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About a month ago, our bunny had to go to the vet for what turned out to be a respiratory problem (probably a cold; Metacam did the trick, but that's by the bye). While at the vet, she mentioned that he was a good weight, but his teeth were too sharp and we ought to reduce his nuggets to 1-2 teaspoons per day. At the time, he was getting quite a lot of hay and the occasional fresh vegetable -- mostly parsley, spinach and coriander (cilantro), and the occasional carrot head -- but that was a considerable reduction to his dry food (which he loves).

Anyway, we reduced his nugget intake -- which didn't go down well, initially -- and he's slowly gotten used to it. (It was weeks before he was flopping again!) Consequently, his hay intake has increased and we give him slightly more fresh vegetables to compensate; plus he's become a bit crazy when it's nugget time!

He's not a fan of hay, so even though his consumption has increased, it's clear that it isn't as much as what the nuggets provided, as he's lost a lot of weight. For example, when you stroke him, his skeleton is now really obvious and he seems more sleepy than usual. He's happy, but we're concerned that he's not getting enough food.

Is this normal? If so, then I guess we'll just try to be less "protective"; if not, presuming it's not a more serious issue, what additional food can we supply that's good for him (both his digestion and teeth) that he will actually eat?

(Mini lop; male, neutered; ~16mo. I don't remember his "good weight", but it was slightly over 1kg and he's smaller-than-average, even for a mini lop.)

  • You can mark the answer that fit best to your question/help you the most: click on the "check" mark at this question. – Allerleirauh May 9 at 7:02
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No, that does not sound normal. Bunnies are capable of being underweight and overweight. You should not be able to easily feel his ribs/spine. Does he have bunny-safe wooden chews available to him in his cage at all times? The pet store typically sells scented ones to entice small animals to chew on them. Refrain from using wood from outside unless you know it has never been treated with pesticides and is not a toxic plant. I'd increase the amount of food he will eat (nuggets), provide some chews, and if his teeth continue to be an issue, you can very slowly, gradually alter the percentage of nugget vs hay so that he doesn't notice the change.

Other possible reasons for being underweight are intestinal parasites or other illnesses. Consider getting a fecal test done. Hope this help!

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The abrasion of the teeth is a complex theme.

Factors are:

  1. Food with silicic acid helps (most fresh leafs / grasses, hay has it but less).
  2. If the rabbit has to chew long time this is better than food it can chew and swallow.
  3. Food that makes full in short time is not good (most grains, pellets, old hard bread and likewise).

Conclusion: You can help your rabbit with abrasion if you feed big amounts of fresh natural "wild" greens. (You should increase the amount slowly, one hand full of greens more every day.)

If you have sorrow your rabbit has issues, you should meet the vet again or maybe call it to calm down and decide what to do.

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