Cling ons

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Whiterabbitrage

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Harvey has always kept herself clean, but yesterday and today I noticed " cling ons" on her butt fur. Just a couple goobers. She could take care of it by licking. But she hasn't. I need to know why, and if there is a problem or if this is something I will need to address from now on. And if so, how do I go about it?
Harvey is a Flemish Giant, but not over weight. She is normal weight, but closer to being underweight rather than overweight. She is very active with run time every day in the living room. She was 1 year old in January. I read that she will be considered an adult at 15 months, so she is almost there.

Let me be clear, she has not soiled herself. There are just a few cling ons like she didn't wipe when she was done. Except for that, it looks clean and healthy down there. Am guessing she has just gotten too big to reach the area? If so, can someone explain how to clean her? Otherwise I'm just going to use a damp washcloth.
 

Azerane

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A damp washcloth just with a bit of water is the best thing to use. If it's really soiled you can give a butt bath. Which is just a enough water to cover the rabbit's feet so you can bathe their butt and rinse it out. You need to make sure you dry your rabbit very thoroughly after this though.

In terms of causes, poop generally shouldn't get stuck, especially to a short haired breed. It means that for whatever reason her poops may have been softer than normal. This could be related to something in her diet, for example maybe she had just a few too many leafy greens or treats that day. If it doesn't continue I wouldn't be too worried about it, but if it continues to happen or get worse you may need to make adjustments to her diet.
 

Whiterabbitrage

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Thank you! Now that you mention it, she just started getting some alfalfa grass at the same time so that might be a connection. Thank you!
 

ladysown

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OR (if she's not neutered) be simply a case of hormones. She's old enough she doesn't need alfalfa.
 

Nancy McClelland

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It could be the alfalfa--had to go to an alfalfa free feed for our Checkered Giant as she started having the same problem--also, I cut down on her greens. We use unscented baby wipes to clean the bum unless it's really bad.
 

flemishwhite

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As I've posted before, one reason for a rabbit's dirty rear end is that if they become too fat they can't reach around to eat their cecum pellets or if they have spinal stenosis (authritis of the spine) it's painful to bend around eat and clean the cecum pellets when they come out. Spinal stenosis is a older rabbit problem, so it's likely not a problem for you. (A spinal X-ray indicates stenosis). A daily dose of Metacam, an anelgesic magically cured this problem for Bunny).

But...OK...how to check the rabbit's rear ends? They don't like to be picked up, and worse yet, they don't like to be turned upside down on your lap. How to check if they have clumps of dried cecum pellets on their bum? Simple. With them laying on the floor, take one hand and gently hold their head down on the floor. They don't mind you doing this. Next, take your other hand and just run it up underneath their rear end and feel if there are dried clumps of cecum pellets there. No need to be squemish about this. My opinion..my opinion...is that I don't regard their cecum pellets as being poop.. These soft gooyey pellets come from their cecum stomach and are passed out through their large intestine intended for the rabbit to immediately eat them. The bacteria in them are bacteria that transform cellulose to glucose, so getting this bacteria on your finger tips is harmless.

As for getting rid of hard dried clumps caught in their fur, I used a small very sharp set of scissors intended for cosmetic hair cutting (like moustachs) to just cut the clumps off. Of course, bunny will not be happy if you accidentally clip their skin!
 
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