• 435-644-2001 • www.bestfriends.org
Grooming Your Rabbit
Because of their constant shedding, rabbits need
to be brushed at least weekly to remove loose hair.
You will have to brush daily during heavy sheds.
Rabbits will shed in different ways – some will take
a couple of weeks or more to lose their old coat,
while others will lose theirs all in a few days. Much
of the hair can often be removed by gently plucking
it out with your fingers. Fine-toothed flea combs
made for cats work very well to comb out loose
Rabbits have thin, sensitive skin, so use gentle
strokes when grooming. You can use the soft
brushes sold for cats. Rabbits vary in their affinity for grooming – some like it, some
don’t. Angora and other long-haired rabbits require much more attention than short-
haired rabbits. They must be groomed daily to prevent matting of the fur and hairballs.
Grooming provides an excellent opportunity for you to give your rabbit a quick overall
checkup. You should check his teeth for misalignment, his eyes and nose for any
discharge, and the condition of his fur and skin. Check also for mats and “poopy bottom”
(fecal matter stuck to his bottom).
Bald spots on rabbits can occur when they are shedding, but they could also be an
indication of mites if your bunny picks at the bald spots or you see dandruff-like flakes
when the hair is pulled out. Consult your veterinarian if you are unsure.
Bathing. Rabbits are naturally very clean and do not need baths unless they are
incontinent or prone to poopy bottom. If you do need to bathe your bunny, use water only
or a gentle rabbit or kitten shampoo. Don’t ever immerse your bunny completely in water
– bathe only the soiled area. Many bunnies squirm quite a bit, so you might want to have
another person assist you. Towel-dry the rabbit and use a hairdryer (set to warm, not
hot) if necessary.
Nails. A rabbit’s nails can grow to be very long and sharp, and can be uncomfortable for
both you and the rabbit. You can clip the nails with a guillotine