Any last ideas to save them?

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Kimchilla

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I'm sure there's 500 threads about this and I feel like I've read half of them.
Is there anything else I can do!?

4 day old litter of kits.
Doe hasn't eaten her pellets since 4-5 days prior to their birth or since. Not sure why. She's eating her hay, she will eat veggies, won't touch pellets.
I don't think she's making much milk? She evidently fed them at some point or they wouldnt be here. But they're thin, "dry" and as of this evening not leaping up to be fed much.

I've held her on them, I've tried syringing a few KMR and goat milk but cannot get them to swallow anything.
I have a doe with 9 week old kits. Any chance if I put her in a cage with them that she'd feed them?
 

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user 36296

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have you tried goat milk I herd that is supposed to make them strong and healthy👍
 

JBun

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Are the pellets a new bag, a very old bag, or smell moldy or seem off in any way? Do you have other rabbits that eat the same pellets without any problems? Are you feeding her alfalfa hay, and what cut(leafy small stems, coarse, or mix) is the hay you're feeding her? Is she eating lots of hay?

The other doe may take them in if she's still producing milk and nursing her kits. You would need to wean the older kits by removing them or the doe, to a new cage/pen. Then I would take some of that does litter/bedding with her scent and rub it all over the new kits to get her scent on them, before very carefully seeing if she'll accept them. This needs to be approached with extreme caution, as she could very easily injure them if she doesn't accept them.

But even if she does accept them, she may not be ready to nurse them for several hours, depending on when she last nursed her own kits. And if the kits are already weak from dehydration, they may not last that long. In which case, other intervention may be necessary to stabilize them until the doe is ready to nurse again.

Be aware that it is a risk to try the kits with another doe, or to hand feed (high risk of aspiration pneumonia occurring) the kits. But it does sound like the kits are deteriorating, so some immediate intervention is necessary or you very well could lose them. Whether that's attempting hand feeding them or trying them with your other doe, that's something you'll need to decide.

If the kits won't try and nurse or accept hand feedings because they're dehydrated and weak, first it's important to make sure they're warm, as weakened kits will chill, and a hypothermic rabbit won't eat well or at all. They'll need to be safely warmed up if they're cold.

Then I would very carefully syringe warmed(not hot) unflavored Pedialyte electrolytes, that contains no artificial sweeteners, to restore fluids and get their blood sugar back up, as dehydration can cause them to become hypoglycemic and weak. Not a lot is needed, just enough to restore blood sugar levels. After that they should start acting more responsive and accepting of being fed milk.


If in doubt or having any medical concerns, it's always best to consult with a knowledgeable rabbit vet.

 

Kimchilla

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Thankyou!

Last night we were up entirely to late syringing a little goat milk and KMR into them. A few took it well, most would not swallow or would push it back out their mouth, I'm having a hard time getting them to do anything more than let it drain back out of their mouth!

The doe with 9 week old kits seems like she still has milk, she seems more full to me than these kits mom. She's in a colony, so I put her in a hutch with a couple of her kits until I'm ready to make the move.

I have 23 rabbits and their all eating pellets except these kits mom. She is eating 2nd cutting alfalfa hay, but not very quickly.
 

user 36296

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sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo so sorry I didn't see that you already tried goats milk and KMR I didn'e read that part. Are they doing any better? I couldn't imagine having 23 Rabbits THAT'S SO MANY!!!!!:eek:😍
 

LadyGrey

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If the babies are too weak to latch i resort to tube feeding. Its probably too late to get your hands on some but i have found it to be an absolute godsend when trying to save babies on their last legs.

Its more realistic to feed your mama more veggies high in water like fennel. Go find her handfuls of real grass thats more moisture. It takes a while for first time moms milk to really start coming in or does who haven't been breed in a while. I'll sometimes even feed our moms the milk formula (its important to use milk supplements with less than 2% fiber). I use Dumor formula made with real animal fats, or i do 20%juice 80% water solution. If your lucky she'll drink it up like crazy and the extra fluid will show up in the teets.
 

Preitler

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You can also supplement the does food with oatmeal, it's easily digestable and they generally love it.
 

Kimchilla

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Thankyou! I did start picking the doe grass yesterday and that seemed to supply some milk this morning. I held her on them, a couple times today. This evening they were popping up a little when I opened the nest! Their still dry and the bellies arent super big but it will of course take time to go the other direction. I'm hopeful between feeding them goats milk and trying to get their mom to eat they might pull through!

I'll certainly try offering her oats! I'm feeding her alfalfa hay, grass, carrots, celery, sun flower seeds, calf mana... Offering her pellets. She picks at the feed but she does eat veggies and grass well as of today.


@Sweet Bunny here are some of them, the does!
IMG_20230522_200111964.jpg
IMG_20230522_200309465~2.jpg

IMG_20230522_200345629.jpg IMG_20230522_200954089.jpg
 

Jocee

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I think someone mentioned it above, but giving the babies some unflavoured electrolytes helps millions to hydrate babies that are having trouble feeding, or are runts.
I've experienced it a few times with a couple of runts in a litter, and it helped them perk up. It may not work every time, but for both cases, I used it in, it worked wonders.
I do hope they start feeding better
 

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