Adult rabbits (over 1 yr) moult (lose their coat and grow a new one) usually twice a year, baby rabbits 4 times in their first year. However, the erratic Melbourne weather means that rabbits can often appear to be continually shedding fur! This is normal as long as there are no bald patches developing.
Managing the moult
If a bunny moults a lot they (or their partner) might over-ingest the loose fur. This can lead to a sluggish gut, and is worse case scenarios, an intestinal blockage. There are lots of ways you can remove excess loose hair – plucking, brushing, combing – every bun is different, just find the right method for you!
Some rabbits with health issues, like arthritis or dental disease, can lose the ability to clean their own bottoms so they get messy and out of control. Make an appointment to see one of our vets so we can address the underlying problem, and clip / clean the dirty area and discuss how to manage it going forward. Never give your rabbit a bath – it could kill them!
Long haired buns
Cashmeres, English angoras and other long breed bunnies have a special coat that does not tend to moult like short haired rabbits. Instead the long hair can matt everywhere and can hinder walking, urinating or pooing. Regular brushing can help, but ideally these rabbits should have their fur clipped (2-4 times a year depending on the rabbit).
The Rabbit Doctors offer a professional in house bunny grooming service for long haired rabbits – call the clinic on 03 9416 3100 for more details.