Rabbit Emergency Kit

Preparing a rabbit emergency kit can be live saving. You’ll know you have the supplies needed and won’t have to run around gathering what you need. It’s a peace of mind you don’t know you need, until you do. Trust me!

In case of an emergency, your first point of contact should always be your veterinarian. Contact them and try to get your rabbit in as soon as possible. Meanwhile, you know you’ll have the necessary supplies to hold you over until you see your vet. What I usually keep on hand is baby gas drops, Oxbow Critical Care and or Sherwood Recovery food,  and Sherwood Appetite Restore. It’s also a good idea to keep basic supplies on hand.

Keeping an emergency kit at home also comes in handy in case a natural disaster forces you to evacuate your home.

Here’s a list of items that you should keep in your emergency kit.

  • Baby gas drops – we all know rabbits are delicate animals. This means they stress easily and at times stop eating for one or several reasons. Could be due to dental problems, in pain from injuries, arthritis pain, or their GI can get upset when they eat too much pellets, treats, carrots, sweets and not enough fiber (hay). When rabbits stop eating for too long, my key number is 2 hours, they start producing gas, not always, but that’s why it’s always good to have baby gas drops at home. Also, please consult with your vet on how much to give. My rule of thumb is, if I see they are not eating, keeping their belly close to the ground, give them 1-2 cc of baby simethicone as often as every hour for the first three doses. But please, always consult with your vet prior to needing to use baby gas drops.
  • Oxbow Critical Care – This is a must and one of the top items on your emergency kit. This is the formula I use to force feed MINI when she decides not to eat. It is a life saver. Critical Care has the nutrients your rabbit needs to remain healthy and helps keep their digestive tract going. Critical Care also comes in two flavors, anise or banana-apple.
  • Sherwood Recovery Food – Some rabbits are not fans of Critical Care and prefer Sherwood Recovery Food. Sherwood Recovery food provides the nutrients your rabbit needs and helps keep their digestive tract going.
  • Syringes – These come in handy when you have to force feed your rabbit. You initially can ask your vet for some, ask them which size would work best for your rabbit. They also come in handy when you have to syringe feed them water. These is also a good option if you run out.
  • Pet Styptic Powder – This comes in handy to clot blood on a bleeding nail. Comes in handy for more than your rabbit. Either clipping their toenails, or if they get it caught on something and the nail falls off. Sprinkle a little on the bleeding nail and apply pressure using a cotton ball or gauze. Once the bleeding stops, make sure to rinse off the styptic powder to prevent your rabbit from ingesting it.
    • If you don’t have styptic powder at home, you can always use corn starch. Just apply corn starch on the area as you would the styptic powder. It’s also a safer alternative in case your rabbit ingests. They can ingest corn starch in small amounts, so it is always best to rinse off the area.
  • Heating Pad – heating pads always come in handy when they are not feeling well. When rabbits get sick, their temp drops and a heating pad will help keep them comfortable. Keeping their temp up helps their body function properly. I usually wrap a towel and always keep it at a low setting not to burn their belly. But remember, this is only a temporary solution. You should always seek your vets advice and guidance.
  • Meloxicam –  for pain management. This needs to be prescribed by your vet and it’s always a good idea to keep at home. Usually the name brand is metacam a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) which helps reduce pain. It is used both for short-term after surgeries, or long term for arthritis. MINI is on metacam long term for arthritis.
  • Sherwood Appetite Restore – Is also good to keep in your emergency kit in cases when your rabbit stops eating. I mix a little bit with the critical care/recovery food to help her appetite come back, but it can also be used to add flavor to the syringe feedings. It’s banana flavor and we know how much rabbits love bananas! But just add a little bit according to their weight as it may be too sugary. In my opinion. 
  • Probiotics – I keep probiotics at home to help with MINI’s gut. Especially when they are placed on antibiotics for a long time, this will help them restore the balance in their digestive system. Mine is prescribed by my vet, so make sure to consult with your vet.
  • Immune Booster – Now this probably won’t be for everyone, but it is a must for me now. MINI was diagnosed with calcium deposits in her nasal cavity and is prone to more respiratory infections. I give her 2.5 CCs of Vetri-DMG (prescribed by my vet) daily, and this will be given to her for the rest of her life.

Having mentioned that MINI is on immune booster for the rest of her life, every rabbit is different and will have different needs. For MINI, it is essential I have saline solution, a nebulizer, and a container for daily nebulizer sessions to help with her respiratory infections due to calcium deposits growing inside her nasal cavity.

So every case will be different. This emergency kit is a good foundation to help you build one that will work for your and your rabbit. And always, please consult with your veterinary. They are the best source of information for you and your rabbit.

Stay safe and healthy!