First visit to the vet

Help Support RabbitsOnline:

Lukaku&Onana

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2019
Messages
39
Reaction score
28
Location
London
Tomorrow my two long-eared friends Lukaku and Onana who I feel honoured to share my house with since three months have to go to the vet with me. They were born in October and bought by a member of our family in January, who couldn't keep them, so we were lucky enough to take them in. Their vaccinations they had with the previous owners, so they have never been to the vet with me. I want to take them in because I want a thorough health check before I book them in for being neutered. I am incredibly nervous, because I felt very sorry for them when they first came - they just had bonded with their owners and now there were given away like things ... It took a long time for them to bond with me (I work from home, very long hours and they live in my office, so they are hopping around me 12 hours a day) but we start to have a really trusting relationship - and now I have to put them into their transport boxes, put them into my car, like when they were taken away from their old home, and hand them over to a strange man (our vets are very wonderful, we have been there with our dog and cat since ten years, and they have someone there who really loves and knows about rabbits. But still ...). Won't that destroy their trust? I was wondering if I should wait a bit longer, but on the other hand I want to re-bond them as soon as possible, because at the moment my office is split to keep them apart and they each have only half the available space, and they also have to take turns in their outdoor pen, which is a shame (both are male). Is there anything I can do to make the experience less terrifying for them? They are both very lovely, funny, friendly chaps, hopping around, eating well and enjoying themselves but they weren't when they first came. They were so scared! I don't want that to happen again but I don't know what else to do as I need them to be neutered to be together again.
 

Butterscotch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2019
Messages
255
Reaction score
201
Location
USA
I would think that you are doing what is best for them by neutering them sooner rather than later. I'm a little surprised to hear that they are 8 months old and haven't had any hormonal outbursts. I am by no means an expert, but I've read that it's best to have our bunnies spayed or neutered before hormonal behaviors become habits. I would think that having them neutered as soon as possible is the best choice. They will forgive you!
 

Lukaku&Onana

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2019
Messages
39
Reaction score
28
Location
London
Oh, they have had hormonal outbursts, that is why I have split my office in half with a fence. When they first came they were touchingly loving each other, grooming, laying side by side, playing with each other - but out of the blue one bit the other. (They were also spraying and marking but I could have lived with that.) So we had to split them but we do want them to be back together. They are always at the fence sniffing each other, like brothers (which they are not). Therefore I booked them in to be checked and then to be neutered. I was just wondering if there is anything experienced rabbit owners do to make the trip to the vet more bearable for their rabbits. I can easily do it with my dog ... but I feel like a total idiot when it comes to comfort my new rabbits. Any advice greatly appreciated!
 

John Wick

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
644
Reaction score
836
Location
United States
How exciting and nerve-wracking. You're on the right track in getting a good baseline and establishing a positive vet relationship before booking a neuter.

I happened to notice you mention someone at your dog/cat vet knows about rabbits. Are there others there who are experienced with the procedures though? For example, making sure there is an assistant who can properly regulate anesthesia, in addition to an experienced rabbit surgeon. My current vet sees many animals and so appointment and procedure dates are limited only to when all the rabbit-experienced team are available. I'd double check that, if you haven't already!

If there's something they find especially comforting, like your scent or a certain blanket/cloth you have in their area, putting that in the carrier (or however you're transporting) would be helpful. Getting them familiar with the transport box is good too. So putting it open in their space so they can explore it freely, feeding them in it, etc. can be helpful as well.

Regarding having the rabbits not trust you for bringing them to the vet -- I find time and time again that if an owner is caring, rabbits pick up on that and don't hold the grudge very long. I've had to give my rabbit shots, gross medication, smear lotion and soap on his face (ringworm-related), and he hates grooming and such. Regardless, he still comes running back afterwards. Also, whether the rabbits associate the vet visit with you is also cognitively a variable (they may come to you for comfort while at the vet and not see you as the cause).
 

Butterscotch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 2, 2019
Messages
255
Reaction score
201
Location
USA
Oh, they have had hormonal outbursts, that is why I have split my office in half with a fence. When they first came they were touchingly loving each other, grooming, laying side by side, playing with each other - but out of the blue one bit the other. (They were also spraying and marking but I could have lived with that.) So we had to split them but we do want them to be back together. They are always at the fence sniffing each other, like brothers (which they are not). Therefore I booked them in to be checked and then to be neutered. I was just wondering if there is anything experienced rabbit owners do to make the trip to the vet more bearable for their rabbits. I can easily do it with my dog ... but I feel like a total idiot when it comes to comfort my new rabbits. Any advice greatly appreciated!
I missed that you already had your office split, I apologize. I'm glad you asked these questions, I too have a first vet appointment coming up for my young buck and I was wondering the very same thing!
 

Lukaku&Onana

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2019
Messages
39
Reaction score
28
Location
London
Thanks a lot, John Wick, that is very reassuring.
They do love their transport bags, because I use them several times a week to take them downstairs into their outdoor pen. They always go into them voluntarily (and I feel even more like a traitor by this time using them to take them to the vet ...) I am greatly relieved, however, that your relationship with your rabbits survived worse than a vet trip .. I am so used to big dogs and horses, my two rabbits seem to me so much more vulnerable and tender and endangered ... I will use all your advice and take their favourite toys into the bags. The vet who does rabbit surgery at our vet's office I have met and I have great trust in him. The questions about the assistant I will ask. We had great experience there with the surgeries of our other pets ... but well, rabbits are different.
Thank you so much!
 

Lukaku&Onana

Active Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2019
Messages
39
Reaction score
28
Location
London
Thank you all so much for your responses and good advice. We are now back from the vet, all went well and I was happy to hear that Lukaku and Onana are in perfect health. Both vets looked after them and it was all reassuring. I know booked them in for their surgery next Tuesday and pray that I am doing the right thing. I will be dreadfully scared but I want them to be able to enjoy each other's company again and to freely run around in our entire upper floor.
 

Latest posts

Top