Thursday, December 18, 2014 Register
 

Forum

BUNNY 911 - If your rabbit hasn't eaten or pooped in 12-24 hours, call a vet immediately!

Don't have a vet? Check out VET RESOURCES 

The subject of intentional breeding or meat rabbits is prohibited. The answers provided on this board are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet.  It is your responsibility to assess the information being given and seek professional advice/second opinion from your veterinarian and/or qualified behaviorist.

 

LEADERS:  Beka27  BinkyBunny  KokaneeandKahlua LBJ10 LittlePuffyTail  LongEaredLions  MoveDiagonally  RabbitPam   Sarita

 

You must login and be verified to post, reply, and view profiles
BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > HOUSE RABBIT Q & A > Bunny w psychological dislike for hay...
Last Post by remster at 8/11/2012 8:49 AM (12 Replies)
You are not authorized to post a reply or you have not verified your email address.
Printer Friendly
Sort:
Author Messages

User is Offline remster
7 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2012 4:58 PM

 My Bunny just will not eat what he is supposed to.  when he was 2 he had a very mild tummy upset /colic, that lastedunder  24 hours possibly from the meadow hay he was having at the time or from his heavy moult  .  Once he was better, I changed brands... over the years Ive tried everything from meadow grass, timothy hay - you name it, I've tried it.  He only wants his pellets, veggies and straw. 

Everyday,  since he was ill (it's now been 5 years) he has had hay / eating grass...never touches it.  He spent time with our guinea pig as I hoped that seeing the piggy eat the grass, Bunny would give it a go. But nope...I tried taking out the bedding straw he's so fond of eating but still nope. He will not eat it.  Even my vet doesn't know what to do.

He's no underlying medical problems and never had another tummy upset; He's a very happy healthy bunny BUT for this one thing that is now causing him dental probs for obvious reasons. 

He had a small spur removed this time last year.  Now it's come back and he's got to have it done again.  I know I'll face this prob repeatedly if he won't eat what he's supposed to.  It's as if he has a psychological problem with hay.  There is no physical reason why he can't eat / digest ir normally,

His other subborn prob is he refuses his recovery meds / pain meds after the dental.

Plus as he gets older, there will be a higher risk with anaesthetic...I really don't want to put my lovely bunny through a dental op that is simple to avoid by him eating the foods that are designed to wear his teeth down.

Does anyone out in forum land, have any ideas what I can do about this...

  

 


User is Offline LoveChaCha
Rabbit Warren
6569 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2012 6:12 PM
How many pellets does he eat? I know of stubborn bunnies, and I have one. She won't touch 1st cut hays and will just snub it.
PhotobucketPhotobucket85207e9097ee11e18cf91231380fd29b_6

User is Offline peppypoo
Texas
Forum Leader
1953 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2012 6:17 PM
What do you mean his bedding straw? What are you using?

Also, how much other kinds of food are you giving him on a daily basis?
Tammo (RIP), Milo (RIP), Peppy, Remi

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8682 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2012 8:50 PM
It also may be that he always had some dental issues (even a slight malocclusion will cause spurs regardless of hay consumption), and some bunnies are much more sensitive to the discomfort than others which can affect hay intake. Were his teeth checked in previous years?

My bunny Rucy had to get her teeth checked and spurs trimmed and she ate plenty of hay -- it didn't prevent the spurs from occurring. But I can tell you that she chose the softer pieces of hay, so you may want to try second cut timothy -- a much softer leafier hay. Have you tried cutting of Timothy? It really is the softest.

I also think that diet may be key too, which is why the others were asking about that so we may be able to give better advice once we have all the info.

User is Offline remster
7 posts Send Private Message
7/10/2012 5:59 AM
He has a standard sized ceramic feeding bowl for rabbits with two small helpings per day of 3 - 4 oz each. He has a nutritionally balanced pellet called Excel for Dwarf Rabbits. But he is a 5 kilo rabbit with the unmistakable dwarf ears and face. and he has blue-ish short fur with a mjor moult once a year (sometimes twice). I have to brush him daily for at least ten days, every day. The amout of fur he shed's would go in his mouth if I didn't brush him and cause real trouble.

I don't know what he's crossed with and I was advised by the pet shop I got him from to keep him on the dwarf diet. I wonder if I was given bad advice.

Heres my list of tried it without success:

I've tried giving less pellets in case he was fillling up on them becoming too full for his hay. Result: Ignored hay / ate bedding straw

I've tried giving the two portions separately - one morn / one eve. with only hay in between. Result: Ate bedding Straw

I've also tried the both versions with no access to bedding straw. Result: He literally ripped his best toy to bits in anger and preferred to starve himself. He did that for over 12 hours before I gave in and gave him his pellets back as I was so worried.

Another version was substituting the bedding straw completely with timothy / meadow hay + his bowl of hay + a hay rack .... he enjoyed tossing all the hay out of the bowl and pulling the rack down. His nice pile of food became one mouthful and then a bed. Result: Grumpy, tired and angry from hunger.

Yes ... he does eat the bedding straw - which is barley straw. I worry about him doing it but luckily he's litter trained and I do a daily maintenance as well as a full clean once a week so he doesn't eat soiled bedding. He's never been interested in chew blocks / treats either. In fact his favourite past time is mating with his toy rabbit, flicking his towelly out from his back legs and jumping about like a loony.

The spur that was removed was very small and only on one tooth. He totally refused all food and meds then for nearly 5 days post op. I it poss the vets didn't do the dental properly. I wasn't expecting to see this again for a long while but it's only been almost a year to the day. Last week in June last year.

I am from the UK. We don't get any choice of what 'cut' of the hay is available as far as I know. Here it's mass produced and packaged with only a vague description labelled meadow hay / timothy hay etc. I'll try to see if I can find this 'soft timothy'. You give me an idea, I haven't tried local rabbit breeders ... perhaps they source their feed from better place that I don't know about.

I'm convinced that it's either him being a stubborn old buffoon or it's something in the way I'm feeding / what I'm feeding that I'm sure I could put right if only I can figure it out. About the same time he packed in the hay - he also stopped passing the little edible poops rabbit make. I haven't seen those in years... !?

User is Online Sarita
(Dallas)
Forum Leader
18099 posts Send Private Message
7/10/2012 6:14 AM
Sounds very frustrating.

I will say that as rabbits age they are more susceptible to dental problems because of bone deterioration and once there is a problem it is likely to continue no matter what the diet is. I have 3 seniors and 2 have dental problems. Their teeth do change as they age too. So that being said, has he had his teeth checked since last year? One of my senior rabbits who never had problems before last year is now getting dental filings done almost every other month now (she is 9 years old).

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8682 posts Send Private Message
7/10/2012 2:17 PM

I agree that it does sound frustrating!   The fact that he likes his barley straw and eats it without a problem means he is not really having a problem chewing hay.   Straw is a bit tougher than the softer hays like Orchard or second cut Timothy. So makes me wonder if your bunny would like Oat hay.  Have you heard of the they hayexperts.co.uk?   They are an online store but based in the UK and they seem to have some good options.  Though they don't have second cut timothy, they do have more selections of Orchard, Oat and Timothy hay with botanicals and/or herbs that may be more enticing.  They also offer a sample pack of a few which may be helpful!   Here's the direct link to the hay section 

Does your bunny like treat balls or treat bags?  For example fill a lunch paper bag with hay, and then put a few treats inside the bag.  He may make a mess tearing it up to get to the treats, but IF it really is something psychological, then maybe "playtime- treat time" can be associated with hay and with all of the pushing aside to get the the treat, he may choose to start nibbling...and may be actually start liking it.  

Regarding his cecals -- are you sure he is not producing them?  Could he be just eating them -- I rarely see Viv's because she gets to them as she produces them. 

I also do agree that even if you get your bunny eating more hay, it may not solve the tooth issue, however, I still think it is important because as she ages, she may be more susceptible to illness, which can cause stasis, so having hay in her diet will help keep her gut healthy and on the move. 


User is Offline remster
7 posts Send Private Message
7/10/2012 3:22 PM

Thanks for the Uk link ... I'll check it out and see what's aviallble bulk buy - he's had a green oat treat mix before and loved that - its just finding a brand that is affordable.  I've only seen these 900gm bags that are almost £5 sterling - he'd eat at leat half of that a day so it's too expensive. I'll try your ideas out BB. 

I was unaware of the bone density issue.  Thanks muchly Sarita for that learning curve .. Wilfachopps is my first and only Bunny so does this mean at 7 he's a golden oldie? What other age related probs should I be aware of so I can keep on top of his elderly care too. 

I know this is a very radical thought - but if it's just the same tooth always being affected should I ask them to file it down a little more this time or have it removed completely... I know he can't loose a tooth every time one of them get a spur but I am worried that he might develop an abcess in it eventually and I've heard that can be very nasty...

With his cecals...he always used to miss one or two  so I'd see the occassional one squished or dried out on the floor or in the pen when I clean it out.. and I'd usually see him eating them.  So I'm convinced that either he makes very few or none at all.

PS Thanks for all your help so far with this; my first ever post.  I just hope that Wilfachopps will eventually behave and appreciate what we are all trying to do... oh who am I kidding.  Bunny's will be Bunnies  I'll keep you posted with a soloution when I find it.

 

 

 


User is Offline remster
7 posts Send Private Message
7/10/2012 3:24 PM
 Forgot to ask ... is there a calcium / a supplement he can take to improve the bone density?

User is Offline remster
7 posts Send Private Message
7/11/2012 4:31 AM

Just a quick update.  Just typical of my lovely Wilfachopps... 1) actually did find a wet Cecal stuck to his litter tray this morning ... so BB, I guess you were right ... he must be eating them and I haven't noticed.  2) His eye has stopped watering (for now).  Last year, his watering eye was what prompted me to take him to the vet as I thought he had an eye infection - but it was the tooth spur.

Wifachopps may have caused us all  a false alarm with his teeth. His eye is not watering at all anymore and the fur around it is dry. Perhaps he poked himself in the eye with a bit of straw.  I'll keep my own eyes on it just incase any scratch develops into a minor infection or if it starts watering again, get his  teeth checked.

Still, you guys have still given me a steep learning curve and I will keep working on the Hay side of things.  I've looked at the link and it's brilliant.

Got him a nice big Seagrass ball to chew, some dental 'treats' for him and the pigglies and hope to get a soluble calcium supplement to add to his water.  He doesn't like the treats and he's put the ball in his litter tray ...by accident or is he trying to tell me exactly what he thinks of my efforts.


User is Online Sarita
(Dallas)
Forum Leader
18099 posts Send Private Message
7/11/2012 6:04 AM
You could give him some fresh alfalfa as a treat to help with calcium. I wouldn't put anything in his water though which might change the flavor and make it unpalatable. Now, I don't know if it would help improve his bone density but it certainly cannot hurt.

User is Offline Beka27
Cleveland, Ohio (USA)
Forum Leader
15797 posts Send Private Message
7/11/2012 11:16 AM
Posted By Sarita on 07/11/2012 08:04 AM
You could give him some fresh alfalfa as a treat to help with calcium. I wouldn't put anything in his water though which might change the flavor and make it unpalatable. Now, I don't know if it would help improve his bone density but it certainly cannot hurt.

Have you tried alfalfa hay with him?  Generally adult buns should get grass hays, but very young rabbits and seniors can have alfalfa daily.  If he would eat alfalfa, that's better than nothing.

Meadow..... Photobucket ...... Max, my angel bunny

User is Offline remster
7 posts Send Private Message
8/11/2012 8:49 AM
Thanks Sarita ... I'll check out the Alfalfa hay too.
You are not authorized to post a reply or you have not verified your email address.
BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > HOUSE RABBIT Q & A > Bunny w psychological dislike for hay...

Bunny World Domination
You agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy by using this website.
Copyright 2006-2012 BinkyBunny.com - All Rights Reserved