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Question
I would like to ask a question. I have 2 baby bunnies, about a week old. Their eyes are slightly open. They are active but have big bellies that is why they cannot jump. What should I do? Should I remove them from their mama? Thank you for your response.

Answer
Dear Louise,

I am sorry for the delay, which was due to a very sad death in my family.

Are the babies all right?  If the mother is not stimulating them to urinate/defecate, they may be backed up, and you might have to help them.  Instructions can be found here:

http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare/orphan.html

But sometimes babies are born with congenital abnormalities that prevent them from defecating, and this can be a fatal disorder.  I hope this is not what has happened to your babies.

DO NOT remove them from mama.  Their only hope of survival would be with her, as long as she is caring for them.  If she isn't, then the instructions above can help you save them.  But by now, Nature has undoubtedly given you the answer.

I hope they are okay.

Sincerely,

Dana

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Dana Krempels, Ph.D.

Expertise

I've lived with companion rabbits for more than 35 years, and consider them members of my family. I can answer any questions about the biology and health of rabbits, from the commonplace to the unusual. But please note:

RULE #1:
THE INTERNET IS NOT THE PLACE TO SEEK HELP IN AN EMERGENCY.

...it is an EMERGENCY.

Find a rabbit vet at www.rabbit.org/vet for immediate help, and don't risk your bunny's life by spending time asking questions online! If you can't get in touch with your vet, read these Emergency Sick Bunny Instructions.

If you have found a wild baby rabbit, please read these EMERGENCY INSTRUCTIONS FOR WILD BABY RABBITS and then use this link to FIND A LOCAL WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR who can give you the right advice.


RULE #2:
Help me help you! Please make your subject line informative if you have an urgent question. then LET ME KNOW IN THE SUBJECT LINE so I can give your question highest priority over non-urgent questions. If you don't do this, then I can't guarantee timely assistance!

For all the best, most accurate rabbit health, care and behavior information, visit The House Rabbit Society.

Experience

I have been rescuing and rehabilitating domestic and wild rabbits for about 30 years. I have written articles for many rabbit rescue publications, as well as for the veterinary journal, Exotic DVM. I own EtherBun, the internet's largest listserve dedicated to health, care, and behavior of domestic rabbits.

Organizations
Houserabbit Adoption, Rescue, and Education, Inc. (H.A.R.E., Inc.) president National House Rabbit Society (Board member)

Publications
Exotic DVM
Warren Peace (Journal of the House Rabbit Society of Miami)
Various newsletters of the House Rabbit Society, nationwide

Education/Credentials
Ph.D - Biology
B.S. - Biology
B.A. - English

Awards and Honors
Lightspan Academic Excellence Award for web site on rabbit health and biology
(http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare)

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