My bunny hates hay

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by Shayna, Aug 10, 2019.

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  1. Aug 10, 2019 #1

    Shayna

    Shayna

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    Hi does anyone have a bunny that hates hay? I recently had 3 bunnies get very very sick and none of the vets could really come up with a reason to why. Doing better now however my one bun was a very poor hay eater to begin with. Now he won’t touch it at all he actually throws the bowl. I’ve tried every kind. He even gets some alfalfa because he is under a year old and he doesn’t eat that. He is doing well now,active and happy no physical reason that he’s not eating. I am still giving critical care because he eats no hay. I started a wheat grass fodder system which everyone loves. But can he live on wheat grass and barley fodder?? They also get a mix of kale, dandelions, and broadleaf plantain with some treats like apple or strawberry. Grizzly eats this fine and his pellets and supplement fine just no hay. I’m starting to think he’s enjoying his critical care feedings. I tried to put it in a bowl but he wastes most of it.
     
  2. Aug 10, 2019 #2

    Preitler

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    Does he eat grass? (start with small amounts, like with every new stuff).

    Dental problems are ruled out?
     
  3. Aug 10, 2019 #3

    Shayna

    Shayna

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    Yes no dental problems at all he doesn’t like regular grass but loves the wheat grass. I started with small amounts of that but he is getting quite a bit now. I even tried hiding some hay in dandelion and he still spits it out.
     
  4. Aug 11, 2019 #4

    Ariana

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    I had a picky hay eater she wouldn’t touch it at all , I ground up treats like dried strawberries and rubbed it on her hay, she eventually started to eat it. I hope you find something that gets him to eat it ! Wish I could help .
     
  5. Aug 11, 2019 #5

    Shayna

    Shayna

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    I’ll havta give that a try.. all my buns love strawberries.! I found A brand called timmothy gold which my other picky eater likes but Grizz won’t touch that either
     
  6. Aug 11, 2019 #6
    Wheat grass and barley fodder are Hay. Hay is just dried grass.
    Fodder is fine. Heck its healthier.

    How much pellets and other goodies are you giving each of them (quantity?) And where is it all located in their cages?
     
  7. Aug 11, 2019 #7

    Shayna

    Shayna

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    They get about a cup of oxbow pellets. They are big rabbits.. around 12-13 lbs. 1/2 in the morning and 1/2 evening. 1 tablespoon calf manna, a bowl of greens 2x a day. Each cage is set up different. Some get up to 5 different varieties of hay depending on preferences( I have 8 lol) 2 in pairs the rest by themselves cause I was unable to bond them. Strawberry and apple are the only fruits they eat. Those are limited. The 3 that were sick are on fodder + hay (except grizz who won’t eat it) the other five are starting to get some fodder.. it was a large system to get started up.
     
  8. Aug 11, 2019 #8
    1 cup of pellets each?
    Thats way too much.
    At those weights they should get about 1/2 a cup per day. So 1/4 cup twice a day could work, even then I would lessen that if they dont eat whats good for them, ie their hay/grass.

    Plus if you are giving something like calf manna that should be included in that 1/2 cup youre measuring out.

    Are they breeding or being kept outside? Whats the reason for adding the Mana?

    A bowl of greens is how much quantity wise? A cup? 6 cups?

    Honestly rabbits dont need pellets. Its a nice addition but should only make up a very small portion of their diets.
     
  9. Aug 11, 2019 #9

    Shayna

    Shayna

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    The vets had me increase pellets the used to get only a handful a day. They are fixed. Mostly inside I used to let them run and play outside when I was home but after all the illness I have been afaird to let them out in the yard. I can prob decrease pellets now that they are mostly back to eating.. but they went from 13 lbs to 9 and they said that they were too thin
     
  10. Aug 11, 2019 #10

    Kellyann

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    I second that you are feeding way too much concentrated food(pellets, calf manna?)
    Rabbit specialists report that pellets were created for fattening meat rabbits.
    Calf manna is also a weight gain supplement.
    I feed four different kinds of Oxbow hays but NOT alfalfa. I used to give alot of fresh grass, but the vet said it is too low in fiber and protein because of all the moisture. Dried hay is the best although it is exactly the same but has a much lower water percentage of course. We feed our hay too. It's meadow grass, late 1st cut.
    Barley, alfalfa and other legume and grain crops are not as healthy as straight grass hay but you can chop up fresh grass like confetti and add herbs and sprinkle it all over the hay. Good luck, there's lots of info about this issue.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2019
  11. Aug 11, 2019 #11

    Kellyann

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    I wanted to add that my lionhead angora is 1.3kg/ 2.8lbs and he gets 1 tbsp of pellets twice a day with unlimited hay.
     
  12. Aug 11, 2019 #12

    Shayna

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    The exotic vet actually told me feed unlimited pellets. I’m afraid to do that because they won’t eat enough hay. I think as long as they are gaining weight back it’s ok even if it’s slow. I use calf manna on all my young rabbits and my horses get it also. I had bloodwork, fecal, ec test done, everything was normal or negative so still not sure of the cause of illness. They did not get much pellets before this. The increase was recommend by exotic vet. However ,I can’t say I’ve been impressed by rabbit savvy vets. It’s hard to even get one near me that will even look at a rabbit.
     
  13. Aug 11, 2019 #13

    Didi

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    Mine gets a small amount of pellets each morning and then an equal amount of Timothy Hay and Oaten Hay. Then around lunchtime, he has a little pile of greens and I alternate the small amount of apples/carrot, that type of thing, every other day but only in small amounts. Then he has another small pile of greens in the late afternoon. I make sure he has plenty of hay at night time as he eats during the night. And, of course, always fresh water.
     
  14. Aug 12, 2019 #14

    Kellyann

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    You are so right about the vets, and I'm a vet tech. We could not find any vet within an hours drive to see our rabbit. Exotic animals? Rabbits? No one would dven look at him.
    Finally we have found a great vet practise, in fact they are the Emergency Services for all the vets in the area. So we have this fantastic vet hospital available 24/7. They are not any more expensive than the local vets.
    Alf also gets a small handful, 1/2 cup mixed greens and 1 blueberry a day. He has very long, thick hair and needs all the hay he can eat!
     
  15. Aug 12, 2019 #15

    Shayna

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    Mine are huge so the amounts of hay they eat are unreal lol.. I feel like I’m feeding little horses. Mine eat the most at night too. I’ve been using broadleaf plantain with greens.. it grows in my yard and I’ve had good results with it. I grow kale too but my buns are weird, they are crazy about fruit.
     
  16. Aug 15, 2019 #16

    Camelia_Eva

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    Hi Shayna,
    you may want to try Sherwood pellets (blue bag) which is high in Timothy hay. This is indicated for bunnies that do not like hay very much. It does not taste as good as Oxbow though. I am transitioning from Oxbow Organic pellets (no-soy) to Sherwood pellets mixing them until we move to 100% Sherwood.
    Also, instead of Oxbow Critical Care, we have used Sherwood SARx. They have two types: higher in calories for buns that are loosing weight (the one that comes on a bag with a cute white bun with tan marks) and normal calories (the one that comes in a bag with a pic of a white bun with dark brown marks). Both have more calories than hay though. We left Oxbow Critical Care because it has soy and soy is not good for buns' GI. Sherwood is soy-free.
    I would not give them much fruits because of the sugar. Sugar can mess up the buns' GI. I give my bun one blackberry per day or 2/3 blueberries per day because these do not have much sugar. She is half your buns weight. Avoid banana and sweet fruits.
    If you grow your vegetables, which is super good, make sure you use organic techniques and wash them well to prevent parasites.
    Finally, make sure they have toys to chew so they keep their teeth trimmed.
    Hope your bunnies are doing well!!
     
  17. Aug 15, 2019 #17

    Saltflower

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    Gee, that's a lot of pellets! Try cutting an orange in half and squeezing just a few drops over fresh hay. I did this after one of my boys was neutered and wouldn't eat hay. Once he smelled that orange juice he hopped in gobbling!
     
  18. Aug 15, 2019 #18

    Shayna

    Shayna

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    Hi thanks for the tips I am going to look online for those pellets I haven’t seen them at my feed store. We will give that a try.. and sorry that post was supposed to say my buns are NOT crazy about fruit. They like apple and strawberry that’s about it. I give one apple split between 8 buns and one strawberry each. I will try squeezing the orange too... Thanks for the tips!
     
  19. Aug 15, 2019 #19

    Camelia_Eva

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    Here is the link but you can get them at Amazon too:
    https://store.sherwoodpethealth.com/adult-rabbit-food/
    I bought it from Amazon because I needed it fast so Prime helped. However, I may buy it from Sherwood directly next time because I have the feeling it will be fresher.

    Thanks Saltflower for the orange juice tip! I'll use it too :eek:)
     
  20. Aug 15, 2019 #20

    Saltflower

    Saltflower

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    You're welcome. About the apple, my first vet said that apples upset the stomach.
     
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