Bunny Heimlich Maneuver

Rabbits often choke on pellets, especially if they tend to “gobble” their food.  If you have a “gobbler,” you may want to spread his pellets out on the floor so he can’t eat as fast as he can from a dish. It’s also very important to be sure that pellet dust isn’t included with the pellets.  If rabbits sneeze, and then inhale, the dust can enter their nostrils, which generates mucous, causing them to choke. If your rabbit is “coughing,” and trying to rid himself of the blockage, leave him a...
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Before You Get a Rabbit

Throughout the year, especially at Easter, people see adorable baby bunnies in pet stores and impulsively purchase these little balls of fur. Sadly, for every rabbit purchased from a pet store or breeder, a rabbit must be killed in a shelter for lack of a home. Even sadder, most of these impulsively purchased, adorable bunnies end up in shelters themselves, and face eventual death there! To purchase a rabbit, therefore, is: To condemn an equally wonderful bunny to death To reward ...
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Risking Your Bunny’s Life…

You are risking the lives of your rabbits if you cannot: take their temperature recognize the signs of GI Stasis and get rabbit-savvy medical help FAST recognize the first signs of head tilt and get rabbit-savvy medical help FAST TEMPERATURE On our Health Line, we frequently get calls from adopters who cannot take their bunny's temperature, which means we can do nothing to help. If you can't take their temperature so we CAN help you, your rabbit may be dead before you can get into a...
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A Single or a Pair?

by Nancy J. LaRoche Some people believe a rabbit will be friendlier with humans if the rabbit remains single. What this actually amounts to is that a single rabbit will be terribly lonely most of the time when his person isn’t around, and will therefore seem friendly when someone finally appears. It is my opinion that this is a cruel and self-serving attitude, which doesn’t accomplish what the human thinks it will. Rabbits have a deep and urgent desire to have a rabbit-partner with whom to s...
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About Your New House Rabbit

About Your New Bunny
The rabbit you are adopting spent some time in our shelter being socialized. By "socialized", we mean a process of learning: learning to use a litter box; learning to accept being handled; and learning to display affection towards people. However, your rabbit may have had to share space and affection with many other rabbits. Understanding this will help you during the first few weeks with your rabbit. As your rabbit realizes his new status in life - that he is the center of attention and no lo...
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Basics of Bunny Handling and Behavior

by Nancy J. LaRoche  Copyright 2008 - All Rights Reserved  (May be copied for free distribution) The Crate, From the Rabbit’s Point of View  Rabbits in a crate view that crate as their home. When you enter it, you are violating their space. A few rabbits may welcome you, and run forward to be petted. But most will view you as an unwelcome intruder, just as you would view someone entering your home without invitation. Interpreting common bunny behavior ThumpingThumping can mean a variety o...
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Basics of Litter Training

by Nancy J. LaRoche  Copyright 2000 - All Rights Reserved  (May be copied for free distribution) Rabbits are easy to litter train, providing you understand their toilet psychology. However, because hormones play a major role in their marking behavior, it is necessary for them to be spayed or neutered before attempting this training. Be sure to use only a veterinarian who has a long record of successful spays and neuters of rabbits. Elsewhere on this site is a list of veterinarians. Litter Tr...
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Building Trust with New Rabbits

by Nancy J. LaRoche  Copyright 2009 - All Rights Reserved  (May be copied for free distribution) Don't worry about the lack of friendliness with new rabbits. They need to learn they can trust you. If you can sit inside an X-pen (or any contained space) with them and read or watch TV, completely ignoring them, they will get curious about you. When they do, continue to ignore them - do NOT respond to them coming up to sniff you. Put some treats on yourself or anywhere they can get to them with...
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Making Friends with Your Rabbit

Some rabbits are happy to have you be their slave, and give nothing in return. This can be quite frustrating for care-takers, who expect and desire a mutual relationship. There are several things that you can do to encourage your rabbits' friendliness with you. Communication  It will help your rabbits if they know what your intentions are, so I suggest using three words, which have very different sounds, whenever you are interacting with them: "Treat" means you have something especially yumm...
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