here but been lurking for a time. I've recently decided to get my first pet in many years and have been overwhelmingly drawn to the Flemish Giant. Been voraciously studying (enjoyed this site the best) and have a pretty good idea of how to go but just wanted some advice. I live in a large 2 bedroom apartment with only my wife and her two Cockatiels. My indecision lies in the choice of habitat.

At first I thought to have an area in the living room 4'4ft by 3'6ft set aside for an x-pen but my wife suggested maybe the 7ft by 2'10ft closet (less obtrusive but poorly lit and ventilated). Another thought is to use our office but it's a little cluttered and I'm worried the cockatiels will stress the rabbit. The kitchen is also a thought, but nowhere where I've searched had owners done that so it might be a bad idea. In the end I plan (hope) my rabbit can be free ranged and have the run of the house but I wonder if it's necessary to build that up or can I just start that way with them? If so is a cage still necessary or can I just get a dog crate and lay out their things near it? So many options. Of course, this will be after I take the proper time to bunny proof things. 

Thanks in advance for any help.

User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
Forum Leader
17686 posts Send Private Message
8/07/2012 3:09 AM
I totally agree with Free Range for a Flemish Giant. I think alot of this is going to depend on the rabbit - some rabbits can be free range immediately (and that is usually an older rabbit) but if it's a young rabbit and not yet altered I would do an x-pen since it will be temporary and you can move it around and it's easy to clean and spacious. I totally agree that a closet is a terrible idea as well.

I don't think the cockatiels will bother the rabbit either - I have one that squawks occasionally is noisy with his toys and I think my rabbits just drown him out although I have a hard time dealing with it sometimes.

User is Offline FrankieFlash
Michigan
1715 posts Send Private Message
8/07/2012 3:55 AM
I agree with Sarita about x-pen. Have you thought of whether you will be adopting or something else? Just a thought but if you adopt a flemish giant, you know what size they will be if they are an adult because they've stopped growing rather than a baby that could grow in a range of size. I don't think the cockatiels will bug the rabbit but make sure if they drop or fling seed, that it's not in his space and the bun doesn't eat it. Seeds are bad for buns. Also, not to say all buns are this way but mine doesn't mind it when my moms are sq-walking away, it's when they take flight that scares him.

User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/07/2012 4:35 AM
I will back up the advice that you have gotton already. I have a 8 month old Flemish Giant named Blue. it took a little while to get him to settle down on not pooping where ever lol, but we need to give him a lot of room for play!! I would work on getting to let him free roam, they are too large to keep in a pen for long periods of time.
 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline Hunny's Momma
Beautiful New England
123 posts Send Private Message
8/07/2012 12:44 PM
I have to chime in here also... I also have Flemish buns (2)... 7mo old Hunny & 2mo old Ashes. We live in a 3 bedroom apartment with a conjoined dining/livingroom & Hunny is pretty much free roam, only places she's not allowed are the kids bedrooms & that's only cause trying to get a 7yr & 10yr to pick up after themselves is well... self explanatorily, lol. & Ashes will be free roam also once she is spay, done marking & 100% bonded with Hunny. They also share a (temporarily divided till fully bonded) 4' x 10' pen. That is where their litter boxes are along with the food/water dishes, some toys etc... We also have areas with hidey boxes, tunnels & toys in 3 different sections of the apartment as well & Hunny has made her own special spot under the diningroom table. Eventually (I'm hopeful) that Ashes will be as well behaved as Hunny & we will no longer need to keep them locked up when we are sleeping or gone for long hours... We also have plans to add a 2nd story to the pen once they are bonded completely...

User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/07/2012 5:29 PM
Thanks all for the considerate advice. After discussing it with the wife we've settled on the idea of making the office the pet room and putting a pen there while we house train the rabbit. I only fret a little since the room has the kitchen and dining area before the living room and I worry it may be too far away from the family center.

As for where I'm getting the bunny. Most likely a breeder nearby. I've adopted animals before and while I'm usually all for it, I want the experience of raising a rabbit for the first time to be from a baby up. That way the next time I'll skip the headache and get a proper adult

To those that own Flemish Giants, any advice to give to a first timer? I've owned cats, a dog, fish and parakeets and even tended in farms before, but never personally took care of a rabbit.

User is Offline Hunny's Momma
Beautiful New England
123 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 1:32 AM
Having it's own bunny room is best really esp if you'll have to keep him/her confined for long hours. I don't expect it'll take long to litter train as long as you start from day one. Hunny @ 9 weeks old at the time (being my 1st bun ever, well since I was a kid) took less then a week till she was 100%. Though she still "marked" until she was spay. Ashes was 6 weeks when I took her home & she is about 98% and she's been with us for almost 3 weeks now. But Ashes also still & will continue to mark when she's out and about for playtime until she's spay (another 2 months, our vet will spay at 4mo because of their large size). As I'm still a rookie Flemmie momma I'm still learning myself but I will say they CAN EAT! Lol,

Hunny (7mo old & about 10.5-11lbs) eats about 1-1.5 cups of pellets a day, unlimited hay & about 4 cups of veggies (split between breakfast & dinner) and she gets snack (slice of fruit or baby carrot) after breakfast & at bedtime.

Ashes (just over 2mo & about 3lbs) is a real piggy, lol. She get unlimited pellets (actually eats about the same as Hunny), Unlimited hay and I've just started her on greens this week right now she's eatting about a cup (split) & I know she wants more after she goobles it up but we don't want an bunny with an upset belly, lol. She also had her 1st piece of strawberry last night... so far so good...But other then the hearty appetite & having to bunny proof - (Hunny stopped chewing things she wasn't suppose to, fingers crossed it will pass with Ashes too...) I personally feel they are like having a cat OR small dog... but BETTER!!

User is Offline Hazel
864 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 3:15 AM
Hunny's Momma: When did you start limiting Hunnys pellets? I might get a Flemish on october, so I'm trying to learn also. I hope it's ok I'm asking this in here, not trying to hijack your threat Troller!
"You ain't buna fide!"

User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 3:16 AM
Another questions. I'm planning to build a NIC pen, and keep reading conflicting articles on if it can be two story or not when it comes to these bunnies. The negative opinion states that they are two big to make effective and comfortable use of a 2nd floor. Anyone have firsthand experience?

User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 4:05 AM

My Flemmie has a three story nic condo that I built and I have no issues. but I also have experience working with wood and building things. if you do build on make sure it is steady enough for his weight!!! and extra zip ties are reccomended!!

 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 5:10 AM
Wow Bullrider, that is impressive. Mind if you share the dimensions of that pen? I think I have comparable space, and my wife is handier then I am so between is we could manage something like that I think. Kudos.

User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 5:16 AM
your welcome, anytime!!
 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 5:28 AM
42" wide X 46" deep x 69" tall. I used untreated Plywood for the Flooring and put lanolium on that. and I hade to put some 2 x 2 's under the bottom floor for support unless you don't plan to put casters on it. the shelves have holes drilled in the sides and are ziptied to the levels. I used regular hinges on the ramps so I can lift them for easy cleaning, and in the front made a fold down door also for cleaning. lol and I used a large tub from walmart for a litter bin lol
 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline skunklionshow
City of Brotherly "Shove"
1247 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 6:22 AM

Dh & I have been wanting a Flemish for some time.  We found a farm near us that raises them for food (so Bad!), so we might do a rescue of sorts, but we've decided to wait until our pet herd thins out some.  I'm really partial to lionheads.  I wish I could find a flemmie/ lionhead mix (what a mess that would be!)....

More Flemmie Pics PLease!

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." Ghandi


User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 6:26 AM
where are yall located? Talor's Bunnies ans berries in Missourri raise flemmies for show and are good people
 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline Hunny's Momma
Beautiful New England
123 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 12:17 PM
*Hazel -----> I actually never started "limiting" her pellets... 1-1.5 cups is all she wants to eat - I use a 1/2 cup scoop and I put one scoop in her bowl at breakfast & one at dinner... and another at bedtime ONLY if the bowl's just about empty.   

User is Offline FlemishBlueBunny
52 posts Send Private Message
8/08/2012 4:46 PM

Sherlock is my first bunny since in 20 yrs (I was a lil girl and my Mom did most of the work). So when we saw a Flemish Giant for the first time 2 yrs ago my Hubby and I knew we just had to have one. After a yr of looking and learning we got one. We got him from a lady that breeds show Rabbits and is very concerned with health and standards. Our baby fit the health bill just not the standards because of parent colors. He has been a house bunny from the moment we got him home. He had a room at night but was free roaming even with our dogs. (sometimes I believe he thinks hes a dog) When we take him out he is a show off. Which is good since most people want to pet a giant rabbit on a harness. We are in the process of building him a larger pen since he has out grown his room but the door will be opened most of the day.

OK on to my advice socialize your bunny young with as many different people and animals as possiable (safely of course) because even though he might be in your home most of the time. You will have to take him out once in a while. And a friendly outgoing social bunny is better than a scared timid uptight bunny. Sherlock loves going to the vet for his nail trim.

Sherlock (7months)and our big mouth Dutchess


User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 12:15 AM
Ok, got the NIC, now a question on height. I set out a space of 5ft'10in length by 3ft'6in width. Now I'm contemplating the height being 4ft'8in. Is that high enough to provide adequate space with 2 levels for the bunny to enjoy or is that too short and should make it 5ft'10in?

User is Offline Hunny's Momma
Beautiful New England
123 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 1:48 AM
Personally I'd do the 5' x 10" if it's gonna be a closed cage with levels... you want to allow ur bun enough room to stand up straight & periscope... and I know my Hunny is well over 2.5ft tall when she stretches up to be nosey...

User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/14/2012 5:10 AM
I agree with Hunny, Blue stands up and he is just over 3 feet tall, plus he is brave you dont want to risk yours trying to hop out!!! then you can get a broken bone or worse!! Blue stands up and pariscopes all the time so I had to be carefull. Good luck building!!
 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/16/2012 10:32 PM
Hi folks, still haven't gotten the rabbit but my preparations are underway. I need additional advice on the practical side of a Flemish Giant as a house rabbit. Litter box for instance. Are the large ones sold here at BB big enough for them or do I get a cat one? If so, is there an alternative to the screen they sell at BB that I can use? (I hear things like plastic canvas, or a window screen mesh might work inthe same vein).

What about urine guards? I see a lot of NIC cage pics and few of them use them, are they necessary if the bunny is being litter boxed trained? Is 4 inches high enough if they are needed?

I also want to buy a feeder, but not sure what size one would be necessary. Any suggestions?

Heh, at this point, can any owners of very large rabbits just tell me the hurdles they've gone through to accomadate the larger proportions and the solutions they've come up with?

Thanks

User is Offline Hunny's Momma
Beautiful New England
123 posts Send Private Message
8/17/2012 9:57 AM

Both my Flemmies were super easy to box train BUT like all rabbits till spay/neutered they will mark... Since Hunny's been spay her potty habits have been 100%.  Ashes is all boxed trained as well except she isn't spay yet (too young) so she does still mark.  I have the largest litter box Walmart had for cats with very high sides and its ok for her BUT when they are bonded I will have to get a bigger/wider one (found one at Petsmart)... here's a pic of Hunny in it when she was almost 4 months old... now she fills in just about front to back & she does pee high up so def need the sides, sometimes her bum looks like it's over the side but she adjusts herself b4 she goes...

As far as a feeder... I use heavy ceramic dog dishes for both of them... the grey hay rack/feeder that's in the pic became more a toy & got picked up & banged against the side of her pen so we don't use that one anymore.

Besides having to have a large pen & high gates (if you don't want them in the hall or a certain room) & having to buy lots os veggies every week... there really isn't anything "special" I've had to do to accomadate by big buns (lol, big buns). 

With allowing them free range they're like having a big cat or a lil' dog...

 

 


User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/17/2012 2:13 PM
What about steps or ramps leading to a 2nd floor, which is better, easier, and more fun? And would NIC floors with a pegboard and some dowels be strong enough to support the big rabbit? I'd get plywood but I don't have a drill handy or the environment to do major alterations on wood.

User is Offline Hunny's Momma
Beautiful New England
123 posts Send Private Message
8/17/2012 3:51 PM
That's def a bullrider question... my buns are in a covered xpen... when I add the 2nd level (once buns are bonded) it will be completely open. I plan on picking up a sheet of 4' x 8' flooring to lay on top of the pen and then adding a hiding box, a comfy rest spot & toys. Also where I have their pen set up they will be able to look out the window. Hunny can jump right up no prob as it's only 2' off the ground just needs a blanket so she don't slip, chances are Ashes will be able to jump that no prob also. Hunny's only locked up at bedtime right now and I could prob leave her out with no problem I just keep it locked for my own piece of mind but during the day even when we are gone she's got run of the place (she pretty much just sleeps under the diningroom table all day). When we are home Ashes pen is open but she prefer to stay inside... she'll come out run for a bit then right back in to veg out...

User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/17/2012 4:21 PM

LOL ok well lets see. food dish... I use a pet dish that attaced to the side of the nic cage. I got it at Tractor supply for $5.00 because Blue would dump his food or carry it around at first. and his water I do not use a bottle!! Flemies need lots of water so I got a Small dog auto water dish from walmart i believ that was about $6.00. I do have to give hom water prob twice a day.

Now for the cage ramps I took the same Plywood that I built the floors out of and cut them to size. then I got one of those rainbow colored Log toy from Petsmart and took the individual logs and cut them to the length of the ramps width. I drilled four holes and ziptied them through the log and onto the ramp. Sometimes he uses them sometimes he just skips them, depends on his mood.

any other questions please just asK I am glad to help.

 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline bullrider76543
Joplin MO
1291 posts Send Private Message
8/17/2012 4:24 PM
Oh the Litter box, I almost forgot, I just used a storage tub from walmart I believe you can see it in the picture of his cage. and on the first ramp I ran out of the colored logs so I just used some 1x1 untreated wood attached the same way.
 photo bbsignature_zps33af2ebb.jpg

User is Offline Theresa
64 posts Send Private Message
8/28/2012 4:12 AM
So excited to find this thread - and so many other ones related to Flemish Giants! I have to go introduce myself and my bun over on the welcome thread, but had to post here.

My Roscoe is about 4 months old, and he is already pretty good sized, so I ended up buying a storage box at Walmart for about $4 on sale - then I bought a roll of the small squared chicken mesh wire - and hubby cut it to size for me with a tin snips. Then we taped it off and sprayed the edges with something called Flexseal - you've probably seen the commercial where the guy replaces the bottom of a boat with a screen door and waterproofs it? The squares are too big to completely seal the edges, but it takes away the sharp edges so I don't snag my fingers when I take the screen out.

I basically bought pressed wood pellet fuel, put that in the bottom of the box, then the screen on top, and then some cheap grass hay (got from a friend who has horses) spread out on top of the screen to protect Roscoe's feet. I also built a hay-rack out of a wire basket I got at the dollar store and hung that over the litterbox with some good Timothy hay in it. I was absolutely floored that Roscoe, who had been in an outdoor hutch with no litterbox - using this method based on advice from this site - he was 98% trained within the first 24 hours of being home. I say only 98% trained becuase he isn't neutered yet, so he still marks with a pellet or two here and there.

Roscoe's "home" right now is an extra large dog crate in the living room until he is neutered and fully litter trained. I will be giving him his own room eventually. He has free range of the house if we are home, but must be confined while we are not present because I have two dogs and I don't trust them unsupervised - at least not yet.

I will post a pic later, don't have one with me here at work.

User is Offline Troller
60 posts Send Private Message
8/29/2012 5:16 PM
Is there such a thing as too large a litter pan? I got one of these at home depot http://m.homedepot.com/p/Large-Mixi...02086174/. Basically a tub measuring 36in, 24in, and 8in deep. Is it just to big or will it suit the purpose and be comfortable enough?

User is Offline Larry
2 posts Send Private Message
12/29/2013 7:03 AM
I didn't look to see when this was posted but thought I would share some of my experiences. We recently bought a Giant Flemish, a blue, she was very timid at first also she was breed when we picked her up. Don't think the sellers were quite honest about the age. But that really didn't matter to us because we wanted one anyway. We had a very unussal wind storm out here, 65 mile an hour winds. So we put her in the car port until I got her cage made. I enclosed the carport by the way. The last day of the wind storm she aborted the kits. Very sad about it. You will see the picture of the cage I built in a sec. So we bought another, a grey. He was just a baby. How he got his name Poptart is for another time. This rabbit was was born out side in a wire pen, quite a messy place really but he was healthy. He didn't like being picked up or played with or anything. House breaking this rabbit was very easy. Most animals when in a enclosed space will pick a spot to do their pooping and such. So after we saw where it was we put his box there, and he goes there every time to do his duties. The best part of this is we can move his box and he will use it where ever we put it. He is a part of the family and he knows this. All my rabbits including the Flemish live out side in a motel of sorts. They also roam the back yard at times when I am out there working. They do get under foot from being curious and wanting to help out. Still have to put a proper roof on this. The white tube you see in the back of the cage in a heater for them. Also the dividers come out to make one very big cage, 16ft.

User is Offline Larry
2 posts Send Private Message
12/29/2013 7:06 AM
The pictures didn't post, don't know why but if you want to see them just email me.

User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
Forum Leader
17686 posts Send Private Message
12/29/2013 10:14 AM
Hi Larry, thank you for posting but we do ask that members do not pull up old posts and this one is over a year old - I am going to lock this thread.

We also advocate rabbits living indoors as well.

BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > HABITATS AND TOYS > Living Large: A Flemish Giants Home

---