Bunnies, we love them, we take fun pictures of them for Easter and we cuddle with them. Something we may not do are wellness checks on our rabbits. Unlike dogs or cats, bunnies don’t really give us signs or have ways to tell us that they are feeling off. As bunny parents and caregivers, we must always remember to check-in with our fluffy friends. Here is how you can self-check your rabbit from bottom to top!
Just like other furry friends, a rabbit's nails need to be trimmed if they get too long. Long nails end up causing your bunny pain, and possibly your hardwood floors. When cutting your bunny’s nails, avoid cutting the pink vein which will cause bleeding. On white nailed rabbits, the vein is easier to see, but on black nailed rabbits, it is suggested to use a flashlight. If you’re nervous about any pet grooming, North Star Animal Center can help!
Rabbit’s are susceptible to getting sore heels. The sores can develop as the bunny sits on a rough surface for prolonged amounts of time. You can tell if your rabbit is experiencing soreness by observing them as they hop. If they look like they are limping, their hop is off, or if you see a sore growing on their feet, we recommend taking them to a clinic for further examination.
Look at the outside of your bunny's mouth and check for any bumps or painful spots. Then check the inside of the mouth by gently pulling the upper and lower lips back. With a normal rabbit’s teeth, you should see the teeth aligned and a slight overbite. If the overbite is too drastic or if any of the teeth seem too long, that’s when you know they are having a problem.
Look for any discharge around the nose area. If you do see any discharge, check their paws as rabbit’s will wipe their noses and there could be crust stuck on them. Additionally, you will also want to check for any bumps or scratches on the outside of the nose.
Healthy bunny eyes are ones that are clear and bright. Gently pull down or up on the eyelid. The eye tissue should be pink and not red or pale. If the eyes are red, that can indicate an inflamed eye or infection. Very pale eyes can indicate that they are feeling ill. Rabbit’s also have third eyelids. If this eyelid is showing prominently, that can indicate that your friend is stressed.
Start by feeling around for any bumps or scratches on the outside of the ear. To examine the inside of the ear, you’ll want to grab a small flashlight to get a good view. Look for any dark, crusty material, wax or dirt build up. If your friend just needs a general ear cleaning, use warm water and a cotton pad to gently wipe them out.
If you have any questions about hygiene and care for your bunny or any other pet, we are always here to help! And if you find that your bunny is experiencing anything out of the ordinary, give us a call - (210) 900 4005