Caring for an older rabbit
You might be wondering at what age a rabbit is classed as ‘senior’, and this is indeed quite complex as they come in such a variety of shapes and sizes.
Smaller rabbits tend to have a longer lifespan, so may not be considered senior until they reach around eight or older. Medium rabbits may reach their senior years around six, while large or giant breeds may be categorised as senior at just three to four.
As with any other pets, age can bring its problems, so why not book a senior appointment with the team at Hyde Park Vets and get some care advice at the same time?
Senior rabbit care tips
Our head nurse Kate has the following advice for changes you may need to make to your rabbit’s care as it gets older.
Older rabbits are prone to obesity, dental problems and other health issues that can be directly related to their diet. Speak to us if you’re unsure of how to feed your older rabbit.
Your rabbit’s housing may need adapting as they get older. They may develop arthritis and generally find it more difficult to get around. If they have a two-storey hutch or a hutch with a ramp, it may need to be revised if they are having difficulty jumping or hopping.
- Keep an eye on eating habits
Rabbits are prone to dental issues and this increases with age. Any rabbit eating less, losing weight, salivating or showing signs of swelling around its mouth and jaw should have a thorough dental examination.
It’s well known that rabbits love companionship, so if they were to lose their companion as they get older then they may show signs of grieving. It’s important to then spend extra time with your rabbit and perhaps look at a new suitable addition to the family.
- Keep their claws short
As your rabbit gets older, they are likely to be less active and therefore their claws may start to get too long and will need to be clipped more frequently.
Remember, the team at Connaught Street are always happy to talk through any queries you may have, so simply contact us for advice.