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Rabbit Stops Eating Fruit, Vegetables And Pellets

If a rabbit continues to eat her hay, is it a concern if she now refuses other types of food?

Karen Rosenthal, DVM, MS
Posted: March 16, 2014, 4 a.m. EDT

rabbit sitting on hay
© Gina Cioli/I-5 Studio
It's a good idea to consult a rabbit-savvy veterinarian anytime a rabbit's eating habits change.

Q: My daughter has a young bunny, about a year old now. Lily has stopped eating her pellets and the dried fruits and vegetables in with the pellets. She is still eating her timothy hay though. Should we be concerned? She is still pooping and peeing normally.

A: There are many reasons that rabbits stop eating certain foods. Sometimes it is as simple as being "bored” with the food. But, as a veterinarian, we are always looking to make sure there is not a medical reason for the change in the behavior.

Of course, you want to be sure that the food has not changed. Make sure it is not spoiled. Sometimes doing something as simple as changing brands can cause a rabbit to stop eating.

Typically, with dental disease, we see rabbits stop eating their hay first and then pellets last, as it is easier to chew pellets and dried fruits than the hay. Your rabbit is doing the opposite, plus Lily is younger than the typical rabbit with dental disease.

Because dental disease is so common in rabbit and the first sign of dental disease is a rejection of normal food items, having your rabbit examined by a veterinarian who works with rabbits is the first step in making a diagnosis and getting Lily back to her normal feeding habits.

See all veterinary Q&A about rabbits, click here>>
See all rabbit health articles, click here>>
See veterinary Q&A for all small animal pets, click here>>

Posted: March 16, 2014, 4 a.m. EDT


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