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       Home  >  Baby Cottontail Info

Found a baby cottontail? 

Please read this first
 
A mother rabbit, or doe, will never abandon her babies.  Only her death or creation of an environment where she cannot get to her babies will deter her from her babies.  Most of the time, when you have found a baby bunny, it is ok.
 
Start by looking for its nest.  Look for a shallow depression lined with grass and fur. If the baby's eyes are still closed, it is under 10 days old. If the babies look fat and plump, are nestled snuggly next to each other, and if there seems to be no immediate danger to them, then LEAVE THEM ALONE!  You can check to see if the mother rabbit is coming back to the nest by doing the following: criss-cross the nest with strands of dental floss or other thin string.  If the string is pushed back out of the way in the morning, then you know that mom has returned to the babies and they are alright.
 
If their nest has been damaged, it can be repaired.  Place babies back in the nest with light layers of grass to hide them. Unlike what you have heard, their mother will accept them back, even if you have touched them. Leave the area, or the mother won't return. Mothers return at dawn and dusk to feed and care for their babies. This is so that a predator cannot easily "see" the mother returning to her nest.  She feeds two to three times within 12-hour time frames.  It only takes a minute or so for the a baby's stomach to be filled and the feeding complete.
Cottontail
 If your cat or dog has brought a bunny in, look for wounds. If you see blood and you can�t find the nest, put it in a box with something soft, next, please call a licensed rehabber.
In the case you have had one bunny brought in by your cat or dog, there are always more. You can easily keep the cat or dog from picking off the rest.  Take a large storage container, cut out a hole or rectangle about 4� in diameter, and tip it upside down over the nest. Place something heavy on top of the container that will hold it in place so that a dog can�t tip it. The mother will continue to go in and feed her babies, not allowing the dog or cat to disturb.

If you find healthy bunnies that are 4-5 inches long, able to hop, with eyes open and ears up, they do not need your help - they are starting to forage for food, and they are able to survive on their own, so please leave them alone.
 
   
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