Rabbit Mag

How To Save a Rabbit From Dying? – 10 Ways You Need To Know

Rabbits are one of the most popular pets in the world, but a lot of people don’t know how to properly take care of them. This can often lead to rabbits dying prematurely. In this blog post, I’m going to teach you how to save a rabbit from dying. So please keep reading!

There are many situations in which you might find yourself faced with a rabbit that is on the way out. We have created this guide to help you assess the situation, and perform some last-ditch procedures if need be.

Rabbits are prey animals, so they tend to not show symptoms until they are very sick or hurt. It can be difficult for new rescuers or bunny owners to distinguish what is normal behavior and what is not. A good rule of thumb is that if their eye has suddenly gone runny, or they seem suddenly lethargic, it’s time to head to your vet immediately. If their eyes clear up after a little saline and rest, then you know you just avoided something major and saved your bunny friend a trip to the hospital.

10 Ways to Save a Rabbit From Dying

1. Healthy Diet

A healthy diet for rabbits is free-fed grass hay, unlimited Timothy or Orchard Hay, unlimited green leafy vegetables (i.e. romaine, red/green leaf lettuce, cilantro), and limited amounts of pellets based on your bunny’s body condition. No alfalfa hay! It is too rich in protein and calcium which can lead to serious health problems over time. Freshwater should be available at all times as well as a salt block to lick if your rabbit will take it.

2. Showing Affection

Rabbits are prey animals so they usually do not enjoy being held or touched by people. This does not mean that you cannot bond with them though! Rabbits are social creatures – you can desensitize them to human contact by spending time with them daily, talking quietly, and petting them gently while they do their best to ignore you.

3. Regular Exercise

A rabbit’s bones are extremely delicate! It is really important not to let your bunny jump down off of things or run full speed around the house. Most rabbits love having some toys that they can push around the floor on their own. Try putting several toys on the ground in a circle and allow your bunny to pick up one toy at a time (this trains young bunnies not to bite everything!) A good way to exercise older bunnies is by giving them supervised free range time outside of their cage for an hour or so per day. You can also hang items from the top of their cage that they have to stretch to reach with their front paws – just make sure they cannot jump up and over their own head height!

4. Keeping Clean

Rabbits can easily be litter trained, and it is a good idea to do so if you live in an apartment or small space. It allows them to go freely outside of their cage as needed. A covered box filled with non-toxic litter (we like wheat-based litters such as Yesterday’s News) gives them a designated potty area even when free-roaming your home. You can purchase these kinds of boxes at pet stores, but we recommend looking for used ones at yard sales or thrift stores – they are very easy to clean.

You can line the box with hay, but make sure your rabbit does not eat it! Rabbits should always have fresh hay in their cage at all times, whether in a litterbox or not. Also, make sure that you put down enough litter for their potty spot daily! A good rule of thumb is around 1/2 cup per adult bunny per day.

No matter what kind of setup you use, it’s important to keep things clean for your rabbit’s health. Bunnies are much more susceptible to respiratory infections when kept indoors because their immune system has no idea when there are germs floating around them all time. Make sure to change the litter daily and completely clean the cage at least weekly.

5. Avoid giving sudden shocks:

Rabbits are prey animals, so they get scared very easily. They can be startled by loud noises or quick movements as well as being picked up from the back of their neck (their most vulnerable spot). If your bunny is about to have a spay/neuter surgery, you might have to keep them in a dark room for a few days where they cannot see anything moving around them. This will help tremendously with keeping them calm during recovery!

6. Entertainment:

These creatures love having time out of their cages to explore! Give your rabbit a couple of hours each day outside of his to have a free roamed of your home. Rabbits are very inquisitive creatures by nature, so you can keep things interesting by finding new things for them to investigate! Namely, anything that smells like you! Even if you give them toys or treats to play with, they will inevitably want to try chewing on everything else in the house at some point.

7. A Balanced Temperature:

Rabbits cannot sweat through their skin as humans do – this means that they need a cool place to rest during hot months and somewhere warm during cold months. Cages should always be placed in an area where there is plenty of fresh air flowing through them (such as near open windows). If possible, purchase/find an old fridge or freezer that has no way to the plugin. Rabbits love to feel cool air blowing on their fur, so they will appreciate having a place where they can escape the sun’s rays!

8. Keep the Place Calm & Quiet:

Rabbits are usually very quiet animals – however if there are loud noises coming from television or radio all of the time it may be really scary for them. Try to keep your home as calm and quiet as possible during nap times (sunny days between 8 AM-5 PM) because this is when rabbits tend to rest. They also prefer eating at night (anytime after 5 PM), so try to resist engaging with your rabbit right before you go to bed each night!

9. Signs of Pain:

Rabbits are expert burrowers – they love to dig and hide under things if they don’t feel safe. If you find your rabbit at the bottom of his cage with no food or water bowl, more hay than usual, or a favorite toy of theirs it may be because he’s scared. Try to reduce the amount of light in their surroundings and identify what might have been scared that day! Also check for any signs of injury on their body – tiny cuts, scratches, or missing patches of fur can be from being spooked by something/someone.

10. A Routine Visit to Vet:

Rabbits do not get shots like dogs or cats so you never know when something is wrong with them! They get sick very easily due to their weak immune system, so it is crucial that they get regular checkups at the vet. An annual wellness visit will usually consist of some vaccines (more for indoor rabbits than outdoor), parasite control meds, and some lab work if needed. Your rabbit will also need an exam where the vet checks his eyes, ears, mouth/teeth, organs/bones, and everything else.

Should We Use The Same Cage That A Rabbit Died In?

No. I would gently wash the cage with a mild soap and water solution, then remove it from your rabbit’s living space. If you can find another use for it (eg to store bunnies’ food) that might be fine but if not don’t let them have access to it ever again – they can sense where their friends have died or are ill so might avoid using it themselves.

Can You Prevent A Rabbit From Dying With A proper Diet?

Yes! It’s super important that rabbits have a good diet – here are some things to look out for.

1. Avoid feeding too many fruits/veggies/nuts because it ups their caloric intake and they can become obese which puts them at risk for health problems later on. This includes, but is not limited to: carrots, apples, bananas etc…

2. Make sure all hay you feed your rabbit is dust-free (eg timothy, orchard grass)

3. Take care with any treats you give your bunny because they should only make up about 10% of their total caloric intake (eg half an oatmeal raisin cookie per day).

4. Make sure the ingredients in your rabbit’s pellets are timothy-based.

5. Most importantly, find a veterinarian who is experienced with rabbits! They need annual wellness visits to check on their kidneys, liver, teeth/mouth, eyesight problems, etc…. A rabbit-savvy vet will be able to recognize any health issues early on so they can be treated properly.

Are There More Tips To Keeping A Rabbit Alive?

If you notice your rabbit is irritable/in pain, try to figure out why as soon as possible. Injuries can actually lead to more problems down the road if they are not treated immediately! For example a scratch on the eye or ear from another rabbit can turn into an infection later on.

  • Rabbits will almost always let you know when something’s wrong by their demeanor – if they’re sad and don’t want to interact with you then something is probably going on!
  • Look for little cuts, scratches, bruises etc… that may be signs that your bunny has been spooked or chased by another animal in your house (make sure all predators have been up!) I once found a rabbit with a broken leg this way. If you can’t find anything else, look for signs of black flies or mites around their eyes/ears/cheeks/nose – these are super common in outdoor rabbits but not so much indoor ones.
  • It is essential that your bunny have access to fresh water at all times!
  • Make sure any exercise your rabbit gets is supervised because they’re at risk for chewing through TV cords, eating plants, getting stuck somewhere etc…
  • Keep hay in their cage all the time! Just make sure it’s not touching the bottom tray if you have one because it makes it very difficult to remove the old hay every day without wasting too much of it at once (trust me, I’ve tried).
  • If your rabbit is not spayed or neutered you will want to consider doing that as soon as possible to avoid unwanted behaviors that can be a nuisance. 8. Make sure their exercise area is protected from predators – outdoor cats tend to go after them a lot more often than dogs!
  • If you use a playpen for your rabbit make sure there is no plastic on it (they can chew/eat pieces and get sick or choke)
  • If you use sandpaper as bedding make sure the sandpaper doesn’t have any way of ungluing itself – this goes for all animal bedding!
  • Clean your house! Rabbits love to dig and explore and that means they’ll find things and try to eat them if they’re dusty/dirty. This includes: crumbs on the floor, dust balls under furniture, moldy food in the fridge etc… so clean thoroughly before bringing them home.

5 Common Causes of Sudden Death in Rabbits

Sudden death in rabbits can happen for a variety of reasons, but there are a few common causes that pet owners should be aware of.

1. Aneurysm

2. Bladder Stones

3. Overheating (heatstroke)

4. Intestinal blockage/Gastric Ulcers/Ileus

5. Toxicity (plants, meds, etc…)

Conclusion

Although caring for a rabbit can be very difficult, it is not impossible. Just remember that your pet’s life depends on you being proactive about their health and happiness! If you have any questions or concerns just ask a veterinarian – the internet has a lot of good information but nothing beats an expert opinion.

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