Hop Into Spring with Rabbit Care

It is starting to feel like spring has actually sprung here in Indiana, and what better way to celebrate than talking about bunnies? Rabbit care happens to be one of our specialities here at New Haven Pet Hospital – let us be your official source for information about all things that hop!

Bunny Bits

Rabbits can make great companions, but just like with any other pet it is important to know a little bit about them before jumping into a big commitment. Rabbits don’t fit in to every household, but lagomorph lovers everywhere will tell you that they are great for a lot of people!

A few fun facts about rabbits as pets:

  • Rabbits are herbivores and will add to your weekly produce budget!
  • They require room to move and can get themselves into trouble. Areas they have access to will need to be rabbit-proofed.
  • Rabbits require gentle and quiet handling and are often stressed by young children.
  • Bunnies are crepuscular, meaning their highest levels of activity are at dawn and dusk.
  • They need daily activity (about an hour) and regular social interaction.
  • Healthy, well-cared for rabbits can live ten years or more.
  • Bunnies are social critters, meaning more than one is usually ideal.
  • Domestic rabbits do not have the skills to survive outdoors like a wild rabbit would – once you have made a commitment to one, it is your responsibility to keep it healthy and safe.

All About Proper Rabbit Care

Once you have decided to jump off the deep end into bunny love, there are some important components of good rabbit care that you should learn about.

Rabbit nutrition — Proper care of any pocket or exotic pet often begins with good nutrition. Of course rabbits should have unrestricted access to fresh water at all times. Hay is a huge part of a healthy rabbit’s diet. Timothy or grass hay should also be freely available (pelleted hay is also an option), with alfalfa being only a very small and occasional treat. Fresh fruits and veggies are also important, the average rabbit needs about a cup of vegetables per four pounds of body weight each day. Vitamin A in the diet should come from veggies such as beet tops, broccoli, kale, or pea pods.  Most veggies will do, but there are a few to avoid, including iceberg lettuce. Fruit should be considered a treat.

Home is where the hop is — A proper home is also important for good rabbit care. Be sure that your rabbit’s enclosure is large and tall enough for play and to stretch out. It should have a solid floor and good air circulation. Direct sunlight and drafts should be avoided. Be sure to provide chew toys and other safe but stimulating toys. Daily exercise is encouraged. Be sure that your rabbit’s play space if free of electrical cords, house plants, and other dangers.

Veterinary value Rabbits also require veterinary care. Spaying or neutering is an important part of good rabbit ownership, as well as regular nail trims and dental care.

We are passionate about rabbit care and urge you will call us if you need any help when it comes to bunny ownership!

All About the Fantastic Pet Ferret

Did you know that New Haven Pet Hospital offers the same excellent care you’ve come to know for your dogs and cats to the pocket pet community? While we could never choose between all of the amazing species that we see, ferrets hold a special place in our hearts.

Learn how these magnificent mustelids have weaseled their way into our favor as we spotlight the fabulous pet ferret.

Ferret Facts

The pet ferret is, in fact, a member of the weasel family as you may have suspected. They are closely related to other animals such as badgers, mink, and wolverines.

These friendly and curious creatures enjoy interacting with people and can make great pets. Many people aren’t familiar with the pet ferret, however. They are really very interesting critters. You might be surprised to learn that:

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Smelly Paws? The True Story About Canine “Frito Feet”

Being in the constant company of dogs, their owners typically tune out certain things that may be off-putting to others. Dogs, after all, have some curious, eyebrow-raising behaviors, and in order to co-exist, we overlook their oddball ways.

Unfortunately, when dogs start to smell, it’s hard to ignore. When it goes beyond their trademark salty/sweet perspiration, a funk fills the room. Smelly paws are usually to blame for this whiffy scent, and if you couldn’t put your finger on it before, try to imagine your dog just walked on a bed of Fritos!

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Your Pet and New Baby: A Little Prep Goes a Long Way!

Life is all about transitions. Whether subtle or significant, if we handle changes well, the better off we’ll be. However, when it comes to welcoming a new baby into the world, the transition can be very difficult for many new parents. Eventually, we all figure it out, but guess who else may need a little extra help?

This new chapter can be overwhelming for both human and animal family members, but there are ways to ensure a happy life with your pet and new baby.

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The Dangerous Link Between Pet Obesity and Diabetes

There is a Dangerous Link Between Pet Obesity and Diabetes

It’s no secret that obesity is a major health concern in the U.S., but did you know that over half the nation’s pets are also classified as overweight or obese? Obese pets are at risk for many of the same health problems as humans, including high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.

According to a 2015 Nationwide Pet Insurance survey, diabetes is the third most common obesity-related disease in cats and the sixth most common in dogs. Because pet obesity and diabetes are closely linked, pet owner education and diligence are required to help ensure pets remain healthy.

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A Long Road: Coping With Pet Loss

Pet loss can be devastating, it's ok to grieve for your pet.

Nothing can ever prepare you for the loss of a pet, no matter how expected. From making hard decisions about end of life care, to coping with loss, to dealing with grief in the days, weeks, and months to come, the loss of a pet is no small thing.

Many pet owners don’t realize the scope of the loss they will feel when losing their faithful four legged friends. The loss of a pet can be just as difficult as the loss of a human family member or friend. And it can be very healing to grieve for as long as you need, and to memorialize your pet in some way.

Here are some considerations for coping with pet loss.

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Cold Weather Pet Care Tips for the Change of Seasons

Cold weather pet care is no joke!

Cooler weather is finally upon us, and before we know it winter will be here. In Indiana the seasons can change quickly, and being prepared is essential. Just as you may be investing in a new pair of snow boots and adding a little extra insulation to your home, there are some things that you can do to help your four-legged family members weather the season as well.

New Haven Pet Hospital knows how important attention to cold weather pet care is for the health and safety of our animal friends. Keep reading to ensure that the whole family, fur or not, is ready for the change of seasons.

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Preventing Lost Pets: Are Pet Microchips Worth All the Hype?

Pet microchips increase the odds of a lost pet becoming a found pet.

Despite the best efforts of most pet owners, a third of all pets become separated from their people at least once. The result can simply involve a trip to the animal shelter where they can eventually be reunited with searching owners, but not always. Pets on the loose can unfortunately be stolen (either on purpose or mistakenly) or become victims of automobile accidents, injury, and premature death.

The statistics that support the efficacy of pet microchips are incredible, increasing the inevitable odds of homecoming.

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Would You Know if Your Pet is in Pain?

If your pet is in pain then they should see a veterinarian. Almost all of us have experienced some kind of pain, and we know how debilitating it can be. Our pets are no different, but they don’t have the language to convey how or what they feel.

However, you can learn to recognize the subtle and not so subtle signs that your pet is in pain. This will allow you to take steps to help them feel better more quickly – something we would all want for our beloved family members.

Natural Instincts

We all hope we’d know the moment our pet is in pain. But in reality, studies show that pet owners aren’t very good at recognizing signs of pain in their pets. It’s no easy thing, though, as evolution has protected animals who don’t exhibit signs of pain. It’s a basic instinct for our pets to hide illness or injury in order to be less vulnerable to predators when they’re weakened. So what’s a well-meaning pet owner to do? Continue…

That Time of Year: Back-to-School Pet Anxiety

Pet anxiety can cause bad behavior in bored petsEveryone’s itching to get back into the swing of things by the time August rolls around. Whether it’s been a chaotic or laid back summer, the start of a new school year brings big changes, and pets are always the first to notice. Closely attuned to household dynamics, pets can feel downright confused, abandoned, and stressed out once the kids return to school. However, with a healthy dose of preparation, pet anxiety won’t take center stage this fall.

Long Hours

Not only is everyone gone for the entire day, but with daylight savings time on the horizon, sunlight is at a minimum, as well. A severe case of back-to-school blues could be the result for your sweet, sensitive pet. Continue…