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Nail Trims and Scent Gland Cleaning

    For members of our rescue, nail trims and gland cleaning are free! We do trims for non-members for $5. You can make an appointment to have your bunny's nails trimmed and glands cleaned.  Contact us here.  It can be daunting when you first try to trim nails, but you can easily learn to do this task on your own. You need a clipper, try this standard type or a guillotine clipper (only use these on very large bunnies, it won't fit small bunnies).  We even use small wire cutters at the rescue, though you have to be very careful of the tip. You will also need Styptic Powder and a small penlight.

    First, find a position that your bunny finds relaxing. Try resting them on their back, or sit them on your lap and take turns pulling each foot out from their body. Practice doing this several times without clipping first. It will get them used to the sensation. Second, look for the quick. If they have clear toenails, it's easy to see, cut a few millimeters past it. If they have dark nails, shine the light through the nail to see the quick and cut a few millimeters past it. Nails that are too long make it hard for a rabbit to walk and to groom themselves, so check them every month.

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Here are two types of trimmers we use at the rescue. Left: wire cutter Right: standard clipper


The quick can be seen halfway down the nail in this photo.

Scent Glands

    The most dreaded part of bunny care, cleaning the scent glands. There are two glands, on either side of their genitals. They can build up and cause a lot of odor problems when full. The substance hardens and it can be quite uncomfortable for the rabbit, especially if they get infected. To prevent this from happening, you need to check them once a month to see if they are full. Hold the rabbit in a comfortable position, supporting their back very well and use a q-tip dipped in warm water or baby oil to swab out the buildup.

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