Cat Attack Injures Doe and Kit

by Meagan
(Oklahoma )

I have one rabbit with her week old litter of seven including 1 thriving runt and her daughter had a litter three days ago. She had six babies including two stillborn.

A cat broke into the younger mom's nest and killed one of the remaining babies and punctured the eye of another that seams to be surviving but not nursing now. The mom is also injured and won't nurse them now.

What can I do for the injured kit and can I foster them to the other mom with a bigger and older litter?

***** Karen Sez *****

Fostering 4-day-olds to an 8-day-old litter should theoretically work out okay. By my count, you have 3 healthy kits to foster to a litter of 7, which is doable for a meat rabbit, but might be harder for a smaller pet breed. You'll just need to ensure the smaller kits will get their fair share of milk.

Lots of clues and tips in Rabbit Raising Problem Solver. One good plan is to split the 10 kits into 5 and 5 (or 7 & 3), and then alternate them between 2 feedings per day.

If the injured kit is not nursing, it does not bode well for its survival. Additionally, a wound into the eye socket may end up infected and overwhelm the kit's immune system despite your best efforts. If you really wish to fight for it, a vet's opinion would definitely help. You can certainly try to medicate the wound with antibiotic ointment and add it to the fostering plan. Were this my kit, I might opt to euthanize it.

A shock to a nursing doe such as a cat attack may very well result in the rejection of the litter, but, has she rejected the litter (does only visit the nest once a day for 5-10 minutes), or is she too injured to nurse her kits?

Will she nurse her kits if you help her, by putting the kits onto her, or otherwise supporting her body as the kits nurse under her belly?

Wishing you the best in this difficult situation.

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Jun 28, 2015
my injured doeeee
by: Anonymous

I tried to put her back on her kits and she rejected them. Her injuries don't appear to b we more than some superficial scratches around the nose and shoulder. The injured baby will nurse if I put its nose right at the nipples. it seems to have problems finding it on its own though.

***** Karen Sez *****
Hmm, good. Then if needed, perhaps you can put all of her own kits to her teats and take advantage of the extra milk supply?

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