Sick 3 week old baby

by Hannah

The little boy with his big sister.

The little boy with his big sister.

This is my doe's third litter, and all the babies so far have been doing fantastic. We had some trouble with the first two litters, but after using what I call the "trash can trick" all the babies have been well fed and well taken care of. The trash can trick is where I place the babies in the bottom of a trash can and sit mommy right on top of the little babies. I use this if mother isn't feeding the tiny babies quite enough. I normally only have to do this for the first two weeks to make sure everyone is getting a good start.

All of the eight babies are doing great, until recently one of them started getting thin. He will not nurse from mom whatsoever, and is refusing to nibble on pellets or hay. I have been supplementing him with KMR and a little bit of plain yogurt with L.Acidophilus in it. He has survived for three days now, but he is still VERY thin and refusing to eat unless I feed him with a medicine dropper.

Even while doing this, he is still hesitant to eat. He is with mother all the time, so I know he should be able to get cecotropes from her. All the other babies are almost twice his size now, and he is very lethargic. I thought he wouldn't make it as long as he has. This is going on day four and he is still here. He is on a completely fiber diet of hay, pellets, and grass from outside. What can I possibly do?

***** Karen Sez *****
What a cute pic! You've done heroically. I might be wrong, but that pic sure looks like your little guy is actually a lethal dwarf peanut. See for information. Was he quite runty from birth?

If so, it is amazing that the bunny has lasted this long, and he will surely not survive long term.

If not, there is a condition called "fading" that occurs in dwarf breeds. Read more at (Lionheads can be considered dwarfs and will be possibly susceptible to the same conditions as are Netherland Dwarfs.)

Dunno if these ideas are on the mark, however this might hopefully provide some useful insight.

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Feb 24, 2013
Lionhead Baby, Dwarf?
by: Hannah(Original Poster)

Well neither of the parents have the dwarf gene, so is it possible for him to have the dwarf gene anyways? He is itty bitty, and very skinny. He is still hanging in there, but won't eat pellets or nurse from mom like the other kits. All the other kits are happy and healthy.
The mother is rather small for a lionhead, but she doesn't have any dwarf like features. All the other babies are the same size and very healthy. I hate watching this little guy look so sad and unhealthy, I wonder if I should just put him out of his misery. A few people have said to take him to the vet, but with him being so young, I don't think it is going to make a difference. He has always been a runt, and I think it may be something genetic.
The big sister in the picture is from another litter, so the size difference isn't quite as drastic as it seems in that picture, that may have been what it seemed like, sorry. Haha. Should I continue trying to feed him KMR as a supplement? The only thing he is currently eating is the KMR formula and fresh clovers and grasses from outside. He won't touch anything else. Even when I do the "trash can trick" he still refuses to even try to eat. And with them now being four weeks, it is almost time for them to slow down nursing anyways. I have someone that placed a deposit down on him even after I tried to explain the possibility that he won't make it, but they seem determined to have him.
I keep trying to tell myself that I have done all I can to help the little guy, but have I? :/

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