Need bunny advice

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Need bunny advice

Post by Melissa Litwic » Wed, 25 Sep 1996 04:00:00



Hi -

We acquired a bunny accidentally (and temporarily) and i need to
know a few things:

we are keeping him outside on our deck because 1) he has fleas and 2)
i have ferrets and no room to keep a bunny. the deck is large, but it's
frequently raining here and the temps are dipping into the low 50s at
night.  he goes under our porch when it rains; there's dirt and it's
a fairly good shelter.

- how cold is too cold? he's been an indoor bunny until now.
- how do i deflea him? he'd just gotten a flea bath before we got
him, but it made his fur start to fall out. again, i CANNOT keep him
inside UNTIL he is deflea-d.
- he snacks on fallen maple leaves. is this bad for him? he's also
getting fed plenty of normal bunny food w/fresh water.
- are bunnies nocturnal? he sits on an old dog run (it's a very large
deck with neat accomodations for a previous owner's dog) and stares
off into the neighbor's yard all night long.

he's a very affectionate bunny - he hops around our feet in circles,
he comes up to us and flattens out to be petted, he comes up to the
door to greet us. he's a very large albino lop (like 4 lbs, maybe?)
and we may have a home for him as of the end of this week, but he'll
have to be outdoors for a few days longer, so i badly need some help
on how to best take care of him, given the circumstances...

thanks,
melissa

- the bun's owner is a schoolteacher who moved rooms this year. her new
room doesnt have windows, so she brought him home and kept him in the
garage, which she felt was 'too stuffy,' so she set his cage out in the
(unfenced) backyard and opened the door. she thought he'd like the fresh
air. she let him out, then went canoeing for three hours; we found him
in the thick underbrush by our house and she seemed surprised he made
it so far away from his cage, and was thrilled we wanted to 'watch' him
for a while. :P there are loose dogs, hawks, and cats in our neighborhood.

--
  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Melissa Litwicki                              "Is it ... atomic?"

 
 
 

Need bunny advice

Post by Troy Denking » Mon, 30 Sep 1996 04:00:00



Quote:
>- how cold is too cold? he's been an indoor bunny until now.
>- how do i deflea him? he'd just gotten a flea bath before we got

You'll need to take this bunny to a _qualified_ rabbit veterinarian.  
Rabbits are not hardy animals and a normal flea bath or dip can kill them
easily.  Nothing stronger than kitten strength shampoon can be used on
them.  It's unusual for rabbits to get fleas in the first place -- I've
handled hundreds, many of them found outdoors, that have not have fleas.  
The only rabbits I've seen with fleas have lived with cats and dogs that
had massive flea infestations.  Rabbits, herbivores, are not the favored
hosts for fleas.  So, what I'm getting at is that if he is properly treated
he should not get fleas again.

As for cold.  He does need to come inside -- but you probably already know
that.  The ferrets are a potential threat to the rabbit, even if they are
only playing.  Ferrets play hard with one another, which is fine, but they
would likely play too hard with a bunny.  You main worry should be the rain
not the cool weather; rabbits do well in cool weather.  Hot weather is
deadly.  The main worry about being outside is the presence of predators --
a predator doesn't even have to come into contact with the bunny to cause a
problem that can be terminal.

Quote:
>him, but it made his fur start to fall out. again, i CANNOT keep him
>inside UNTIL he is deflea-d.
>- he snacks on fallen maple leaves. is this bad for him? he's also

The leaves are probably fine unless the tree has been treated with some
type of insecticide.

Quote:
>getting fed plenty of normal bunny food w/fresh water.

He also needs fresh greens (no iceberg lettuce) and fresh hay in unlimited
quantities.  I cannot stress how important it is not to simply feed rabbit
pellets.

Quote:
>- are bunnies nocturnal? he sits on an old dog run (it's a very large
>deck with neat accomodations for a previous owner's dog) and stares
>off into the neighbor's yard all night long.

Rabbits are diurnal; they are most active at dusk and dawn.  They do
sometimes sleep with their eyes open, especially when they are in a
situation where they are not fully comfortable.

Quote:
>he's a very affectionate bunny - he hops around our feet in circles,

An indication that he needs to be neutered.  You're seeing mating/courting  
behaviour here.

Quote:
>he comes up to us and flattens out to be petted, he comes up to the
>door to greet us. he's a very large albino lop (like 4 lbs, maybe?)
>and we may have a home for him as of the end of this week, but he'll
>have to be outdoors for a few days longer, so i badly need some help
>on how to best take care of him, given the circumstances...

Please make sure that whomever he ends up with understands how to take care
of him properly.  If you have web access, go to http://www.webcom.com/hrs/
and check out the Diet And Care section.  Four pounds would actually be a
very small albino, so I'm suspecting that if he's the size of a large cat
or so he's about 8 lbs.  

Quote:
>- the bun's owner is a schoolteacher who moved rooms this year. her new
>room doesnt have windows, so she brought him home and kept him in the
>garage, which she felt was 'too stuffy,' so she set his cage out in the
>(unfenced) backyard and opened the door. she thought he'd like the fresh
>air. she let him out, then went canoeing for three hours; we found him
>in the thick underbrush by our house and she seemed surprised he made
>it so far away from his cage, and was thrilled we wanted to 'watch' him
>for a while. :P there are loose dogs, hawks, and cats in our neighborhood.

Thank you for taking this little one in and finding a new home for him.  I
wish this teacher story were uncommon.  Sadly, the very people to whom we
entrust our children daily have little regard for non-human lives and
little interest in learning more about them.

Good luck,

Troy