Is our little Lionhead overheated or is there something else wrong?

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by doodlebugger, Jul 4, 2017.

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  1. Jul 4, 2017 #1

    doodlebugger

    doodlebugger

    doodlebugger

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    We have been gone off and on for some of the day. When I last checked on her, about four or five hours ago, she was doing fine. She is indoors, in a very large cage (and she does get out almost every other day to get exercise), and our house is air conditioned. But, someone in the house turned the thermostat higher than usual, and when we got home, she wasn't acting right. She won't eat greens, but I did catch her nibbling on some hay. She keeps laying down, and she won't let me hardly touch her. She is my college daughter's rabbit, but my daughter is away for the week for work. I tried to play with her like I sometimes do, because she is a rescue bunny and sometimes I have to sort of break the ice with her, let her know that I'm here to help her and love her, and I always tell her that I'm going to pet her and she will bow to me. But this time, she swatted me and nipped me (didn't draw blood though). Our thermostat says it's 72, but we were pretty hot in the house, and she is in our big living room with high ceilings, so I am thinking she might be overheated? How can I know? She is such a tiny thing, and I took a few precautions. I dampened her ears with cool (not cold) water. I turned on a small fan. Then she proceeded to go to where the fan is blowing, and lay under it. She is slowly perking up, but still not eating her nightly greens or drinking water. She still wants nothing to do with me. I can't tell if she is stress breathing because she kind of freezes up when I get near her. What I can see from far away, doesn't look like stress breathing. She doesn't look like she is panting or anything like that. She is moving her ears a bit more than she was, and she is looking around a bit more than she was. I cannot give her ice packs or bottles to lay against because she is a chewer (she chewed a ceramic bowl!!!). What can I do for her? I have turned off the lights to give her some privacy, and we have the air conditioner turned up, she has a small fan pointed on one side of her cage (which she is laying under), and she has fresh water, greens, and hay. Should I be worried about anything else that could be going on? If she has poos, and she just got done peeing in her litter box, and she has nibbled some hay....how long should I wait before calling the vet? I'm worried something is wrong and I will have to call our vet tomorrow which is a holiday here in the US. :(
     
  2. Jul 4, 2017 #2

    stevesmum

    stevesmum

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    I'm not sure what's wrong but if you are worried about her being too warm, put a few floor tiles in the freezer and when they're nice and cold put one in her cage so she can lie on it to keep cool. Then swap them out when they get warm again.
     
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  3. Jul 4, 2017 #3

    RavenousDragon

    RavenousDragon

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    In terms of treatment for overheating, you guys did all the right things. I'd almost be worried about ileus (where the GI stops working) if she's stress breathing and not eating greens. How is she today?
     
  4. Aug 4, 2017 #4

    doodlebugger

    doodlebugger

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    Sorry I never updated this! It turned out that she was just overheated. After she cooled down, she was fine. I am better prepared these days with frozen water bottles, tiles, and she now has a little fan that runs when the days get extra hot.
     
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  5. Aug 4, 2017 #5

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

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    I'm glad she's doing better. I would have guessed she had a mild bout with GI stress. Sometimes just stress can induce that. I truly find it hard to believe that she could be overheated at just 72 F. indoors (not in sunshine or humidity)

    From May to September, our home is never ever below 79, but usually stays around 83F. The rabbits are fine in that. I bring out the frozen bottles and frozen ceramic tiles if it gets closer to 85.

    Here are the symptoms of heat stroke in rabbits (from myhouserabbit.com):

    Reddening of the ears
    Panting
    Lethargy
    Salivating
    Weakness/Slow movement
    Acting Confused
    Convulsing

    It didn't sound like that was what she experienced? either way, glad she got better.
     
  6. Aug 4, 2017 #6

    RavenousDragon

    RavenousDragon

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    Yeah, we keep our AC at 80 (above that it gets to hot for us all except the cat I think XD) and in the winter we keep our place at 65. It seems to keep everyone somewhat comfortable (rabbits included!).
     
  7. Aug 29, 2017 #7

    flemishwhite

    flemishwhite

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    We don't have A/C which is usually OK where we live. However, there is an occasional week, where we really could use A/C. We worry about our two Flemish sisters. So we bought two fans, about 12 or 14 inches in diameter. They love to lay directly in front of their respective fan. They don't seem to mind the air blast. They enjoy the fans even when the house is not warm! It's going to be 75 degrees F, at night, here this week so the fans should keep them comfortable.

    I think I've read that rabbits get stressed by heat at 85 or 90 degrees. One real problem with heat and rabbits is that when they are being stressed by heat, they don't eat very much. This is potentially dangerous since poor appetite is also a symptom of the onset of GI Statis. So heat distress can disguise the onset of GI Statis. I think also when hot, rabbits may lick their fur and swallowing the hair also can be a trigger for GI. Unlike cats, rabbits cannot vomit a hair ball.
     
  8. Sep 15, 2017 #8

    doodlebugger

    doodlebugger

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    Actually, I think our thermostat is messed up. But, yes, this little bunny has so much fur that I believe she overheated, or perhaps could have just been having a mild GI issue from grooming all her massive amounts of fur. But, as soon as I got her fan going, and the temp dropped a little, she was all better, so that leads me to believe it was the temperature.
     

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