Rabbit died suddenly without symptoms

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by SB1208, Dec 7, 2011.

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  1. Dec 7, 2011 #1

    SB1208

    SB1208

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    I'm heartbroken. We got our little brown rabbit, Luna, from a nice couple in town and she was happy, healthy, very sweet and adventurous. She and my Boston Terrier became best friends from day 1, and my husband and I really bonded with her. She was just wonderful.

    We take her out of her cage to play (supervised) several times a day for an hour or so. Sometimes with our Boston, sometimes alone. Last night we took her out to play, she was happy and adventurous as usual, climbing all over everything, sniffing and licking our dog and us, and cuddling. We had just given her a little shower to clean her fur (water only, as I read soap can be harmful to rabbits) to clean her fur, dried her off and brushed her. She was totally fine and hopping around like normal. My husband shelled an almond and gave it to her, she ate about half. We played with her a while longer and then put her in her cage to eat her hay and drink her water and relax, and we went downstairs to watch TV.

    An hour later we were getting ready for bed. I check on her at night before bed, a few times throughout the night when I've woken up anyway, first thing in the morning, and we take her out to play several times a day. However, before we went to bed when I checked on her she was dead. My husband said she was already stiff, so maybe she had died shortly after we put her in her cage.

    I'm heartbroken. I loved my little Luna, I bonded with her more than I thought I could with a rabbit and I read a whole bunch of websites, books, and articles before we got her so I'd know how to take care of her. I think the culprit here was the almond- raw almonds can have traces of cyanide which can be harmful to small animals. I didn't know this.

    Unfortunately, there are some people out there who say almonds are a great treat for rabbits. I feel horrible that I lost my bunny and I don't feel confident getting another. It's sad that other rabbits might die this way because there's false information out there.

    I am wondering, how would this almond kill her SO fast? She had NO symptoms of being sick when we were playing with her, she was just suddenly dead an hour later. Is that normal? I read that this happened to another woman with her kid's rabbit but it died in 12 hours, not 1.
     
  2. Dec 7, 2011 #2

    OneTwoThree

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    Well, rabbits don't often show anything obvious when they are ill, its a survival technique. There are a lot of seemingly minor signs that your rabbit is ill, and sometimes even by the time you see these signs it can be too late.

    In the future however, rabbits should never have showers or baths, even with just water. They are clean animals in their own right, and only occasionally need a small bum bath if they get the runs.

    Almonds are toxic to rabbits so that could be the culprit. I've never seen anything say otherwise, actually. You might want to write to those websites and let them know.
     
  3. Dec 7, 2011 #3

    SB1208

    SB1208

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    Thanks for the advice. She was a bit of a messy rabbit so we had given her a bath twice if her fur got messy on her back/rear area. No runs or anything she just liked to lay in her litterbox and messed her bedding and laid in it before we could change it out. (She was young so she wasn't fully litter trained yet.) She didn't breathe in any water or anything, I just washed the area that was messy, and she was fine afterward.

    It's been like 12 hours but I'm still in shock. :(
     
  4. Dec 7, 2011 #4

    OneTwoThree

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    SB1208 wrote:
    Not to be insensitive, but it is important, regardless of breathing it in, it is really dangerous for a rabbit to be completely wet. It can be fatal, they can easily get hypothermia, and it can be difficult to tell because their top coat would be dry while their undercoat and skin are still damp. Its also extremely stressful, and like I said earlier, a rabbit wont let you know if something is wrong, and since she has passed she clearly wasn't fine for some reason or another. Many bunnies enjoy a good nap in their litter boxes, and as long as there isn't runny poop on their fur, will be perfectly adept at cleaning themselves.

    I am sorry for your loss.


    ETA- I just saw that she was only 10 weeks old, she really should have been on a diet of unlimited alfalfa pellets and unlimited hay at that point, no treats. The almonds could have been too much for her, as well as the bath, or she simply could have had a health issue from the pet store. Its impossible to say unless you did one of those rabbit autopsy things. :(
     
  5. Dec 7, 2011 #5

    MiniLopHop

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    I'm sorry for your loss. It is so difficult when they pass so quickly.

    Just a tip for the future, unscented baby wipes can be good if you need to clean a rabbit up a little. It can get the mess off without soaking the fur. It's much less stressful to wipe their bottom with the damp wipe than to give them a bath.
     
  6. Dec 7, 2011 #6

    Sweetie

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    I would let my rabbits in the bath/shower with me when it is warm out, and they are just fine afterwards. I don't give them baths/showers during the colder months because of the cold and the fact that they can get very cold. I don't use any soap when they are with me in the bath shower. They actually like it in there with me. I cannot wait until the weather warms up again.

    Yes the almond would definitely be the culprit.

    I am sorry for your loss.
     
  7. Dec 7, 2011 #7

    Anaira

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    I'm so sorry for your loss. :( They really know how to hop right into our hearts, don't they?

    I doubt it was the bath; I have bathed Reuben quite a few times(messy butt that the wet wipes just couldn't deal with) and he's been fine.
     
  8. Dec 7, 2011 #8

    I_heart_Fraggles

    I_heart_Fraggles

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    I would go with the almond also. I'm so sorry for your loss. Was this a raw almond? If so then it would have poisoned her :( However it does sound like you loved her and did everything to be good bunny parents. Everybody makes mistakes in the beginning. Jason and I often say its a miracle Fraggles lived when we first got her cause we new nothing about rabbits. So few rabbits find good loving homes and on that note I think you should consider opening your heart to another bunny. If we had not adopted Fraggles she would have been killed at six months and now I could never picture are home without a bunny.
     
  9. Dec 7, 2011 #9

    Paddy Ohara

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    So sorry for your loss. I would be surprised if it was the water too. My rabbit loves to play in water and that included splashing and getting completly wet. When I give my dog a bath, she loves to assist especially outside in the hot weather she loves the puddles. The almond scares me since my husband asks me all the time about giving her those when he is snacking. I always say no but I will make sure he knows since I can't say no when I am not there.
     
  10. Dec 8, 2011 #10

    Pipp

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    So sorry. :( Baby bunnies can pass away for no apparent reason, they can have internal issues that aren't apparent.

    It is very unlikely it was the almond, raw almonds are not toxic to rabbits in small amounts. (Bitter almond can be a problem, but unlikely).

    And the butt bath would not have been an issue, either, although the fact the bunny needed the bath is odd.

    Was her poo sticky? What kind of litter were you using?

    Again, so sorry. :( I do hope you try again.


    sas :sad:
     
  11. Dec 8, 2011 #11

    Nancy McClelland

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    Were so sorry you lost your Luna. Don't really know what was the problem for sure and you shouldn't beat yourself up over it by second guessing. We lost our little Bonny and she was around 3 with no sign of any problem. We went to a concert and when our son came over to feed everybody for the night he thought she was just sleeping as she was a world class flopper. Just one of those things you think won't happen to you.
     
  12. Dec 8, 2011 #12

    Ivory

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    Some rabbits like water. It's uncommon, but some like to swim, or take a bath. I had a rabbit that liked splashing in water and would get himself completely wet. Getting a rabbit wet isn't going to kill it as long as you don't stick it in the freezer afterward.

    Half of a raw almond also is probably not going to kill a rabbit, unless she had a nut allergy. I have no idea of the incidence in this in rabbits. I'm being somewhat facetious with that comment, but it's a possibility.

    Sometimes, we have bunnies that pee, poop, and sit on their litterbox and they get messy, so they get butt-baths.

    If the poops were kind of sticky, it could indicate coccidiosis, or some other enteric disease.

    I am very sorry for your loss. I hope you try again. We would be happy to assist you on the forum. It sounds like you really loved your rabbit and took great care of her.
     
  13. Dec 8, 2011 #13

    KrisandSoup

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    Im am very sorry for your loss. I know it is hard. I couldnt imagine my world without soup. I wouldnt blame yourself. You care and loved her as much as you could. I wouldnt let this stop you from finding a new rabbit. Though i know thats hard. I dont think i could get a nother one after soup. The bond i have with soup is strong i dont think i will ever be able to do it again. Me and soup will be thinking about you guys. Once again i am so so sorry for your loss.
     
  14. Dec 8, 2011 #14

    Sweetie

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    Sas: how can it not be the almond? The rabbit died an hour after it was given. Plus the rabbit didn't have any other symptoms of being ill.

    I am going to look this up and see if almonds are indeed toxic to bunnies and I will post it in this thread.
     
  15. Dec 8, 2011 #15

    OneTwoThree

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    Sweetie wrote:
    From the rabbit.org site http://adoptarabbit.org/articles/toxic.html, almonds are toxic. Apparently its debatable?

    And my apologies about not being clear about the bath, its freezing cold here so I forgot that its not everywhere :)
     
  16. Dec 8, 2011 #16

    Sweetie

    Sweetie

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    I cannot really find anything, but I have text messaged Randy and he should see this thread and give his input on this situation.

    Although I have found what you have found SB1208. That raw almonds contain cyanide and are dangerous to any animal and human.

    In the future, it is best not to give any kind of nuts to rabbits, just safe fruits and veggies and hay, pellets, water.

    This is not your fault at all.
     
  17. Dec 8, 2011 #17

    galinfla

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    Just throwing in another vote for bathing being safe. Contrary to popular belief, wild rabbits who don't carry umbrellas get wet when it rains... and they don't even have a handy servant (aka human) around to towel them off or use the blow dryer on their little rumps.
     
  18. Dec 9, 2011 #18

    Pipp

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    Bitter or wild almonds are the toxic ones, and I really don't think they are allowed to be sold in the US. Most almonds are also heat-treated which destroys any traces of cyanide. Unless the almonds were bought from an unusual source, highly unlikely they were the culprit.


    sas :rip:
     

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