Have you rece ntly adopted a longhaired rabbit, such as an Angora? Are you planning to get one soon? These super fluffy bunnies are of course super cute. However, Floppy won’t be able to keep up with all that fur herself. You’ll need to groom your pet regularly. A vet offers some advice on this below.
In summer, you’ll need to be extra careful to keep your bunny dry and clean. Otherwise, she could develop flystrike, which is painful, gross, and potentially deadly. Check Floppy’s skin and coat daily. Your vet may also recommend a flystrike preventative. It’s also very important to make sure that your furry friend doesn’t overheat!
A few times a year, your rabbit will shed all of her old fur and grow in a new coat. This is called molting, as it’s a bit more intense than regular shedding. Grooming is especially crucial at these times. If Floppy swallows her fur, she can’t vomit it back up the way a cat could. That means those hairballs can cause very dangerous—and even life-threatening—intestinal blockages. Ask your vet for more information, including warning signs to look for.
Be very careful when selecting tools. Don’t get anything sharp! Whether you opt for combs, a slicker brush, a mat rake, or another brush, take care not to pull too hard. Bunnies have very delicate skin, which rips very easily. Generally, you’ll want to start with a wide-toothed comb or special mat comb. Then, finish up with a tool that has narrower teeth.
With longhaired bunnies, it’s often their ‘armpits’ and the spots between their legs that mat the most. Your vet may recommend clipping or even shaving these trouble areas. Ask your veterinarian for specific advice.
You should never bathe a rabbit. If Floppy ever gets something spilled on her fur, you can gently clean off the dirty area. One option is hold your bunny carefully and, if possible, submerge just the part or her that’s dirty into a tub or sink of lukewarm water, and swish the water around. Never submerge your pet’s head or whole body in water. This is extremely scary for bunnies, and they can actually go into shock from it.
Bunnies vary greatly in how they react to being groomed. Pick a time when Floppy feels relaxed. As you brush your furry friend, talk to her gently, and offer her treats and praise. Don’t try your pet’s patience with long sessions. About 10 or 15 minutes is fine.
Please contact us for more information about rabbit care. We’re hoppy to help!