Sudden death of rabbit

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by stickman, Aug 2, 2010.

  1. stickman

    stickman In the Brooder

    Jul 6, 2009
    Lebanon, TN
    I have a 2 year old rabbit that was perfectly fine this morning. When I got home this afternoon around 5 I noticed he was acting a little strange. His food bowl was still full and he was being lathargic. I checked on him every 1/2 hour and his condition did not seem to improve but he also did not seem to worsen. I just checked on him again and he has died. Can a rabbit have a heat stroke? It has been nearly 100 degrees for the last few weeks but he has been just fine. Anyone have any ideas what could have happened?
  2. cassie

    cassie Crowing 9 Years

    Mar 19, 2009
    Rabbits do not take heat very well. One way to keep them cool is to fill a gallon milk jug with water and freeze it. Put the frozen jug in the rabbit's cage. They will cuddle up to it to keep cool.
  3. RabbitMage

    RabbitMage Songster

    Mar 27, 2009
    Prolonged exposure to temps about 90 degrees can be fatal. The fact he didn't eat means there might have been something else going on, though, like G.I. Stasis.
  4. Bunnylady

    Bunnylady POOF Goes the Pooka 8 Years

    Nov 27, 2009
    Wilmington, NC
    Sorry to hear you lost your rabbit.

    About 15 years ago, I lost 3 rabbits to heatstroke in one afternoon. The reason that I remember it, is that I just happened to be out there among them at the time. The rabbits were all lying as flat as they could get on their bellies, with their heads back, breathing rapidly. Suddenly, one rabbit began staggering around in her cage and screaming. I grabbed her, and rushed her to the garden hose, to run cool water over her in an effort to cool her down. While I was working on her, I heard another rabbit begin screaming, and a few minutes later, another. I guess by the time they were so distressed they couldn't be silent any more, they were in too much trouble, because I wasn't able to save any of them. Shortly after this happened, I built my current rabbitry, and included things like fans, additional shade, and a soaker hose on the roof. Thankfully, I have never had a repeat of that day.

    A rabbit that isn't eating is a huge red flag for me. Your rabbit should have eaten something before the temperature got so uncomfortable that all he wanted to do was breathe. Was his water bottle working properly? Rabbits need water to process their food, so if they can't drink, they won't eat. I'm with RabbitMage on this one, I suspect there may have been something else going on: GI stasis seems a pretty likely culprit.
  5. therealsilkiechick

    therealsilkiechick ShowGirl Queen

    Jul 18, 2007
    Northwestern, pa
    did he have diarhea or a swollen belly?
  6. Surehatch

    Surehatch Songster

    Nov 16, 2009

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