|Beautiful bunny feet.|
(20 February 2016)
It is a very sad morning at my house.
My family and I are waking up to an empty house because darling young bunny Max had an emergency dash to the Animal hospital overnight.
|Someone's stalking me!|
(20 Feb 2016)
From the kitchen window I saw a blur of white fluff streak across the lawn; shortly afterwards he was at the door looking for a playmate to chase him. A very happy, healthy and active bunny.
|Gardening, bunny style.|
(23 Mar 2016)
We brought Max inside around 4:00 p.m. and laid out his early dinner at 5:00 p.m. because we were going out to a family birthday celebration in the evening. It was such a happy night with lots of love and laughter. The birthday person had an excellent time and the car journey home was festive.
|Baby Max resting in the backyard.|
(3 January 2016)
|Found growing in the garden!|
(16 Feb 2016)
We arrived home around 10:30 p.m. to discover things were not right:
- A strange 'wee' on the floor in a strange place (under the kitchen chair)–Max is toilet trained and always uses his litter tray.
- The hay in the hutch was in disarray. We had never seen such a weird pattern of disorder.
- Bunny dinner had not been touched.
- Max was found sitting on the tiles in the shower recess, cold and huddled underneath my shower chair–he NEVER goes in there!
- We picked him up and took him to his hutch and he looked groggy and he stumbled trying to get into his hutch.
- Max refused to eat a piece of apple, his favourite treat.
What on earth happened during those 5 hours while we were out?
|Stuck inside on a rainy day, |
waiting at the door, wanting to play outside.
(22 May 2016)
Our minds boggled. Did he get a fright? We heard fireworks in the neighbourhood the night before. Did he get spooked again with no one here to comfort him? As we were leaving for our celebration, our street was filling up with cars as visitors were arriving at a neighbour's house. Was there a raucous celebration in the street that could have caused Max stress? Was he tearing around the house and skidding on the floors? Could he have crashed into a chair leg etc. and concussed himself? We were at a loss to know.
When rabbits show signs of illness, they can deteriorate rapidly. We raced him off to the Emergency Vet Hospital immediately. (I was so tired after a night out–why do these things always happen on a weekend and at night when the regular vet is not available?)
Max was diagnosed with gastro-intestinal stasis (also called 'gut stasis' or 'GI stasis'). This is a serious condition when a rabbit's digestive system slows down or stops completely. This seemed to be a very sudden development because Max had been passing lots of faeces as normal during the morning and had been playing happily in the garden all day.
|"This broomstick needle looks good enough to chew!"|
(7 May 2016)
Last night was the first time in months that bunny had been left completely alone at home because there is usually at least one person left at home at any time of the week. It is frustrating that Max got sick sometime in the 5 hours when we were not at home. We wondered how long he had been suffering before we found him and we were extremely distressed that we weren't at home to catch Max's illness earlier.
Gut stasis can be triggered by all sorts of things including stress or not enough fibre in the diet. Max gets free access to hay and straw plus free run of the garden where he eats all sorts of herbs, plus he gets fresh vegetables for dinner and also some dry food pellets so we don't think diet was an issue; besides we had our previous rabbit, Smokey, for a good eight years (his full life span) on the same diet and never had this problem. Was it stress that caused Max's gut stasis?
|Chewing on sticks is good for the teeth.|
(31 May 2016)
Apart from the gastric problem, Max was in good general condition with no other discernable problems. Unfortunately gut stasis is a very serious problem for a rabbit to have. We are glad we went to the vet immediately. The vet was confident that we could get Max on the right track by syringe feeding him at home with a special food mix so we came home with him.
|Snuggling with "Nibblet"|
(31 May 2016)
Max barely ingested any of the critical care food mix and he was looking sicker by the minute so it was straight back to the vet within the hour. By this stage Max looked so poorly we were worried he might die in my daughter's arms before we got there!
On return to the vet hospital, the nurses were confident he would be fine and perhaps it is just a technique issue with the syringe feeding; they could also administer extra fluid and medication overnight. We left Max at the vet hospital, feeling relieved that the staff were experienced in this problem and that it was treatable. It was around 1:00 a.m. by then and boy were we exhausted!
"No news is good news!" the nurse cheerfully reassured us so we could sleep without worrying too much. "We'll ring you if Max looks like he's starting to go downhill."
At 2:00 a.m. the phone rang. We answered it with dread.
Max was suffering a seizure and the staff were performing CPR. Efforts were unsuccessful.
Max was only 1 year old! The vet was surprised and said the seizure was totally unexpected because it is uncommon, especially since Max was so young and in such good condition. Max would have been exactly 1 year and 5 months on Christmas Day.
|Baby Max eating nasturtiums|
(13 December 2015)
|When packing for a long weekend,|
it is important to pack the essentials:
towel, beanie, bunny …
(29 September 2016)
In his honour, I will post as many photos as I can find. Many of them have already been published on Maxxy's own Instagram page: maxxybunny where one can also find video of him.
There are more photographs to be added to this blog entry but it was more important to share today's news first and add photos later. Do enjoy the photos that are here so far and I will do my best to finish the descriptions and add more during the week(s) to come.
The children and I went back to the animal hospital this evening to say formal goodbyes. The staff were so compassionate and patient. They were beautiful. It must be so difficult when families lose their pets. I couldn't do that job for all the world as it must be heartbreaking.
Many thanks to the wonderful vets and nurses that have been involved in Max's care.
25 July 2015 — 18 December 2016
|Max, the Dutch Bunny|
"Onze liefste konijntje."
x x x x
(4 September 2016)
Adelaide Animal Emergency and Referral Centre (aaerc), 119 Anzac Highway, Kurralta Park, South Australia: aaerc.com.au
Cushman, Abi, "GI Stasis in Rabbits: A Deadly Condition", My House Rabbit, website, USA: http://myhouserabbit.com/rabbit-health/gi-stasis-in-rabbits-a-deadly-condition/
Max on Instagram, maxxybunny: https://www.instagram.com/maxxybunny/
|A wheelly cute bunny!|
(30 October 2016)
Melbourne Rabbit Clinic, "Gastro Intestinal Stasis", Veterinary Referral Hospital
18/151-159 Princes Highway, Hallam, Victoria, Australia: http://www.melbournerabbitclinic.com/melbournerabbi/stasis.html
PetMD LLC., "Seizures (Epilepsy) in Rabbits", petMD, website, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462, USA : http://www.petmd.com/rabbit/conditions/neurological/c_rb_seizures
Related Posts on Lupey Loops
"Bunny Was Here", 7 July 2016: http://lupeyloops.blogspot.com.au/2016/07/bunny-was-here.html
"Pattern and Rhyme Bunny Style", 16 June 2016: http://lupeyloops.blogspot.com.au/2016/06/pattern-rhyme-bunny-style.html
"Messy to the Max", 29 September 2015: http://lupeyloops.blogspot.com.au/2015/09/messy-to-max.html
"Smokey", 23 October 2013: http://lupeyloops.blogspot.com.au/2013/10/smokey.html
(3 January 2016)