Cleaning your Rabbit’s Ears

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RABBIT EAR CLEANER

Cleaning your rabbit’s ears is an especially delicate operation because you need to earn the rabbit’s trust first.
This is no small task for rabbits that frighten easy. Before tackling the ear cleaning job, spend a few weeks cuddling and stroking your rabbit, so that he or she trusts you and doesn’t mind being handled.
You will need to regularly check inside your rabbit’s ears to make sure there isn’t any build up of ear wax.
The golden rule is: don’t stick anything in your rabbit’s ear that could hurt them, poke or go into the ear canal. It may have taken along time to earn your rabbit’s trust, so be gentle in the actual cleaning of the ear! Try using a gentle ear-wash like Four Paws Anti-itch ear cleaner. Four Paws Ear Wash Anti-Itch Cleaner is used by veterinarians and groomers to remove odor causing ear wax. Formulated with only the highest quality ingredients for maximum effectiveness. Soothes and cools will not sting.
Rabbit ears should be cleaned every two weeks, but you should run an ear check daily for wax build up. Any black discharge or soreness in the ear could indicate mites of other infections that require the attention of a veterinarian or rabbit ear mite medication.
Use a soft cotton ball or cotton-tipped swab and clean areas that are visible. You don’t need to go into the ear canal or anywhere that you cannot clearly see. Leave the ear canal to the veterinarian if a condition develops.
Gently rub the cotton ball or swab, remove any wax or grime that has collected in the ear and you are finished. Tell your rabbit what a good boy or girl they are and gently release them.
Cleaning your rabbit’s ears should be a welcome process and not cause them any anxiety or stress. Gentle, Consistent and trust development are the keys.

Caring for your Rabbit’s Teeth

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RABBIT DENTAL CARE

Taking care of your rabbits teeth is easy, but vital to the health of your rabbit. It is best to prevent dental problems before they occur because there are few treatments to help correct teeth. Your rabbit�s diet should contain food or treats that require a lot of hard chewing to help prevent a variety of dental problems. If your rabbit does not have a hard surface to chew on, he or she may develop a dental problem that cannot be fixed.

To prevent dental problems, provide your rabbit with hard, crunchy surfaces to chew on, such as the Chew-A-Lot Crunch Bar. The best treats to give your rabbit on mineral or wood chews. By chewing on a hard surface, your rabbits teeth will stay trim and will not become overgrown. Also, it is a good idea to periodically check the cheek teeth for uneven wear. If spikes form on the cheek teeth, it will become painful for your rabbit to chew, which could cause your rabbit not to eat and lead to malnutrition.

If your rabbit appears to be having problems chewing, lose of appetite, the tooth growth appears to be abnormal, drooling, or pain when the mouth area is touched, these are signs of dental problems and you should take your rabbit to the veterinarian as soon as possible. The sooner the problem can be diagnosed, the more likely it can be treated. Your veterinarian may be able to easily correct the dental problem if caught early. However, if the problem is severe, then there may be no possible treatment.

For more great rabbit products and supplies, check out RabbitMart for all your rabbit needs.

Preventing Heatstroke in Your Rabbit

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During the summer, temperatures of 80 degrees or more can be harmful to your rabbit. Because rabbits can tolerate the cold easier, they are less able to tolerate very warm or hot temperatures. When rabbits are exposed to warm temperatures, they are more likely to develop heatstroke and that can be fatal. To prevent your rabbit from getting heatstroke, it is important to follow these simple steps:

  • Give your rabbit a cool place to rest. If your rabbit is an outdoor rabbit, try to move your rabbit indoors on a hot, humid day. If this is not possible, keep your rabbit�s hutch in a covered, shady area.
  • If your rabbit stays indoors, but there is no air conditioning, move your rabbit to the coolest area in the house and open the windows to get the air moving. You may also want to set up a fan in the room to help circulate the air. Do not have the fan blowing directly on your rabbit.
  • Keep your rabbit hydrated with cool water. Offer your rabbit cool, clean water many times throughout the day. You can help prevent heatstroke by getting your rabbit to drink water. A great waterer for rabbits is the Emerald Tints Water Bottle. This water bottle has a green tint that helps to block indoor and outdoor UV rays.
  • If your water appears to be suffering from the heat, you may also want to place a cool towel around the ears. This will help to cool your rabbit�s blood quickly.
  • Offer your rabbit a cool spot to rest in the hutch. Place your rabbit�s mat, such as the Small Animal Multi-Mat, in the freezer for a few minutes to cool it quickly and then place it back in your rabbit�s hutch for an easy and quick cooling solution.

If you notice that your rabbit has become lethargic, has trouble breathing and has a high body temperature, cool your rabbit as soon as possible using the techniques above and take your rabbit to the nearest vet for further treatment.

Keep Your Rabbit Healthy Through the Winter

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Even though rabbits can handle cold weather much better than hot weather, it is important to avoid illnesses to keep your rabbit comfortable and healthy all winter long.  Whether your rabbit lives indoors or outdoors, it is a good idea to prevent your rabbit from becoming ill all winter long.  The easiest way to prevent illness is by following these easy steps:

  1. Check your indoor or outdoor rabbit on a regular basis.  It is important to spend some time with your rabbit on a daily basis, not only to help their mental well-being, but also to check on the status of her health.  The Critter Care Message Center makes it easy to keep tabs on your rabbit and it is a friendly reminder for feedings and more.
  2. Keep the immune system healthy.   There are a variety of diseases that rabbits can get when their immunity is weak.  Respiratory infections can become severe infections quickly, so it is very important to make sure that your rabbit has a healthy diet, such as the Vita-Vittles Rabbit Food, and stays away from sick rabbits if you have more than one rabbit.  Take your rabbit to the vet right away if you notice her having any problems breathing, discharge from the eyes or the nose, sneezing, coughing, loss of appetite, lethargy and any other sign that indicates your rabbit might be in trouble.
  3. Clean the hutch regularly.  It may be more difficult to clean your rabbit’s cage in the winter, but it is very important for you to continue keeping it clean.  A dirty rabbit cage is a haven for a variety of bacteria and other organisms that cause illness.  If your rabbit gets sick and you have more than one rabbit, you should keep her separated from your other rabbits to avoid spreading the infection.  The Super Pet Clean Critter Wipes are great for a quick cleaning of your rabbit’s cage.  If your rabbit becomes sick you will need to use disinfectant on a regular basis to help the spread of germs.
  4. Never treat your rabbit on your own.  Always consult your vet first before giving any antibiotics or other types of medications.  Some medications can be harmful to rabbits and make her condition worse.

Creating a First-Aid Kit for Your Rabbit

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It can be very scary for a rabbit owner when your rabbit gets sick or injured and must be treated right away. For treating an urgent medical condition, it is a good idea to put together a first-aid kit to help with your rabbit�s minor injuries. Most minor injuries can be treated with the tools in this kit, however, you should always call your vet if you have questions or your rabbit�s condition gets worse.

Here are some essential tools to have in your rabbit�s first-aid kit:
1. Antibiotic lotion, such as Biocaine Antiseptic First Aid Lotion, is great for treating small wounds and cuts. Apply the lotion to the injured area to help prevent the cut from becoming infected.
2. Hydrogen peroxide or a wound cleaner to help flush out dirt and bacteria.
3. Cotton balls or cotton swabs for applying medication and cleaning the injured area.
4. Bandages, such as gauze wraps or pads, and bandage tape.
5. A rectal thermometer for animals and a lubricant, such as Vasoline. The normal temperature for a rabbit is between 103 and 106.
6. Tweezers for removing a foreign object stuck in the skin.
7. Scissors for cutting bandage wraps and tapes.
8. Styptic powder for nails that bleed when cut.
9. A soft towel for wrapping up an injured rabbit.
10. A medication dispenser, such as the Quick & Easy Pill Dispenser for Pets, for quickly administering medication.
It is also a good idea to have your vet�s phone number in the kit in case your rabbit has a serious injury. Having an emergency kit conveniently available during an emergency helps to give you a piece of mind when you are worried about your rabbit.