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If your rabbit suddenly loses hair, it is no reason to be alarmed.. ¡Relax, it's totally normal! The simplest explanation is that your bunny is shedding its hair. The time has just come to change some old hairs to suit the time of year you are in..
In this AnimalWised article, we will explain what it is and how is the shedding of hair in rabbits, what to do at this time and why it is important to brush them frequently.You may also be interested in: How is the shedding of hair in cats? Index
- What is the shedding of rabbits?
- How long does the shedding of hair last in rabbits?
- Risks of shedding in rabbits
- Can you peel a rabbit?
What is the shedding of rabbits?
Like other pets, rabbits they change their fur to regulate your body temperature and thus adapt to seasonal changes. They usually do it at least twice a year and in some animals the shedding of hair goes almost unnoticed, while in others the rabbit loses a lot of hair suddenly, appearing bald and leaving small clouds of hair where they sit or lie down.
The most visible molt is spring, when temperatures rise, because it loses the hair of the first layer that it no longer needs. The rabbit changes its thick and heavy winter coat for a lighter summer coat. If it's cold again in the fall, change again. Now the light skin of summer is exchanged for warm winter hair. However, the change is not done "punctually like clockwork ", but rather can go little by little and in phases. That depends a lot on the climate and the region. In some places in October it is already colder and the bunny needs to be warmer, and in other regions the weather is still more than "golden autumn ". In any case, the rabbit's guardian should help him with the brush. If you want to know why you have to brush the rabbit during the molt, keep reading the following tips.
How long does the shedding of hair last in rabbits?
The duration of hair shedding in rabbits it depends on each one and especially of his race. Sometimes it takes a few days and sometimes weeks to finish changing the hair. In theory, they lose their hair progressively, but some change it to patches and sometimes bald spots.. ¡Don't worry, if your rabbit has bald spots during the molt, it is totally normal! Look at the bald spot and see if the skin is healthy. If there are no injuries, there is no reason to worry.
If you don't know if your bunny has already started shedding, we recommend that you check to see if it loses hair (or more than usual) when stroking it, if there are hairballs on the floor and, above all, in its poop. And it is that especially during the shedding of the rabbit it often happens that its pellets of feces unite and they look like a pearl necklace. It's due to the hair that has swallowed while washing. If the appearance of your rabbit's poop has not changed and the space between the balls is even, it is a good indication that your rabbit is healthy and its digestion is working well. But, ¿Why is your bunny's digestion important during the molting season? We will explain it to you in the next section.
Risks of shedding in rabbits
The shedding of hair is a time not entirely without problems. In this phase, rabbits ingest more hair when cleaning, which can lead to a intestinal tract problem. Ingested fur can lead to hairballs that can quickly cause a life-threatening intestinal obstruction. But there are several ways to help our friend and avoid it.
Tips to avoid hairballs in rabbits
To avoid hairballs, preventive measures should be taken, especially during hair shedding, such as the following:
- Brushing the rabbit: It is essential that you brush your rabbit regularly to remove loose hair. In addition to eating less hair, the rabbit will lose less fur everywhere. If several rabbits live together, they also help each other with grooming and cleaning, an act that we should not interrupt. To brush your friend, the brush is better than the comb, since the teeth of the comb get tangled and can hurt him. The hairbrush is only suitable for superficial styling because it does not penetrate to the inner layer. With this, the rabbit is accustomed to daily brushing to remove loose hair. The flexible metal bristle brush is perfect for styling upper and lower hair. With the right pressure, we can help our rabbit with shedding.
- Provide hay: so that the hair swallowed during the shedding cause less problems, we can help you with fresh food. Fresh hay is not only the ideal and healthiest way to feed rabbits, it also has a positive cleansing effect on the gastrointestinal tract. For its part, the fresh grass stimulates digestion and "sweeps " the hair from the rabbit's intestine.
- Malt for rabbits- You've probably read or heard that malt can help rabbits with stomach balls. However, it is not always advisable to give malt to our pet nor can it be of any brand, so it is best to consult it first with our veterinarian.
For more information, you can read this other article on Rabbit care.
Can you peel a rabbit?
If during the shedding of hair knots come out and you are not able to remove them with the brush, they must be cut. However, it is recommended to always take our little friend to a specialist to cut your hair. Rabbits are very nervous animals and there is a risk of hurting them while we skin them. Its fur is strong, but her skin is fine and delicate, In addition to the frightening experience of cutting their hair with a noisy clipper, we can cause trauma forever. Thus, our advice is do not skin a rabbit, unless strictly necessary.
As we have seen, knots in the hair are very dangerous for rabbits, therefore it is important to treat them as soon as possible to prevent them from getting worse or from being ingested by your bunny by mistake when grooming..