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Question
My lionhead doe had babies about 4 weeks ago. We had the male seperated but our temps got way below zero, like -30. I live in Minnesota, so we moved their cages into our heated garage, they both got out of their enclosures and now she is nesting again. Do I need to remove the babies? will they harm the new babies and I thought they had to nurse for 8 weeks? i am new to this, we are not breeding. The male was supposed to get fixed but had to reschedule due to bad weather. I hope you can help me.
Thanks
Nicole

Answer
Dear Nicole,

Yikes.  Well, it's possible she is going to have babies again.  If this happens, you'll have to monitor the time she spends with the four-week old babies, and probably let them have a chance at her milk only after the new litter has had a chance to fill up.  It's not ideal to wean them this young, and you might have to supplement their feeding, especially with the colostrum.  Please find instructions here:

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

and

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

I hope you can get the boy neutered as soon as possible.  It's important that he not get to her a third time, as that would be bad not only for the babies, but for mama.

Good luck!

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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