Help-2 holland lops died in a week

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Leah szemple

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Hi,

We are devastated. I just got 2 holland lops from a rabbitry last Saturday. One suddenly past away on Wednesday and now my other one just today. I called the breeder to tell her that her poop was abnormal and took a picture she said I could be giving her too much hay. I asked her if I should bring her to the vet she said to limit the hay and she should be fine. I woke up this morning with her on her side breathing heavily. We rushed her to the vet and she didn’t make it. The vet assured me I couldn’t have been over feeding her. She treats rabbits. She thinks the rabbits could have had a parasite and I should inform the rabbitry. The breeder replaced my first lop. She assured me it was nothing I did. That this just happens. So I still have her and I’m terrified. I’m bringing her to the vet tomorrow just for a check up to make sure she’s ok. Has anyone ever heard of this happening?
 

Nunu

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It’s pretty common to not know when rabbits are sick as they are really good at hiding symptoms. However, I would be cautious of the rabbitry because it doesn’t sound like the person knows what they’re doing. Rabbits should always have unlimited access to timothy hay because it is extremely important to their digestion. It also makes up about 80% of their diet. The breeder is wrong, this doesn’t just happen, but I seriously doubt that it was anything you did. If those bunnies were being cared for properly by the breeder then there isn’t really a reason that they should have died two weeks later. If you don’t mind me asking, what we’re they being fed? I’m really sorry for your loss
 

Leah szemple

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She gave me a bag of these pellets. I’ve also been giving them Timothy hay and alfalfa hay in there bed. She said to give a small handful of each in the morning and at night put in there box. When she replaced the first rabbit she was on a different pellet that I do not know the name of. She just gave it to me in a bag and said to do half and half and slowly ween the one pellet down and then to continue with the attached photo. They were eating a lot of pellets. I was confused too with the too much hay comment as well. Everything in researched was to give them Timothy hay but she told me not to trust google. I attached the photo I sent to her. She said it was way too much. Is it? I just want to be cautious with the bunny I have left.
 

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SableSteel

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How old were the rabbits? Were they living outdoors before you got them?

A change is diet isn't good for rabbits - it might be that suddenly given extra hay they stopped eating enough pellets, but that shouldn't be too big of a problem. Do you have that picture of the poop that you sent the breeder? What else is in that litterbox with the timothy hay?
 

Nunu

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On the contrary, your bunny could eat a lot more, but as long as you replenish the hay as it gets low it should be fine. The pellets, however aren’t heavily required and I know a lot of people who only give about 1/4 cup with fresh greens with the morning feeding. The alfalfa is not needed at all unless your bun is a baby. The main thing alfalfa provides is calcium, and lots of it. It can actually lead to bladder stones which can be fatal and are expensive to get removed (I just dealt with this myself) but the calcium build up would take longer than two weeks so there is no way that could be the reason for the other bunnies passing.

 

Nunu

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How old were the rabbits? Were they living outdoors before you got them?

A change is diet isn't good for rabbits - it might be that suddenly given extra hay they stopped eating enough pellets, but that shouldn't be too big of a problem. Do you have that picture of the poop that you sent the breeder? What else is in that litterbox with the timothy hay?
That is a valid point, but that wouldn’t be the reason they died, and a diet change would mainly refer to completely switching to a new food source and abandoning the other, or giving too much of a new food which can often be done with new fruits and veggies.
 

Leah szemple

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They were born October 6th and 11th. In the liter box is the bedding I got from the breeder. I will have to take a look at the bag when I get home. We just started with the new pellets on Wednesday since the other bunny was on it. Should I give less pellets and more hay?
 

Leah szemple

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How old were the rabbits? Were they living outdoors before you got them?

A change is diet isn't good for rabbits - it might be that suddenly given extra hay they stopped eating enough pellets, but that shouldn't be too big of a problem. Do you have that picture of the poop that you sent the breeder? What else is in that litterbox with the timothy hay?

They were living indoor and born oct 8th and 11th.
 

Leah szemple

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How old were the rabbits? Were they living outdoors before you got them?

A change is diet isn't good for rabbits - it might be that suddenly given extra hay they stopped eating enough pellets, but that shouldn't be too big of a problem. Do you have that picture of the poop that you sent the breeder? What else is in that litterbox with the timothy hay?
On the contrary, your bunny could eat a lot more, but as long as you replenish the hay as it gets low it should be fine. The pellets, however aren’t heavily required and I know a lot of people who only give about 1/4 cup with fresh greens with the morning feeding. The alfalfa is not needed at all unless your bun is a baby. The main thing alfalfa provides is calcium, and lots of it. It can actually lead to bladder stones which can be fatal and are expensive to get removed (I just dealt with this myself) but the calcium build up would take longer than two weeks so there is no way that could be the reason for the other bunnies passing.

thank you for you reply. We only had the bunnies for 1 week. I really just want to make sure I’m not doing anything wrong. We have still have the one bunny left and I’m so paranoid. I’ve had a dog for 14 years with no issue and our family has never experienced a death of an animal yet so 2 in one week have been so devastating for us and my kids.
 

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Augustus&HazelGrace

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If I read right the vet said it was because you were feeding too much hay and you should cut back? If it were me I would not trust that vet on anything else because any rabbit savvy vet would know that hay is the most important thing in a rabbit's diet and more is always better. And just because a vet SEES rabbits does NOT mean that they are RABBIT SAVVY. And if those are any type of shavings beside Aspen in the litterbox then they are toxic to rabbits, I would recommend using horse stall wood pellets or woodstove pellets without any ignition stuff in them. I normally get my pellets at my local farm store but I don't know if there are any farm stores in New Jersey.
 

Leah szemple

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If I read right the vet said it was because you were feeding too much hay and you should cut back? If it were me I would not trust that vet on anything else because any rabbit savvy vet would know that hay is the most important thing in a rabbit's diet and more is always better. And just because a vet SEES rabbits does NOT mean that they are RABBIT SAVVY. And if those are any type of shavings beside Aspen in the litterbox then they are toxic to rabbits, I would recommend using horse stall wood pellets or woodstove pellets without any ignition stuff in them. I normally get my pellets at my local farm store but I don't know if there are any farm stores in New Jersey.
It was not the vet it was the breeder that told me I was giving them way too much hay. The vet said the opposite. The breeder gave me living world pine shavings to put in the bed. Is this bad?
 

Augustus&HazelGrace

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Oh ok, I'm sorry I misread. Yes, pine shavings are toxic to rabbits. You are calling it the bed but do you mean where they are using the bathroom at like the litterbox?
 
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