Bunny passed away, can’t seem to overcome grief and guilt..

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Rsjm

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This is a very long post, but I need to find the words to describe the situation, I apologise if it is too lengthy.

My beloved 7 and a half year of lop passed away Wednesday noon.. i didn’t order a post mortem to find the exact cause of death, in part cause of financial constraints, and also partly cuz I didn’t want to find out the reason why (how much of my fault it was..) I just know it was due to her bloat/ GI stasis.

I have 2 rabbits, and she was a joy in my life. I can’t believe she’s gone. She’s had a few rounds of GI stasis throughout the years, and after the first few times with visits to the vet, I learnt to treat her myself with belly massages as well as syringe feeding her with water and food.

On Tuesday around 6pm, I realised she was pooping large soft masses that stuck to her butt. She was clearly uncomfortable and did not want to eat, drink, or move. I left her for a while and waited till evening to see if it fit better/worse. At 10pm, she was still the same. So I syringe fed her some water and massages. She didn’t seem weak, the usual bunny-loaf posture and could still hop around to find her comfortable spot/position.

On Wednesday morning (about 12 hours after symptoms appeared) i woke up to find her in the same place as the night before, staying there for the whole night. I massaged her a little more, and thought that I should give it a bit more time before bringing her to the vet, since it’s only been 12 hours and her bouts usually lasted 24-36 hours before getting better with home treatment.

I went out to get some ridwind, and gave her a long belly massage before feeding her the ridwind at 1130am on wednesday. Up till that point, she was in her bunny-loaf position. She looked upset and clearly uncomfortable, but did not look weak or dying.

I went to take a shower, and was gonna take her to the vet after that. When I came out, she was sprawled on the ground looking very weak with her paws sprawled all over. I panicked, and ldrove as fast as I could to the vet (30min drive)

My beloved bunny passed away on the way to the vet, less than 24 hours after she started exhibiting symptoms, and barely 30mins after the last round of massages and ridwind. I can’t help but think that instead of helping her, I made her condition worse. The massages worsened the bloat/stasis instead of helping her. That’s the only reason I can think of that her condition worsened so quickly in less than 24 hours.

I can’t get over it, and I don’t know if I ever will. My lovely bunny had a good few more years with us, and I let her down by failing to get her to the vet on time. I had a similar situation many years ago, where my puppy passed away on the way to the vet too. Coincidentally, it was on the same date. 23rd October 2002. I blamed myself for not being faster, not catching onto the signs earlier. Tried to show my other rabbit that she’s gone, but he can’t seem to understand and it breaks my heart.

My lovely bunny only had me to count on, and I let her down. I work from home so I spend about 8 hours with my bunnies everyday running around my room. I am devastated and I’ve been telling myself this is just a bad dream, and I’ll wake up from it. No words can describe the pain and grief I feel right now. What do I do from here, how do I overcome the guilt? How do I continue living my life, cuz I can’t imagine life without her right now, especially when her life ended prematurely due to my own mistake.

please reply with pictures of your bunnies as well, it would mean a lot to me..
 

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Gelly

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Oh, she was gorgeous. She lived a long and happy life with an amazing bun-parent. You were in no way neglectful and you have nothing to feel guilty about. It's normal to blame yourself and fish out all the ways it was your fault. I moved out of the country a couple years ago for a little and in the 4 months I was gone, my cat passed away. When my family told me, I blamed myself completely thinking if I'd been there, she would have been alive. But the truth is, it was her time and there is no sense in blaming yourself. Remember her for all the good times instead of focusing on the end. I gave my bun an extra squeeze in her memory.

here's a picture of Rémy :)
 

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Kittylion

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I am so sorry for your loss. I can see how much you loved your precious bun and your pain and grief are overwhelming. It's normal to do, but don't beat yourself up. You did not do anything wrong, just the opposite! You lovingly cared for her and did all that you could to pull her through. Don't forget that bunnies are meant to hide illness as a survival skill, for all you know she might have had cancer or some underlying illness. You did what had worked for her in the past, but it seems it was her time to go over that Rainbow Bridge. Take comfort in all the sweet memories of the life you shared with her and from your surviving bunny. She was such a beautiful bun and I know it feels like a hole in your gut right now, I've been through it and I know. But her memory should be a blessing. And you have absolutely nothing to feel guilty about, truly, accept that. You did well by her, bringing her through the stasis before. The only bad thing about bunnies is that they don't live to fifty.
 

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Rsjm

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Oh, she was gorgeous. She lived a long and happy life with an amazing bun-parent. You were in no way neglectful and you have nothing to feel guilty about. It's normal to blame yourself and fish out all the ways it was your fault. I moved out of the country a couple years ago for a little and in the 4 months I was gone, my cat passed away. When my family told me, I blamed myself completely thinking if I'd been there, she would have been alive. But the truth is, it was her time and there is no sense in blaming yourself. Remember her for all the good times instead of focusing on the end. I gave my bun an extra squeeze in her memory.

here's a picture of Rémy :)
Remy looks so calm and happy to be around you. Holly was the same, always lying everywhere being happy around us. Her surviving hus-bun is a bit more wary. Standing up whenever we get close and panicking easily. Thank you for taking the time to reply to me as well, means the world to me. Please give remy a treat today on behalf of Holly :)
She used to love bananas. Wish I had the chance to give her more..
 

Rsjm

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I am so sorry for your loss. I can see how much you loved your precious bun and your pain and grief are overwhelming. It's normal to do, but don't beat yourself up. You did not do anything wrong, just the opposite! You lovingly cared for her and did all that you could to pull her through. Don't forget that bunnies are meant to hide illness as a survival skill, for all you know she might have had cancer or some underlying illness. You did what had worked for her in the past, but it seems it was her time to go over that Rainbow Bridge. Take comfort in all the sweet memories of the life you shared with her and from your surviving bunny. She was such a beautiful bun and I know it feels like a hole in your gut right now, I've been through it and I know. But her memory should be a blessing. And you have absolutely nothing to feel guilty about, truly, accept that. You did well by her, bringing her through the stasis before. The only bad thing about bunnies is that they don't live to fifty.
It’s so hard to, but I guess it’ll just take time. Your bonded bunnies look adorable, used to have one of those cardboard houses as well before Holly destroyed it I was aware of GI stasis, but just did some reading and turns out bloating is different from stasis, and somewhat more severe and requires immediate vet intervention. Perhaps that is why her condition worsened in less than 24 hours.. hope this information can help anyone else reading.
Thank you as well for taking the time to reply me. Treats for your bunnies on behalf of holly please :)
 

JenGibs

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Let me start by saying I’m so sorry this happened. But you know what? You are amazing! You cared for her so much and we all can tell. Most bun parents don’t know to show their bond-mate that the other bun is gone. The fact that you gave him time with her, even though you think he didn’t understand, that was a very important process for him. A lot of times the other bun searches and searches for their friend for a long time. He will connect the dots because you gave him that gift. Also, we know he will be just fine because you are there to look after him.
Try not to be too hard on yourself. Maybe it was just her time. She knows you loved her and did everything you could. I wish we could keep our fur babies forever but they are not meant to be here that long. They come and bless us in their own special way and then go off to the rainbow bridge. Though so heartbreaking, they give us an unconditional love that we all need in our lives and in return we get some of the most devoted friends we will ever have.
Let yourself grieve. Look back at your memories and spend bunches of time with your other bun. I know it’s so early to think about but if he is a friendly fellow, thinking about trying to find him a bun-mate sooner rather than later is good for him. I don’t know how long they were together. I know my Georgia chapter of House Rabbit Society has so many bunnies that need loving homes. They know their personalities so well and provide sessions with as many bunnies as it takes until your little guy would find a friend. They are truly very helpful and they want nothing but the best for their babies as you do for yours.
Take care and let us know if we can help with anything.
Camilla (the duckie) sends her love and Wally (the football player) sends his love too.
 

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Alyssa and Bugs♡

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I'm sorry. She was beautiful.

Remember you did absolutely everything you could have and even if you would have taken her to the vet the very second you had suspicions she still might not have made it. Try to remember the good times and not her death. Stay strong and know we're always here.
 

Rsjm

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Let me start by saying I’m so sorry this happened. But you know what? You are amazing! You cared for her so much and we all can tell. Most bun parents don’t know to show their bond-mate that the other bun is gone. The fact that you gave him time with her, even though you think he didn’t understand, that was a very important process for him. A lot of times the other bun searches and searches for their friend for a long time. He will connect the dots because you gave him that gift. Also, we know he will be just fine because you are there to look after him.
Try not to be too hard on yourself. Maybe it was just her time. She knows you loved her and did everything you could. I wish we could keep our fur babies forever but they are not meant to be here that long. They come and bless us in their own special way and then go off to the rainbow bridge. Though so heartbreaking, they give us an unconditional love that we all need in our lives and in return we get some of the most devoted friends we will ever have.
Let yourself grieve. Look back at your memories and spend bunches of time with your other bun. I know it’s so early to think about but if he is a friendly fellow, thinking about trying to find him a bun-mate sooner rather than later is good for him. I don’t know how long they were together. I know my Georgia chapter of House Rabbit Society has so many bunnies that need loving homes. They know their personalities so well and provide sessions with as many bunnies as it takes until your little guy would find a friend. They are truly very helpful and they want nothing but the best for their babies as you do for yours.
Take care and let us know if we can help with anything.
Camilla (the duckie) sends her love and Wally (the football player) sends his love too.
Yeah have been thinking of getting a bun-mate for him, but I don’t know when is it a good time to do so. 1 month? Or 3 months? On one hand I feel like I’m “betraying” her by replacing her, while on the other hand I know that she will never be replaced and I’m giving another bunny an opportunity for a better life. There are rabbit societies where I am, and will most definitely adopt one rather than purchase. Her surviving hus-bun is turning 8 next month, what age should his new partner be ideally?

I’m not located in the states, but I couldn’t find anywhere else to share my thoughts and feelings outside of this forum, since not many people where I’m from understand bunnies and the emotions that i am able to have with my bunnies. I am very, very grateful to all of you here for responding to me. Thank you Camilla, and thank you Wallie ❤ <3
 

Rsjm

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I'm sorry. She was beautiful.

Remember you did absolutely everything you could have and even if you would have taken her to the vet the very second you had suspicions she still might not have made it. Try to remember the good times and not her death. Stay strong and know we're always here.
That’s what I’m slowly trying to accept as well, since she’s been giving us mini health scares for the longest of times. From what I read, there is not much vets can do for bloats, and even with surgery had I got there early, there would have been a high chance of failure. I guess I can only seek solace in that I gave her the best life that I hope she had. (Certainly hope she feels that way)
Thank you very much for your reply as well. Sending love to Alyssa & Bugs too
 

cosmoluna

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so so sorry for your loss <3 don’t blame yourself, it was just her time to go. hug her husbunny tight and love on him as you grieve. cosmo and luna send all their love, and i’ll give them some banana in her honor :)
 

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Rsjm

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so so sorry for your loss <3 don’t blame yourself, it was just her time to go. hug her husbunny tight and love on him as you grieve. cosmo and luna send all their love, and i’ll give them some banana in her honor :)
Thank you <3
Cosmo & Luna look similar to my 2 buns as well. I'm feeling slightly better. Although the sight of having Hoppy alone in the room with me, without Holly, still triggers me and makes me cry. I guess this will take time. Very thankful for all your love and support, and taking the time to respond to me.
 

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Sorry for your loss. We lost Annabelle 17 days ago at the vet. I was shocked when the vet called and said she passed away. This forum of friends will give you lots of love and support you need. You were in no way neglectful and you have nothing to feel guilty about. My vet said rabbits are beautiful, fragile creatures.
 
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Hi, first of all im so sorry for your loss! It’s such a hard time but she knew how loved and looked after she was and you did an amazing job with her! I lost one of my buns toffee at 7 months old and I too felt like I could have prevented it, as it was due to his neutering operation and I remember that I just felt so guilty that I chose to have him neutered and what if I hadn’t have done that? He’d still be here. I now find peace in the fact that he was loved and one spoilt little boy, even if I could only give him that for such a short period. He had a best friend ginger who went in to be neutered at the same time and ginger was left alone without his best friend( even if it was just a baby bunny buns) and everyone’s situation is different but within a month i chose to adopt a little girl so that he wasn’t lonely. I saw it as not replacing toffee but giving another bun a chance at the life he would have had. I hope that you’re ok soon and that you feel better. She was gorgeous. RIP
 

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Th


Yeah have been thinking of getting a bun-mate for him, but I don’t know when is it a good time to do so. 1 month? Or 3 months? On one hand I feel like I’m “betraying” her by replacing her, while on the other hand I know that she will never be replaced and I’m giving another bunny an opportunity for a better life. There are rabbit societies where I am, and will most definitely adopt one rather than purchase. Her surviving hus-bun is turning 8 next month, what age should his new partner be ideally?

I’m not located in the states, but I couldn’t find anywhere else to share my thoughts and feelings outside of this forum, since not many people where I’m from understand bunnies and the emotions that i am able to have with my bunnies. I am very, very grateful to all of you here for responding to me. Thank you Camilla, and thank you Wallie ❤ <3
You will never replace her. Each of our fur babies are different. I like that you would see it as giving another bunny an opportunity! I would reach out to a few rescues and vets to get their opinion on it. I don’t think there is a set time frame for trying to get him a friend. Just remember that it will take some time and patience to find a good match for him.
 

Rsjm

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Sorry for your loss. We lost Annabelle 17 days ago at the vet. I was shocked when the vet called and said she passed away. This forum of friends will give you lots of love and support you need. You were in no way neglectful and you have nothing to feel guilty about. My vet said rabbits are beautiful, fragile creatures.
Indeed they are.. I was fully expecting her to live to at least 10, if not maybe 12 given how well I thought I was looking after her. Shatters my heart thinking that I took those extra years away from her. Was not prepared for or anticipating it at all. I’m very thankful for this forum, literally joined yesterday as I couldn’t find anywhere else to share my emotions and grief. Thank you, for taking the time to reply me as well. Do send your buns my love and kisses from holly as well, she would have liked that.
 

Rsjm

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No matter how hard we try, we all lose our babies. Some are with us a long time and others bless our lives for only a short while. Just how life is. Rest in peace little girl.
Thank you, it was the best 6 years I’ve ever had, and will never ever forget her. It’s so special how a bunny can make you feel. Never thought I’d feel like that.
 

Rsjm

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Hi, first of all im so sorry for your loss! It’s such a hard time but she knew how loved and looked after she was and you did an amazing job with her! I lost one of my buns toffee at 7 months old and I too felt like I could have prevented it, as it was due to his neutering operation and I remember that I just felt so guilty that I chose to have him neutered and what if I hadn’t have done that? He’d still be here. I now find peace in the fact that he was loved and one spoilt little boy, even if I could only give him that for such a short period. He had a best friend ginger who went in to be neutered at the same time and ginger was left alone without his best friend( even if it was just a baby bunny buns) and everyone’s situation is different but within a month i chose to adopt a little girl so that he wasn’t lonely. I saw it as not replacing toffee but giving another bun a chance at the life he would have had. I hope that you’re ok soon and that you feel better. She was gorgeous. RIP
I’m so sorry to hear that. How did ginger react to it? My buns spent 6 years with his bun-mate, but now he’s acting normal/ non-Chalant, and I can’t tell if he’s okay or if he still doesn’t get it. Hurts me still. How are both your bunnies now? I’m feeling the same guilt as you had, if only I brought her to the vet sooner, if only I fed her more hay, if only I brought her for more checkups. Still beating myself up, although I’m still trying to rationalise with myself. It sucks, and I hope it gets better in time.
 

Rsjm

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You will never replace her. Each of our fur babies are different. I like that you would see it as giving another bunny an opportunity! I would reach out to a few rescues and vets to get their opinion on it. I don’t think there is a set time frame for trying to get him a friend. Just remember that it will take some time and patience to find a good match for him.
I don’t think she will ever be replaced. She was completely different from so many different bunnies that I see on Instagram/ in videos/ from friends etc, and I knew I had a very special bun. She spent a lot of her time grooming her hus-bun and he seldom reciprocated, but she still did it nonetheless. Initially she would bite me at the slightest discontent, but after a few months she never bit me anymore, no matter how much I annoyed or played with her. I guess she knew I wasn’t a threat and loved me too. Thank you for your replying me as well Jen, it really does mean the world to me. Thank you.
 

Rsjm

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She was the goodest girl as well. Although she spent most of her day in my room, her litter box and playpen was about 20feet away, where her food/water/hay and litter box were. Hoppy would always pee and poo in my room as I figured it was far and he was lazy to go back to the playpen. Holly would always make the effort to travel all the way there to do her business, and come back to my room immediately after. Very seldom would she ever do it in my room. She was honestly the best and “goodest” buns ever. I had her cremated today, and have her ashes collected in a small urn. Is there anything I could do or place I could contact to turn some of the ashes into jewellery to be work, or has anyone done something similar before?
 
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