Doe not eating

Help Support RabbitTalk:

Preitler

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
975
Reaction score
140
Location
Austria
Hi,

Magda, my agouti, 6yo, 9lbs doe stopped eating. She got quite skinny this winter, but I attributed that to her room mate which inhales every yummy food and stole her share until I noticed 2 weeks ago.
I noticed Monday morning that something is wrong when she ignored her daily piece of topinambur and apple. Ate some pellets and carrot in the evening, but today morning, nothing. I syringed her some water with simethicone, just in case, locked her alone in her hutch and left a variety of food, didn't notice anything missing in the evening.

Ground up some pellets with apple leafes and a litte oatmeal and started syringe feeding her, got 20ml into her, will repeat that later. There was some sound from her intestines afterwards, so she'll get a tummy massage too next time
She seems more tired than in pain, lounges in a pose that I would have called "relaxed" if everythiung were ok, with the rear feet sideways in one of the litter boxes (that's strange, never saw her resting there before).

She has some medical problems, chronic runny eyes, and both her last two litters were two stillborn kits (normal 5 or 6), so there might be something going on...

I'm not going to breed her again anyway, but I would have liked her around when her daughter has her first litter this year.

Anything else I can try? Depending on how she is tomorrow I'll skip work and see the vet.

She really isn't thrilled about being handled, boy, can she bite, need to dress up better or see a doc myself if she ever gets me, but at least there is some fight left in her.

Preitler
 

KimitsuKouseki

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 13, 2017
Messages
605
Reaction score
2
Location
Quebec
First, I'd bring her inside and make her the comfiest setup I could. With a safety blanket and all. Maybe she's too stressed in her current environement or overworn by the cold in her curent state. Making her more comfy and spoiling her a bit might help out.
I'd try and give her plenty of treats that she loves, even the unhealthy ones, if 3 carrots, an apple and a banana is what gets her eating on her own again it'd be a win in my book. (as long as its stuff she's used to, dont wanna cause bloating or diahrea) I say that cause for exemple, I've had to weane 2 week old kits to survive losing their mom by eating apple slices. Once they got to 3 weeks old I gave em an older, 3 months old, brother to teach em to eat hay cause they hadnt started on their own yet (my avatar pic). So the apple slices is what got them through their first week without mom so although thats technically bad, it did save their lives.

Go see the vet for sure if you can, but she could've gotten sick or she might be feeling her end. If it's the later, all you can do is make her comfy or end her early.
 

Preitler

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
975
Reaction score
140
Location
Austria
What I did worked out, fed her a second time last night, today she's much better. When I came home she even came running across the garden, since she ate and looked better in the morning I let them out for the day, yesterday she would have killed me for handling her, got some bruises and bite marks although I was prepared. Now she doesn't hold any grudge, that's so sweet, she even demanded pets.

Well, she's an outdoor bunny, so taking her in would stress her, which might actually help against apathy. Treats didn't work whatsoever, I have tried, food doesn't work if she eats nothing. It was really necessary to stuff it into her to get things going again. There definitly was some gas, I put simethicone into every serving. Some Ibuprofen too, in case there was any pain.

Today evening she was active, perky, and in good spirits, ate from everything I offered her, although slowly compared to her daughter, need to feed her in a different part of the hutch, out of sight of each other.

Still, she's skinny, and not her old, bossy self, so there might be an underlaying issue, but I think the current crisis is over :)

-- Thu Feb 14, 2019 8:55 pm --

Well, that was too good to be true. Today morning back at the start, Magda is not eating again. Late for work, it does take time to feed her. Left early and took her to the vet this afternoon, got some injections for better appetite and stuff, and the vet thinks she has a respiratory issue that weakens her as the underlaying cause, temperature was 39.1°C (102.4°F). Besides stuff for appetite, elektrolyts (I think that's what that powder is) she gave me Bytril tablets for 4 days (why didn't I ask for drops... :? ). Bill was 53€ (60$), that's not too bad.

Since she didn't touch the oatmeal I mixed all that stuff in I ground it up with pellets, made a paste and I'm back at syringe feeding her, at least she gets somewhat used to it, but my favorite winter working jacket is a total loss, torn and shredded. I'm just happy that she doesn't aim for flesh when she bites, and she's quite relaxed and doesn't struggle anymore between her biting fits.

I seperated her for the night, her daughter would raid that buffet I set up just in case she decides to start eating anything by herself.

She's down to 3,5kg, normal was 4-4,2 kg, obviously this issue was brewing for some time now... :( . Considering her 2 last, failed litters I think there's the possibility that some kind of cancer is gnawing on her innards, which would be my bet instead of the vets respiratory issue, well, lets see.

-- Fri Feb 15, 2019 7:37 pm --

Turns out seperating her and leaving her with a pile of yummy food was the completly wrong approach. Didn't eat or poop the whole day. So I thought since rest isn't working, get her moving. When I came home I shooed her out in the garden, with the other doe - and surprise,they roamed through the garden, she started nibbling on the little grass there is too, also ate hay and weeds I put in front of her. She ignored fresh grass in the hutch, was passive and not her self. She was obviously happy to be with the other doe again (still to be named, but I start thinking of her as Chantal...), even humped her.

Had to syringe feed her anyway to get the Bytril into her, she still put's up a fight when she realises that I'm going to pick her up, but when I feed her she's relaxed and I don't even need to hold her, even goes for the syringe to get the next mouthfull sometimes. :wr_kabob:
Much to my surprise she started to like the feeding sessions, no more trying to kill me. <br /><br /> -- Sat Feb 16, 2019 7:07 pm -- <br /><br /> Sigh, its one step forward, two back. :( She has good moments, but today she spent the whole day basking in the sun (everbunny else was in the shadow), ignoring food and rarely moving. So, if she likes it warm, I followed Kimis advice now and took her in over night, rather small cage but she doesn't move much anyway.
I can't stuff the amount of food into her that would be necessary to maintain her condition, after getting 20ml into her I just rocked her on my lap, you know that reflex motion when you sit and balance your foot on that spot at the forefoot, well, she let me shake her for 15 minutes, and I heard some little gurgling.

She doesn't look like she's in pain, but she would contently sit in a corner and starve.
 

KimitsuKouseki

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 13, 2017
Messages
605
Reaction score
2
Location
Quebec
Preitler, I think it's time you start considering easing her pain for good. I know you like her, but you also can recognise when it's time. If you think she can still make it, by all means go for it, but sounds like it might be time to start considering that option.
 

Preitler

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
975
Reaction score
140
Location
Austria
Well, yesterday I really started to think about that, but I wouldn't have done it as long as there is some fight left in her, I don't give up easily, gosh, I'm actually scared shitless of the day when this decision will arise for one of my pets (she isn't, she's a retired, not very nice meat breading doe, but one gets attached when caring for her for so many years...), one reason I'm single and alone is that just thinking about the possibility of losing a loved one is unbearable.

But back to Magda.

Yesterday was bad, and i think she started to be in pain. So I took her in, fed and watered her, and since there was horrible gurgling noises coming from her I rocked her on my lap for 20-30 minutes. At 20:00, 00:00, 04:00, 08:00. I also added Ibuprofen to the Simethicon again. Didn't sleep much that night, but it was worth it.
After the last feeding I put her in her hutch, offered greens wich she ate, then I let both of them out in the garden and beyond so they could forage wherever they wanted, roamed the neighbourhood for dandelion and plaintain - she ate everything I put in front of her :) .

Watched over them out in the meadow way past sunset, grazing rabbits can be such a great sight...
Back in the hutch she continued to eat, gave her the medication on pellets.

So, either that crises is over, or if it starts all over again I think I need to keep her on pain medication. But actually I think stuffing her every 4 hours was the reason for the improvement today. Time will tell, but today she acted like there never was a problem :p <br /><br /> -- Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:33 pm -- <br /><br /> Well, this is my diary to keep track of that issue...

Today, well, she did eat, but not very enthusiasticly. Have to seperate the hutches when feeding those two, Chantal would gobble down everything while Magda chews her first bite. But she does eat. Didn't force feed and medicate her today, but I'm prepared to do it tomorrow morning if the trend continues.

I'm sure now that there is an underlying issue, my bet would be spread uterine cancer or something like that, considering her failed litters, and her slowly fading away. Let's see how it goes on, will take her to the vet once more, even for just getting more effective pain medication instead of my hangover pills.
 

Preitler

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
975
Reaction score
140
Location
Austria
Well, Tuesday morning I fed her again, with pain meds included. After that rollercoaster ride from one day to the next, she's fine since then. I still have to fend off the other doe until she finishes her veggies and pellets, but she's the first at the door when they hear me comming :)
She's grazing and digging again, and overall happy and active.

Its so sweet, although my arms are still covered with bruises and bite marks because she really hates being handled, she never before was so nice, tame and friendly like now, after that ordeal. Guess she knows I helped her :)

-- Mon Mar 25, 2019 6:34 pm --

I had to bury Magda today, she died last night. Not so surprising, I suspected there was something serious going on.
She knew her time had come, yesterday evening she didn't come when called and I couldn't find her when it was time to get back to the hutch, at about 11pm I found her at the creek, contently sleeping between bolders at the waters edge, something she's never done before. Guess she had chosen that rather beautiful spot for dying, I feel somewhat bad for waking her, but she went right back to the hutch then, without a sign that anything was amiss. On the other hand, she didn't die alone, her daughter was with her.

At least she didn't die in pain, I'm glad I got her through that last crisis.

Circle of life, she missed becoming grandma by a few days, her daughter is due any moment now.

I'll miss her, her daughter, Chantal, is pretty skittish and lacks that wildish, smart attitude, I hope she does ok with her first litter at 2 years of age.
 

Latest posts

Top