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Posts: 1

I am one of the worst rabbit owner.
My pet rabbit wasn’t eating normally for a while so I took him to the vet.The vet told me it was GI stasis and that I would have to syringe feed him as well as giving pain medication. I did all of that, but I just wasn’t proactive enough. I was so stupid to ignore other symptoms he was showing (mucous and drooling) after a week and didn’t take him to the vet for an emergency. He was showing improvements one day but drop back down the next. I should have taken him to the vet again after the first week of no improvement, but waited the second week before even calling again, and by then it was too late.

I was too busy focusing on syringe feeding him and keeping his pain down to take anything else seriously. Now because of my stupidity, my rabbit of 7 years is now dead. So many things I could have done to save him or at least give a better attempt to save him. Everyday I feel worse because I didn’t try hard enough to save him. The thing I learned from this is that I should definitely not have kids or another pet. My rabbit deserved a better owner/friend.


Posts: 8
I am so sorry for your loss. Hindsight is always 20/20 and there is not one of us who has not wished we could go back and do things over. But you certainly sound like a very caring person who tried to do the best for your beloved rabbit. I think people who shouldn't have kids or pets are the ones who do not learn from their experiences. You don't seem like that type of person and honestly- you can't be sure that even with an emergency vet visit your sweet rabbit would have been cured.  I wish you peace and comfort and I know it's hard, but please forgive yourself.  Take all that love and caring and bestow it on another rabbit that needs to be rescued when you have time to recover from your grief.

Posts: 32
I’m so sorry for the loss of your bunny. It’s been 5 weeks today since the loss of my lovely bunny who was also 7. I am going through the guilt you have described. My bunny was poorly for 4 weeks, she would go off her food for a few hours, seem to be in pain/ uncomfortable and then start eating again so like you I didn’t take her to vet straight away. She’d had a bout of this a month earlier which lasted 4 days, I took her to the vet then and it was really traumatic as she was terrified and I was actually worried she might die of fright the way she was breathing. The vet couldn’t find anything wrong but said she probably had cancer as she was “ancient”, she gave me pain meds and critical care feed and said to bring her back in 3 days if she was no better, the vet said she’d need X-rays but if it was cancer she wouldn’t survive an operation. Well she was fine for a month and then it started again, going off the food for hours and then back on it. I let it go on a week, keeping an eye on her and then took her to a different vet as she didn’t improve herself this time. This vet couldn’t find anything wrong and said he thought it could be arthritis and gave her pain medication for 3 weeks. So we started her on the pain meds and syringe fed her if she hadn’t ate for more than a few hours. I think she gradually got worse over the 3 weeks and the food she would eat ended up just being leaves and a bit of carrot at times. I waited til the end of the course of her meds before going back to the vet. I have felt terrible guilt that I left it that long, I also have guilt that I’d took her to the vets the day of the night she died as I think the stress of the vets visit and the extra medications she was given may have been too much for her. I was so worried about her but was so focused on giving her meds and monitoring her eating for the force feeding. I knew it was serious but didn’t treat taking her back as an emergency because she was eating at times and I was so hoping she was going to improve. She’d had GI stasis last year but she went off her food completely and I had her to the vets every day when she didn’t eat. I think her showing some positive signs fooled me. On the day she died the vet still didn’t know what was wrong but was concerned as the pain relief she was on was high but this wasn’t being effective and she’d lost a lot of weight. He took bloods which came back ok, her teeth were checked again and looked ok though he said he couldn’t rule out teeth being a problem. I had an appointment for 3 days later, the vet talked about xrays but said because of her age and condition she would only have a 75% chance of surviving the anaesthetic and he mentioned euthanasia which I couldn’t contemplate without even knowing what was wrong with her. I’m sorry for giving you the long version. I hope you realise you are not alone. Bunnies are so fragile and it’s difficult when things go wrong and vets don’t give you the answer straight away. You did take your bunny to the vet and were caring for him trying to help him get better. If we had a crystal ball and knew we had to take different actions to save them we would without question. I still feel guilty but the guilt isn’t quite as intense as time has gone on. I can see other issues instead of just seeing my negligence as the reason for my poor bunny’s suffering and death. We didn’t make our bunnies ill. I still believe I should have took my bunny back sooner to the vet but this may not have saved her, I know she would have hated having to stay at the vets for any tests and treatment and they may not have worked. It may have sadly just been our bunnies time. I have read a lot of posts from people who have lost their rabbits and guilt is very common. I think we just need time. Remember the things you did do for your bunny and the wonderful love he had. Sounds to me that he was lucky to have you and I hope you will stop being so hard on yourself.
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