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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 Timothy hay pellets

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    • Hayden Wolford
      Participant
      14 posts Send Private Message

        Hey, this is my first time on this so I’m sorry if I’m in the wrong category. I recently got a rabbit about 6 weeks of age and I didn’t really know much of anything. He was eating Timothy pellets and the store told me that’s all he needed. I fed him and kept it 1/4 cup per 3 pounds like I read. He was fine for 3 days and then the end of the 3rd night he was having diarrhea. I figured maybe something was up and I’d see how he was in the morning. Well I found him in the cage sprawled out with his back legs straight out and front paws out with his head straight up. He couldn’t stand or walk and would kick his legs while laying on his side. He was crying to me and then I held him and unfortunately he passed on. I don’t know why this was. But I was wondering was this my fault or did he have problems as it was? Is it ok to feed them only Timothy hay pellets if it’s controlled? Or do they actually need hay instead of pellets. They were good quality pellets too. I also have 2 new rabbits and I feed them hay and pellets and they have lived for a week so they are fine. I love them but I feel bad for the other one. Can anyone tell me is it bad to only feed just Timothy hay pellets and was it my fault he died or could he have had a disease?

        thanks guys!!


      • DanaNM
        Moderator
        9012 posts Send Private Message

          I’m very sorry for your loss of your bunny. 🙁 He was very young, so there are a lot of things that could have gone wrong. It’s possible he wasn’t weaned correctly or was taken from his mother too young. Large shifts in diet can also cause issues. He also could have had coccidea, a parasite which causes diarrhea and is often fatal in baby bunnies. In all rabbits, diarrhea is an emergency, and in young rabbits especially it can be fatal very quickly.

          For future reference, young rabbits (under around 6-7 months of age) should have a diet of unlimited alfalfa based pellets and unlimited grass hay. Timothy pellets are OK, but then they need alfalfa hay as they do need at least one source of alfalfa, and pellets should not be rationed tightly when they are that young. Rabbits need hay especially available at all times, as going more than 12 hours without eating can cause serious health issues. Around 6-7 months old most people start reducing the amount of pellets. Depending on the breed, alfalfa may be needed for up to a year (for large breeds), but most are done growing around 7 months so you can switch to only timothy hay and pellets.

          If you choose to get another bunny, I would encourage you not to support that pet store as they didn’t give you good information and may have given you a sick bunny. I always encourage people to look for rescues or shelters in their area as there are so many wonderful rabbits that need homes.

           

          . . . 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
          16956 posts Send Private Message

            I’m very sorry this happened. 🙁

            Although not the recommended type of pellet, the timothy pellets are probably what he was eating before you got him. So I’m going to guess that there was something else wrong. As Dana said, young bunnies are very susceptible to parasites like coccidia. It takes awhile to incubate, so it would make sense that you didn’t see symptoms right away.

            Dana gave good advice regarding proper diet (for future reference). And yes, be very careful about where you get a bunny. It isn’t unusual to find pet stores selling sick animals.


          • Hayden Wolford
            Participant
            14 posts Send Private Message

              Ok thank you guys. I’m very happy to hear I didn’t cause the death. He was eating the Same pellets I gave him so I guess he was sick. I felt pretty bad for him but now I have 2 more. They are both healthy and have been well. I have been feeding a lot of hay and very little pellets with some veggies for treats. Thanks for the help!

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          Forum DIET & CARE Timothy hay pellets