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Old 05-10-2011, 11:33 PM  
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Baby cottontail rabbit.....PIC added

Was given a 6 week old hand tame baby cottontail bunny rabbit. Uhhhhh what do I do with it????? Lol..... It has either a deformed front right paw or broken front right paw. ( doesn't seem to bother it tooooo much, but then again I'm not a vet. ) it's fully furred and eating Timothy hay and nibbling on carrots. I've had bunnies before, but never one this small or this young. What should I be feeding it? I know about the fruits and veggies and dark greens, but this is a semi wild rabbit. ?? I plan on contacting a wildlife rehabber for help , but until then, what do I feed it?
The back story is.... A guy in the country had bunnies in his barn. He was able to semi hand tame them. Those bunnies had babies and he tamed those babies too. This is one of those babies. But this one is either injured or deformed. So he gave it to my niece, who gave it to me. It's go small and soooooooooo cute. I have it in my kitchen away from the other pets and it seems just fine with lots of human noise and such. I haven't picked it up yet as I didn't want to stress it too much today. I'll post pics in the morning of "Niblet" as we ate calling it. Don't know it's gender yet. So any suggestions on how to care for it until it is placed with the rehabber is appreciated.
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Old 05-11-2011, 08:44 AM  
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Sounds like you already have a pretty good grasp on what to be feeding. Wild rabbits graze on grass and leafy weeds, like dandelion leaves. Make sure he or she gets plenty of water. Absolutely no dairy! You probably already know that-but thought I would add it, just in case someone else who reads this finds themselves in the same boat someday. People think baby animals need milk-but dairy is really BAD for wild babies! And, ss you probably know, a six week old rabbit would be on its own in the wild anyway-so long since weaned anyway.

I recently started volunteering for a wildlife rehabber and you would be surprised at the number of animals that come in near death, because well meaning people find them orphaned or injured, and decide to keep them as pets. When people have no clue how to care for them, the animals health will quickly deteriorate, sometimes in a matter of hours-- especially when injured.

Rabbits generally do not like to be picked up. Their backs break quite easily, so extra care is required. I used to wrap my domestic rabbit in a towel to pick him up.

We just got two bunnies in yesterday-about the same age. It is understandable why people want to keep them. Baby rabbits are the epitome of CUTE!! However, it is rarely in the best interest of the animal.

Sorry if I am telling you things you already know!

I think you are right to get bunny to the rehabber as soon as possible! Thanks for helping him/her and good luck!
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Old 05-11-2011, 10:08 AM  
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Thanks that's what I wanted to know! Ya it's cute alright. Since he is somewhat hand tame and has injured/deformed foot what are they going to do with it? You can't put him back in the wild, well guess you could . Nature says he'd be dinner. I just don't want to be the one to make that decision.
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Old 05-11-2011, 12:10 PM  
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This is niblet has it is being called..

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Old 05-11-2011, 09:21 PM  
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Rehabbers are usually about saving animals, so they would not force release on an animal if they felt it would not survive. When release is not possible, there are other options- such as zoos, and other places that will take them in.

The place I volunteer at does "soft" releases. After an animal is weaned and/or fully recovered from illness or injury, they are moved to a huge outdoor cage. As the animal adjusts, the rehabbers gradually start leaving the door open. Feeding continues and the animal can come and go at will. This gives critters the chance to find new food sources and territory, yet have food and a safe place to return to, if need be. So far, there has only been one animal- a rabbit- who chose not to go. He just hung around and lived out his life on the property.

You can ask those questions when you call, too. The sooner that foot gets treated, the better his odds.

He is so tiny and sweet looking!! No wonder you feel protective of him.
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Old 05-12-2011, 07:18 AM  
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Well they came and took him last night. So he is in good hands now. He'll see a vet today and is going to get the proper care he needs. So I am happy... I think some day I'd like to do rehab care for animals.. I've done lots of hand raising before... It's alway nice when they make it and you can release them... So maybe some day I can return the favor of the rehabbers for taking the bunny... Thanks for all the info!!!
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Old 05-12-2011, 07:29 AM  
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Actually little wild ones can survive on their own really soon after their eyes are open and they are mobile! Even with a bad leg he will most likely do just fine. Bless you for getting him to the right people. They never completely "mellow out" and can be easily stressed if kept in captivity.

I was the local kid who got the orphans and birds with broken wings dropped off...I raised a nest of baby bunnies to about the age you have and released them in the side field. The rest of the summer, when I was in my dad's garden I'd feel something fuzzy and it would be one of the bunnies coming to sample dad's work! even 20 yearsl later my Mom still called any bunny in the back yard one of Tree's babies!

You did good...pat yourself on the back!
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Old 05-12-2011, 07:58 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snwflk View Post
Well they came and took him last night. So he is in good hands now. He'll see a vet today and is going to get the proper care he needs. So I am happy... I think some day I'd like to do rehab care for animals.. I've done lots of hand raising before... It's alway nice when they make it and you can release them... So maybe some day I can return the favor of the rehabbers for taking the bunny... Thanks for all the info!!!
That is great to hear! I bet they would be happy to provide you with updates on him if you call. That is cool you have an interest in providing rehab care. And yes, DO give yourself a huge pat on the back!!
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