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Joan, Vet Technician
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 17299
Experience:  Vet Tech for 35+yrs. Small Animals and Fish
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Loose Stools In The Morning

Customer Question

I like Joan (Jav917 Veterinary Technician) to answer this question.

My pet rabbit develops chronic loose stools in the morning. His stools in the evening is round, big and firm. Very good and normal. But somehow the morning stools i.e. the cecal pellet stools which usually rabbits will consume back; is now in runny, mushy and sticky form. It has no form shape like a bunch of grapes but is like a patch of melted ice-cream, mushy and stick to his hind quarters. It always happen in the mid night between 4-5am. When I try to clean his backside, the sticky stools will crush and smurdge into his fur, very messy and difficult to clean. I know diet is a main part but I have been feeding the same stuff for these years and there hasn't been any problem, i.e. Oxbow Tim pellets, plenty of Mountain Grass Hay and Timothy and oat hay and honestly, he is eating alot of hay, so means fiber is not an issue? I also reduce and totally remove the quantity of vegetables he eats but still mushy stools.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Joan replied 8 years ago.


I know the care you take of your baby and it is primo. This may be an issue with parasites or digestion, because of the times it occurs. You may need to bring in a stronger proboitic to help with this problem to help restore the gut Flora. the acidophilus may not be enough to help get things back on track. I am including a site about Probiotics and the effects they have on the gut flora and digestion. Please let me know if I can be of further help. Joan

Joan and other Pet Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thanks Joan. But when i consulted a vet, they say this is not consider as diahrrea as diahrrea will be watery stools through, regardless which time. The good part is, my rabbit does have nice round stools in the evening. As for the cecal stools in the morning, that is really terribly mushy. With that, he won't be able to consume the cecal pellets as rabbits get their nutrients from that. I mean, occassionally he also don't eat but at least that is not crushed and not stick to his hindquarters. With that I worry of fly strike too. So I apply lot of Diamaceutous earth on that area just in case. Is this ok?

I gave anti-diahrrea remedy but still soft stools and it affects the evening stools - it becamse small and hard so I know is the diahrrea. I also wonder if is parasite. what kind of parasite? is it colic?

the APD mountain grass I purchase, I noticed have some crawling little ants, whenever I take out the hay, I will see these little ants crawling on the floor. The supplier told me can't be help as hay is an outdoor item...can ants be consider as a parasite? If he eats the ants accidentally while munching hay, can this cause a havoc to the gut that is producing soft stools?
Expert:  Joan replied 8 years ago.


The Diatomaceutous Earth is fine and very safe for the pets. I am concerned about the hay you are using. The hay quality may be causing the loose droppings. Have you considered tring to order some of the oxbox critical care and hays online. This is a place that sells the hay online. It may make a difference if there is something wrong with the hay. I am also feeling the Probiotics will help with the problems as well. As far as the parasites, I am concerned that this could be something picked up from the hay, (not the ants) but coccidia, giardia, hook worms, or round worms. I just have (not to mean a pun) a gut feeling a change in the hay may be the answer to what is going on. If the hay you are getting has ants it can be exposed to other problems as well. Please let me know your thoughts. I will also consult with another expert for her input. Joan

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Actually yes, I also have a gut feeling that might be the hay. Before he start eating this hay, I don't remember seeing some much crush stools. But then, I tried all other brands of hay until all petshops in Singapore all know me as the "woman who buy alot of hay" and none of which my rabbit will eat. He rather not eat hay then. Which can complicate matters.

Even if I don't offer other food and just other brand of hay, he will nibble a little, not munch every now and then and I know to consume as much hay as possible should be the right way...

The brand of hay I am using now with the ants problem is from the link you gave me i.e. AmericanPetDiner. But that is what I can get in Singapore. I tried writing to the people from the link u gave me, 2 weeks ago, they told me they don't do direct shipping to Singapore as the market is too small. So snobbish.

I bought alot of other brands of hay and he don't seem interested. BUT the thing is, if is the hay problem, how come there are nice round stools in the evening and night time?

Is there such thing known as "Strong Probiotics"? I gave some but it didn't help also. So i wonder is it that I must buy something stronger.

Alot of people tell me is the diet issue. Honestly my rabbit maybe plump but I don't think he is fat to the extend of getting loose stools due to obestity. Some even ask me to change to a senior diet and I think is a stupid idea. They kepte telling me Oxbow Timothy Pellets is no healthy. Is that possible?

Yesterday when I reach home, goodness soft stools all over his tail. But then there are round stools in his litter box also. I am so confuse. If this goes on, will he die?
Expert:  Joan replied 8 years ago.


I do not think we are going to loose him becaue of what is happening. I did give you a link for some probiotics.

Our biggest problem is getting the right products to you, since Singapore is out major problem. I am wondering if we can swiitch to a more pelleted diet of Oxbow products.

If we disect what is happening the problem is happening in the morning which means this is something that is being eaten at night so by morning we have the loose stools. Is there any difference what he is getting at night from what you are feeding in the morning.

Lets break down the diet taht he is eating in the morning , Vs what he is eating at night and we can see where there is a difference. Joan

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Sure, here’s the breakdown

1)     1/4 cup of Oxbow Timothy pellets (equivalent to 10-15 pieces)
2)     Plenty of newly replenish AmericanPetDiner Mountain Grass Hay, VitalPool Timothy Hay, Oxbow Orchard Grass and NPF Oaten Hay. Of which he eats the Mountain Grass Hay Most.
3)     Herbs sprinkle around the hay are : Dried Dandelion, Horsetail, Plantain, Marigold, Parsley, Peppermint, Dried Rose Petals, Ribwort, Chamomile.
4)      1-2 pieces of Wheat Ears (From this brand call PUIK)

5)     1 small piece of dried cranberry (to make him happy)
6)     1 papaya tablet
7)     1 tiny strip of fresh apple.

1)     1 drop of a herbal remedy from Azimira onto the dried cranberry (this is a remedy that helps eliminates toxins, got to drip it onto the cranberry so that he will eat).
2)     Replenish new Hay
3)     1/4 cup of Oxbow Timothy pellets (equivalent to 10-15 pieces)
4)     1 papaya tablet
5)     3-4 pieces green vegetables (vegetable approved by HRSS for rabbits consumption)
6)     1 tiny piece of fresh cherry

This diet I have been following for these years. In fact, he used to eat even more treats, fruits and vegetables previously. May seem like a lot but the items are given in tiny pieces. I don’t give herbs in the evening.

The loose stools always happened between 4-6am. Yesterday was bad, even after 9am still loose stools.
Expert:  Joan replied 8 years ago.


Lets try using the same diet in the eveing as the morning. Use the exact same amounts of everything. This way we can see if it is something that is being fed at night is causing the loose stools in the morning. The fecals at night are formed because of the morning diet. THis way we can use a process of elimination to see what may be causing the problems. It is worth a try to do it this way. Joan

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