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I need rabbit help!! Empty I need rabbit help!!

Post by Harvey_Birdman on Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:30 pm

As you all know I have a litter of bunnies that are nearly a month old. I have lost 2 of them in the last week! One Friday, and another yesterday. I do not know the cause, one day they were happy and healthy, the next dead! Both were growing good, and seemed to eat as well as the others. I found now marks on them, or any other signs of what killed them.

I am feeding hay and pellets. I empty and refill thier water every day. It is mostly collected rain water, and some filtered creek water (the same that I drink). They also have mineral blocks for rabbits in thier cage. They still have the nest box so they can get out of the wind, and off of the wire. (one was found dead in the nest box.)

Fearing that the cause was in the nest box I completely cleaned it out and filled it with fresh straw yesterday. I plan to buy some rations that are made for pet rabbits that have sunflower seeds and other high nutrition goodies in them. Other than that I don't know what to do.

I talked to my buddy who has raised rabbits for years, and he had never heard of anything like what I am having happen.

Do any of you have any idea what may be the cause, or of anything else I should try to save the rest of the litter?

God bless,
Chad

Thanks for any help
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Post by Rohn on Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:29 pm

Sorry I can't be of much help Chad. Also sorry you have lost a couple of your bunnies. Hope the others make it OK. Keep us up on anything you find out.
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Post by 12acrehome on Wed Apr 17, 2013 12:38 am

Two thoughts come to mind, but only guess work at this point. First where is the rain water collected from? If it's coming off a roof there could be something getting into it from there. It would not be high enough levels to harm all that drink it, but only the weakest.

The other thought, and I may be way off base with this one, wild rabbits are easily shocked into heart failure at a young age. Some wild rabbit babies can be killed simply from catching them, others in the same litter will be unaffected. There may simply nothing you could do.

Just my guesses...

umm, wait a second ... What kind of hay are you feeding them?? Fescue will prevent nutrient uptake in rabbits, feed only alfalfa, or a clover alfalfa mix.

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Post by Harvey_Birdman on Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:00 am

I feed alfalfa hay. The rain is collected off the metal roof of one of my hutches.

The hutch they are in is next to my driveway, so maybe me coming and going in the car is shocking them.?. I will have to move the hutch, maybe that will help.

Thanks and God bless,
Chad
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Post by Chicken Freak on Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:19 am

HI there. I am sorry for your losses. Raising rabbits or any animal will ultimately result in some losses. It is sad and unfortunate, but a reality. I know that if you have old or moldy hay, straw, or bedding, it can be toxic to the rabbits. So, changing the bedding is a plus. Is the male rabbit still with the group? If so, you will want to move the male to a different cage. The males are notorious for killing the babies after they are born. How old was the female when she gave birth? Was this her first litter? Are there any other rabbits is the cage with her? Sometimes these things just happen. I have raised rabbits for many, many years. Sometimes, there just are no answers, other than the fact that sometimes we just lose some rabbits. I hope this helps some. Many blessings.
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Post by Harvey_Birdman on Wed Apr 24, 2013 4:19 pm

No other rabbits in the hutch, other than babies and mother. I think it is her second litter, but I am not sure.

I switched them to "high nutrition" food, and put a few drops of baby oil in their water. So far so good, I haven't had any more losses.

The weather had been changing rapidly, so that may have had something to do with it, but like Chicken Freak said "sometimes these things just happen."

Thank you all for your help!

God bless,
Chad
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