Register

Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Discussion of all aspects of rabbits as meat animals. If this subject is offensive to you, please do not visit.
3 years of membership3 years of membership3 years of membership
Posts: 23
Joined: February 15, 2015
Location: Jamaica
Jamaica Male
Thanks: 14
Thanked: 1 in 1 post
BunnyBucks: 135.00

Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#1  Unread postby Kent » Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:18 pm


Hi everyone. I need some help with this decision. Sometimes when I bring in new stock, one or two refuse or fail to use the automated water system properly. They try a little but don't seem to get any water from it while everyone else seems fine with it. I then end up adding a water bottle after 2 days and the rabbit then drinks a lot (so obviously really thirsty). I tried touching the nipple to let them realise water is there but they just lick it off the wire and still don't press in the little plunger properly. Should I just let them get really thirsty and hope that they eventually learn how to use it? I put in the system to avoid bottles and would hate to be giving bottles to any rabbit. My system is modeled off Grumpy's but I used a different nipple (Lixit rabbit). This happens even when they are in the same cage with littermates who get used to it right away.

Site Admin
8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 16752
Joined: December 16, 2009
Location: South Eastern Ontario
Canada Female
Thanks: 825
Thanked: 2518 in 1944 posts
BunnyBucks: 60,573.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#2  Unread postby MaggieJ » Fri Aug 17, 2018 2:27 pm


There is no way I'd leave a rabbit without an easily available supply of water, especially in hot weather. Dehydration can trigger a lot of problems. You could try putting something tasty on the little plunger (a bit of jam maybe?) and hope that entices them to figure it out, but I'd suggest changing the type of nipple to something easier on the cages with "problem" rabbits. Or eat them. :dinner:
Sojourning in 1894 . . .

The following user would like to thank MaggieJ for this post
Kent

8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 7078
Joined: July 17, 2010
Location: Iowa
Thanks: 1
Thanked: 1051 in 932 posts
BunnyBucks: 36,435.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#3  Unread postby akane » Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:51 pm


I've had a rabbit die when 2 water sources failed and it was only drinking twice a day when the water was refilled and temporarily worked. They can die quickly with even restricted water.

Flavoring the nozzle or wedging something in it to make it drip can get them to start using it sooner. We used lixit topfill heated waters before with the valves and even netherland kits would use them for us so we never took more than a week to get anyone on the lixit lever valves. If they figure it out after a couple days I see no reason not to just use a regular bottle temporarily and let it run out or remove it for a few hours depending on temp before replacing it. Most should use the other system. You can't expect every new rabbit to just instantly work with your setup and unless you are rotating new rabbits through a lot I'd just deal with the short inconvenience on a few cages. If they didn't get it after several weeks I might go ahead and sell them back off or otherwise cull. Maybe keep one with a bottle until I get replacements out of it if it's a real nice rabbit but I can't keep up the maintenance of water bottles for them.

All my multiple rabbit cages or the ground colony pens went to chicken waters though so it was even easier and less to mess with. I only had to clean the rim a little and pour several days worth into 4 or 5 waters with very easy drinking for everyone except the smallest kits. We had them up raised up in most cases so it required some reach or climbing the brick steps for the big colony ones. Safer and cleaner than bowls but more water and easier access than bottles. In the past we only ever had issues with automatic water attempts for animals so I don't bother with them. Pouring water into top fill bottles or chicken waters ended up taking less time and less mess than setting up and repairing automatic systems. Maybe our cold winters contribute too much to the problem of water lines and automatic valves functioning well.
http://s1321.beta.photobucket.com/user/takakageri/library/
Failing might just mean you are trying to climb instead of swim https://youtu.be/evathYHc1Fg

The following user would like to thank akane for this post
Kent

Site Supporter
4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 2030
Joined: December 6, 2013
Location: Johnson City ,Tn.
United States of America Male
Thanks: 950
Thanked: 539 in 422 posts
BunnyBucks: 10,061.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#4  Unread postby michaels4gardens » Fri Aug 17, 2018 5:12 pm


like akane mentioned above--
I stick a little piece of hay stem in the waterer so it drips just a little, for a day or so, until I am sure they have figured it out.
meat-mutt rabbits, a few laying hens.

The following user would like to thank michaels4gardens for this post
Kent

6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership
Posts: 2163
Joined: May 25, 2012
Location: Florida, zone 9b
Thanks: 14
Thanked: 170 in 131 posts
BunnyBucks: 12,815.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#5  Unread postby GBov » Sat Aug 25, 2018 9:46 pm


I often put a crock in with new rabbits. It only takes a few days for them to figure out the nipple system and this way, they don't suffer as they learn.

3 years of membership3 years of membership3 years of membership
Posts: 23
Joined: February 15, 2015
Location: Jamaica
Jamaica Male
Thanks: 14
Thanked: 1 in 1 post
BunnyBucks: 135.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#6  Unread postby Kent » Mon Aug 27, 2018 1:43 pm


michaels4gardens wrote:like akane mentioned above--
I stick a little piece of hay stem in the waterer so it drips just a little, for a day or so, until I am sure they have figured it out.


Which nipple do you use? I can't get a straw in mine.

__________ Mon Aug 27, 2018 1:43 pm __________

MaggieJ wrote:There is no way I'd leave a rabbit without an easily available supply of water, especially in hot weather. Dehydration can trigger a lot of problems. You could try putting something tasty on the little plunger (a bit of jam maybe?) and hope that entices them to figure it out, but I'd suggest changing the type of nipple to something easier on the cages with "problem" rabbits. Or eat them. :dinner:


What nipples do you use?

Site Supporter
4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 2030
Joined: December 6, 2013
Location: Johnson City ,Tn.
United States of America Male
Thanks: 950
Thanked: 539 in 422 posts
BunnyBucks: 10,061.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#7  Unread postby michaels4gardens » Mon Aug 27, 2018 3:06 pm


meat-mutt rabbits, a few laying hens.

Site Admin
8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 16752
Joined: December 16, 2009
Location: South Eastern Ontario
Canada Female
Thanks: 825
Thanked: 2518 in 1944 posts
BunnyBucks: 60,573.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#8  Unread postby MaggieJ » Mon Aug 27, 2018 6:57 pm


Kent, I always used crocks for the rabbits' water, whether in cages or later, in an indoor colony. A crock raised up a bit stays clean (usually) and you can see at a glance that the rabbit has access to water.

There have been numerous cases where good rabbit breeders using bottles have had rabbits get dehydrated because the valve was not working properly. Even when I was a kid with a pet hamster, I soon learned to check the water bottle daily when I fed him. You can't be too careful about water.
Sojourning in 1894 . . .

6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership6 years of membership
Posts: 2163
Joined: May 25, 2012
Location: Florida, zone 9b
Thanks: 14
Thanked: 170 in 131 posts
BunnyBucks: 12,815.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#9  Unread postby GBov » Mon Aug 27, 2018 7:13 pm


Charity shops and the Dollar store are your friends for cheap crock type containers. All you need is something with NO lip, straight sides and a flat bottom.

My favorite waterer is a one-gallon bucket, a short length of rubber pipe and a gravity nipple. Easy to tip out (mosquito larva) and a short pipe is easy to poke a wire into to get the green gunge out.

Many MANY different containers get used as well, the funniest ones being the heart-shaped glass bowls from the DS. They do get some looks. :lol:

I have even used frying pans. :D

The following user would like to thank GBov for this post
MaggieJ

Site Supporter
4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 2030
Joined: December 6, 2013
Location: Johnson City ,Tn.
United States of America Male
Thanks: 950
Thanked: 539 in 422 posts
BunnyBucks: 10,061.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#10  Unread postby michaels4gardens » Tue Aug 28, 2018 5:41 am


MaggieJ wrote:Kent, I always used crocks for the rabbits' water, whether in cages or later, in an indoor colony. A crock raised up a bit stays clean (usually) and you can see at a glance that the rabbit has access to water.

There have been numerous cases where good rabbit breeders using bottles have had rabbits get dehydrated because the valve was not working properly. Even when I was a kid with a pet hamster, I soon learned to check the water bottle daily when I fed him. You can't be too careful about water.


In the summer time , I "always" check the automatic waterer nipple each time I feed, because it does not take much moss to clog one of those. And... If feed intake is even a little reduced , the waterer is the first thing I check.
With that said-- I love the automatic watering system, and it rarely has any issues.

[chickens were actually faster, at learning how to use a rabbit waterer than the rabbits]
meat-mutt rabbits, a few laying hens.

The following user would like to thank michaels4gardens for this post
MaggieJ

Site Admin
8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 16752
Joined: December 16, 2009
Location: South Eastern Ontario
Canada Female
Thanks: 825
Thanked: 2518 in 1944 posts
BunnyBucks: 60,573.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#11  Unread postby MaggieJ » Wed Aug 29, 2018 1:11 am


Michael, I agree that a good automatic watering system is superior to crocks, especially for a large rabbitry. It does need more vigilance and more expertise, as well as a thorough understanding of what to watch out for.

For someone just getting into rabbits and who has little experience and a small rabbitry, I suggest beginning with crocks (thrift store/dollar store type) and moving up to an automatic system later on if desired.

One mistake I made when I started with chickens was thinking I needed an expensive feeder and waterer. Neither got used for very long and the money could have been better spent elsewhere. When I started with rabbits a couple of years later, I went low-tech and low-cost. I've never regretted it. But, that said, I had a small backyard rabbitry -- no more than four working does at tops -- and they were in a colony for much of that time.
Sojourning in 1894 . . .

The following user would like to thank MaggieJ for this post
michaels4gardens

Site Supporter
4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership4 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 2030
Joined: December 6, 2013
Location: Johnson City ,Tn.
United States of America Male
Thanks: 950
Thanked: 539 in 422 posts
BunnyBucks: 10,061.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#12  Unread postby michaels4gardens » Wed Aug 29, 2018 5:05 am


MaggieJ wrote:Michael, I agree that a good automatic watering system is superior to crocks, especially for a large rabbitry. It does need more vigilance and more expertise, as well as a thorough understanding of what to watch out for.

For someone just getting into rabbits and who has little experience and a small rabbitry, I suggest beginning with crocks (thrift store/dollar store type) and moving up to an automatic system later on if desired.

One mistake I made when I started with chickens was thinking I needed an expensive feeder and waterer. Neither got used for very long and the money could have been better spent elsewhere. When I started with rabbits a couple of years later, I went low-tech and low-cost. I've never regretted it. But, that said, I had a small backyard rabbitry -- no more than four working does at tops -- and they were in a colony for much of that time.


I agree, I raised rabbits for many years using crocks for water.
I had as many as 100 does, so there was an awful lot of labor involved.
Using crocks, has it's own set of issues that must be dealt with.
The crock must large enough to keep the rabbits in water until the next chore time.
The crock must be kept clean, scrubbed and disinfected at least a couple times a week.
The crock must be hard for rabbits to tip over, and put in a place where it is less likely to be pooped,or peed in.
Some rabbits insist in filling the crock with hay, and or dumping it out. Litters raised by those kind of does always have more disease problems.
I was always in a hurry, when I had a lot of rabbits watered with crocks, and so much time was required to deal with watering, and cleaning the crocks, I often missed, or neglected things that were important. I also had solid bottom cages that had to be maintained,cleaned, and kept dry. Having crocks for a few rabbits is just fine, and maybe even better, but if you are going to have a lot of rabbits, I can't say enough good things about a good automatic watering system, and good quality, heavy gauge wire floors.
meat-mutt rabbits, a few laying hens.

The following user would like to thank michaels4gardens for this post
MaggieJ

Site Admin
8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership8 years of membership
User avatar
Posts: 16752
Joined: December 16, 2009
Location: South Eastern Ontario
Canada Female
Thanks: 825
Thanked: 2518 in 1944 posts
BunnyBucks: 60,573.00

Re: Thirsty bunny not using water supply

Post Number:#13  Unread postby MaggieJ » Wed Aug 29, 2018 6:37 am


With a hundred does, Michael, you really did need an automatic watering system! I can't even imagine dealing with them any other way. :shock:

And you're right about the things that can contaminate crocks. Some rabbits are very messy and gross. But they still taste good. :dinner:
Sojourning in 1894 . . .

The following user would like to thank MaggieJ for this post
michaels4gardens

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests