Rabbit Suddenly Scared of Food Bowl?

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CrazyChickenGirl

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A couple days ago my doe Opal suddenly panicked while eating her veggies. It was out of nowhere and I thought I’d done something to scare her. I went in her pen sat down pet her a bit and hand fed her some of her veggies. She didn’t seem nervous or anything aside from she was nervous about going back to eating her veggies. I didn’t think much of it, and everything seemed normal. Until today, she did it again, she still runs around my feet, wants pet, and attention, but she’s jumpy. She ran over to the corner of the pen sat there for a minute, panicked and ran into her box, and back into the corner. Everything about her personality is normal, aside from she is one of my hardest to scare rabbits. I don’t know what’s wrong, she still won’t go back to where I feed her.
Any ideas?

Here is a picture of her set up. (I just took it).
 

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Blue eyes

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Are you talking about the steel bowl? What's on the other side of the pen wall there? Is there anything on the other side (beyond the bowl) that could be bothering her?

Maybe try giving her the greens on a paper or plastic plate and put the plate elsewhere in her area.

(Are those carrots, etc near the bowl in the photo?)
 

JBun

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I would say that either she is having a reaction to one of the veggies and so it is immediately causing some sort of digestive upset or allergic reaction, that something is happening uncomfortable around the veggie bowl and that's causing her reaction(eg. weird sound, static shock, etc), or she's having a choking episode and that's causing the panicked reaction. It'll take some close observation and investigation to figure out exactly what's causing it.
 

CrazyChickenGirl

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Are you talking about the steel bowl? What's on the other side of the pen wall there? Is there anything on the other side (beyond the bowl) that could be bothering her?

Maybe try giving her the greens on a paper or plastic plate and put the plate elsewhere in her area.

(Are those carrots, etc near the bowl in the photo?)
I realized after posting the thread that instead of putting bowl I probably should have put feeding area because it doesn’t really have anything to do with the bowl, sorry. On the other side of the fence is Bullet, but they’ve been living next to each other the entire time I’ve had them so I don’t think it’s anything actually happening out of the usual around her. Yes, it is some carrots next to the bowl (there are cucumbers and green pepper as well).
I would say that either she is having a reaction to one of the veggies and so it is immediately causing some sort of digestive upset or allergic reaction, that something is happening uncomfortable around the veggie bowl and that's causing her reaction(eg. weird sound, static shock, etc), or she's having a choking episode and that's causing the panicked reaction. It'll take some close observation and investigation to figure out exactly what's causing it.
I doubt it’s static shock (I have no idea how it’d be generated). Like I said above nothing out of the usual around her to scare her. She has been slowly introduced to each of the veggies so I doubt it’d be a reaction. Choking is a possibility, how would I tell? She’s fine now by the way, she has completely finished her veggies and is eating her pellets fine, acting like it never happened, she did the same thing last time which is why I shrugged it off. Could I just be over reacting?
 

JBun

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It's not an overreaction if a rabbit suddenly starts acting in a way that's unusual from how they are normally. Signs of choking can be a rabbit suddenly exhibiting frantic behavior, like running around suddenly, but in what seems a frantic way and not just from fear or playing(zoomies). Or they may suddenly start pawing at their face(not grooming), shaking their head, hold their nose up in the air, have a chewing motion with their mouth but not be eating anything.

"The following information is provided for reference only. Ask your rabbit savvy vet about this subject before you need to use it! They can show you the correct technique for your rabbit! There can be very serious negative consequences using the techniques below!"

 

CrazyChickenGirl

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It's not an overreaction if a rabbit suddenly starts acting in a way that's unusual from how they are normally. Signs of choking can be a rabbit suddenly exhibiting frantic behavior, like running around suddenly, but in what seems a frantic way and not just from fear or playing(zoomies). Or they may suddenly start pawing at their face(not grooming), shaking their head, hold their nose up in the air, have a chewing motion with their mouth but not be eating anything.

"The following information is provided for reference only. Ask your rabbit savvy vet about this subject before you need to use it! They can show you the correct technique for your rabbit! There can be very serious negative consequences using the techniques below!"

It's not an overreaction if a rabbit suddenly starts acting in a way that's unusual from how they are normally. Signs of choking can be a rabbit suddenly exhibiting frantic behavior, like running around suddenly, but in what seems a frantic way and not just from fear or playing(zoomies). Or they may suddenly start pawing at their face(not grooming), shaking their head, hold their nose up in the air, have a chewing motion with their mouth but not be eating anything.

"The following information is provided for reference only. Ask your rabbit savvy vet about this subject before you need to use it! They can show you the correct technique for your rabbit! There can be very serious negative consequences using the techniques below!"

She didn’t point her nose up, breathe raspy, gurgle, whistle, or with difficulty, there was no drooling, and she didn’t paw at her face. Could it just have been she choked for a short time at the beginning? She was fine after running initially, she wanted pet and loafed, but she was still nervous. I didn’t think to check her gums.
 

CrazyChickenGirl

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It's not an overreaction if a rabbit suddenly starts acting in a way that's unusual from how they are normally. Signs of choking can be a rabbit suddenly exhibiting frantic behavior, like running around suddenly, but in what seems a frantic way and not just from fear or playing(zoomies). Or they may suddenly start pawing at their face(not grooming), shaking their head, hold their nose up in the air, have a chewing motion with their mouth but not be eating anything.

"The following information is provided for reference only. Ask your rabbit savvy vet about this subject before you need to use it! They can show you the correct technique for your rabbit! There can be very serious negative consequences using the techniques below!"

She didn’t point her nose up, breathe raspy, gurgle, whistle, or with difficulty, there was no drooling, and she didn’t paw at her face. She was fine after running initially, she wanted pet and loafed, but she was still nervous. I didn’t think to check her gums. Could it just have been she choked for a short time at the beginning?
 

rabbit_friend

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I had a big bunny, very laid back and hard to scare, who once stopped drinking from her water bowl for 3 months and acted scared of it. I put all kinds of things in the water to entice her to drink—pear juice, apple juice, tea—and she would go near and act like she desperately wanted to drink these yummy things, then run away panicked. I had to give her subq fluids for three months. She only started drinking again when we brought a new bunny to live in a pen beside hers and she saw him drinking from his bowl.

About the same time she quit drinking we noticed an unusual number of very long-legged spiders occupying her room and nearby rooms (Daddy Long Legs). I did catch a couple drinking from the water bowl. Best we figure is that she went to drink one night and one was at her water bowl and climbed on her nose, spooking her. Don't know if you have any bugs around, but that may be a factor.

Side note: in the last week, we've had a 3” wolf spider on the bed, a tree frog on the toilet seat, and a possum sleeping in our grill — we have quite the wildlife haven around our house 😀
 

CrazyChickenGirl

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I had a big bunny, very laid back and hard to scare, who once stopped drinking from her water bowl for 3 months and acted scared of it. I put all kinds of things in the water to entice her to drink—pear juice, apple juice, tea—and she would go near and act like she desperately wanted to drink these yummy things, then run away panicked. I had to give her subq fluids for three months. She only started drinking again when we brought a new bunny to live in a pen beside hers and she saw him drinking from his bowl.

About the same time she quit drinking we noticed an unusual number of very long-legged spiders occupying her room and nearby rooms (Daddy Long Legs). I did catch a couple drinking from the water bowl. Best we figure is that she went to drink one night and one was at her water bowl and climbed on her nose, spooking her. Don't know if you have any bugs around, but that may be a factor.
With summer we have had a bunch of flies and fruit flies due to the fact that we live on hobby farm (we have 67 animals in total) so no matter what we do in the summer flies are a problem until it gets colder again. Considering we got Opal at the beginning of last winter we never had her during the summer. It’s very possible she has gotten scared by a fruit fly while eating her veggies. Thank you everyone for the help. I’m just happy it’s nothing serious.
Side note: in the last week, we've had a 3” wolf spider on the bed, a tree frog on the toilet seat, and a possum sleeping in our grill — we have quite the wildlife haven around our house 😀
I hope you saw the the spider BEFORE getting in bed, otherwise I bet it was quiet a scare 😝. I bet the possum had a rude awakening 🤣
 

JBun

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She didn’t point her nose up, breathe raspy, gurgle, whistle, or with difficulty, there was no drooling, and she didn’t paw at her face. She was fine after running initially, she wanted pet and loafed, but she was still nervous. I didn’t think to check her gums. Could it just have been she choked for a short time at the beginning?

It could be, or it could have been something like rabbit_friend mentioned. It can be hard to know with rabbits sometimes.
 

rabbit_friend

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I hope you saw the the spider BEFORE getting in bed, otherwise I bet it was quiet a scare 😝. I bet the possum had a rude awakening 🤣
My husband was actually in bed and reached for a booklet of answers to puzzles he was working on, and the spider rode up to the bed on the booklet! It's the loudest I've ever heard him yell. The possum definitely had an awakening he hadn’t planned on when we opened the grill to cook dinner. We let him sleep another hour till dusk before we shooed him off, and fixed a dinner that didn't require the grill that day 😉

839E8646-2E62-43B1-AED0-86DF04E40774.jpeg
 

rabbit_friend

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With summer we have had a bunch of flies and fruit flies due to the fact that we live on hobby farm (we have 67 animals in total) so no matter what we do in the summer flies are a problem until it gets colder again.
Make sure you keep the bunny areas clean and free of flies and check the bunnies carefully every day. Prevention is key, as fly strike in bunnies is nasty and often fatal.
 

CrazyChickenGirl

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Make sure you keep the bunny areas clean and free of flies and check the bunnies carefully every day. Prevention is key, as fly strike in bunnies is nasty and often fatal.
We are working on it right now. Aside from fly strips and daily cleaning we don’t know what else to do. Luckily, with winter coming the flies are slowly disappearing.
 

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