Under Weight Nursing Rabbit

by Json

About 2 weeks after I rescued two rabbits I was surprised with 5 little kits. The buck and doe had been kept in the same cage before I got them, and both rabbits were very under weight. The buck has since made a full recovery,and all the kits (now 4 weeks old) are very active and healthy with round little bellies.

The female, however, has not gained any weight at all. I feed my other rabbits who are about the same size 2/3 cup of high quality pellets, unlimited timothy hay and a handful of fresh greens each day. As I did not know she was pregnant this is what I fed her as well. Since her giving birth I have increased her pellet intake to unlimited pellets, as the babies are starting to nibble them too, unlimited timothy hay, two handfuls of alfalfa hay, kale, and other greens. She has still not gained any weight at all and I am starting to worry for her. She is still active, bright and alert. She drinks well and eats most of what I give her. She is currently being kept with her litter in a large pen indoors. Her stool and urine look normal. What can I feed her to help her gain weight?

***** Karen Sez *****
You're doing the right thing, Jason. The doe's milk production will peak when the kits are 3 weeks old, and then subside. She may begin to put on conditioning at that time. The fact that she is able to support very healthy kits is a good thing.

Try adding black oil sunflower seeds to the doe's ration (don't cut back anything else, just add). Or, you could coat the day's ration of pellets with a teaspoon of olive oil. Meaning, the amount you know she'll clean up for sure, and then add uncoated pellets to her feeder for the rest of the day's snacking. I'm confident this will help.

When did you say you separated the buck and doe? Before or after you found the surprise kits? If after, then it could very well be the doe has a new litter 'in the oven.' All the more reason to be feeding her well, as you're capably doing.

One last observation: You said you 'rescued' these rabbits. Jason, I don't know you from Adam. Perhaps these rabbits did need help, especially if they were underweight. But, generally speaking, I'm no longer willing to assume that a 'rescue' occurred simply because the word was used.

To our readers:

Not including Jason, we at Raising-Rabbits have begun questioning the use of the verb 'rescue,' and here's why. Because the vast majority of 'rescues' have become robberies, not rescues, at the hands of animal rights organizations and their animal control officer puppets, neither of whom understand livestock rabbits (it is rabbit farmers they target, not pet owners, generally). These organizations SAY there is neglect or cruelty, but it is a lie. In fact, some organizations have been caught sabotaging a situation in order to make their case. See www.raising-rabbits.com/200-rabbits.html.

Why their charade? Ideology. Religion. They believe humans should all be vegans, and no one should be allowed to keep any pets whatsoever. This has nothing to do with animal welfare, and everything to do with turning animals into little people (pantheology, or animal worship).

We're taking this post as a general-purpose opportunity to encourage all our readers to ask the deeper question the next time you read a story about any sort of animal rescue -- did the animals need help, or was this thievery? CLUE: The media story prolly does NOT carry the salient facts; you'll need to dig for the truth.

And IF you dig, and really listen to the words the animal rights folks say, and set aside the rhetoric and the smoke screens, we think you'll see what we mean...

Thanks for listening.

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Jan 19, 2012
Under weight nursing rabbit
by: Anonymous

Try adding Calf Manna. DON'T go out and buy a 40 lb bag of it. LOL A small 5 lb bag will do. A handful/coffee scoop full is plenty and it will help with milk and all around health of the doe.

WELL SAID about "rescues." Just this week a travel trailer FULL of "rescued" dogs from CA was confiscated and the cages were in deplorable condition, zip tied shut. A "Rescue Group" was supposedly transporting them to AL where "dogs are in demand."

HORSE HOCKEY! I have a good friend in rescue (a legitimate one) in AL and they have dogs coming out of their ears. I hear the same thing in GA... "we gotta send these dogs north because of the shortage of dogs in New England state." Again HORSE HOCKEY ! There is no shortage of dogs in any state... just a shortage of people with GOOD SENSE.

As mentioned before, don't believe the media hype when they say someone abused an animal. FIND OUT MORE. Pictures are but a heartbeat in time and do not tell the whole story EVER!

Thanks for the post... it was good and well written.

Spirit of Shenandoah Angoras & Satins
Byron, GA

Jan 18, 2012
Poster Edit
by: Json

Just to clarify,

I separated the buck and doe the day I got them as I did not want them to breed at all. I got them from a friend of mine who was not capable of caring for animals, and knew nothing of rabbit care in the first place, so I view it as a rescue as they were being neglected before they came into my care and, without my intervention, would have suffered greatly.

Please note that no one should remove any animal from other persons or their property without first discussing said matters with the current owner of the animals, or with persons of law, such as police or animal control officers.

***** Karen Sez *****
Jason, it is persons like you to whom the word 'rescue' legitimately applies. Thanks for your help. I'm sure your friend was appreciative.

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