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Less interest in Pellets

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Dagny

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Hi everybody,
Has anyone had the experience of their buns losing enthusiasm over their pellets, but everything else is ok? They are still eating hay, treats, playing, drinking water, and they had their teeth done a few weeks ago. They used to run up to their pellets in the morning and eat until they were gone. Over the last month or so, they will eat the pellets but are not super excited about them, and will even leave some until the evening. Can this be "normal" or is something most likely brewing? I am a first time bun mom.
Thanks!!
 

Dagny

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The male will be 2 years next week
The female is a rescue from the streets... estimated to be between 3 -4 years old
The female had to have her molars trimmed this summer and last summer.
The males teeth were checked and everything looked good
They get a little less than 1/4 cup in the morning of oxbow organic timothy pellets, Timothy hay, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd cutting, and fresh salad in the evenings.
 

Apollo’s Slave

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Okay, that’s all good! I would talk to your vet about how often the female has to have her teeth trimmed - as sometimes it every 4-6 weeks (I’ve heard).

As long as they’re eating their hay and veggies, they are probably okay and maybe just don’t want to eat the pellets.
It also could be that the pellets are off date why the bunnies don’t want to eat them
 

Dagny

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Are they both not eating their normal amount of pellets or just one?
It's like they have both realized that they don't have to hurry because the pellets will be there for them all day. They used to sit in front of bowl and not budge until the pellets were gone. So I would say it's a behavior change in both of them.
 

JBun

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Usually when a rabbit stops eating a certain food but continues to eat other foods normally and there's no other change of behavior, the problem is usually going to be either a dental problem or a problem with the food they've stopped wanting to eat.

Since it's both your buns that seem to be less enthusiastic about the pellets , I would say it could be a problem with the pellets, as it would be unusual for both buns to develop dental issues at the exact same time.

When this started, had you just changed to that brand and type of pellet? Or had you just opened a new bag? Do the pellets smell sour or musty, is there any white dust on the pellets, are there pellets clumped together, or are there any odd colored pellets in the bag?
 

Momma Luvbun

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My last girl was a picky eater. I had endless issues with her and hay.
I had sooo many types of hay I'd have to alternative with, after she got bored with what I gave her.

My thought to you is this:
Hay is the most important staple for a bunny's diet. There are many different types for them, so experiment!😁

Pellets can actually be taken right out since they should only get no more than a 1/4 cup a day for a 4lb bun.
So if your bun isn't eating pellets but EVERYTHING else you give them, don't fret, it's less on your pocket book 😉
 

Dagny

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Usually when a rabbit stops eating a certain food but continues to eat other foods normally and there's no other change of behavior, the problem is usually going to be either a dental problem or a problem with the food they've stopped wanting to eat.

Since it's both your buns that seem to be less enthusiastic about the pellets , I would say it could be a problem with the pellets, as it would be unusual for both buns to develop dental issues at the exact same time.

When this started, had you just changed to that brand and type of pellet? Or had you just opened a new bag? Do the pellets smell sour or musty, is there any white dust on the pellets, are there pellets clumped together, or are there any odd colored pellets in the bag?
Actually they started the behavior with a bag of pellets they had been eating from for a couple of weeks. I did go out and buy a new bag, just in case the pellets had gone bad. Same reaction.
 

Blue eyes

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Actually they started the behavior with a bag of pellets they had been eating from for a couple of weeks. I did go out and buy a new bag, just in case the pellets had gone bad. Same reaction.
If you got the new bag from the same store as the prior bag, it may be from the same lot of pellets. It could be they had an old (or bad) batch. They could've had a shipment that got stuck on a hot truck or in a hot warehouse somewhere or from an old batch that hadn't been rotated to the front.
 

JBun

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Yes, if you can check the batch number on both bags and see if they come from the same batch. Contaminated pellets, moldy pellets, pellets with an improper mix of vitamins, can all be extremely harmful to rabbits and can be a reason rabbits will go off their pellets unexpectedly. When it happens with multiple rabbits at the same time, feed is a likely culprit. If both bags are from the same batch of pellets, the pellets being bad could explain their disinterest in them. Or it could be that this batch isn't bad but just tastes different and they don't care for the taste.

If they don't have the same batch number and are from different batches, it could just be that both rabbits decided that pellet isn't their favorite and they prefer their other food, or it could even be the manufacturer changed an ingredient in the pellet mix and your rabbits gradually decided they didn't like the pellets as much.

A remote possibility too is that they both coincidentally developed dental issues at the same time. I don't think this is too likely, but you never know.

One way to test if it's just those pellets or all pellets that they won't eat, is buy a different type of pellet like the regular oxbow pellet, supreme select, sherwood, etc, and test a small amount(new types of pellets should always be gradually introduced) to see if they immediately will eat it or not. If they do eat the new different type of pellet, then I would say the issue is with their old/usual pellet type or batch.

Or you can just leave things as is as long as they continue to eat their other food well and don't show signs of other health or dental issues, and let them choose to eat their current pellets or not(as long as you are sure they aren't contaminated or bad), then have their teeth checked again at their next regular vet appointment.
 

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