04.11.07

It’s Shedding Season!

Posted in Life on the Farm, News You Can Use at 12:30 PM by Lori

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Boo is a shedding professional! Read more about him on our Adoptables page.

Is the fur flying at your house? It certainly is at Friendly Farms! Many of our bunnies are shedding their winter coats right now, and we are working everyday to keep up with them!

Rabbits are especially vulnerable to deadly hair blockages from swallowed fur when they are shedding, so it is doubly important to help them with their grooming during these times. As bunnies can’t vomit, everything that is ingested has to pass through the entire length of their long digestive tract to be eliminated. This is another reason why feeding a high fiber grass hay based diet is important.

Most rabbits shed every three months; a heavy shed followed by a lighter one. Some bunnies lose a lot of fur at once and will need to be groomed several times a day while they are shedding. Brushing your rabbit at least once a week year-round is a good rule to go by, and then as often as needed when she is replacing her coat.

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“Watch us change this navy blue towel to white before your eyes!” Chester and Danika are permanent residents of Friendly Farms.

Almost all of our rabbits are short-haired and we rarely have to use more than barely damp hands to groom them. We have found that stroking their head and ears with one hand and passing the other hand over their body to collect loose fur usually allows us to continue the session for as long as we like without the rabbit getting upset. Many rabbits enjoy a brushing with a soft bristled brush, if you prefer. Their hindquarters are often where you’ll find the most tufts of loose fur that need to be removed.

Even short-haired bunnies can get mats around their tails, especially if they are overweight, so be sure to check this area during your grooming sessions. A flea comb, mat splitter, or mat rake can be helpful in breaking up mats in short-haired rabbits.

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Gorgeous Clyde is easy to love, but his beautiful coat needs regular attention to keep looking good.

Our long-haired bunnies need grooming at least twice a week when they are not shedding, and we brush them out well every other day when their old coat is being replaced. A hair pick works well for breaking up mats, and then we use a regular comb to smooth them out. A slicker brush can be used for the finishing touches- just make sure the bristles are not sharp and scratching bunny’s delicate skin. Keeping long-haired bunny’s fur trimmed short can be helpful in preventing mats.

Patience and a lot of strokes makes grooming a fun time for everyone, so be sure to set aside enough time so you do not feel the need to rush things. For more information about keeping your bunny looking and feeling good, visit the House Rabbit Society website at rabbit.org.

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