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Red Velvet Rabbitry

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Health Problems and Medicine Chest

Fur Mites

Fur mites typically appear in rabbits with spring and milder weather. Its presence in rabbits can be difficult to determine. When seen, they will most likely be found in the are of the neck and back. The presence of fur mites may cause the rabbit to have dandruff in the infected area. Occasionally lesions may form with severe infections. Rabbits will often scratch the infected area. Some fur mites can be passed to humans.

There are a few types of fur mites. Each type has there own distinct symptoms. For example some fur mites actually will burrow deep into the skin. They leave small round areas of missing fur and sores in the area that appear like holes

There are two areas of treatment to be concerned about. The first is the rabbit itself and the second is the living area around the rabbit. Ivermectin is effective in treating your rabbit for fur mites. Because of the life cycle of the mites, the rabbit should be treated three times, at intervals of 10-14 days. Ivermectin can be give orally, injected, or the medication can be applied directly to infected areas. Although fipronil, made by Frontline, will kill fur mites, it should not be used on rabbits, as it can cause convulsions, and death.

The area around your rabbits living quarters must also be treated for the fur mites. There are several products on the market that can be used for this purpose. Do not use a steam cleaner to clean carpets, as the humidity may actually increase the problem with the mites. Be sure to keep your rabbit away from areas treated with chemicals, the chemicals used may be harmful to the rabbit.

Medicine Chest-

Vandonine is a very strong disinfectant. Yet it is safe to use in sanitizing drinking water. We lightly spray our rabbits with Vanodine after every rabbit show they attend. It is also used to sanitize their cages during their weekly cleaning.

Ivomec comes in several different forms. We use the 1% injectable solution. We give it to our bunnies orally at the rate of .03 cc per pound. It is effective against biting parasites including mites and fleas. Ivomec can also be used as a wormer.

Any time our rabbits get diarrhea we immediately start to replace the lost electrolytes by adding pedialyte to their drinking water. Whether you use the pedialyte brand or another brand, we always make sure it is unflavored.

Nutri-cal is an excellent nutritional aid when bunnies are ill, not eating, or have diarrhea. It is marketed for both dogs and cats. It can be fed to your rabbit with a syringe or small spoon.

Occasionally when clipping rabbits nails you will hit the quick of the nail, causing the nail to bleed. Styptic Powder and products such as Quik Stop can be applied to the nail to stop the bleeding. In emergencies we have also used baking soda.

Terramycin Ointment is effective at fighting many eye infections.

Rubbing alcohol gets used in our rabbitry for a variety of purposes. We use it to clean the inside of our rabbits ear prior to tattooing. We also use it to sterilize our tattooing equipment after tattooing.

Piperazine is a wormer that can be added directly to your rabbits drinking water. It has several different brand names including Wazine.

Effective medication used against enteritis. Is sold in some pet stores under the name Dry-Tail. Dry-Tail is a very diluted form of Biosol. Some people will recommend anti-diarrhea medications such as peptobismal. Biosol would be a better solution, as the anti-diarrhea medications can cause the digestive system of your bunny to stop working, and don’t actually attack the cause.

Bene-Bac is a source of naturally occurring bacteria necessary for the digestive system. It is very helpful for kits that are having digestive problems while being weaned. In situations where we've had no Bene-bac our vet has recommended using yogurt, which has also worked for us

Neosporin-Good all around topical wound antiseptic

Mineral Oil- Aids in the treatment of ear mites

Simethicone Drops- This is used to relieve gas in bunnies that have enteritis. It is found in most drug stores in the baby section. It has many brand names.

Esbilac is A milk replacer for dogs and small animals. Will be necessary should your doe decide she doesn’t want to feed the kits, and you have no does that can foster the kits. Might be able to feed it with a small pet nursing bottle or with a syringe.

 

 

Mucoid Enteritis

Often the first visible signs will be mucous and feces packed near the rabbits bottom. The rabbits droppings will be covered with a clear jelly like mucous. As the digestive system of the rabbit discontinues its work, the rabbit will quit eating, will become dehydrated, and bloated. The rabbit may show signs of pain, including squealing, and grinding its teeth.

There are several factors at work when treating mucoid enteritis:

1. The bunny may be in pain because of the build up of gas in the stomach. If this pain is not alleviated the bunny will not eat or drink. Although, this will not treat the root cause, it is none the less, very important to treat this. Simethicone infant drops will effectively reduce this problem. Simethicone drops can be found at any drug store. Although some antacid and anti-diarrhea medications may also work, they can cause the digestive system to cease functioning as it should and cause even further complications.

2. The cause of the mucoid enteritis must now be treated. Harmful bacteria have grown in the intestinal tract of the bunny, and it needs to be removed while leaving the good bacteria in the digestive system. Neomycin Sulfate is very effective in removing these harmful bacteria. You can find this medication under a couple of different brand names. Biosol is marketed for scours in pigs and goats, and is the most common form of this medication. You may also find it in pet stores under the name Dri-Tail. While Biosol contains 200 mg per cc of neomycin sulfate, the Dri-tail is a much diluted form of neomycin sulfate. While on Biosol, we will feed unflavored yogurt to our bunnies to encourage the growth of good bacteria. BeneBac is another product that will encourage the growth of the proper bacteria, and can be used instead of the yogurt.

3. The bunny now has some relief from the discomfort of mucoid enteritis, and we have started our battle against the harmful bacteria. But the health of the bunny is still at great risk. The bunny has lost nutrients and electrolytes from the diarrhea, and dehydration is a very real possibility. Mucoid enteritis usually occurs in kits changing from nursing to pellets. Discontinue feeding the pellets to the bunny. Feed only grass hay and oats. You will need to supplement their feeding to get them back up to health. Mix one half Pedialyte and water and encourage the bunny to drink as much as possible. If the bunny will not drink on its own, then you need to do so by syringe. Feed the bunny NutriCal to give it some immediate palatable nutrition. NutriCal is marketed for dogs and cats. If the bunny is already dehydrated then lactating ringers may be necessary. You will only be able to get these from a vet. If your bunny is showing signs of listlessness get them to the vet immediately. The sooner you treat the dehydration the better chance of survival your bunny has.

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