Are you the proud owner of a pet rabbit? If so, you’re likely aware of the joy and companionship these adorable creatures can bring. However, like any pet, rabbits need regular care and grooming to stay healthy and happy. Today, we’re diving into the benefits of regular rabbit grooming, and why it’s a must for every bunny owner. For terminology sake, it should be noted that Rex rabbits and Mini-Rex rabbits have a thicker, short, more dense fur coat than other species.
Health Benefits of Rabbit Grooming
One of the main reasons to groom your rabbit regularly is to maintain their overall health. Grooming can help prevent several health issues, such as hairballs and parasites. Unlike cats, rabbits cannot vomit, meaning hairballs can continue to accumulate and can cause serious intestinal discomfort or even blockages. Regular grooming, particularly brushing, can help reduce the amount of hair your rabbit ingests during self-grooming. Long haired rabbits, like purebred Angora rabbits and mixes, need daily combing or brushing to prevent matts from occurring.
Parasites, such as fleas, lice or mites, can also be detected during grooming. These can cause a lot of discomfort for your rabbit, so early detection and treatment are crucial.
Rabbits’ toenails do continually grow. Routine trimming will prevent the toenails from becoming caught on clothing, carpet or toys. Long toenails will also be uncomfortable for family members as rabbits can scratch or kick when they do not want to be played with.
Aesthetic Benefits of Rabbit Grooming
In addition to health benefits, grooming keeps your rabbit looking their best. Regular brushing ensures their coat remains smooth and free of mats, while nail trimming prevents overgrowth and related problems. Grooming also provides a time for bonding with family members. Plus, a clean rabbit is a happy rabbit.
How to Groom Your Rabbit at Home
Essential Tools for Home Rabbit Grooming
For home grooming, you’ll need a rabbit-safe brush, a rabbit/feline nail trimmer, and possibly some gentle, rabbit-safe shampoo to assist with cleaning soiled feet or undersides. ROUTINE BATHING IS DISCOURAGED, as rabbits do not generally like baths and may hurt themselves or you while fighting the bath. We use brushes or combs designed for cats and gloves with rubber tips to help pull away loose hair as we brush the coat. Feline nail trimmers work very well for most rabbits, but the standard dog nail trimmer may be necessary for large breed rabbits like New Zealands, Flemish Giants and English Lops.
Key Steps to Groom Your Rabbit
To groom your rabbit, start by gently brushing their fur to remove loose hair. Be sure to check for any signs of parasites or skin issues. Then, move on to nail trimming. If you’re unsure about how to do this, seek advice from a professional to avoid injuring your rabbit.
Our Rabbit Grooming Services
While home grooming is essential, more intense or professional grooming services can provide a more thorough, health-focused session for your rabbit. Rabbit skin is very thin. It is never recommended to try and cut a rabbit’s hair or remove matts with scissors.
What to Expect from a Professional Grooming Session
At Avian and Exotic Animal Hospital of Louisiana, our rabbit grooming services include a comprehensive health check, coat brushing and nail trimming by our veterinary technical staff, ear cleaning, and mite checks. Rabbits that present with matted hair/fur, often require sedation to safely comb out or remove the matts.
We offer expert care for your rabbit. With a team of experienced and passionate professionals, we understand the unique needs of exotic pets, and we’re committed to ensuring your rabbit’s grooming experience is stress-free and beneficial to their health.
Ready to reap the benefits of professional rabbit grooming? Call us today at (504) 455-6386 to make an appointment or for more information. Your rabbit deserves the best care, and we’re here to provide it!
About Avian & Exotic Animal Hospital of Louisiana
Avian & Exotic Animal Hospital of Louisiana, formally West Esplanade Veterinary Clinic, is Louisiana’s only veterinarian that provides care exclusively to avian and exotic pets. From parrots to rabbits and ferrets to a wide variety of reptiles, as well as a multitude of small mammal exotic pets, we welcome them all to our practice!