Urgent! How do I know when my doe is in labour?

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by Akittay, Aug 22, 2015.

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  1. Aug 24, 2015 #21

    JBun

    JBun

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    What food do you have her on now? Is it alfalfa based? How much does she get and how much does she weight?

    There's not really anything a shelter could do for the kits unless they just happen to have a nursing doe with new kits or kits ready to be weaned, that they could foster to. Hand feeding can be done but is really the least advisable option due to the aspiration risks involved.

    If she hasn't fed them by morning, your best bet is to hold them up to her belly to try and nurse. Best way is to sit her on your lap and hold onto her, then have someone else bring the babies up from underneath to nurse. But you may not even need to worry. As long as she has milk coming in, she should get to the point where she will want to nurse them to relieve the pressure from the milk.
     
  2. Aug 24, 2015 #22

    Akittay

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    I threw away the bag of food she currently has, it was one the pet store recommended (no they dont give false advertisement) for pregant rabbits and I'm pretty sure it was alfafa based, i'm not sure of the weigh but she's reaaalaly fat,
    Oh and her nipples are red when I lay her on her back and feed the babies to her,, View attachment ImageUploadedByRabbit Forum1440389551.261322.jpg
     
  3. Aug 24, 2015 #23

    Akittay

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    I'm not here till tomorrow afternoon so I figured I'd let feed them now
    (I left a blanket on her cage in a quiet room all day)
     
  4. Aug 24, 2015 #24

    JBun

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    Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    It's not usually a good idea to suddenly change a rabbits pelleted food. Reason being it can cause digestive problems. Usually changing a pelleted food takes a gradual transition period of a couple weeks at the least. If you want to change her feed then it's best to continue to feed the pellets she is used to and gradually start adding in some of the new pellets and taking some out of the old pellets, gradually doing more of the new pellets and less of the old, each day until after 2 weeks she would be switched over.

    You will also need to start increasing her pellet amount over the next week. Nursing mom's eat quite a bit more, usually 2-3 times the normal amount of pellets, but this needs to be gradually increased over a week or two.

    Can you tell if the babies got any milk at all? Or if there was milk in the nipples?
     
  5. Aug 24, 2015 #25

    Akittay

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    I don't think the babies got any milk at all, I dont even think she's lactating, and ohhh, I didn't know it wasn't good to suddenly change the food. Ugh >.<..

    I put the doe on her back and let the babies drink for about 10 minutes and their belly hasnt changed :/..
     
  6. Aug 24, 2015 #26

    JBun

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    Babies will usually only nurse for about 5 minutes. So after 10 minutes, if there was any milk they should have plump bellies. She could still start producing milk, but if not you may need to take her to the vet to get a shot of oxytocin to help stimulate milk production. It may or may not help though.

    Hand feeding is a possibility, but can be complicated as it is difficult to prevent the babies from aspirating the milk. But if she doesn't start producing milk, it may be something that will be necessary to try.

    The babies can't go more than 48 hours without feeding or they will gradually become too weak to nurse, so keep that in mind. Even waiting 48 hours is pushing it though.
     
  7. Aug 24, 2015 #27

    BlazeBunnies

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    The doe will fee them at dawn and dusk ... Put on the nipples like how a kit would and see if milk comes out, if milk does then she is lactating if no milk comes out then she isn't.... I have heard that does won't start lactating until all babies are out but I don't know if this is true as all my girls give birth within 30 mins and I miss the birth :( :)
     
  8. Aug 24, 2015 #28

    Akittay

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    Thank you everyone I'll wait 48 hours then I'll start to call the vet
     
  9. Aug 24, 2015 #29

    BlazeBunnies

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    I wouldn't wait 48 hours a rabbit can hide its pain and then the pain gets too much for them to handle and they show it and they crash fast!
     
  10. Aug 24, 2015 #30

    swarning1222

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    My female didn't feed her babies for the first couple days. After about 24 hours (which was probably too long for the babies since they were very week at that point) I started putting them one at a time underneath her to nurse. If you have to do this be very careful she doesn't jump away quick and hurt them. They weren't getting very much milk, if any at first so I had to do it quite a few times throughout the day. But a day or two after she started feeding them on her own. I'm thinking she either didn't have milk at first and the suction helped get the milk out, or, I had a baby die on day 2, so she might not have been going near them because she knew there was a sick one. Just keep watching their bellies to make sure they're eating and don't let them get to the point of dehydration.
     
  11. Aug 24, 2015 #31

    JBun

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    I agree. I would keep trying to let them nurse throughout the day, several times. If by this evening, or if they seem to be getting weak or dehydrated, I would start syringe feeding them. This needs to be done very carefully and very slowly to try and keep them from aspirating.

    If there is no milk and you plan on taking her to the vet, you will want to do it today. If you wait til tomorrow that is too late. After 48 hours the kits will be too weak.
    http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare/orphan.html
     
  12. Aug 25, 2015 #32

    Akittay

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    She still doesnt feed them, one died and there's the last one on the edge of dying right now, very cold, And is it normal if my doe's nipples are very swollen?
     
  13. Aug 25, 2015 #33

    swarning1222

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    Mine were very swollen but I would maybe look up some pictures to see how swollen yours are compared to how they should normally be because they can have some problems with that. Since there's only one left you have to really make sure it's staying warm. Does it seem dehydrated? I rescued a wild baby who was very cold and dehydrated, I put him in a warm room in a cat carrier and I took one towel and rolled it up like a hot dog and made a small circle with it and put hay inside (you can use the mamas fur if you have some) then I would tuck him in there and cover the top with another towel. Then I filled a water bottle with warm-hot water and put that on the outside of the towel close to him (not touching him). He survived so it worked pretty well. If he's weak he might not make it to the top for feeding times though so I would just keep pulling him out (making sure your hands are warm and he stays warm, their temperature can drop very quickly!) and trying to get it to eat. Good luck :(
     
  14. Aug 25, 2015 #34

    majorv

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    Does should start feeding their kits within 24 hours. If they haven't been fed by 36 hours you have to find a surrogate doe who's currently nursing or try to feed them yourself with goats milk or KMR. First time moms don't always do things right, unfortunately. I'm sorry you're losing them
     
  15. Aug 26, 2015 #35

    Akittay

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    Sadly the last one died overnight, I wasn't home all the the day before so I could do anything
     
  16. Aug 26, 2015 #36

    MiniLopMad

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    I'm so sorry to hear that :( First time mothers don't always do a good job, which sucks.

    You did a good job though and you tried, and that's all we can do sometimes :)
     
  17. Aug 26, 2015 #37

    Thumperina

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    I am so sorry about her babies.
    Do you plan to just keep her separately from the males?
     
  18. Aug 27, 2015 #38

    BlazeBunnies

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    I'm sorry to hear that :(
    First time mothers aren't the best but you did everything you could and your getting her sprayed to avoid this again so good luck! :)
     
  19. Aug 27, 2015 #39

    Akittay

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    Yes I am separating them from the males until the vet accepts to spay them
     

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