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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.

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Forum DIET & CARE Bunny wet poop – a cry for help, tried everything

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    • aaronIre
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      Hello all – two mini lops here. Boy and girl, fully vaxed, neutered, vet visits up to date. Free roam indoors.

      I adopted these buns 6 months ago. From day 1 we had a major poo problem, related to the morning cecotropes. After an extensive amount of research, I can say that I am quite the bunny poo expert, but after trying everything, it’s still a problem.

      Both buns are constantly pumping out wet cecotropes every morning. We have to keep newspapers under their box where they sleep and change it out every 30 mins for the duration of the morning. This will go on from 8am – 1pm. Sometimes they do eat the cecotropes (either directly from anus or shortly after its passed), but other times they just nest on it. It gets terribly matted in their fur and this is a major problem trying to clean daily with wet wipes – they hate us cleaning them and they don’t seem to be great at cleaning themselves.

      Vet treated for possible parasites, took sample of poo, didn’t detect any strange bacteria. Suspected it to be diet related. Another vet nurse commented that rabbits are usually very clean animals and couldn’t understand why they are so matted, suggesting they are kept confined in a hutch… this is not the case at all.

      At the start, we had them both on (1) unlimited timothy hay, timothy grass, oat hay, and water (mixed with prebiotics), (2) eggcup of good quality pelets in morning and evening, (3) handfull each of greens in evening.

      We were advised to completely restrict the diet to see if it improves. This day three weeks ago, we removed everything except for the unlimited timothy hay, timothy grass & oat hay and water (no prebiotics). It initially seemed to improve for the first week, and there was very little wet poo in the mornings.

      Week 2 of diet, it started returning gradually and now we’re almost back to as bad as it was initially.

      Two days ago, we removed the timothy and oat grass so they are only eating Timothy hay (Science Selective Timothy Hay). It’s still just as bad in the mornings.

      I have no idea what to do next. Poor bunnies haven’t given us a binky or zoomie for the past two weeks so I’m worried that i’m not doing the right thing with this restricted diet.

      As the title suggests, a cry for help! Any idea where to go next?


    • DanaNM
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      Hmm, are you sure this is happening with both bunnies, or is it just one?

      Do their other poops look normal? As in, are there normal poops + excess cecotropes, or does it seem like all the poops are soft?

      Have you reached out to where you adopted them from to see if this was a problem before?

      Sorry for all the questions!

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • aaronIre
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      Thanks @DanaNM. Each time we change the papers, they are both nesting on their cecotropes (and may I add, it’s quite smelly).  However it affects one worse than the other, as the other is much better at cleaning herself. So to answer your question, affects both, however symptoms affect one (boy) far more than the other (girl).

      Their poos during the day are 100% perfect. Light brown and would crumble into dust. This problem is completely confined to between 8am – 1pm.

      Yes, the previous owners always have had problems with this one bunny who isn’t great at cleaning himself. They had to frequently bring to the vet to get his backside trimmed down and cleaned. Root cause never identified.

      He is quite clumsy when trying to clean himself and I’m not sure if he can properly reach down there, it looks like a lot of effort for him when he puts his head down to try to clean. The vet (exotic vet) said the next test would be to put him under anesthetic to take scans and try to identify any problems, but i think this is too risky.

      I have read about trying some Benebac probiotics.. any thoughts about that? Until now, we have only used the Pro-C Probiotic powder.


    • DanaNM
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      I think Benebac is worth trying, but it also might be worth exploring if it’s a mobility issue that prevents them from eating them easily. Since their poops are normal otherwise, it seems like that might be more of the culprit. How old are they? Could they have some arthritis?

      Mini-lops can also have some ear issues, so I wonder if there could be something going on with their ears that’s affecting their balance?

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • aaronIre
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      They are only two years old, so arthritis would be unlikely I think. That’s a really interesting thought about the balance. I am pretty sure that they are 100% deaf. They don’t react to any sound at all (even clapping hands behind them or the fire alarm). Vet just said yes its common for them to have hearing problems, but didn’t look further into it.

      Here’s some pics of the boy trying to clean his bottom 🙂 I will try to take a video next time though, so you can get a better impression.

       


    • DanaNM
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      That doesn’t look too unusual in terms of how they are reaching down for the poops, but that is very interesting that they seem deaf! I wonder if that could be related at all?

      Dental issues are also pretty common in lops, are they good hay eaters?

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


    • LBJ10
      Moderator
      15591 posts Send Private Message

      Deafness does seem to mess with their equilibrium a little bit. But I wouldn’t think that would cause messy cecotropes. At least, that has not been my experience.

      You said the vet looked for bacteria in the poop and did not see any “strange” bacteria. What about the possibility of a bacteria or yeast overgrowth? This would be cecal dysbiosis. And depending on how unbalanced the gut flora is, it may take more than simply cutting everything out of their diet to get things back in order. I don’t think a probiotic would be a bad idea.

      Here’s some info on cecal dysbiosis: https://rabbit.org/disorders-of-the-cecum/


      • aaronIre
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        Thanks @DanaNM and @LBJ10..

        They are very good hay eaters, we have two large litter boxes and if they are not sleeping, they are constantly munching.

        I’ve been a little worried about their ears since you mentioned it and noticed one of them shaking his head and scratching his ear / face, so I booked a vet visit for later today to investigate. It could very well be a balance issue from the ears which is discouraging them from putting their heads down to eat cecotropes.

        I have been reading similar articles to the one you mentioned, thanks for that. I was following this one -> https://rabbit.org/intermittent-soft-cecotropes-in-rabbits/
        We are now over three weeks into the strict hay only diet. They haven’t had a single treat, vegetable or pellet. I do note, in both articles it says if this has been an ongoing problem for a long time, then it could take up to two months. I just hope they can sustain on that diet for all that time.

        I will try to bring another sample of the cecos to the vet and ask to examine for overgrown yeast or bacteria, cheers!

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Forum DIET & CARE Bunny wet poop – a cry for help, tried everything