Rabbits are unique in the diverse animal kingdom, they have different mannerisms and it won’t be inaccurate to say that they’re built differently. As such we will be looking at one of the peculiar attributes of their offspring.
Now that it’s no longer speculation but a certainty.
At what age do baby rabbits open their eyes?
Baby rabbits though typically born blind open their eyes for the first time after about 10 to 12 days. Baby rabbits differ, some open their eyes quicker than the other, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. Just stay calm and enjoy the ride.
Why Are Baby Rabbits Born with Their Eyes Closed?
Baby rabbits are born with their eyes closed for a plethora of reasons. They include but aren’t limited to.
To Help The Mum
Pregnancy takes a significant toll on mother rabbits, they are incredibly weak during this period and as such make easy prey for the most sinister of predators. To help keep Mom alive, Mother Nature decided to speed up the gestational process by channeling the mother’s energy on creating and fostering proper tools that can live outside her body.
Eyes are not that important for life in a warm nest, so baby rabbits are built to grow more important body functions and organs instead. Following this period, the baby rabbit would gain its eyesight and ability to hear while the mother recoups its strength to tend to the newborn and herself.
To Protect The Baby Bunny
Baby bunnies are born in litters and that could be pretty problematic. Rabbits are known to be pesky scratchers and that’s even worse when they’re young. Nature built them in a way that will prevent certain injuries to their eyes, once they’re blind for the main time they can avoid such unfortunate events.
Not just that, bright lights could be hurtful for their underdeveloped tissue, as can even the slightest breeze can be detrimental. That’s why it’s quite helpful that their eyes are sealed shut in the first place.
Can I Help My Rabbit Open Her Eyes?
We understand that it could be a worrisome sight noticing that one baby bunny out of a liter still hasn’t opened its eyes after the usual two weeks waiting period. Plus, we get it that you might want to take the laws into your hands and force its eyes open.
There’s one thing we got to say about that though. Please desist from trying this, it could lead to a lot of horrible consequences such as injury, scarring, blindness, and even death.
If you have any worries about such you should consult with your veterinarian as he’s the one in the best position to sort out the issue. This might not be as big a deal as you think.
He’ll probably tell you to do either of these.
Scenario 1 – A Bit Of Conjunctivitis
This is quite common in baby bunnies and your veterinarian is likely to have seen his or her fair bunch. All the vet would do is to wipe away crusty bits, rub a special antibiotic lotion, and tell you to take the bunny home for further monitoring and care.
Scenario 2 – An Eye Infection
In this scenario, the veterinarian would direct you to apply the antibiotic lotion all by yourself instead of burdening him or her with the basic task. You would be instructed to do so daily and properly.
Every day just apply a bit of the lotion on your toddler bunny’s eyes, and keep it up for a few days. Before you know it, the bunny will open its eyes and you’ll forget about the worrisome days in no time.
Scenario 3 – Genetics
Some bunnies are just built differently from their bunny peers, that’s why their eyes take a bit longer to open. In this case, they do not need any lotion or sensitive care.
All you need to do as an owner is to ensure that they aren’t bullied or cheated by their peers in the litter. After a few extra days, they’ll get their eyesight.
How To Protect Baby Rabbits From An Early Death?
Rabbits are quite vulnerable when they are young, the slightest mistake could lead to a bunny funeral and it’ll be smart of you to take the necessary precautions. So how do you protect baby rabbits from infant mortality?
Just in case the mother passed on or is fairly distant from her toddler bunnies, you should feed it with ample quantities of colostrum. This is the nutrient heavy first milk that baby bunnies need.
Consult a vet for the right quantities of colostrum needed and make sure you observe proper hygiene to avoid infecting the rabbit.
Treat it delicately
Baby bunnies are as fragile as eggs, one small mistake they’ll crack and you would never have them in that initial form. That’s why we advise that you take care of baby bunnies with delicate care especially if the mother is seemingly distant or negligent.
Clean their habitats property and avoid any dangerous practices. This isn’t the time for your children to start messing around with the toddler bunnies.
Since this is a period when they’re blind, anything and everything can happen. Ensure that they are properly monitored and if you notice any weird mannerisms ensure that you call the veterinarian.
That way you’ll be sure that the baby bunnies are getting additional professional care. Never forget, it’s better to be safe than sorry and sad.
Rabbits are mammals just like us humans but they are remarkably different in many aspects. Their mothers act super weird, as they abandon their young for large periods, they are born blind, and let’s not start with their possessive streak.
However, like a rabbit owner, your job is to monitor these creatures and treat them on their own merits. They differ from bunny to bunny and what works for one rabbit might fail spectacularly for the other.
Just follow the tips above and don’t hesitate to add yours, remember, it’s all for the good of your furry buddy.