The situation is alarming if the rabbit is too skinny and weighs less. Your pet must need to put on weight to stay comfortable and healthy.
The rabbit needs to eat up plenty of fiber-laden foods to increase its weight. It is better to feed them a decent amount of veggies, greens, and oats. Give your rabbit enough chances to roam around and exercise. Take it to the veterinarian to know what type of diet plan you should follow to keep the rabbit healthy.
We are here with the best ten easy methods, and you can follow them to make your rabbit gain weight.
- Method 1: Visiting The Veterinarian
- Method 2: Reduction Of Stress
- Method 3: Slow Change
- Method 4: Choosing Calorie-rich Foods And Leafy Greens
- Method 5: Giving Plenty Of Dry Food
- Method 6: Keeping More Food Bowls
- Method 7: Oats
- Method 8: Sweets And Treats
- Method 9: Exercise
- Method 10: Checking Weight
Method 1: Visiting The Veterinarian
First of all, you have to bring the rabbit to the veterinarian, even before starting the weight-increasing steps. There are many reasons a few rabbits look skinnier than their usual weight. Some rabbits might lose weight due to a lack of nutritious food when they are young. A few pets become skinny because of parasites or a decline in hunger. One common reason is due to lack of decent appetite, which declines body calories.
Before helping the rabbit to gain weight, you have to discuss with the veterinarian why your pet weighs less. Giving more amounts of calories to the rabbit is not the only solution. You have to try several methods to make the rabbit gain weight so that it can be healthy.
In general, the decline of appetite occurs when the rabbit is suffering from a disease. Be it cardiovascular, dental, muscle, gastrointestinal, musculoskeletal, cancer, or metabolic diseases – the rabbit will have a weak appetite. All the illnesses are related to severe discomfort, which can make your pet feel unbearable pain. Sometimes, the rabbits could not even smell the food that you feed them.
Another factor that might reduce the hunger of the rabbit is stress. Rabbits are vulnerable to stress. When the rabbit is under pressure, it will face many difficulties even to eat food.
Method 2: Reduction Of Stress
After visiting the veterinarian, you can determine the reason why your pet weighs less. As per the directions and instructions from the vet, you can make the rabbit gain weight. Though it is better to follow the diet plan from the rabbit expert, here are a few extra steps you can try to increase the rabbit’s weight:
The pet might be suffering from a disease, or it is not getting enough nutrients. Either way, it is better to remove the things which can stress the rabbit from its surroundings. When your pet is in a stressful condition, it would not have the appetite to eat.
Make sure to keep away the rabbit from other pet animals and children. If needed, you can also move the rabbit’s cage to another peaceful room. Resist yourself from holding the pet till it feels relaxed and safe. Decrease the chances of loud sounds, like the dog barking, children shouting, and door banging.
Method 3: Slow Change
Sudden changes in the rabbit’s everyday routine might cause stress. If you need to modify the rabbit’s daily nutrition plan, take it slow. When you give the pet plenty of new foods, it tends to move away and would not even eat a single piece. While changing their diet, introduce one food at a time.
If you have to include new protein-rich and high-fiber foods, keep one food at a time in the pet’s plate or bowl. Feed them a small portion of recent foods. When the rabbits decline the new food like hay or greens, feed them different food. Do not give up! Some diets will capture their attention.
Rabbits, being sensitive animals, will come under stress when there is a sudden change in their day-to-day life. When you are trying to increase the pet’s weight, you have to be careful and caring.
Method 4: Choosing Calorie-rich Foods And Leafy Greens
Increasing the number of calories for the rabbits will help in gaining weight. Putting plenty of calories in their diet is the simple yet effective way. Choose different high-calorie foods that the rabbits already have in their daily routine.
Rather than giving golden hay to the pet, it is better to feed it green hay. Compared to the golden hay, the leafy and green hay contains a high protein and fat percentage. The readigrass is an excellent alternative to traditional hay because it has more nutrients. Alfalfa hay is another better option as it is rich in calcium. But, if the rabbit is losing weight because of bladder issues, do not feed the Alfalfa hay because it causes harm to the rabbit.
In general, an increase in fiber food intake helps the rabbit to gain weight and be healthy.
Here are other hay alternatives:
- Orchardgrass hay – rich in calories, protein, and fiber
- Oat hay – rich in fiber
Here is another extraordinary food that is best for the underweight and skinny rabbit. A typical rabbit’s diet should include fiber-rich hay. It is not good to replace the grass with leafy greens as these veggies are like side dishes.
Below are a few leafy greens, and these are safe and helps your pet to put on weight:
- Romaine Lettuce
- Spinach leaves
If you look at the list again, you can see that there is no iceberg lettuce. Iceberg lettuce does not have essential nutrients, and it has only plenty of water. It is crucial not to give your pet iceberg lettuce.
Method 5: Giving Plenty Of Dry Food
Rabbits love to eat dry food, especially pellets! In general, any pet expert would not suggest you feed pellets to rabbits because there are chances of obesity. But, if the rabbit has to gain weight, you can include these pellets into its everyday diet. Giving plenty of dry food to the rabbits is one of the fast and best ways to boost their calorie intake.
It is better to feed the furry pet the pellets meant for baby rabbits or breeding ones. These pellets come with high protein and fiber levels. When the rabbit is not eating the supplementary food, it is good to feed them the pellets. These foods will give more proteins and fiber, and the rabbit does not need to eat much food.
Method 6: Keeping More Food Bowls
If the skinny rabbit is living with other buddies, then it would not get access to eat food from the bowl. A few rabbits will cover the food bowl, avoiding other pets from consuming it. When you see this kind of situation, it is better to keep many food bowls at different places in their cage.
But, if you have only one pet, this method is also helpful for you. Keeping many food containers provides several options for your bunny! The rabbit will eat the food it loves, and you can give them more food of that kind. When there are many food options to choose from, the rabbit can eat up more and increase its weight.
Method 7: Oats
Oats are another decent food for your pet! They are much more delicious and help the rabbit to gain the necessary weight! Make sure that your pet has a good enough digestive system to absorb oats. From method 2, you need to remember to take it slow and small. When you rush this process, they might get stressed or suffer from digestive problems.
Porridge oats and rolled oats are the best types of oats. You should feed only one full tablespoon of oats daily.
Method 8: Sweets And Treats
If the rabbits are not eating any of the above foods, it is better to feed them treats such as pieces of fruits or veggies. It will help in boosting their appetite. Some incredible treat foods include sweet pepper, Apple, parsnips, and carrot. Compared to leafy greens, these kinds of foods have high energy and calorie levels.
Using treats is not the best method to increase the weight of your pet. But, if the rabbit is not eating anything, you can feed them treats that motivate them to eat. Again, remember that you should not replace hay with treats. These are only extra foods to supplement its weight.
Method 9: Exercise
You might think that this method is a bit anti-mainstream. But the rabbit must be active to increase its weight. If your pet is resting in the same place without exercising for a long time, it tends to lose muscle. When the rabbit is lethargic, feeling pain while walking, or spending too much time inside the cage, it will lose both its strength and weight.
Allow your pet to roam outside the pen often. Motivate the rabbits to walk around and play. Make sure to try method six by keeping food bowls at different places. It will encourage your pet to jump around the places to eat food. This method helps the rabbit stay active and allows it to eat more food than usual.
Method 10: Checking Weight
Out of all the things, you have to remember that a healthy pet rabbit is a happy pet rabbit. Be cautious while feeding them as being overweight poses a severe threat to the health of the rabbit.
The average weight of a typical rabbit must be between 5 to 8 pounds. But it also changes based on the pet’s breed. When you are at the veterinarian, ask about the ideal healthy weight for the rabbit. No owner wants their pet rabbit to become obese.
It is crucial to check on the rabbit’s weight from time to time. You should make sure that your pet is not getting overweight because it is dangerous for its health. Remember, an increase in heavyweight will also boost the chances of risk of health issues.
There, you have the necessary information about how to make the rabbit increase its weight. Follow these methods, be cautious, and do not hurry! If you do not want to stress your pet with sudden changes, you must take it slow.
At last, remember, an active and healthy pet rabbit is a happy pet rabbit!