You have just noticed that your rabbit has a floppy ear. Before calling the veterinarian, it’s a good idea to take the time to observe it, as it may not be serious.
Your rabbit has a floppy ear: the causes
It’s a ram rabbit
If your rabbit is less than three months old and his ears are falling off one after the other, he probably belongs to the ram rabbit species. This breed is born with straight ears, which naturally fall back around four months of age. And if only one of his parents is a ram, your rabbit may grow up with one ear erect and the other drooping. Nothing serious, it’s just a genetic trait.
Your rabbit is stressed
His large ears allow him to ensure his survival. Its highly developed hearing detects the slightest movements of an approaching fox or the flight of a hunting bird of prey. But it becomes disabling inside a house. Too much music, a strident bell, will strongly stress your rabbit. You will then find him in a state of prostration, panting, one ear falling off. The only thing to do is to turn down the sound.
He’s too hot
In hot weather, rabbits crossed with rams often have one or both ears at half-mast. Don’t panic, they’ll perk up as soon as it’s cooler.
Your rabbit has an ear infection or trauma
If you don’t notice any change in your rabbit’s behavior, except for his tilted ear, there’s no need to worry. However, if your rabbit stops eating, moves with difficulty and has a tilted head, it is certainly sick. A drooping ear indicates that he has an ear infection or a trauma (bite, shock, etc.). The only solution is to go quickly to a veterinarian.
How to avoid ear problems in rabbits?
It is essential to provide your rabbit with impeccable hygiene, both for its ears, which should be regularly inspected and cleaned, and for the maintenance of its habitat. Your rabbit’s ears must be kept clean to avoid infections. It is recommended to clean the inner part twice a month with a specific product, in order to keep the skin light pink, a sign of good health. Inspect them regularly to watch for the appearance of wax deposits, suspicious scabs and parasites. The hair on the outside should also be washed. Your rabbit’s living space should be clean and spacious enough for him to move around in. Pay attention to the sun exposure, as it could suffer from the heat. Also, be careful with sound sources, as rabbits are sensitive to noise. Regularly wash and disinfect the cage and the bowl with suitable products, and change the litter box often.
Ears are a part of a rabbit’s body language. Seeing them erect is a sign of good general health, unless it belongs to the ram species. In this case, it is normal for them to droop. To be in good shape, your pet needs an environment adapted to its needs. Observe him with patience and attention. Offer him calm and security, use the right products and treatments. He will then give you all his affection.