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Thread: Encouraging a stubborn bunny to eat more hay!

  1. #11
    Warren Veteran joey&boo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ambrer View Post
    Still struggling - her hay samples arrived a couple of days ago! Despite serving it to her in all different ways, she's turned her nose up at both Orchard Hay, as well as Readigrass! I'm leaving it there for a day or so in between feeds and reducing her pellets again to keep trying her. Getting ready to pull my hair out!
    I know its discouraging not to see instant results but do keep up the good work. That she has eaten some is good. New accommodation plans sound great - I'm sure she'll appreciate your efforts

  2. #12
    Warren Scout binkyCodie's Avatar
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    personally in my opinion, rabbits do not even need pellet. out in the wild nobody comes over to them with a bowl full of pellet. instead they are foraging eating grass, leaves, flowers etc.

    mine get 1/4 cup of pellet a week, maybe twice. one bag can last me 6 months sometimes lol. one bun is 2.4kg, another is 1.8kg. if anything they mostly eat hay and vegetables.

    removing pellet won't do her any harm, however, her not eating hay will. she will likely end up dental issues, stomach issues through the lack of fibre. so re in leaving her to it, i would say a big fat no.

    as others have said, cut back on the pellet, treats etc. bunnies have a sweet tooth, and right now what shes doing is "you won't give me pellet, i won't eat." however, eventually she won't enjoy being hungry and will give in. cutting down on the pellet won't do her harm. bunnies won't starve themselves, they're not stupid. its like offered a kid candy, then wondering why they wont eat their veggies bunnies are like toddlers, you have to control their food and how much they have, and what they have of it.

    i have a very fussy bunny, however that changed when i went to a local farm and got hay from them. maybe see if you have any around, as my buns love the fresh stuff. i have to fill up the plastic box in my room every 4 days lol.

    and once you get her eating, do not add more pellet back in. keep it at a bare minimum. adding more back in will go back to this of having this issue. instead add in some veggies, grass, leaves and so on that are safe.

    TL;DR: cut back on the pellet, treats, and keep trying different hays. once you have one that she likes, do not add back in more pellet. instead add veggies and forage for her. and keep pellet to the minimum.

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by joey&boo View Post
    I know its discouraging not to see instant results but do keep up the good work. That she has eaten some is good. New accommodation plans sound great - I'm sure she'll appreciate your efforts
    I sure hope so! We've also had another idea - building a fence across the grass with a gate, so that when we're home, she'll be allowed to have full run of the garden and only be shut in the hutch at night time. Still playing around with different ideas.

    She's just a complete diva! I love her to pieces, I'm just worried about her health and teeth just because she refuses to eat hay. She's like this - she's never been keen on changes to her diet and is known to have hunger strikes until she eventually gives in. It is improving as she's getting older, but I don't think she's quite out of her teenager years! I'll keep trying - good news is the guinea pigs are having fun sampling the new hay when she completely and utterly refuses!

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by binkyCodie View Post
    personally in my opinion, rabbits do not even need pellet. out in the wild nobody comes over to them with a bowl full of pellet. instead they are foraging eating grass, leaves, flowers etc.

    mine get 1/4 cup of pellet a week, maybe twice. one bag can last me 6 months sometimes lol. one bun is 2.4kg, another is 1.8kg. if anything they mostly eat hay and vegetables.

    removing pellet won't do her any harm, however, her not eating hay will. she will likely end up dental issues, stomach issues through the lack of fibre. so re in leaving her to it, i would say a big fat no.

    as others have said, cut back on the pellet, treats etc. bunnies have a sweet tooth, and right now what shes doing is "you won't give me pellet, i won't eat." however, eventually she won't enjoy being hungry and will give in. cutting down on the pellet won't do her harm. bunnies won't starve themselves, they're not stupid. its like offered a kid candy, then wondering why they wont eat their veggies bunnies are like toddlers, you have to control their food and how much they have, and what they have of it.

    i have a very fussy bunny, however that changed when i went to a local farm and got hay from them. maybe see if you have any around, as my buns love the fresh stuff. i have to fill up the plastic box in my room every 4 days lol.

    and once you get her eating, do not add more pellet back in. keep it at a bare minimum. adding more back in will go back to this of having this issue. instead add in some veggies, grass, leaves and so on that are safe.

    TL;DR: cut back on the pellet, treats, and keep trying different hays. once you have one that she likes, do not add back in more pellet. instead add veggies and forage for her. and keep pellet to the minimum.
    I've cut down on her pellets as far as I'm willing to go - one handful per day at the minute, just because I'm too scared to cut it down any further until she starts eating hay on a more regular basis. We've started including forage, too - no interest in that, and all her treats have completely gone. Currently, it's one handful of pellets, unlimited hay and smal amount of veggies - but she's also really fussy with her veg too, though that is improving as she gets older.

    Really hoping for a breakthrough soon! She's dropped some weight doing this - now down to 2.6kg, but I'm keeping a close eye and monitoring closely. The vet is pretty happy for me to continue (she went in for her routine teeth check since she won't eat hay, as well as a nail filing) as long as she doesn't loose much more weight!

  5. #15

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    Hi guys! We've had a breakthrough - Chappy adored readigrass! The entire thing was gone this morning and she was actually asking for more!

    I'm just a little worried - googling it, it seems there's some conflicting opinions on feeding readigrass as a hay? Some people are saying the calcium content is too high for normal hay consuming use, but others are saying if it's less than 1% calcium then it's really nothing to worry about... I just wanted to ask you guys if readigrass is safe for her to have daily and for her main hay intake? Honestly at this point I'd much rather have her eating something that's a little high in calcium rather than no hay at all, but I obviously don't want to put her health at risk.

    We still have a couple of taster bags from the Hay Experts left to try, so my hope is Chappy will take to another hay as well so that I can swap out the different types of hay - we'll see! But I just don't want to put her in danger of calcium stones or anything like that.

    Thanks for the help and patience with me so far; guys! I really appreciate it all

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