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Can Rabbits Live On Hay Alone?

Is hay the only food you have at your disclosure, and you’re wondering if your bunnies can live on this hay alone?

Hay is an essential food in rabbits’ diets because it has lots of nutritional value and is good for their digestive system and teeth.

In this article, we will let you know if rabbits can live on hay alone and the reasons for our answer.

Can Rabbits Live On Hay Alone?

Yes, rabbits can survive on a diet of hay alone, but we don’t recommend it as hay alone may not provide them with all the nutrients they need for optimal health.

Although hay makes up the majority of food rabbits take, it still doesn’t provide all the nutrients that bunnies need to be healthy.

Therefore, it is essential to supplement a rabbit’s hay diet with other foods, such as fresh vegetables, pellets, and occasional treats, to ensure they get a balanced diet.

Reasons Rabbits Shouldn’t Be Fed With Hay Alone

Although hay is so important for rabbits _we are going to list some of the importance below_ there are still a few reasons they shouldn’t be fed with only hay.

They include:

1. Digestive Problems

Although hay is a good source of fiber, feeding rabbits with hay alone can cause digestive problems such as diarrhea, constipation, or other gastrointestinal issues.

A balanced diet that includes fresh vegetables and pellets will provide a variety of nutrients that can help keep the digestive system healthy.

2. Malnutrition

Hay alone may not give rabbits all the essential nutrients they need to maintain good health.

Feeding your rabbits with hay alone can lead to nutritional deficiencies that can cause health problems such as a weakened immune system, weak bones, or growth problems.

3. Behavioral Problems

Your rabbits may become bored or frustrated if you feed them with hay alone over a long period.

This can lead to behavioral problems such as aggression or destructive behavior.

Why Is Hay So Important For Rabbits

Hay is important for rabbits for many reasons.

Below are some of them.

1. For Healthy Teeth

Hay is essential in rabbits’ digestive system and prevents their teeth from overgrowing.

Without those rough foods like hay, rabbits’ teeth grow longer than usual, but frequent chewing of the hay causes the teeth to have the necessary wear and tear the teeth needs.

2. Encourages Natural Rabbits Behaviors

Rabbits eating hay is one of the easiest ways for rabbits to engage in natural behaviors like foraging and chewing without destroying things in your home.

Having lots of hay to chew at all times means that the rate of chewing on items around the house will reduce.

3. Reduces Boredom

Bored rabbits can be very difficult to handle, and leaving your rabbit all day without anything to chew can cause them to be bored.

Ensuring rabbits are available for your rabbit can be a good way of providing sound health enrichment and helping them be happy.

Types Of Hay Best For Rabbits

Many types of hay are quite suitable for rabbits.

Below are some of them:

1. Timothy Hay

This is the most popular type of hay for rabbits. It is low in calcium and high in fiber, making it ideal for promoting healthy digestion and preventing dental problems.

2. Orchard Grass Hay

This is very similar to Timothy’s hay but is slightly softer and sweeter. Some rabbits prefer orchard grass hay to timothy hay.

3. Meadow Hay

This type of hay is a mixture of grasses and herbs found in meadows. It is a good source of fiber and nutrients, and many rabbits enjoy the variety of tastes and textures.

4. Alfalfa Hay

This type of hay is high in protein and calcium and is suitable for young rabbits or pregnant/nursing ones but, it should be fed in moderation to adult rabbits as it can lead to bladder stones.


Here are some frequently asked questions.

Is It Ok For Rabbits To Only Eat Hay?

Yes, rabbits can survive on a diet of hay alone, but it may not provide them with all the nutrients they need for optimal health.

Do Rabbits Need Fresh Hay Every Day?

Rabbits need at least one bundle of good quality hay daily, which should be as big as they are!

How Long Can Rabbits Survive On Hay?

Rabbits should primarily eat hay, so if you run out of rabbit food, your bunny can survive a few days without pellets until you get more.


Hay makes up most of the rabbit’s food and should always be available. But it shouldn’t be the only food they will be given.

Adding supplements like fresh vegetables, pellets, and occasional treats will give them a balanced diet.

We hope this article helped you know if rabbits can live on hay alone and why we don’t recommend it.

If you have other questions, kindly drop them in the comment section below.

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