Bunny gave birth to one kit that died
So my bunny finally gave birth 6 days after she started nesting. I didn't witness her giving birth until probably 30 minutes later. I checked to feed her and there I saw a baby bunny just lying still. It wasn't even on the nest. The mother is on the nest facing the wall. I guess she didn't wanna see her dead baby. :( I looked at the baby and it was really dead.
I tried to observe what went wrong and I noticed that the bottom part of the baby (legs) are a little bloody compared to the top. I'm guessing it's premature birth...the baby also looked long compared to usual. Out was about 4 inches long and it's parents are dwarf bunnies. I'm curious why the baby is long, and why did the mother give birth to only one and why would she give birth early (if premature birth is the case). Please help :(***** Karen Sez *****
It's hard to say if the birth was premature. Did you record the breeding date and count forward 31 days to the kindling date?
By your description I'd guess any of several other problems:Genetically modified (GMO) feed
, that is, pelleted rabbit food that is high in both soy and corn, seems to raise the risk of birthing problems, including fatal defects in the kits.Overweight doe
. Extra internal fat reduces the number of kits, including to zero or one, plus increases the difficulty of the birth itself.Full term, excessively large kit.
This happens at times with dwarf breed rabbits carrying just one or two kits. All the maternal nutrition goes to one baby only (or two), and it can get too large. The other scenarios may be true in the case of your doe, but this one is most likely the cause of the dead kit. The doe was probably in labor for quite a while, but because the kit was so big, she had trouble delivering it, and it died while inside the doe. You may be lucky the doe did not die as well.BTW
About your doe with her back to the dead baby: It is impossible to put people-thoughts into bunny-heads. Unlike humans, rabbits have no emotional attachment to their dead offspring. Your doe's instincts in the wild would have prompted her to simply abandon the burrow and go dig another one. In the wild she would be rebred already, and she would be too busy watching her back trail to worry about a dead kit.
Here's another consideration: Are you sure your doe isn't still in labor, trying to have a second very large kit, which is dead inside of her?? Now what?
Put the doe on a diet. Check the feed and switch to a healthier feed (King Feeds in CA is a breeder recommended feed). Give lots of grass hay so she won't pork out on pellets. Try rebreeding, either immediately or within a couple weeks, giving the 'diet' a chance to help her drop a few ounces. Hopefully your doe will have several kits this time, and all will go well. And, keep good records, so you'll know exactly when to put the nestbox in the cage, when the doe is due and when problems might be ensuing.