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bought 2 rabbits in 2 weeks, both died.

22 9:53:31

We bought from a local pet store a black mini-rex rabbit, and not even 1 week later, I came in, in the morning and she was laying on her side unable to get up, but was still breathing and kicking her legs, so I rushed her to a vet, and he said she probably had some sort of brain infection or lesion on her brain and said he needed to put her to sleep. So, we went back to the same pet store and they do have a 30 day guarantee on their animals, and said they were getting a shipment in that day and to come in and they would replace her. So we got another black mini-rex that looked identical to the other one, only this one was a male.  So here we are 5 days later, I go in this morning and he was not moving, not breathing, just looked froze, or like a fake rabbit. No visible signs of anything that went wrong.  I don't know, I am lost. I wonder if it is something we did? Or if we got 2 rabbits from the same litter with health problems.

Hi Stephanie,

First, none of this is your fault!

I don't know your pet store, but unless, they're high-end, most do not buy from breeders--and if you paid less than $50, then not from reputable breeders. The stores that do buy from breeders will be able to get you a pedigree (though they may ask you to pay $10 more for it#

Because I sell to a livestock auction regarding the meat aspect, I know this for a fact that many pet stores buy their babies from the meat side of livestock auctions. This means that you may be getting a rabbit that is way too young #I deplore it, but not all breeders wait until the 8 week age mark to sell to the auction# and thus much more susceptible to disease. In addition, depending on the auction, not all of them are well kept--and are centers of disease themselves.

To go over what you've had, your first rabbit probably had an e. cuniculi infection. That is actually very treatable, but treatment will take between 2 weeks and 3 months and is very intensive. Should you ever see it again, all it is either a treatment of Ivermectin or Panacur #Fenbendazole#. You can get both medications at a local farm store.

The second one may have had anything--a stroke, an e. cuniculi infection #it sometimes just kills them--and is very possible if the store keeps its rabbits in a tub and right on the shavings--this protozoa infection is transmittable through contact with other rabbit's urine), pastuerella, etc. In any of these, the problem would have been there before you bought the animal.

Can you give me your state? I'll be happy to provide you a listing of Mini Rex breeders in your area. They're surprisingly affordable--usually between $30 and $70 depending on the status of the breeder.

I'm sorry you're having such a hard time with rabbits! Please know that these are usually very hardy animals and should have a life span of 8-10 years.

Keep in touch--let me know how you're doing.