Would you say that older rabbits (4 plus) should be getting more protein, or less protein. I know all the food people say less, but I always thought that older rabbits needed a bit extra?
Answer Dear Sally,
Because an aging bunny's kidneys are also aging, it gets harder for them to process and remove nitrogenous waste. Protein is very high in nitrogen, and typical rabbit forage is low in protein. They have evolved to thrive on a diet relatively low in protein. So that's why an older rabbit probably needs less protein than a younger one.
Protein is important for growth and repair. Younger animals (including humans) need more protein than older ones for this reason.
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:
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If your rabbits is LETHARGIC
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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