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Thread: Older rabbits & sleeping habits

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    Wise Old Thumper joey&boo's Avatar
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    Default Older rabbits & sleeping habits

    Mouse has been sleeping loads for a good few years. The past few months Boo's sleeping has increased notably. She seems fine, she still plays in her digging box, is the same weight, loves us like usual & wakes in a nano second when you put food in front of her nose. Poor Joey looks bored in the evening. He isn't much of a doer (never really engages with toys or activities like Boo will) - he certainly doesn't seem to need or want more sleep. I do think he just used to like hanging out in the open each evening with Boo, not doing much but at least being awake.

    what do you know about older bunnies & increased sleeping? Is it normal or a worrying sign

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    Wise Old Thumper
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    I would say it's normal, but don't know that to be a fact. I see it as the same as humans in that as we get older we tend to slow down and need more sleep. There are exceptions of course and perhaps Joey is one of those.

    My experience with Tethra also was that when we adopted the young lively Tui, he didn't sleep as much and I would guess Joey might run around a bit more if he had a much younger partner. It wasn't so good for Tui though as she had a slow, elderly bunny as a partner. I have been thinking of the ages of partner bunnies a lot recently and whilst I'm sure it doesn't make any difference to bonding, I think that the closer they are in liveliness is probably important for the bunnies quality of life. It's certainly something to ponder about I think.

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    Wise Old Thumper joey&boo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omi View Post
    I would say it's normal, but don't know that to be a fact. I see it as the same as humans in that as we get older we tend to slow down and need more sleep. There are exceptions of course and perhaps Joey is one of those.

    My experience with Tethra also was that when we adopted the young lively Tui, he didn't sleep as much and I would guess Joey might run around a bit more if he had a much younger partner. It wasn't so good for Tui though as she had a slow, elderly bunny as a partner. I have been thinking of the ages of partner bunnies a lot recently and whilst I'm sure it doesn't make any difference to bonding, I think that the closer they are in liveliness is probably important for the bunnies quality of life. It's certainly something to ponder about I think.
    I suspect you're right Omi. the personality matching we say is the most important thing should probably incorporate activity levels. J&B have been together forever & always been well matched with this stuff until now. I don't think Joey knows how to age His fur is sooooo soft atm . I'll just have to make some time to interact with him each evening & try not to sing too much

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    Warren Veteran bunny momma's Avatar
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    Sleep is a time for healing and restoration in humans, so perhaps older buns need more sleep because it takes longer to heal/restore our bodies as we age..
    Joey takes after my spouse,

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    Forum Buddy Pets mum's Avatar
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    Aww sleepy bunnies and softy fur Joey still holding back the years, maybe Tulip could pay a visit
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    Mama Doe Scrappy's Little Helper's Avatar
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    It's an interesting thought. Snoopy has always been very lazy and loves his sleep. Takes after me in that regard! I actually don't think it's possible for him to fit any more snoozes into his day!

    Fudgie is around 7 and a half and is still very bouncy. I wonder if she'll start to slow down at some point?

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by bunny momma View Post
    Sleep is a time for healing and restoration in humans, so perhaps older buns need more sleep because it takes longer to heal/restore our bodies as we age..
    Joey takes after my spouse,
    That would make sense, I think.


    Sophie and Casper are sleeping more the older they get, too. I figure they just need more rest now that they're older, and it's nothing to be concerned about? But I'm not completely sure. It does sound like Joey is an exception, though.
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    Wise Old Thumper keletkezes's Avatar
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    Definitely lots of sleeping here. Lopsy's second favourite thing to do is sleep but, like Boo, the prospect of food will rouse him. Chibbs will sleep a fair amount but she is a bit younger. They really kicked the sleeping up a gear at 6, Lopsy and Aboleth, it's how we pretty much settled on them being the same age
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    Mama Doe doorkeeper's Avatar
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    Sleeping more is definitely perfectly normal in older rabbits. As long as they still enjoy the time they spend moving around and wake up and pay attention at dinner time I don't worry about it at all. We have and have had many elderly rabbits. At the moment we have several who don't do much except sleep apart from a burst of activity when I let them out in the morning and then another ain anticipation of dinner time. They do throw in an extra one miraculously if someone turns up giving out treats too. Kovu is probably 12 and Ozzy is 10 so I don't worry about it at all, even though they both used to be much more active. Of course not all elderly rabbits are quite so sleepy. We also have teenagers who have much longer periods of activity. At 13 Angel and Zion mooch about for most of the day apart from a nap in the middle. And we have much younger rabbits who sleep a lot too. 5 year old Goose is much quieter than his 10 year old partner Butter for example. I find it is the old ones with the most space that are the most active, quite likely because more leaves fall into their runs requiring hoovering. The stomach is king! Angel and Zion and their younger but still ten year old partner have what used to be two runs. They have lots to forage and lots of scope for digging. At first I thought maybe I should give the enormous run to some of the younger rabbits as I thought they might make better use of it but the oldies clearly are not going to let me justify taking it away from them!

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    Wise Old Thumper joey&boo's Avatar
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    It does make sense they sleep more as their bodies have to rejuvenate more. Its good to know its nothing to worry about.

    Thanks everyone.

    Doorkeeper thank you for your stories - it highlights how diverse rabbits are reassuring to have input from someone who has cared for so many rabbits

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