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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 16254
Experience:  I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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My bunny is an office pet at my local business. she is about 10 weeks old. Typically I fee

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My bunny is an office pet at my local business. she is about 10 weeks old. Typically I feed her a small handful of pellets every morning between 7-10am. She grazes on them throughout the day, and by the next morning they are always gone. She always has fresh hay, but doesn't eat a ton of it. This morning when I came in her pellets were still in the bowl. There was a bunch of fresh poop, but it wasn't her normal hard poop. It was a darker smaller wetter poop and there was a lot of it. She's also usually very active--runs very fast around the office, explores, hops everywhere-- and hates being picked up. She's been sitting in my lap for a half hour now without me even holding her put. She's content just sitting. Now I did move her food bowl to the other side of her cage, because I'm trying to litter train her, and so it's in a new spot. She's also traveled 8 hours in the car in the past 2 days. Could that be what it is? Maybe just a loss of appetite?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I am afraid that the expert you have requested is not currently available. Still I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.
This is very troubling news about Moe.
Rabbits do not just have a loss of appetite for no reason as cats and dogs can. Furthermore, the stool you are reporting here sounds like her cecotrophs (aka night stool, which tend to look more jelly like and can appear in grape like clusters) and that is not something she should be leaving. In fact, these are a critical part of the rabbit diet and something they eat overnight (which many owners are unaware of). So, these are both red flags of a seriously unwell bunny.
Now when a rabbit goes off their food, for whatever reason (ie GI upset, diarrhea, respiratory disease, pain, stress from the car, etc), this can cause their gut to slow or stop, which can lead to gastric stasis, a situation which it is one of the few true rabbit emergencies. So, if you think she is eating less and subdued, then it would be prudent for her to be seen by her vet before this can progress any further.
Just to note, some of the other signs we can see with gastric stasis:
· Decreasing or sudden lack of appetite for food +/- water)
· Changes to fecal production (from soft stools, to strangely shaped fecal pellets to diarrhea or no fecal production at all)
· Off color/lethargy/ hiding
· No GI sounds or loud uncharacteristic grumbles/growl
Now in regards ***** ***** "why" she is lethargic, showing a decreased appetite and has stopped eating cecotrophs can be a little trickier. There are of course a range of primary issues we must consider, and this is something that a full physical exam by your vet will be able to shed light upon. The vet will be able to listen to her guts, check her temperature, and have a general evaluation of what underlying trigger might be ailing her
Depending on the vet's findings, they can address the underlying trigger and initiate treatment. To keep the guts moving and get them back on track, often these cases need pain relief, pro-motility drugs, +/- antibiotics. If her signs are severe, she may need to be hospitalized. Or if you are able to provide diligent supportive care at home, they may advise you on how to syringe feed her
Typically, anorexic rabbits need to be hand or syringe fed (usually hourly) to continue nutrition input to meet their body's requirement and keep her guts moving to prevent/address stasis. To support her, it is worthing getting a vet to dispense a critical care feeds that you can syringe feed the bunny. A very good product for this is Oxbow’s Critical Care feed or Supreme Recovery diet and most vets will be able to provide this to you. This is a highly nutritious herbivore feed that can be easily made into a slurry for syringe feeding. And it is much easier to use then trying to create a balanced critical care diet at home. Though in a pinch you can start syringe feeding veggie baby food with her pellets crushed into it. This is too low in fiber for long term use but can be a quick short term option to get food into her.
Now be warned that if you do undertake syringe feeding her, then this can be a challenge (we all end up with rabbit food on us when we are syringe feeding rabbits). To administer it in as stress free means as possible, I would advise having a peek of this guide (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8iGZVYVm5Bg) since a video is worth at least a thousand words. If she is quite resistant to being fed, then do watch the end of the video for 'towel wrapping' her to keep her snug and secure while you are feeding her
Overall, a depressed appetite is a very serious situation for a rabbit and this shouldn't be ignored. I would advise that she should see her vet immediately. They will be able to treat her for this and advise you on how to administer critical care diet and nurse her through this situation. Overall, prompt treatment and supportive care are the best things we can do to get this under control and give this little one the best chance of recovery and getting back to herself.
If you don’t already have an rabbit vet, you can find one near you at http://www.aemv.org/vetlist.cfm or http://rabbit.org/vet-listings/.
Please take care,
Dr. B.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi Olivia,

I'm just following up on our conversation about Moe. How is everything going?

Dr. B.