First time bunny owner. Any help appreciated.

Help Support RabbitsOnline:

odyssey~

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 28, 2021
Messages
359
Reaction score
257
Location
ontario 🇨🇦
Not so fast lol. She's so small that she actually did sit in the meatloaf pan and pooped all over in it. I was a little shocked to find her snuggled in it this morning. 🤦‍♂️🤣 I ordered this to try and it will arrive tomorrow:


I figured I can put it low enough for her to eat comfortably but high enough to discourage her from getting into it and soiling the hay.

She sprayed on my fiance yesterday after flopping on her side and getting pets and belly rubs from her for several minutes. Of course when it happened my fiance moved quickly and Freya took off doing binkies like she did to me.

I freaking love her.
haha!
If that doesn't work out I recommend hay bags- you can use tote bag and cut out a hole and fill it with hay! or you can use an old cereal box/shoebox whatever and cut out a hole for hay (this is what I do)
Freya seems adorable and you're doing a great job :)
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
She received her evening leafy greens (1/2 cup of Romaine Lettuce). I also added half of a grape and a small bite of banana. When I checked on her an hour later, the lettuce was gone and the fruit remained. Our girl just isn't interested in sweets/fruits. I guess this is good since she doesn't need them and is perfectly happy without a sweet treat.

It does make me worry about her spaying that will be coming up. I read that a good way to give them pain medicine is to add it to a small fruit mash. Otherwise straight from the syringe into the mouth, which I'm not confident she'll be open to.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
11,133
Reaction score
6,719
Location
Utah, , USA
Some rabbits don't mind getting meloxicam, the usual pain med given for post surgery in rabbits. In fact a few of mine LOVE it and will get so excited when it's time to give meds. So your rabbit may actually take it willingly. You can always try practicing with a syringe now, starting with just plain water. Syringing always needs to be slow, giving the rabbit time to chew and swallow, so aspiration doesn't occur.

I'd say 1-2 cups greens per day for a rabbit the size of yours. You may have increased the greens amount too quickly. Usually it needs to be done one item at a time and a slow increase over at least a week, to give their digestive flora time to adapt to the new food. If you see any signs of digestive upset or mushy poop, then the sudden increase of lettuce is likely the cause.

Greens feeding info:



Medirabbit: vegetables
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
Some rabbits don't mind getting meloxicam, the usual pain med given for post surgery in rabbits. In fact a few of mine LOVE it and will get so excited when it's time to give meds. So your rabbit may actually take it willingly. You can always try practicing with a syringe now, starting with just plain water. Syringing always needs to be slow, giving the rabbit time to chew and swallow, so aspiration doesn't occur.

I'd say 1-2 cups greens per day for a rabbit the size of yours. You may have increased the greens amount too quickly. Usually it needs to be done one item at a time and a slow increase over at least a week, to give their digestive flora time to adapt to the new food. If you see any signs of digestive upset or mushy poop, then the sudden increase of lettuce is likely the cause.

Greens feeding info:



Medirabbit: vegetables
There's so much contrary information out there. Some sites say double the greens of other sites, and same for pellets, and it seems most of them have different opinion on the amount to rabbits of X weight. Some say a half cup right away, some say a cup, some say just a bite. I didn't know where to start with the lack of consistency in the information available. This is why I opted to give a half cup of just one green (romaine lettuce) hours apart. She's now had 3 half cup servings since yesterday and so far no signs of anything being upset or mushy poops. I'll keep an eye open.
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
I'm very proud of her, although if she would have complications it wouldn't be her fault, just as it isn't our fault as humans if we're born with health issues or a predisposition to them. I've learned that she was eating Muesli, along with all the other rabbits the breeder/show person at the fair had. They didn't have pellets or hay (no hay at all!), just the seed and nut mix of whatever. I didn't know that I should have gotten two weeks worth of that upon getting her and that I should have slowly transitioned her into the pellets she has now (Oxbow Essentials Young Rabbit [Alfalfa]). It's been a week and she hasn't had any digestive problems at all. She was put on Timothy Hay and Orchard Grass right away, and again no issues. Lots and lots and healthy pooping and an extremely active bunny. And now with the leafy greens I was uncertain on the exact amount to start with, and although she can still develop some problems because of them, we're 3 servings and over 24 hours in without any issues at all with pooping or a decrease in her activity. She's taken new food, a new environment, and new people like a champion.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
11,133
Reaction score
6,719
Location
Utah, , USA
I know it can be a bit confusing for anyone new to this. Everyone has a differing opinion on the greens, and most other things really. I've found that I take more into account, with opinions where several others say something similar and because it's what they've learned through personal experience, not just because they read it somewhere. But also weighed by what actual scientific and medical sources say, as well as what my own experience has been with my own rabbits, and the trial and error I've gone through with them.

I've encountered all sorts of different issues over the years. The most complicated being a few rabbits with megacolon. A lot of what I learned about sensitivities of a rabbits digestive tract and finding the right balance in the diet, was with them. Because of their condition they had to have a very specific diet, which took some trial and error on my part, until I found the right balance to keep them as healthy as possible, for as long as possible.

And just to show the importance, especially to rabbits that may be more prone to being sensitive. With my first megacolon rabbit years ago, I had no idea that anything was really wrong because I didn't really know a whole lot back then. And then it was too late and she passed because of dietary sensitivities and the sudden introduction of a new food causing stasis. So, for some rabbits these dietary recommendations are extremely critical.

For your rabbit and the greens amount, if you're feeding pellets, it's not such a big issue, as they get the needed vitamins from those. But if you're feeding a very reduced portion of pellets or none at all, then the veggies will be a more important part of the diet. I personally don't worry so much about the amount and just feed the amount and type that I want or feel/learned is best for my rabbits, based on their poop and urine output, weight maintenance, and if they remain healthy on a particular diet.

With new foods and what types to feed, the important aspects are the gradual introduction and not feeding an excess of high calcium veggies, especially if a rabbit is having a lot of calcium sediment in the urine, or thick creamy/gritty urine(a whole other health issue). I don't emphasize this just because some of the sites say this. The links I include in a post are for the most part, because it has info that I agree with because I've learned it's true through my own experience and experiences related by others, that are first hand accounts on here or other sites that I've looked at. So it's seeing what has caused problems for my own rabbits and what's helped, and what problems others have had and what's helped their rabbits.

Like gradually introducing new foods, especially high carb/sugary foods. I've learned that sometimes foods introduced too quickly with some rabbits, can cause issues. In particular, young rabbits with sensitive digestive tracts, who can even develop fatal enteric disease when this happens.

Now you may be lucky and find your rabbit is one of those with an iron gut, that nothing upsets. They're out there. I used to have a rabbit like that who could eat anything at any time, and never had an issue. She lived to be 10 and never had an episode of GI stasis. But because there are many more rabbits sensitive to changes and certain foods, slow food introduction is always the general recommendation I give here. That way if a rabbit does have a food sensitivity, then only a small portion has been introduced and so minimal upset will occur, and you know to remove that food from the diet. And the gradual introduction gives rabbits that are more sensitive to changes, time for their digestive system to adapt and acquire the microflora needed to process that new food without resulting in digestive upset.

The exception to gradually introducing food is with grass hay. Most grass hay varieties almost never cause digestive upset or issues. The rare cases I've read of involved rich early growth fresh grass and grass hay(too rich for some rabbits), grain hays with the grain still in them(too many carbs), and hay that has spoiled(makes rabbits sick). I would say grass(fresh or dried hay) is the most important aspect of a rabbits diet. The amount consumed and the balance of protein and fiber to help regulate weight, nutrition, and gut motility.

And all of this is from my experience and what I've learned having rabbits for the past 20 years. Some things you'll just learn by experience with your own rabbit, and what diet works best for her. For her, the sudden change from muesli to a healthy pellet was good and worked out. For other rabbits, to suddenly remove the muesli from their diet, even if it is unhealthy, and switch to a new less tasty but healthier pellet, may cause them to just stop eating and end up in stasis.. It actually happens pretty frequently. So it's going to be different for every rabbit and every situation. But the general recommendations are there for the rabbits that it may be an issue for.

With knowing if a particular diet is working for a rabbit, monitor droppings, urine, changes in eating, body condition/weight, and for unusual changes of behavior. If you find irregularities or unusual changes, then it can be a signal a certain food is causing an issue.



 
Last edited:

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
OK! I had a momentary freak out until I looked it up. My fiance noticed a reddish orange marking on the carpet in the room Freya gets to free roam for a portion of the day. We passed it off as someone spilling something until we noticed a few more spots and realized it's Freya's pee! I thought she was peeing blood! But I looked it up and the rabbits can have this color of pee from time to time. Blood in the pee would be streaky and it isn't; it's all one reddish orange pigment.

Is this because of the Romaine Lettuce? It's her only dietary change. And does this mean the Romaine needs to stop? Poops are normal and her activity is normal.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
11,133
Reaction score
6,719
Location
Utah, , USA
Reddish orange is a normal color for rabbit urine. Plant pigments in the food they eat can cause it to have this coloring. So yes, it could be the romaine. If you look at the link on urine in my post above, it goes into detail about all of this stuff.
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
Reddish orange is a normal color for rabbit urine. Plant pigments in the food they eat can cause it to have this coloring. So yes, it could be the romaine. If you look at the link on urine in my post above, it goes into detail about all of this stuff.
It's got to be the Romaine then because it's high in beta-carotene. In your link where it shows picture A next to picture B with only picture A being actual blood, it looks like picture B which isn't blood. Thank God.

I assume it's safe to keep feeding Romaine???
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
11,133
Reaction score
6,719
Location
Utah, , USA
It's safe. Plant pigments don't cause any harm. The only issue you need to watch with the romaine is the sudden increase causing mushy poop. As long as that isn't happening, it's all good. I'm glad she decided she likes it. My rabbit's love romaine.
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
We're a little messy right now, so you'll have to forgive us for that.

The hay manger arrived. I think this is going to work very well. It should allow us to keep the hay unsoiled and help us not to waste very much. I'm using the Aspen bedding I originally bought as, well, bedding, as litter until it's gone and then we will move on to something else.

IMG_20210807_193106638_HDR.jpg
IMG_20210807_193118595_HDR.jpg

We've come a long way in a week.
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
The manger in this position should discourage her from sitting in it. I don't think she could even if she tried. It's skinnier than the meatloaf pan and she barely fit into that. She still hasn't figured out that she could get on the Chewy box (makeshift hideaway) and escape if she really wanted to.
 

odyssey~

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 28, 2021
Messages
359
Reaction score
257
Location
ontario 🇨🇦
You're doing amazing!
I would say that the hay manger doesn't hold much hay but if you're home most of the time I don't see a problem :)
Everything looks great and she's adorable <3
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
You're doing amazing!
I would say that the hay manger doesn't hold much hay but if you're home most of the time I don't see a problem :)
Everything looks great and she's adorable <3
I suspect that she isn't eating as much hay as I thought. It was hard to tell when it was just in the litter box getting smashed down.
 

dogwoodblossoms

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2021
Messages
242
Reaction score
167
Location
New York
So, I didn't read any of the comments but some things I need to point are;
The crate looks great! But the bottom looks plastic so please, put some sort of shaving down in it. I don't want your rabbit slipping and hurting herself. The pen is great, I just suggest you lock her up at night so that nothing bad happens to her. Make sure her pen also has carpet in it, again she can slip. If you do want to get another bunny I suggest a bigger cage though. And make sure that if you do get another rabbit and want to bond them, get a female. That way you don't have to pay for one to be fixed.
Hay is big. But never big her alfalfa hay, it has to much protein. Pellets should be hay based and she should only get 1/4 cup for every two pounds she weighs. Fresh foods are usually refused when they've never had any. Just put the fresh stuff in her pellet bowl she'll soon learn that she can eat them. (just remove them when she doesn't eat them after a day, the fresh stuff will ago bad) She'll start eating more hay over time.
Another thing to sort of defend my fellow 4H-ers, even though I don't agree with small cages and not socializing rabbits here's the thing; 4H rabbit showers breed for quality of their breed, so all the rabbits that are up to the standard are usually passed onto pet homes. Most of the time when you purchase from a 4H or show breeder, the rabbit is very good at being handled, because their used to being posed by their owner. Now, babies as young as yours are shown how to pose at a young age (some start a 4 weeks) but since your rabbits breeder knew they were selling her they probably focused more on their show rabbits. I'm not saying it's right, it just happens. It's really easy for rabbits to be unsocialized, she was at the fair for a week or more. Also this is a kid who owned the rabbit, and kids aren't always responsible. All my rabbits are from show breeders and are really good with being handled and being messed with. I've noticed with pet breeders they tend to shy away.
Your bun might also just be shy in personality.
Now that I'm done with that, some things I wished I knew with my first rabbit was; diseases and having a exotic vet to call when something goes wrong.
Thanks for reading my long paragraph.
P.S. Toys and hideaways always are great ideas.
 

odyssey~

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 28, 2021
Messages
359
Reaction score
257
Location
ontario 🇨🇦
just so you know if you look at the more recent posts you'll see that they have a towel down on the bottom and have many enrichment opprutunities such as hideouts and chew toys in their cage :)
you'll also see that they've made lots of changes so what you said is covered mainly :)
 

dogwoodblossoms

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2021
Messages
242
Reaction score
167
Location
New York
just so you know if you look at the more recent posts you'll see that they have a towel down on the bottom and have many enrichment opprutunities such as hideouts and chew toys in their cage :)
you'll also see that they've made lots of changes so what you said is covered mainly :)
I figured as much; but thought since I was to lazy to read the comments lol, I'd add what I could think of ;)
Also, I hope my little--um--rant about show breeders was understandable.
 

Space Monkey

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2021
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
USA
So, I didn't read any of the comments but some things I need to point are;
The crate looks great! But the bottom looks plastic so please, put some sort of shaving down in it. I don't want your rabbit slipping and hurting herself. The pen is great, I just suggest you lock her up at night so that nothing bad happens to her. Make sure her pen also has carpet in it, again she can slip. If you do want to get another bunny I suggest a bigger cage though. And make sure that if you do get another rabbit and want to bond them, get a female. That way you don't have to pay for one to be fixed.
Hay is big. But never big her alfalfa hay, it has to much protein. Pellets should be hay based and she should only get 1/4 cup for every two pounds she weighs. Fresh foods are usually refused when they've never had any. Just put the fresh stuff in her pellet bowl she'll soon learn that she can eat them. (just remove them when she doesn't eat them after a day, the fresh stuff will ago bad) She'll start eating more hay over time.
Another thing to sort of defend my fellow 4H-ers, even though I don't agree with small cages and not socializing rabbits here's the thing; 4H rabbit showers breed for quality of their breed, so all the rabbits that are up to the standard are usually passed onto pet homes. Most of the time when you purchase from a 4H or show breeder, the rabbit is very good at being handled, because their used to being posed by their owner. Now, babies as young as yours are shown how to pose at a young age (some start a 4 weeks) but since your rabbits breeder knew they were selling her they probably focused more on their show rabbits. I'm not saying it's right, it just happens. It's really easy for rabbits to be unsocialized, she was at the fair for a week or more. Also this is a kid who owned the rabbit, and kids aren't always responsible. All my rabbits are from show breeders and are really good with being handled and being messed with. I've noticed with pet breeders they tend to shy away.
Your bun might also just be shy in personality.
Now that I'm done with that, some things I wished I knew with my first rabbit was; diseases and having a exotic vet to call when something goes wrong.
Thanks for reading my long paragraph.
P.S. Toys and hideaways always are great ideas.
We've come a long way and her habitat is much different than it was 8 days ago.

From everything I've read on rabbits her age (17 weeks) I'll have to disagree on the Alfalfa. She's on Oxbow Essentials Young Rabbit Alfalfa pellets. Her age, being a growing girl, makes them good for her. However, she's got Timothy and Orchard hay to chew on all day.
 

Latest posts

Top