ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Pets and Animals»
  • Small Mammals

Caring for wild bunnies

Updated on December 24, 2011
my loving shepherd licking a baby bunny
my loving shepherd licking a baby bunny

When I lived in the country, I had quite a bit of acreage. I would often find ground nests, lined with fur when I mowed with tractor; always careful not to run over the soft ground beneath me.

One day, I saw the neighbor dog run into my back yard and leave carrying a rabbit in its mouth. I ran outside to the newest nest I had discovered and found 6 tiny bunnies, huddled together, trying to keep warm. I covered them back up with the warm fur and placed two stick on top of the nest in an X so that I could check for their mother's return the next morning; as mother rabbits return to their babies at night to feed and sit upon their nests.

The next morning, my fear was confirmed; it was the mother that had been snatched by the neighboring dog and I now had orphan bunnies to take care of. I tried to find a wildlife rehabilitation center that would take them but they would only with a fee. I didn't have the money to do this. I researched a bit at the local library and decided to try my hand at rabbit mothering. Little did I know, how much work that mother rabbit had to put into those little bunnies their first two weeks of life.

I put the babies in a tall box, lined with cedar chips, a blanket and a heat lamp to keep them warm. I purchased non-iron baby formula from the store and heavy cream and mixed the two together and got out some eye droppers for feeding. I would warm the milk mixture to a bit warmer than room temperature and take each little babe, one at a time and feed them by squirting the warm mixture into their mouth a bit at a time. Their little tongues would lap up the milk mixture (you need to mix with cream as they need a high fat diet) until they could eat no more and then I had the fun task of helping them pee. Little animals such as bunnies cannot urinate on their own. I had to wet a cotton ball and stroke their genital area after each feeding to help them eliminate. Those little bunnies ate quite a bit during the day too! I fed them every two hours the first week and then every four hours the second week. After each feeding, I helped them eliminate until I saw them doing so on their own. The third week, they were fed every 5 hours. They began to eliminate somewhere around this time.

After a couple weeks, I began to put oatmeal, grasses and clovers in the box. I took them out and let them exercise by allowing them to hop around in the kitchen or the bathroom. Within a month, they were hopping, eliminating and biting! I knew it was getting close to the time to set my little orphans free. As cute as they were, I knew they were wild creatures so I began to take them outside and let them hop around on the grass within a penned in area. Once I saw they could find food on their own, I took them to the field and set them free one by one.

Most of them scurried away. One, my favorite called Patch would come and visit from time to time. He never got close enough for me to touch again but he would watch me plant my flowers and would peer from the bushes as I mowed.

I raised another batch of bunnies a year later successfully but the following year lost 6 because my work didn't allow me to bring the bunnies with me. They starved I believe. Raising a wild creature and setting it free, knowing you are helping it begin its new life is very rewarding but very time consuming!

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • ljrc1961 profile image
      Author

      Laura Cole 8 years ago from Michigan

      Sage,

      You need to give more information. Yes, Rabbits are cute but wild ones cannot live in captivity. Is it wild or store purchased? I can tell you about how to care for a tame rabbit and how to nurse a wild one but you need to give more information.

    • profile image

      sage 8 years ago

      hi i have a rabbit right now and i need help!!!! she is so cute but i need more room for her some one please repliy thx!!!!

    • Paper Moon profile image

      Paper Moon 8 years ago from In the clouds

      My wife and I have had success with a few baby bunnies. Unfortunatly our last one was brought in by the cat and did not make it. :(

    • Dame Scribe profile image

      Dame Scribe 8 years ago from Canada

      I found a baby blue jay once n used the same thing, baby pablum, lol. I lost it too due to the cold. Great story n thanks for sharing. :)

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)