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Thread: A question about diet

  1. #1
    Mama Doe Orenoko's Avatar
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    Default A question about diet

    Lilac needs a dental (boooo) following much investigation on an ongoing eye infection, the vet found some spurs, although not too bad. She's had a dental once not long after I got her 3 years ago which I put down to me feeding too much veg and pellets (twice daily for both and far too many pellets). She's been fine ever since although does have a very flat face so I suppose there may always be an element of proneness to this. I just wanted to give a rundown of what I feed her and Rupert to see if there's anything people think I should add/take away to help the situation:

    Morning:
    Small handful of forage (petals, parsley root, chicory root) and a couple of dandelion root sticks
    Cereal bowl full of veg

    Evening:
    Egg cup of pellets to share
    A couple of Fibrefirst sticks
    Small handful of forage (dandelion leaf/parsley leaf)

    Free access to hay at all times.

    Both are good hay eaters, I get my hay from timothyhay.co.uk and never have any problems with them eating it, just wondering if there's anything I should stop/cut back in order to encourage more hay eating to help manage her teeth? I've had a dental bun before but his was due to problems associated with head tilt. I know she may be prone to these issues because of her breed (mini lop) but any advice is welcome!

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  2. #2
    Mama Doe Orenoko's Avatar
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    Sorry I should've added they also get a hay cookie maybe once a fortnight? They don't like chewing sticks or anything apart from dandelion root.

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  3. #3
    Young Bun Livvie's Avatar
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    Default A question about diet

    Thatís a good diet to be fair. Maybe just do the forage once a day? And like break the dandelion stick in half for the two of them. It could mean they eat just that bit more hay.

    The Fibafirst and nuggets are essentially the same part of the diet so maybe reduce by 1 Fibafirst? So half each a day?

    These are little changes it may be worth trying to see what happens. I always monitor and record my bunnies' weight every now and then which i recommend.

    But yeah some bunnies are more prone to dental issues. Iíve had bunnies who the vets say barely have any spurs (but vets do see a lot of neglected buns which are really severe) but Iíll insist on a dental and it makes SO much difference. They start eating more hay straight away.

    Some will say nuggets are the first they go off of when they have poor teeth however my experience has been they go off the hay first, and then start to lose weight and not eat as many nuggets.

    I had a bunny who was losing weight and eating slow, and dribbling when he ate. I took him to my friend for a dental and she said he barely had any spurs (she even showed me a picture of him she took while under, his little face - LOL). Yet even on the evening of the op, he started eating so well again!

    Sorry to digress, just thought experiences are worth sharing. I am no veterinary expert but have had a lot of buns and animal qualifications - basically take it with a pinch of salt, make any changes gradually and see what happens. Iím sure other people may weigh in a bit differently.

    Good luck xxxx

    Ps. If the buns are well bonded, about the same size and breed, and eating the same diet every day with no food aggression issues, it canít be terrible as only one of them seems to have issues! But if course all buns are different. X


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    Last edited by Livvie; 24-07-2021 at 09:28 PM.

  4. #4
    Mama Doe Orenoko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Livvie View Post
    Thatís a good diet to be fair. Maybe just do the forage once a day? And like break the dandelion stick in half for the two of them. It could mean they eat just that bit more hay.

    The Fibafirst and nuggets are essentially the same part of the diet so maybe reduce by 1 Fibafirst? So half each a day?

    These are little changes it may be worth trying to see what happens. I always monitor and record my bunnies' weight every now and then which i recommend.

    But yeah some bunnies are more prone to dental issues. Iíve had bunnies who the vets say barely have any spurs (but vets do see a lot of neglected buns which are really severe) but Iíll insist on a dental and it makes SO much difference. They start eating more hay straight away.

    Some will say nuggets are the first they go off of when they have poor teeth however my experience has been they go off the hay first, and then start to lose weight and not eat as many nuggets.

    I had a bunny who was losing weight and eating slow, and dribbling when he ate. I took him to my friend for a dental and she said he barely had any spurs (she even showed me a picture of him she took while under, his little face - LOL). Yet even on the evening of the op, he started eating so well again!

    Sorry to digress, just thought experiences are worth sharing. I am no veterinary expert but have had a lot of buns and animal qualifications - basically take it with a pinch of salt, make any changes gradually and see what happens. Iím sure other people may weigh in a bit differently.

    Good luck xxxx

    Ps. If the buns are well bonded, about the same size and breed, and eating the same diet every day with no food aggression issues, it canít be terrible as only one of them seems to have issues! But if course all buns are different. X


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    Thanks, I'll try your suggestions, I think I have been guilty of spoiling them a bit too much! I went away a few weeks ago and wrote a list for my other half of what they have every day and he said they eat better than he does!

    They're very well bonded and no food aggression (I scatter feed anyway or use toys to hide food in), both a good weight too. Hopefully I can nip these problems in the bud before Rupert gets any teeth issues too, he's also had one dental in the 2 years I've had him, luckily no recurring issues and his face isn't as flat so hopefully he'll be fine!

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  5. #5
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    If I was going to do anything differently, I would change some of the forage to more fibrous leaves eg bramble, willow, apple. And fresh grass.
    I find a small amount of pellets is useful to check that they are eating normally. For a dental bunny, it may help them to keep their weight up if they are struggling with hay, but hay will always give better dental health - so it's a balance of what suits that rabbit best.
    Weighing rabbits weekly is also a good idea if they have known health issues. A continued drop over a couple of weeks should need investigating.

  6. #6
    Mama Doe Orenoko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shimmer View Post
    If I was going to do anything differently, I would change some of the forage to more fibrous leaves eg bramble, willow, apple. And fresh grass.
    I find a small amount of pellets is useful to check that they are eating normally. For a dental bunny, it may help them to keep their weight up if they are struggling with hay, but hay will always give better dental health - so it's a balance of what suits that rabbit best.
    Weighing rabbits weekly is also a good idea if they have known health issues. A continued drop over a couple of weeks should need investigating.
    I'll see what I can find online as they're due a re-stock. I don't have access to a garden but do grow them some grass from time to time, have neglected that recently so will get on it!

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    Brambles grow all over the place - you should be able to find some locally on some spare ground or local park, although it will be spikey. Willow is also quite common eg by rivers or canals.
    Dried echinacea is quite fibrous and available online.
    If what you are doing now is working, I wouldn't go overboard changing it for things that you can't get hold of consistently, though.

  8. #8
    Mama Doe Orenoko's Avatar
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    Thanks, I'm not very confident at foraging apart from the obvious stuff like cow parsley, dandelion etc. I'll have to start researching a bit more.

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  9. #9
    Wise Old Thumper
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    Perhaps cut out the bowl of veg as they are getting healthier things and don't need it.

  10. #10
    Warren Veteran InspectorMorse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Orenoko View Post
    Thanks, I'm not very confident at foraging apart from the obvious stuff like cow parsley, dandelion etc. I'll have to start researching a bit more.

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    This is a really helpful book

    https://shop.rabbitwelfare.co.uk/pro...-by-twigs-way/


    I used to be ĎJackís-Janeí but I have been logged out of that account and I canít get back in !

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