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Home Forums DIET & CARE everything was wrong

This topic contains 2sd replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Vienna Blue in France 1 year, 2 months ago.

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  • #1320479

    BlueS
    Participant

    I just adopted a lion/lop mix from an old high school friend. She is moving and I didn’t want to see him sent to a shelter. I’ve wanted a rabbit for years so I immediately went out and bought a large dog cage for him and all the good supplies he would need. Upon receiving him (for free with all his equipment) I noticed that he hasn’t been properly taken care of for over a year (he’s about a year and a half old) he wasn’t given hay even though that’s what should make up most of his diet, the food that he’s been eating is colorful and has nuts and seeds… as a result he’s pretty overweight. I have given him hay (I have a chinchilla as well and know how the diets for rodents work) switched him to oxbow essentials rabbit food and have introduced him to veggies and fruit… but he won’t eat it. He smells the spinach, raspberries, bananas, collards, etc. but won’t eat it. I don’t think his previous owner ever gave him any…
    My ultimate question is how do I get him to eat it :/ I have to get his diet undercontrol to fix his weight and possible GI damage but he’s not making it easy lol


    #1880418

    Bam
    Moderator

    Thank you for adopting this bunny! It seems like he really needs you =)

    When switching a bun over to a healthier diet, it’s important to take it slow. Rabbits can otherwise refuse to eat the new food or eat so little of it that they go into gastro-intestinal stasis. A slow transition is especially important when a bunny is over-weight. Even though the colorful seed mix is rather abhorrent to a true bunny lover, it’s what his gut is used to – so you should taper it out by gradually mixing in more and more of the good Oxbow pellets. Keep a close eye on his poop – amount, size, consitency and also color of poop are all important clues to a bunny’s wellbeing. If he eats too little he could get “peppercorn poop” and that means there’s not enough food in his tummy.

    Has he eaten any hay since you got him? I won’t bore you with the importance of hay since you have a chinchilla, just want to mention that a bun that has never had hay before can have difficulty extracting nourishment from hay. Rabbits make starch and sugar from hay just like horses do, but for that, their cecum needs to have the right microorganisms in the right proportions. This microflora needs a little time to establish. This is the reason why a bun that’s never had hay before and is put on a hay-only diet can actually starve, even if it eats the hay.

    As for vegs and fruit – it’s perfectly normal for a bun to be suspicious of new food. You often have to present new food items many times before the bunny ventures to have a nibble. Once that has happened, there’s often no stopping them. Raspberries are good treats for a chubby bun, they are low in sugar, but banana is very high in calories and should be fed in very small amounts, if at all while he’s trying to lose a bit of weight.

    It’s good if you can weigh him weekly and keep notes of his weight. I have weighed my buns in a bowl on normal kitchen digital scales. It’s very difficult to visually assess a bun’s weightloss or -gain, because there’s so much fluff. With a lion head there’s really a lot of fluff, and that makes it extra difficult.

    We’d love to hear more about your new bun and your life together!


    #1880455

    This is why our BAM is a Forum Leader. !!!!


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