Should I start feeding my rabbit more or give her alfalfa hay? - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
Rabbit Discussion All things floppy.

 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-16-2011, 11:40 PM Thread Starter
Playful Pup
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 37
 
Should I start feeding my rabbit more or give her alfalfa hay?

My rabbit isnít a senior yet. But she is almost 5 years and 10 months (born on January 29, 2006). So sheís almost a senior. Iíve always feed her ľ cup of food, (oxbow-she hasnít always gotten oxbow but this is what sheís gotten the past few months) along with unlimited Timothy hay and veggies. But recently sheís started to lose weight. For the past few days Iíve been giving her Ĺ cup of food instead. Should I continue to just feed her more? Or should I give her some alfalfa hay? Iíve read that itís a good idea to start feeding senior rabbits alfalfa hay. She never eats all her food right away, but it is gone by morning. She is healthy, I just notice sheís lost a little weight. Also she weighs 5lbs normally and she is spayed (Iím not sure if that matters).

Thanks for any advice!!!
Number1Sticky is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2011, 07:43 AM
Betta Bomb
 
Purple-Hops's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: SJ Newfoundland, Canada
Age: 31
Posts: 5,202
Blog Entries: 5
  
The weight loss could indicate something else actually. My Acacia-berry is 5 years 4 months or something and is spayed and she's got the plumps! I wouldn't feed alfalfa based on a visual representation of her weight. I would consult the vet first to rule out anything else.
Jess here has a 7 yr old rabbit who doesn't show signs of weight loss yet .. Indicative of "geriatrics" is loss of bladdar control, unable to hop up onto levels in the cage or into litterbox anymore with ease, messy bottom (unable to clean and eat cecals).
Is she off balance at all? Like, tilting her head to favor one side?

Tooth problems need to be examined by a vet and appropriate measures taken from there. As bunnies age they can develop tooth problems.. Some rabbits stop eating when this happens which alerts the owner. I had a pig of a bunny who kept eating right up until her last day even though she had a tooth removed (it was severing her eye duct) and multiple abscesses (due to a sort of malloclusion I think)

To conclude my very hastily written and disorganised response, have her looked at by a vet to rule out any internal problems. Alfalfa is typically fed to super old rabbits to keep up their calcium and energy perhaps. I wouldn't jump on that bandwagon and start up more problems than is necessary.

Good luck!
Purple-Hops is offline  
post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2011, 10:30 AM
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 4,212
  
I agree, I'd get her in for a health evaluation if she's loosing weight. Don't just assume it's because of age. There are quite a few medical reasons why a rabbit could start loosing weight.

I've heard a few people lately say that apparently rabbits over 5 are considered to be seniors. I never gave it much thought but 5 seems kind of young to me to start considering them senior. Maybe that's just me though. The first rabbit I owned as a kid growing up lived to be just over 15, so thinking of them being old when they're 5 seems weird to me. I've worked with quite a few rabbits over 5, some of them even double that, at the shelter I volunteer at and many of them even at those ages weren't yet showing signs often associated with old rabbits.

Anyways yeah I'd get her checked out before you make any assumptions. Even if it turns out the vet agrees that it may be due to her age, it never hurts to get them in for a check up anyways.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Dragonrain is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2011, 12:18 PM
is a little "special"
 
Jess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Southern-ish Minnesota
Age: 25
Posts: 4,131
 
Amanda, Smudge is 8 years old now!
He does have a very small amount of alfalfa in with his hay, but that's just how the bales I buy are. I figured it wouldn't hurt him, because he had lost 2 oz at his last yearly check up and my vet said he could have some more calories.


I don't see 5 - 6 as being very old either, personally. Smudge isn't exactly young anymore, but he acts like he is 3. He still has tons of energy (and attitude). The only difference I've noticed is that he doesn't use his shelf any more, and he has had some minor teeth issues.



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


"For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older than ours they move finished and complete, gifted with extensions of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear.They are not brethen, they are not underlings; they are other nations caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendor and travail of the earth."
Jess is offline  
post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2011, 02:41 PM
Betta Bomb
 
Purple-Hops's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: SJ Newfoundland, Canada
Age: 31
Posts: 5,202
Blog Entries: 5
  
oops! Sorry I forgot he had his bun-day!!
Purple-Hops is offline  
post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-17-2011, 04:34 PM
Resident Aquarium Nerd
 
Sasami's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Murfreesboro, TN
Age: 28
Posts: 9,930
   
How much weight has she lost? I wouldn't consider her a senior and even if she was I wouldn't attribute the weight loss to age. Sounds like something else is going on.

I have a rabbit that's at least 10 (we don't know the exact age since he's a rescue). He's a bit calmer now but still runs around and hasn't lost weight.




~Stephanie

"We weep for a bird's cry, but not for a fish's blood. Blessed are those with a voice."


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




Sasami is offline  
post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-20-2011, 06:42 PM Thread Starter
Playful Pup
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 37
 
Thanks for advice. She has actually put all her weight back on since I started feeding her more pellets.

I don't think there's anything wrong with her teeth. She eats TONS of hay. I have to fill up her hay rack a few times a day because it's so small.

But I will still call the vet and at least talk to them about it. I also do want to get her some blood work done, just because she is getting older.

Also I just wanted to let everyone know that she wasn't an unhealthy weight, I definitely would have taken her to the vet if she was like skin and bones. I could just feel that she had lost a little weight.

Thanks again!!!
Number1Sticky is offline  
Reply

Tags
alfalfa, senior


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome