4 week old baby attacked by my other rabbit :(

Discussion in 'General Rabbit Discussion' started by bellathebouncingbun, Jul 1, 2019.

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  1. Jul 1, 2019 #1

    bellathebouncingbun

    bellathebouncingbun

    bellathebouncingbun

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    I brought home the most gorgeous 4-week old baby girl today. She was named Lola but after today's incident, I decided she needed more luck and named her Clover (after the four-leafed clover). She has one blue eye and one brown eye and is the smallest little thing :')

    Obviously, I was apprehensive about bringing her home with my current rabbit Bella. Bella is about 10 months old and much, much bigger. She's very territorial so I was expecting her to hate Clover but after holding Clover up to Bella behind some wire (just in case), Bella was fine. In fact, she was licking Clover and wanting to see her so I let her out and Bella continued to groom the baby.

    Things started to go wrong after I opened Skype on my laptop to show Clover to my boyfriend. I got Clover out and placed her on the bed to show him and in a split-second, Bella pounced and Clover was squealing. Bella had bitten a large chunk out of Clover (just millimeters away from her spine) and there was literally blood oozing.

    I took Clover straight to the vets and the vet was very friendly and put some staples to hold the wound in place to heal and gave me a course of antibiotics: Metacam (normally for cats) and Karidox liquid.

    I now have two issues: I am petrified of this happening again and need advice on how to prevent this and help with them bonding properly. I know a lot about properly bonding rabbits and supervised sessions but Bella only needs a split-second to do some damage..

    And secondly, is Clover going to be okay? The vet admitted he doesn't exactly know as she is so young and he has little-experience with antibiotics for baby rabbits.

    I was in bits earlier and can't stop blaming myself for this happening :( Really don't know what to do
     
  2. Jul 1, 2019 #2

    JBun

    JBun

    JBun

    Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    First off, no responsible breeder or seller should ever sell a baby rabbit at 4 weeks old. Their digestive system isn't fully matured and separating it from it's mom prematurely and placing it in the stress of a new home, very often leads to critical digestive illnesses developing, which very often is fatal. Baby rabbits should be at the minimum 8 weeks old, before letting them go to a new home, and in some places it is illegal to sell them before 8 weeks.

    As for bonding, it's best to wait until the baby is fully matured, get her spayed, and your other rabbit if she isn't spayed yet, wait 2-4 weeks for the hormones to fade, then go about the bonding process properly. There's no guarantee they will bond though. Bonding two female rabbits doesn't often work as it's one of the harder bonding combinations.
    https://www.cottontails-rescue.org.uk/information/bonding-bunnies/
    http://www.saveabunny.org/rabbitcare/bonding-guide

    For a vet not to know how an antibiotic will affect a baby rabbit would make me concerned as to how experienced that vet is with rabbits. If your vet isn't very rabbit savvy, I would suggest finding a more experienced rabbit vet.
    https://www.harcourt-brown.co.uk/ve...s-that-have-been-recommended-by-rabbit-owners
    https://rabbitwelfare.co.uk/rabbit-care-advice/rabbit-friendly-vets/rabbit-friendly-vet-list/
     
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  3. Jul 2, 2019 #3

    zupper

    zupper

    zupper

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    As JBun said this is pretty bad that 4 week baby rabbit separated from it's mother and I understand that you are very excited that she's soo tiny and all, but at 4 weeks all rabbits are tiny she's still a baby and she should be getting mother's milk for another 4 weeks. It is even illegal selling rabbits less than 8 weeks old because their digestive system still weak and at 4 weeks they just trying eating a little bit of their moters dry food and her milk is helping this process so if she's not getting milk anymore you should go get cat milk replacement and feed her manually adding regular rabbit food gradually, until she is 8 weeks, otherwise se can die or have serious health problems.

    What you described as bond with your rabbit is definitely not. Firstly, she (you can't be sure at 4 weeks it is she to be honest, she could be him in fact) will be growing rapidly during the next weeks and we don't know her breed or how big were her parents but she could be even bigger than your Bella after a few weeks.

    My suggestion if you can contact person who gave her to you it is better to return her so she could stay with her mother for another 4 weeks and then you can take her back if you want, that would be best solution because she's not safe now, even if you keep them separately she won't be getting mother's milk and starting eating just dry food at this age could be a nightmare and life threatening. I am not kidding.

    So please contact her mother's family if you can or find another rabbit mother currently feeding her babies who'd take her in and feed her for another 4 weeks or get cat milk replacement and feed her manually adding dry food gradually in very small amounts.

    If you decide on keeping her please post some photo of her, her setup and her food and all and we will try to help you raising her.
     
  4. Jul 2, 2019 #4

    JBun

    JBun

    JBun

    Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    You do not need to feed cat milk replacer, and it could actually possibly cause problems when it's not needed. If she is eating her solid food really well, drinking well, and her poop isn't mushy, she hopefully should be just fine and definitely doesn't need milk replacer added to her diet. Milk replacer is only needed if she isn't eating solid food much or at all, and needs to be supplemented. Though I would suggest making sure she is eating plenty of good quality grass hay(any variety). This will help with good digestive function and may help prevent weaning enteritis occurring.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2019
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  5. Jul 2, 2019 #5

    zupper

    zupper

    zupper

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    Well maybe you're right, cat milk replacement isn't natural rabbit milk anyway, I just wanted to explain that normally baby should stay with their mother until 8 weeks, of course it happens that younger kits are getting weaned early and not necessarily all of them will die but I just worried about this little baby think it would be so much better for her to go back to her mother if possible. Hopefully OP will take a good care of her, good luck with it anyway.

    I am not sure this baby can eat solid food, they just got her today so hopefully there will be no problem with digestion.
     
  6. Jul 2, 2019 #6

    bellathebouncingbun

    bellathebouncingbun

    bellathebouncingbun

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    Hi sorry for the late reply,

    I wanted to firstly explain the mother situation. I'm almost 100% sure the mother died and the seller doesn't want the babies back at all. She told me last week all rabbits MUST go and this is why I decided to take the 4-week old in case somebody with much less experience took her.

    I have been feeding her KMR since this morning and her poops have gone from being very dry, extremely small and light brown to a more normal size and colour. She's eating plenty of Timothy hay and drinking lots of water and seems extremely happy. I stayed up until 3am last night to syringe-feed her water and make sure she was okay, and then woke back up at 6am to give her the medication. She's hopping around, grooming herself and pooping as normal. She is peeing in small patches but I haven't put sawdust down in case it interferes with her breathing so I just have a blanket down.

    I really appreciate the advice so far and have decided to take Bella to be spayed within the next week or so. This is a decision I struggled to make as I really wanted her to have her own litter some day but I understand that Clover is at risk. I used some de-stress herbal spray and sprayed it on Bella's bedding and she seems to have calmed down. She did launch herself at me this morning and drew some blood but I assume she's still alert after last night's incident.

    I also want to make it clear that as much as I love how little and cute Clover is, I'm in this for the rabbit's well-being and not because I see them as a cute little fluffy thing. Yes, the cuteness is definitely a plus but I cared more about taking the baby out of the situation she was in. The fact that she wasn't fed any hay where she was and her poop was so uneven and weird looking makes me suspect that some serious neglect took place and I am seriously considering contacting local charities to let them know about this before they continue selling such young babies.

    Thank you so much for the advice though I really appreciate it guys :)
     
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  7. Jul 2, 2019 #7

    zupper

    zupper

    zupper

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    I didn't know that you practically rescued her that's very nice of you good luck with raising her :)

    You know you can use some fresh or dried herbs for de-stressing your rabbits lavender worked really well for my Smokey also some of my rabbits like herbal teas (some don't), Fred and Bernie love chamomile tea and mint and all love dried mint it is also very good for their digestion.
     
  8. Jul 2, 2019 #8

    bellathebouncingbun

    bellathebouncingbun

    bellathebouncingbun

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    I've never thought of using natural herbs before actually, that's a really good idea. As for tea, when is the correct age for rabbits to have some?
     
  9. Jul 2, 2019 #9

    zupper

    zupper

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    Not sure I gave my rabbits dried mint and thyme since they were 8 weeks and they loved them it never caused any problem but it was winter and I had a plenty of dried herbs from my backyard.

    Fred was a rescue when I've got him in January he was sneezing so I filled his bottle with some slightly warm chamomile tea and also cleaned his nose regularly with a cotton pad with it and he was so much better in a couple days. He liked his tea and I just gave him it instead of water for a couple days, not full strength though half with water. I don't know his age he was found on street in a cardboard box I thought he was very old and ill that's why he was dumped by his owners but now after 6 months I think he was just their Christmas gift and was dumped first days of this new year I think he was about 3-5 months then he grew up a bit I think he's about 9-12 months now.

    My other rabbit lop girl Smokey was about 4 months old when she had a false pregnancy and she was so nervous during and after that even got sick and was also sneezing and had urination problems I used chamomile tea as well and for urination problems fresh cranberry tea and also dried herbs thymes, mint, lavender for when she was nervous.

    I saw you've posted a link to the spray you are using just wondering what ingredients listed on the bottle must be lavender and rosemary as well?
     

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