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One overweight rabbit and one underweight one

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Apollo’s Slave

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Apollo has pretty much always weighed a healthy amount, just under 6lb, which is what he was before we adopted him, I'm not too sure how much he weighs now but he's starting to look a little overweight. I'm not sure how much Athena weighs but the rescue said that she has trouble gaining weight, so she should eat double the amount of pellets than Apollo. Now, i think that is were the problem has come. Both of my rabbits are in love with food and eat as quickly as possible, so I always measure their food (1/4 cup for Apollo, 1/2 for Athena) and then scatter feed. I don't know how much each rabbit is getting.

They'll be going to the vet for a general check-up and Athena's vaccinations next month, so hopefully the vet will be able to help out, but before then. I'm not sure what to do to fix the problem. It's mainly Apollo, that i'm worried about as I can handfeed Athena to help her gain weight.

Is there a way to help him lose weight?
 

Megamuffinandchip

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Well, my little chonker of a bun is very similar to your Apollo, very good driven, ALWAYS "hungry." I've learned that she is almost always lying to me when it comes to food 😂. I actually dropped her pellet amount to a 1/8 of a cup. If you supplement with more hay and low calorie veggies, that should make your little man lose weight. Of course talk to your vet and see if it could be something else, but that would be my first step. Also, I don't know if your buns are in the same enclosure, is it possible that Apollo is eating some of Athena's food? Good luck with the tubby boy!
 

Apollo’s Slave

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Well, my little chonker of a bun is very similar to your Apollo, very good driven, ALWAYS "hungry." I've learned that she is almost always lying to me when it comes to food 😂. I actually dropped her pellet amount to a 1/8 of a cup. If you supplement with more hay and low calorie veggies, that should make your little man lose weight. Of course talk to your vet and see if it could be something else, but that would be my first step. Also, I don't know if your buns are in the same enclosure, is it possible that Apollo is eating some of Athena's food? Good luck with the tubby boy!
Thank you! I’ll probably start giving him an 1/8 cup instead! Yeah, Apollo and Athena are bonded so they live together. The rescue I got Athena from recommended scatter feeding which is causing a little bit of an issue, but yeah, I definitely lowering his pellets is a good start 😅
 

Megamuffinandchip

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Thank you! I’ll probably start giving him an 1/8 cup instead! Yeah, Apollo and Athena are bonded so they live together. The rescue I got Athena from recommended scatter feeding which is causing a little bit of an issue, but yeah, I definitely lowering his pellets is a good start 😅
Also, and I don't know if this would work for your bunnies, but could you try feeding them in different areas? That way you know that they are eating the amount of food that you set out of each of them. Good luck, I'm sure he will be a little upset with you at first 😂.
 

Apollo’s Slave

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Also, and I don't know if this would work for your bunnies, but could you try feeding them in different areas? That way you know that they are eating the amount of food that you set out of each of them. Good luck, I'm sure he will be a little upset with you at first 😂.
I definitely could try! Thanks!
 

Miepie

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it seem to me that Athena need time to eat seperate from Apolloto help her gain weight. and You can handfeed Athena to help her gain weight. in the space of Appolo you can give him grainfree meadows menu/beapar nature. Read on the ingredients ;no wheat produkts. makes that he didn't grow so fat. For Athena you can feed here before she eat a pice of celery 4cm,not more. That gives mine more apepite and little pice of apple. but are you sure that she didn't have some pain?
 

Apollo’s Slave

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it seem to me that Athena need time to eat seperate from Apolloto help her gain weight. and You can handfeed Athena to help her gain weight. in the space of Appolo you can give him grainfree meadows menu/beapar nature. Read on the ingredients ;no wheat produkts. makes that he didn't grow so fat. For Athena you can feed here before she eat a pice of celery 4cm,not more. That gives mine more apepite and little pice of apple. but are you sure that she didn't have some pain?
Thank you. I’ll probably try feeding Athena in my room and feeding Apollo in the hallway and see if that works.
As of now, I’m feeding them both Science Selective Adult Rabbit Pellets, but I could transition them onto the Science Selective GrainFree version?

Athena is a good eater so I don’t think she’s had any pain while eating or anything like that.
Thanks again ☺
 

Happy Hollands

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This is a tricky situation, you can approach it in a few different ways. Not sure if you do this already, but try spreading out feedings into "meals" two or three times per day, as this will prevent them from eating all their food at once and then being hungry later. This seems to work very well for my fast eaters.

If you would like to continue scatter feeding, I recommend using a forage mat (check out TokiHut's one!) or simply scatter it in their hay for starters! Although this is a good way to increase natural foraging, be careful as many of the pellets can get lost and your rabbit will not get the right amount to eat :)

As for getting her to gain some weight, try feeding about 3 black oil sunflower seeds (highly caloric, great to get a rabbit to gain weight and especially helps for condition during molting) and about 1/2 tablespoon of oats daily! She will most definitely enjoy this, and it can help you both bond if you hand feed, too.

Hope this helps, keep us updated on how their vet appointments go!
 

Apollo’s Slave

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This is a tricky situation, you can approach it in a few different ways. Not sure if you do this already, but try spreading out feedings into "meals" two or three times per day, as this will prevent them from eating all their food at once and then being hungry later. This seems to work very well for my fast eaters.

If you would like to continue scatter feeding, I recommend using a forage mat (check out TokiHut's one!) or simply scatter it in their hay for starters! Although this is a good way to increase natural foraging, be careful as many of the pellets can get lost and your rabbit will not get the right amount to eat :)

As for getting her to gain some weight, try feeding about 3 black oil sunflower seeds (highly caloric, great to get a rabbit to gain weight and especially helps for condition during molting) and about 1/2 tablespoon of oats daily! She will most definitely enjoy this, and it can help you both bond if you hand feed, too.

Hope this helps, keep us updated on how their vet appointments go!
I didn’t think about splitting their meals actually, so I’ll definitely try that! Thank you!
I’ll also give her a bit of oats daily and hopefully that will help her gain weight! She’s not very underweight but she has trouble maintaining the weight, so hopefully this will help! Thank you!

I’ll let you know how the vet appointment goes 🥰
 

Happy Hollands

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I didn’t think about splitting their meals actually, so I’ll definitely try that!
LMK how it goes! I feel confident this should help. I normally do half in the morning, veggies in the afternoon, and the rest of pellets at night.

I’ll also give her a bit of oats daily and hopefully that will help her gain weight!
This should get her to gain weight rapidly, you can also mix it in with her pellets to get her to eat more... just make sure your other bun doesn't get them instead lol.
 

LightOfHeart

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I've had a similar situation before I had to start feeding my rabbits their pellets and greens separately that helped one lose weight and the other gain a little weight. I would lessen the one rabbits food a little too and just give him more hay to make up for it. Sometimes I give him Timothy Hay Oxbow treats and make him chase me around a little before I give it to him so he gets a little exercise chasing after it.
 

Apollo’s Slave

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Thank you!

What i'm going try is something like this:

Athena will get her pellets in three goes - breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Apollo, however, I've decided will get pellets as a treat (maybe a tablespoons worth). I had planned on giving him only 1/8 cup but someone had left cecotropes uneaten and I don't know who it is but it's kind of stressing me out. Instead, I'll spread his veggies out to three meals a day when Athena will get her pellets so that he'll be distracted and not try to eat her pellets.

I'm also trying a bit of agility with the two of them so hopefully, that will help him. I don't want to speed up his weight loss too quickly because I've heard that can cause health problems.

Athena is a great weight now! I can no longer feel her bones so prominently and I know she's the ideal weight so that's super.

Do you think I should use my xpen to divide them during meal times? That way Athena can get the food that she needs without Apollo getting overweight, and I could do a bit of agility with Apollo without Athena getting in the way because she's better at it. That wouldn't ruin their bond would it?
 

Mariam+Theo

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Sounds like a great plan! As long as they can see each other when eating their bond will be fine. The cecotropes thing would stress me out too! I hope you find out who it was.
I'm so happy that Athena is back to a healthy weight; hopefully, Apollo is that easy to help.
 

Happy Hollands

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Yay, that sounds like a great plan! Just make sure to slowly limit his pellet amount over time so his stomach has time to adjust and will shrink over time. When you are giving Athena her pellets, maybe use that time to snuggle Apollo and hand feed him vegetables if he likes to sit on your lap. I know you've had him for longer, so if he is anything like my bun, he gets a bit jealous when you spend too much time with the other ones and savors that one on one time with you ❤ If you remove one of them during meal time, you should not need to use an exercise pen to separate them. Best of luck!
 

Apollo’s Slave

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Sounds like a great plan! As long as they can see each other when eating their bond will be fine. The cecotropes thing would stress me out too! I hope you find out who it was.
I'm so happy that Athena is back to a healthy weight; hopefully, Apollo is that easy to help.
Thank you! ☺


Yay, that sounds like a great plan! Just make sure to slowly limit his pellet amount over time so his stomach has time to adjust and will shrink over time. When you are giving Athena her pellets, maybe use that time to snuggle Apollo and hand feed him vegetables if he likes to sit on your lap. I know you've had him for longer, so if he is anything like my bun, he gets a bit jealous when you spend too much time with the other ones and savors that one on one time with you ❤ If you remove one of them during meal time, you should not need to use an exercise pen to separate them. Best of luck!
thank you! I’ll definitely spend some time with him while Athena is eating!
 

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