Its starting to feel a lot like… Summer!

As temperatures climb in Canberra, it is certainly starting to feel a lot like Summer out there! So please don’t forget that our pets feel the increase in temperatures even more than we do…

Our little pocket pet friends (especially rabbits and guinea pigs) are very sensitive to increases in temperature so please make sure that you are prepared, can recognise the signs of heat stress (please keep a close eye on them!) and know what to do if these occur.

Signs of heat stress in rabbits and pocket pets include:

– Lethargy

– Panting/ increased respiratory rate

– Decreased responsiveness

– Collapse

– Convulsions/ seizures.

What to do if you see these signs in your pet:

– Wipe down their ears with a damp cloth to cool them down

– Place a wet towel on them

– Rush them straight to the vet.

Some helpful things to do to reduce the risk of heat stress for your rabbits:

– Keep their hutch out of the sun or under shelter/ shade

– Provide a cool surface for them to lie on ie. ceramic tiles or wet soil

– Provide lots of fresh water and even add ice cubes!

– Fill plastic bottles with water and freeze these, bunnies love lying against them

– Apply a fan or light water mist if possible!

– If the temperatures are over 30degrees, bring them indoors.

Please also be mindful that flystrike occurs very quickly in these warm conditions, so please be sure to check your bunnies daily to ensure that they are clean and do not become afflicted.

Please contact your vet immediately if you think that your bunny (or pet!) is suffering from the heat.

Canberra Veterinary Emergency Service, Compassionate and Experienced Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, when you need it the most.