Rabbits may actually wash their face for several reasons.
Rabbit researchers have discovered that rabbits are meticulous about keeping their grooming area clean, spending at least an hour every day carefully cleaning the fur on their face and chin with their tongues. And they require a lot of help in order to keep themselves looking good.
Digging, running through tunnels, hopping up and down, or reaching out of cage bottoms can pull loose whiskers, creating bare patches on the rabbit’s face.
Broken-off whiskers need to be trimmed periodically. If your new rabbit doesn’t tolerate being picked up very well yet, you’ll need to reach into his cage with forceps to do this or wait until he voluntarily comes out of his hidey-hole.
Until he grows accustomed to being handled in this way, your rabbit may need his face wiped gently with a damp washcloth or soft paper towel each day. Some rabbits will learn to tolerate having their face wiped clean more quickly than others.
Ears also require attention so they don’t become smelly, dirty, and fly-infested. A rabbit cannot move its ears around very easily—their size makes them hard to maneuver—so they are an ideal environment for insects to live in if left unchecked for too long. Occasionally wipe around the outside of your bunny’s ears with a clean cloth dampened with warm water mixed with mild soap (and rinse well). Cleaning the floppy part at the top is usually not necessary unless there is discharge, odor, or irritation.
If your rabbit’s ears are folded down flat against his head, it means he is frightened—just as a dog will tuck his tail between his legs when scared or upset.
Rabbits will also flatten their ears if they are angry with you. Examine the situation carefully to determine what caused this behavior so it can be avoided in the future. If necessary, consult with an experienced rabbit veterinarian about whether medication would help reduce your bunny’s stress level enough for him to change his typical response of ear flattening.
Fixing Your Rabbit’s Loose Fur Problem
You may have noticed some fur or tufts of hair sticking out from under your bunny’s chin and around its mouth and nose: these are whiskers. Rabbits do not have regular hair as we do; they only grow the hairs on their heads (also known as “ear fluff” or “pelage”).
Everything else is fur, which feels softer than our own hair. Whiskers grow out of tiny holes in their skin called follicles and will continue to lengthen throughout your pet’s life—just like human fingernails. Rabbits need their long facial whiskers for their excellent sense of touch—it helps them determine whether it is safe to go through a tunnel opening or if they can fit into an area comfortably.
– Always check your rabbit’s eyes, nose, mouth, and rear-end carefully while grooming him so you can remove any debris that might be stuck in his fur. – Gently clean your rabbit’s face and chin with a wet washcloth each day to remove dirt and food particles, and wipe the inside of his ears once a week. – Trim excess fur around his eyes, nose, and mouth every few weeks (or as necessary) using scissors or clippers specifically designed for animal grooming.
– If you notice any discharge from the eyes or nose, visit your veterinarian since it may indicate an infection; also check whether there are any scratches on these areas that need to be treated and cleaned daily until healed. – Check your rabbit’s rear end to make sure its tail is not irritated.
Some rabbits will develop hair mats around their tails which you will need to check and clean regularly so your pet’s skin stays healthy. -Check whether any scabs are located where the fur is thinning; scabs may indicate an ear infection or mites. Take your rabbit to its veterinarian if this problem persists, as it is usually not possible to do proper cleaning on your own without hurting your rabbit.
– If you notice that hair is missing around his face or tail, take him back to the vet for a diagnosis of what might have caused the damage, as it may be symptomatic of a more serious condition due to internal mite infestation or cancer.
– Try treating allergies by taking away fabric softeners from all wash cycles avoiding artificial sprays and curtains. Ask your veterinarian about using a humidifier to add more moisture back into the skin and hair of your bunny; this may help prevent hair loss by keeping his skin from drying out too much. –
If you think that stress is the cause behind any fur loss around your rabbit’s face, take steps so he can live in a less stressful environment. Consistent, loving care will go a long way toward making sure your pet stays happy and healthy for many years to come!