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Malt is an inexpensive, over-the-counter, and easily accessible product that has always been associated with cats and their pets. hair balls, but the truth is that there are more companion species, such as dogs or ferrets, that can benefit from its effects.
But in this AnimalWised article we will focus on talking about the malt for rabbits. We will explain what it is for to give our rabbit malt on a regular or occasional basis, which one to choose and how we can provide it..You may also be interested in: Malt for dogs - Uses and dosage Index
- What is malt?
- Uses of malt for rabbits
- Malt dosage for rabbits
- How to choose malt for rabbits?
- How to give malt to a rabbit?
What is malt?
Malt is a thick brown paste more or less dark that is usually sold in tubes such as toothpaste, which facilitates its dosage and makes its use and storage comfortable.
It is a product of vegetable origin based on barley that goes through a malting process, hence its name, which consists of sprouting, drying and roasting. It works like a food supplement or supplement and, although we usually link it to cats, the truth is that there is also malt for rabbits.
Uses of malt for rabbits
The main use of malt in cats is the prevention of hairballs and the dreaded complications that they cause. This same indication also applies in the case of rabbits. In other words, malt contributes to promote digestive transit and the consequent evacuation of feces when constipation appears, which avoids or reduces the risk of hairball formation, since rabbits, like cats, can also swallow considerable amounts of hair during their grooming, which will be especially important in long-haired rabbits during molt.
But it must be clear that malt is not a drug that can solve, for example, an obstruction. Therefore, if we suspect a digestive problem, we must go to the vet directly and not wait at home giving malt. This type of disorder can cause the death of the rabbit by causing the so-called paralytic ileus. It is true that malt has a laxative effect that can contribute to the expulsion of an already formed hairball, but in these cases it will be just one more piece of the treatment that the veterinarian will have to establish and that usually includes fluid therapy, different drugs and measures of management such as exercise or abdominal massage.
Malt dosage for rabbits
There is no single malt dosage for rabbits, as it will depend on the characteristics of the animal's coat or on whether or not it is in the molting season. That is why it is best that we pay attention to recommendations offered by the manufacturer, since there may be variations depending on the malt we buy, and we check them with the veterinarian. Although it is a product that can be purchased without a prescription, it is more than advisable to consult with this professional before giving anything to the rabbit, even if it is a supplement and not a drug. Also, malt usually given to adult rabbits. If yours is still young, ask your vet when you can start consuming it.
In general, it is possible to offer malt 1-2 times a week and increase consumption up to 3-4 times during shedding periods. In terms of quantity, the dose will be similar to the size of a chickpea. As we can see, malt can occur frequently, but the amount administered must be taken into account when calculating the rabbit's daily feed ration, especially if we are dealing with a specimen with overweight problems. The idea is to offer you the malt on time, as if it were a prize.
How to choose malt for rabbits?
For sale we can find paste malts from different manufacturers. There are special for rabbits, but it is also possible to use, in some cases, the malt marketed for cats, provided that no other ingredients not suitable for rabbits have been added.
In any case, it is best to search the most natural possible. Some only contain malt extract, but others are added, for example, fibers, fruit, vegetable oils, fatty acids or vitamins, which can provide other benefits such as caring for the coat or intestinal flora. Of course, you have to avoid preservatives, dyes, sugars and any other ingredient that can be harmful to the rabbit, such as dairy..
How to give malt to a rabbit?
In general, paste malt is not very well accepted by rabbits, although it can be found in different flavors. It is also marketed under the name of malt jelly for rabbits. In any case, the most common way to offer it is staining the front legs with it of the rabbit so that it feels the urge to clean itself and, with this action, swallows it, although it will not always be the full dose. Another alternative is mix it with food or, even if there is no other option, it could be administered with great caution and a syringe.
But, if our rabbit resists or we do not want to risk that he will lose everything with the malt, we have the option of giving it as part of a snack. In the market we will find this type of malt stuffed rabbit biscuits, which can facilitate its intake. It would also be a complementary food to offer as a reward as many times as you consider.
This article is merely informative, at AnimalWised.com we do not have the power to prescribe veterinary treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the vet in the event that it presents any type of condition or discomfort.