Recommendation to ALL rabbit owners:


Monitoring the weight of a rabbit



Dr. Amir Maurer

Companion and Exotic Animal Veterinary Center, Holon, Israel is funded solely by the generosity of donors.

Every donation, no matter what the size, is appreciated and will aid in the continuing research of medical care and health of rabbits all over the world.

Thank you


Rabbits, rodents and birds can suffer from a health problem over a prolonged period of time, without showing outward signs, without change of appetite. The disease - especially dental disease - will not stop progressing. The result can be devastating to the animal, with secondary effects on its health.

Secondary effects  dental problems

1.   Spurs, overgrown molars, deformed teeth can cause:

    -  Damage the gums and tongue, and possible secondary bacterial or yeast infections;

    -  Ptyalism (hypersalivation, slobbering) and secondary inflammation of the skn (dermatitis) and alopecia.

2.   Elongation of the roots of incisors or cheek teeth can cause various problems:

    -  Compression or blockage of the nasolachrymal duct cause a runny eye or dacryocystitis;

    -  Infection of the dental root, with development of a root abscess or a retrobulbar infection;

    -  Infection of the root and deformation of the bone due to dissolution of bone (osteolysis) or osteomyelitis;

    -  Dysplastic changes, e.g., pseudo-odontoma, that lead to compression of the nasal cavity, difficult breathing,

       sneezing or “reversed” sneezing;

    -  Discomfort and/or pain caused by the dental problem leads to a decreases appetite;

    -  Secondary renal failure, due to anorexia, hepatic lipidosis, septicemia.

3.   Behavioral and diet changes due to discomfort or pain, such as a sudden aggressiveness or shyness, nibbling of furniture, changes in food habits, licking a long ignored salt block.

How can this be avoided

To avoid these tragic situations, it is worth buying a digital scale to weigh the animal at least monthly. The average of three measurements should be taken and noted- this is the stable weigh of a rabbit.

When there is a loss of 10% of stable weight - call for a vet exam.

This simple method is a great help to veterinarians as it allows to "catch" many diseases as they begin, especially dental disease.

Material needed

A digital kitchen scale that weigh up to 5 kg

A light plastic box


0.196 kg after adding the container on the scale.

Arrow shows tarring button on this scale


Tarring will set the scale to zero: 0.000

Before weighing the rabbit, the scale must be set to zero. Depending on the country, the scale will display the weight in kilos or pounds.

The container box is placed in the middle of the digital scale for tarring. This is needed to display the correct weight of the rabbit.

After pressing the tarring button, the display will show lines or dots until ready. Once tarring is completed 0.000.

Weighing the rabbit...

Since rabbits often move in the box, which affects the weight shown on the digital scale, it is best to take a few measurement and calculate the average:

How much ?

Measurement 1: 2.68 kilos

Measurement 2: 2.83 kilos

Measurement 3: 2.75 kilos

Average: addition of weights divided by the number of measurements. In this case:

(2.68 + 2.83 + 2.75) / 3 = 2.74 kilos


10% of the weight = 0.274 kilos,

or a weight of the rabbit of 2.74 – 0.274 = 2.47 kilo



Measurement 1: 2.34 kilos

Measurement 2: 2.51 kilos

Measurement 3: 2.33 kilos

Measurement 4: 2.25 kilos

Average: addition of weights divided by the number of measurements. In this case:

(2.34 + 2.51 + 2.33 + 2.25) / 4 = 2.36 kilos


10% of the weight = 0.236 kilos

or a weight of the rabbit of 2.36 – 0.236 = 2.124 kilo



Thanks to Yara and Kaspi for their cooperation.