Summer isn’t far off now. At this time of year, we often focus a lot of our attention on keeping pets cool. Heat is very dangerous for rabbits. After all, Floppy is wearing a fur coat! A Fort Collins, CO veterinarian offers some summer bunny care tips below.
Rabbits should live indoors, with their families. Keep Floppy inside when it’s really hot out, in rooms with fans or air conditioners. When the temperature goes over about 75, turn the AC on.
Many of our canine friends—and a few of our feline ones—love swimming on hot days. It may seem like Floppy would enjoy splashing around in a kiddie pool or the spray from a sprinkler fountain, but this isn’t the case. Actually, getting wet is dangerous for rabbits. Bunnies don’t swim naturally, and they just aren’t well-suited for it. In fact, being submerged can be so traumatic for them that they go into shock. Wet bunny skin is also a prime target for flystrike, which is both painful and dangerous. You can mist your pet’s ears with water, but make sure she’s completely dry after.
Floppy will probably spend a lot of her time just lying around. Offer her some cool spots to sprawl out on. You can put ceramic tiles, towels, or wicker placemats in the freezer for her. You can also freeze water bottles or freezer packs. Put a washcloth over them, and offer them to your furball to relax against.
Brushing your little buddy regularly will remove dead fur from her coat. That will definitely help her stay cooler! If Floppy has long fur, she may benefit from getting clipped. Just check with your vet first, as this is not an across-the-board recommendation.
Consider putting an oscillating fan in Floppy’s area. This will keep the air moving, which can be remarkably effective at keeping things cool.
Who doesn’t enjoy a glass of cold water on a sweltering day? Add some ice cubes to your bunny’s water reservoir.
Watch for signs of heat exhaustion. These include panting, wet nose, hot ears, lethargy, and restlessness. If you see any of these, immediately bring Floppy to a cooler area, give her cold water, and call your vet.
As your Fort Collins, CO veterinary clinic, we’re here to help. Please contact us anytime!