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Rabbits/Mother Rabbit with Unformed Cecotropes

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Question
My mother rabbit started having unformed cecotropes last night. Her babies are 3 weeks old and all of them are together, but yesterday a snake got into the cage and killed one of the babies. I moved her and all kits into the house and then found unformed cecotropes this morning. Could the stress of the snake attack or moving them into a new cage/location cause this? She seems calm, still nursing the kits, eating/drinking, and having normal pellet poop. The nearest vet is 2 hours away. Thank you.

Answer
Dear Karah,

The stress of this terrible even could certainly have caused this temporary cecal dysbiosis or whatever physiological change occurred to make her leave unformed cecotropes.  I'm glad you got the rabbits inside where they are safe.  There are untold hazards outdoors, and I'm sorry you had to learn the hard way.  :(

If the mushy poop continues, please read:

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

and find a good rabbit vet here:

http://www.rabbit.org/vet

I hope everything resolves, and everyone will be well.

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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