Sad news.... and hopeful news, too?

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sandhills_rabbits

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My two Holland Lop females that I bred with my Holland male show bunny went into labor today.

The first female had three babes, and all were still-born. Right as Iwas tending to the sweetie her lost all her babies, my other femalestarted having contractions. She quickly delivered a baby, that wasalso deceased. When I examined the baby, I noticed that it's tongue wassticking out of it's mouth, and appeared very swollen. I thought thatthis indicated that the baby must have been alive, and didnt get enough(or any) oxygen?

After spending quite a few hours with my rabbits and trying to showthem how much I love them and how bad I felt, I decided I had better gotend to other things that needed to be done. I checked on the girlsperiodically to make sure each was doing well, and went back upstairs.This evening I once again went down to check the buns, and to feed andwater everyone because I didnt want them to wonder where their dinnerwas.

I glanced in the 2nd female's cage (the sweetie that only had one baby)and there was a black kit on the cage floor. She didnt have the baby inthe nest box, and was having nothing to do with it. The baby was COLDto the touch, and I knew that it was going to be gone, too. It wasnt!!!It was very, very cold, but still alive and breathing. We took itupstairs and warmed it up, and are just praying and praying that thislittle baby will make it. I ran to the store and stocked up on smallanimal bottles and kmr just in case the mama bunny (who's a first timemom) doesnt properly care for the little one.

If anyone has any advice whatsoever, feel free to let me know! I amdetermined that this baby will be my little black bunny that I've beenwanting forever, AND my miricle baby too! I really want to help herhave the best chance at life that she can, so any input would begreatly appreciated.
 

babybunnywrigley

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I'm so sorry that some of the babies didn't makeit :( I really hope the little black bunny pullsthrough ;)

I wish I could give you some advice, but I know nothing about newborn bunnies :?

Best of luck with the little one!
 

Rowan

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I'm sorry I don't have any advice at all but Ireally hope your longed for little black rabbit makes it. That would beso wonderful after the sadness of the rest. I'll be praying for you :).

Kate
 

sandhills_rabbits

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I'm trying to remain hopeful that the black bunnybaby will make it. Does anyone know how soon I should know whether themom is feeding it? I know that I'm to watch and make sure it's littlebelly stays chubby and not dehydrated-wrinkly looking.

I'm also wanting to be prepared in case I do have to aid in it'sfeeding. The pet nurser bottles I bought are for small kittens, andlook very tiny. The nipple is small, but looks almost too big for thebaby bun's mouth. Would a baby just nurse off the tip of the bottle, ordoes it actually take the whole nipple into it's mouth? (I know that'sprobably a stupid sounding question, but i've never bottle-nursedanything smaller than a puppy).

I'm also wondering- If the baby ends up having to be bottle fed, whatthe typical mortality rates for bottle-fed bunnies? Do they have a goodshot at living a healthy, happy life, or are they at a majordisadvantage?

I apologize for all the questions.... It's just that I want to do whatever I can and need to for this little babe....
 

Rowan

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I remember reading that you have to be very verycareful with bottle feeding because they can aspirate the milk and itcan kill them, also that they need to be fed much more often than theirmother would feed them, but I don't know more than that except keepingthem warm of course.

I'm still praying that your little one does make it. Hopefully the Mumwill take over which would have a much higher chance of success for thelittle one I'm sure. Do single babies need an extra heat source to makeup for their lack of sibling warmth?

Kate
 

pamnock

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I've never bottle fed, but many people are quitesuccessful with it. Kits aspirating the formula is a commonproblem as it may result in pneumonia.

If I'm concerned that a doe isn't nursing the young, I place a towel onmy lap, set the doe on it and put the kit under her to nurse.You can give the doe a little snack and pet her to relax her so themilk will let down.

The "death babies brought to life" are rather common. Thephysical response of the hypothermia is called the "mammalian divingresponse" which causes all the bodies resources to go into maintainingthe critical organs (brain, heart, lungs). The heartbeat andbreathing slow down to nearly a standstill and the circulation of theblood is restricted to the inner core to maintain the critical organs,resulting in the body feeling very cold to the touch and a "death-like"state. These babies can often be revived by warmth.

Yes, the protruding, swollen tongue can be a sign of asphyxiation.

You'll find that Holland Lops can be very prone to these types ofbirthing problems during the winter. Retained kits are alsovery common.

Pam
 

mambo101

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So sorry about the newborns. I also have noadvice for you on the little black one. I will send all my best wishesto you and the little wriggly. I also believe as you do that this couldturn a to be a very special bunny.
 

lyndsy

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Oh, congrats on the little one...

I too have no advice, but I'm sure there's llots out there on the computer, or your vet or a local breeder.

Good luck, I hope the one pulls through for you!:D
 

sandhills_rabbits

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pamnock wrote:
If I'm concerned that a doe isn't nursing the young, I place a towel onmy lap, set the doe on it and put the kit under her to nurse. You cangive the doe a little snack and pet her to relax her so the milk willlet down.


Pam

Pam, thanks so much for the wonderful advice of putting the mother onmy lap, and keeping her relaxed and still so she can nurse the kit. Ijust did that, and I believe it worked! The baby crawled under mamaright away, and I just petted and petted the mama. The baby seemed toreally enjoy the closeness and warmth it got from her, too. After awhile the baby wriggled out from under her, and had a BIG full lookingbelly!!! Yay! I am so happy that worked!!
Thank you so so much!
 

Dwarf_Angel04

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sandhills_rabbits wrote:
Pam, thanks so much for the wonderful advice of putting themother on my lap, and keeping her relaxed and still so she can nursethe kit. I just did that, and I believe it worked! The baby crawledunder mama right away, and I just petted and petted the mama. The babyseemed to really enjoy the closeness and warmth it got from her, too.After a while the baby wriggled out from under her, and had a BIG fulllooking belly!!! Yay! I am so happy that worked!!
Thank you so so much!
I'm glad to know that your kit has a full tummy. I would let the doetry to do the next feeding for the kit. If it doesn't have another fulltummy in 24 hours then I would do the towel version of feeding. Somedoes don't feed their kits right away so this is actually more normalthen what people would think. For exampe, I've got does that kindle ona Sunday at 3 am and don'tfeed until Monday at 2 am.

I hope you don't have to go to hand feeding the kit. There is more of afatality rate over a success rate. Kits are VERY delicate and liquidcan get in their lungs VERY easily. Most handfed kits die duringfeedings rather then getting cold. I tried handfeeding one litter witha kitten bottle and each kit died during the feeding. The bottle Iended up having had too big of a hole in the nipple of the bottle. Inow when having to handfeed, use an eyedropper. You put ever so smallamounts of milk in at a time.

If you do have to hand feed, I suggest putting the nestboxover a heating pad on the low setting. This way they have some warmththat they don't get from their mother, or other kits.

I hope I have helped a bit.I hope this kit survives! ;)

~*~Amanda~*~
 

sandhills_rabbits

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Dwarf_Angel04 wrote:
I'm glad to know that your kit has a full tummy. I would let the doetry to do the next feeding for the kit. If it doesn't have another fulltummy in 24 hours then I would do the towel version of feeding. Somedoes don't feed their kits right away so this is actually more normalthen what people would think. For exampe, I've got does that kindle ona Sunday at 3 am and don't feed until Monday at 2 am.

I hope you don't have to go to hand feeding the kit. There is more of afatality rate over a success rate. Kits are VERY delicate and liquidcan get in their lungs VERY easily. Most handfed kits die duringfeedings rather then getting cold. I tried handfeeding one litter witha kitten bottle and each kit died during the feeding. The bottle Iended up having had too big of a hole in the nipple of the bottle. Inow when having to handfeed, use an eyedropper. You put ever so smallamounts of milk in at a time.

If you do have to hand feed, I suggest putting the nestbox over aheating pad on the low setting. This way they have some warmth thatthey don't get from their mother, or other kits.

I hope I have helped a bit. I hope this kit survives! ;)

~*~Amanda~*~

Amanda, thanks so much for all the information on the bottle feeding. Iam hoping not to have to go that route at all, because I am just tooscared of the possibility of causing harm or death to the baby.

The mother of the baby never did kindle at all, and while I know it'sstill the baby's first 24 hours of life, I am just trying to getprepared in case the mother doesnt start to take an interest in herbaby. Even if I do have to do the towel-version of the feeding, I willstill be much more optimistic then if i was bottle-feeding the baby.I've already got a box with a towel in the bottom, a heating pad on the'low'setting inside, and a handtowel covering the heating pad so thebaby won't get over heated when the mom nurses it again. (I actuallydidnt hold the mother bunny in my lap when helping her to nurse herbaby, i set her in the box with the baby.)

If I do have to do the towel-feeding with the mom and baby each time,do I still only do that twice a day? Is it best to do it morning andagain at night, or should I also offer a feeding mid-day?

 

Dwarf_Angel04

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sandhills_rabbits wrote:
The mother of the baby never did kindle at all, and while Iknow it's still the baby's first 24 hours of life, I am just trying toget prepared in case the mother doesnt start to take an interest in herbaby.
If I do have to do the towel-feeding with the momand baby each time, do I still only do that twice a day? Is it best todo it morning and again at night, or should I also offer a feedingmid-day?
Kindling is the act of giving birth. How can the mother of the kitnever kindle? You wouldn't have a 'black kit' then. I'm just confusedthats all. ;)
I would feedthe kittwice a day feeding. You justhave to make sure the kit doesn't get 'too much'. Also, youneed to take a wet towl and wipe the kits genital area. If I'mhandfeeding I wipe until I get something outta the kit. The does lickthe kits gential areas after each feeding to help pass outfeeces/urine. However, if the doe ends up taking care of it 24/7 thenyou don't have to worry about it. Unless, you see the kit has stuckpoppies. ;)


 

sandhills_rabbits

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[/quote]
Kindling is the act of giving birth. How can the mother of the kitnever kindle? You wouldn't have a 'black kit' then. I'm just confusedthats all. ;)
I would feed the kit twice a day feeding. You just have to make surethe kit doesn't get 'too much'. Also, you need to take a wet towl andwipe the kits genital area. If I'm handfeeding I wipe until I getsomething outta the kit. The does lick the kits gential areas aftereach feeding to help pass out feeces/urine. However, if the doe ends uptaking care of it 24/7 then you don't have to worry about it. Unless,you see the kit has stuck poppies. ;)


[/quote]

Sorry! When I wrote that post I must have had my mind elsewhere.... (Iguess that's what happens when a person got maybe 2 hours of sleep thenight before!)

I meant to say she didnt nest at all, but what I say is never, everwhat i mean. I put a nest box in with her, and there was no reaction.No fur pulling, no burrow-making, nothing.

I knew about having to wipe the baby's genital area with a dampwashcloth, because we had to do the same thing when bottle-feedingpuppies. This might be another silly question, but how much should ababy bunny be urinating/releiving it's bowels every day? Should it bejust right after feedings, or is there no rhyme or reason to it?

Thanks so much, Dwarf_Angel.... all you're help and advice is greatly appreciated! :)
 

pamnock

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sandhills_rabbits wrote:
I knew about having to wipe the baby's genital area with a dampwashcloth, because we had to do the same thing when bottle-feedingpuppies. This might be another silly question, but how much should ababy bunny be urinating/releiving it's bowels every day? Should it bejust right after feedings, or is there no rhyme or reason to it?


I've seen the kits crawl from the nest to void, then crawl back to thenest. The scent that the mother leaves from her mammary scentglands is what draws the kits back to the nest, so you won't want toremove all the nesting material when cleaning. It doesn'tappear to be necessary to wipe the babies genitals, some will urinateright away when you pick them up.

Pam
 

sandhills_rabbits

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pamnock wrote:
sandhills_rabbits wrote:
I knew about having to wipe the baby's genital area with a dampwashcloth, because we had to do the same thing when bottle-feedingpuppies. This might be another silly question, but how much should ababy bunny be urinating/releiving it's bowels every day? Should it bejust right after feedings, or is there no rhyme or reason to it?


I've seen the kits crawl from the nest to void, then crawl back to thenest. The scent that the mother leaves from her mammary scent glands iswhat draws the kits back to the nest, so you won't want to remove allthe nesting material when cleaning. It doesn't appear to be necessaryto wipe the babies genitals, some will urinate right away when you pickthem up.

Pam

Thanks again for the words of wisdom, Pam! I swear, people are just sofull of wonderful advice and information here. It never ceases to amazeme!

This is a little o/t, but it's a case in point. My little sister boughta bunny two weeks ago, and called me this morning to tell me that herbunny is having quite a bit of diarrhea and is not very active. Sheneeded advice, and needed it as quickly as possible..... so where did iturn? Rabbits Only, of course!!! I found as much relevant informationas I could, printed it off, and also emailed it to her. She now knows afew things that might help her bunny until she can make it to the vetin the morning.
 

Dwarf_Angel04

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Sorry! When I wrote that post I must havehad my mind elsewhere.... (I guess that's what happens when a persongot maybe 2 hours of sleep the night before!)
Thats okay :) I understand. I was just a tad confused. ;)[/quote]
 
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