View Full Version : Orphaned Infant! Please Help!

bunnyrehab luv
11-12-06, 08:17 am
Hello, I hate for this to be my first post but I need help! I work at a wildlife rehabilitation facility in Oklahoma. Someone found a baby bunny in their backyard yesterday. Their dog was barking at it but did not pick it up. They took the dog inside and came back out to find a little bunny sitting out by the tree. There was no indentation in the ground, no fur, no discernable nest of any kind, no other babies, and no adult. I had them look over the entire backyard but still no nestor adult.
In this case I decided it needed help and should come to our facility. The woman who found it drove 45 min and brought the baby to us immediately. Well, it is not a wild bunny. Way to big and furless to be a cottontail. Doesnít have the ears to be a jackrabbit (not to mention all the other little details that rule out this option). It would have been highly unusual this time of year to get an infant wild bunny in the first place!
I have worked at WildCare for 3+ years, through 3 full baby seasons, and have raised literally hundreds of cottontails (with a few jacks sprinkled in). I have not however raised any domestic rabbits and am starting from scratch on this one.
We donít have a HRS in Oklahoma and we only have one rabbit rescue center. She doesnít have any lactating moms or know of any that could foster. I read through all of the information I could find on the HRS website yesterday and got a little advice from the rabbit rescue on how to raise an infant domestic rabbit.
Last night was my first feeding and it was slow going but not to bad. Today I CANNOT get it to suckle and this morning he/she aspirated a little! Wild bunnies are no easy task either when it comes to getting them interested in hand feeding but I really want to help this little one! I LOVE domestic rabbits and have two house bunnies of my own (spayed and neutered of course). I just wondered if anyone on here could help me out with some advice. Are there any little tricks that might help me get it more excited about eating? I know rabbits are hard to hand raise and since I work rehab I have experience loosing little guys. This one is a little special to me and I'm worried. So if anyone can help it would be much appreciated.
The infant is in good health and has good weight, aprx. 50g. It's eyes are still closed and I'm thinking it's about 2-3 days old. Right now I have the kiddo on eastern cottontail formula because that is what we had available at work. It said online that this would be an acceptable replacement milk and the local rabbit rescue said it would work. I've collected some cecotropes from my rabbits but haven't done anything with them yet.
Ok, any advice would be great but really want to know how I can get it to start suckling. Thanks to you all!