Common Rabbit Diseases Symptom, Treatment

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Poor sanitation can cause sickness and death in rabbits. Learn about rabbit health and common rabbit diseases Symptom, Treatment

Rabbit Emergencies

SIGNS OF AN EMERGENCY

  • Persistent choking or wheezing.
  • Difficulty in breathing.
  • Sudden injuries in which blood is present or bones are protruding.
  • Uncontrolled bleeding.
  • Large lacerations
  • Coma
  • Seizures
  • Head trauma that accompanies lethargy or depression
  • Animal bites
  • Eye injuries

SIGNS OF ILLNESS

  • Hair loss (possibly by mutilation or infection)
  • Chronic intermittent diarrhea
  • Anorexia (see in 24 hours if appetite doesn't return)
  • Fractures
  • Periodic weakness (may indicate systemic disease)
  • Periodic salivation or pawing at the mouth (teeth should be checked)
  • Lumps or bumps on the skin
  • Chronic coughing
  • Unusually aggressive behavior
  • Small lacerations or signs of injury
  • Persistent scratching
  • Ear infections and head tilt
  • Lethargy, depression, changed attitude
  • The pus of thick crusts around the eyes or nose
  • Broken teeth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rabbit Diseases picture

Non-Infectious

Non-infectious problems with your rabbit

Broken Back
Fracture of the backbone is very common in rabbits.

Symptoms: Paralysis, and no control over the ability to urinate or defecate.

Diagnosis: Based on clinical signs and symptoms.

Treatment: Anti-inflammatory steroid drugs may help. If the treatment does not help after two weeks, then the rabbit cannot be helped.

Sometimes young rabbits kill and eat their babies for different reasons, such as nervousness with new things or people.

Dental Malocclusion (i.e. over or under-bite):
Rabbit's teeth grow throughout their lifetime. The normal length of teeth is maintained by grinding with the opposite teeth. Malocclusion will be the most common cause of the overgrowth of the incisors; which in turn can cause difficulty in eating and drinking. In some cases, the cheek teeth grow longer and can irritate the tongue or bucca – the inside of the cheek. This problem should be checked by your vet.

Hair chewing and hairballs:
Rabbits who groom themselves continuously swallow their hair, which as a result, comes out with the feces. If they swallow an excessive amount of hair, it will block the pylorus.

Symptom: Rabbit stop eating, losing weight, and die within 3-4days.

Diagnosis: X-ray and clinical symptoms.

Treatment: Removing the hairball surgically.

Prevention: Combing the rabbit regularly, feeding the rabbit a plentiful amount of hay, and pineapple juice as needed.

Heat Exhaustion
Rabbits are sensitive to heat and humidity.

Symptoms: Exhausted rabbits will stretch out and will be breathing fast.

Diagnosis: High temperature.

Treatment: Soak the rabbit in cold water.

Hutch Burn
Caused by a wet and dirty hutch floor. It can be confused with Treponema cuniculi.

Symptom: Genital region and anus became inflamed and chapped.

Diagnosis: Based on the clinical symptom, environment, and urinary problem.

Treatment: Remove the cause and treat it with antibiotics.

Wet Dewlap (Moist dermatitis):
Cause by wetting the skin fold of the female rabbit’s neck due to open water cricks, damp bedding, dental malocclusion.

Symptom: Inflammation of the skin fold.

Diagnosis: Clinical symptom.

Treatment: Automatic watering, shaving the infected skin, keep drying the skin, and antibiotics.

Sore Hocks (Ulcerative pododermatitis)
Cause by pressure on the skin from the bearing of weight on the wire floor or any other possible skin damage.

Symptom: Lesion on the skin of paws.

Diagnosis: History, observing lesion on the lower surface of the paws.

Treatment: Remove the causative agent; clean the cage, and antibiotics.

Urinary bladder stone
Many factors are involved the most important one is Ca and Phosphorus imbalance in the diet.

Symptom: Blood in the urine.

Diagnosis: X-ray of the abdomen.

Treatment: Surgically removal of stone from the bladder.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rabbit Diseases

Rabbits contract bacterial, fungal, viral, internal and external parasites, and metabolic diseases.

Bacterial diseases
Pasteurellosis is a highly contagious disease in domesticated rabbits. It is transmitted by direct and indirect contact.

Symptoms: Inflammation of the nose, pneumonia, infection of the middle ear, conjunctivitis, abscesses, breast infection, and septicemia.

Diagnosis: Based on the physical appearance and isolation of the causative agent. Fluorescent antibody test on nasal swabs will identify the carrier.

Treatment: Difficult because of the nature of the bacteria.

Snuffles (Pasteurella)
Caused by bacteria

Symptoms: Initially a thin, serous discharge from the nose and eyes then it becomes a thicker discharge. Infected rabbets sneeze and cough.

Pneumonia is a bacterial disease and common in rabbits. It can affect young and adult rabbits.

Symptoms: Not eating, listless, and hardly taking breathe, and have a temperature.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of bacteria.

Treatment: Possible with antibiotics.

Wry Neck
The infection and accumulation of mucus in the middle ear.

Symptom: Twisted head.

Treatment: Long term antibiotics.

Weepy Eye
Caused by a bacterial infection. Both young and adult rabbits can get infected.

Symptoms: Rubbing the eye with front paws.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of the causative agent from the eye.

Treatment: Antibiotics.

Abscesses (swelling)
Caused by a bacterial infection. It may be found anywhere in the body, at any age.

Symptoms: Lumps under the skin, a rabbit would be lethargic, and possibly die within 48 hr.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of the causative agent.

Treatment: By draining the abscess and using antibiotics.

Genital Infection
Caused by a bacterial infection.

Symptoms: Inflammation of the reproductive tract. The infected buck might have large testicle and thick discharge will come from the female vagina.

Treatment: Possible by long term antibiotic therapy.

Syphilis
A venereal disease caused by a spirochete. This disease infects domesticated rabbits and does not transmit to other animals or people.

Symptoms: Small vesicles or ulcers on the surface of the genital region then change to scab.

Differential Diagnosis: Hutch burn.

Diagnosis: Based on lesion appearance and isolation of the causative agent.

Treatment: Possible with antibiotics.

Diarrhea:
Most likely caused by a bacterial infection. Different aged rabbits have different symptoms, depending on the bacteria.

Symptoms: Not eating, lethargic behavior, low body temperature, dehydration, rough coat, and anal area are covered with feces. In most cases, the rabbit may die without ever showing symptoms.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of the causative agent of the disease.

Treatment: Depends on the stage of sickness and kind of bacteria.

Ringworm
Rabbits living with poor sanitation are most likely to be infected.

Symptoms: Lesion will start on the head, and then spread all over the body. The lesions are circular, raised, reddened, and capped with white, bran like flaky material.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of the causative agents.

Treatment: Is possible with antifungal agents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parasitic Diseases

Coccidia:
Infects rabbit’s liver and intestine.

Symptoms: Not eating, rough coat. It is also possible for the rabbit to show no symptoms.

Diagnosis: based on history, isolation, and identification of causative agent.

Treatment: Possible with medicated water.

Larval Worm Infection
This particular infection can affect dogs, as well as the rabbits because rabbits host two types of canine tapeworm at the larva stage. If a dog eats an infected rabbit, the dog will be the final host of the tapeworm.

Mite Infestation
Ear mites infest rabbit world wide.

Symptoms: Head shaking, ear flapping, and scratching at ears.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of the mite on a direct slide under a microscope.

Treatment: Ears should be cleaned with cerumenolytic agents. Then the proper medication should be applied.

Other Mites/Sarcoptes Scabiei
Burrow into the skin and lay eggs.

Symptoms: constant scratching of themselves.

Diagnosis: Based on scraping the skin and looking at it under a microscope.

Treatment: Topical or oral medication.

Pinworms
By the rabbit ingesting contaminated food and/or water.

Symptom: Rabbit will continually try to rub its back end, and scratch/bite at it.

Diagnosis: Based on the identification of parasite’s egg in feces, or adult worm on autopsy.

Treatment: Oral medication.

Shope Fibroma
A tumor caused by a virus; found on the legs, feet, and ears.

Papilloma - manifest in two forms:

  1. The oral papilloma lesion consists of small, grayish-white warts on the lower surface of the tongue or floor of the mouth.
  2. The second type is characterized as horny warts on the neck, shoulders, ears, or abdomen.

Rabbit Pox

Symptoms: Shows fever, nasal and conjunctiva (eye) discharge, and skin rash.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Viral Diseases

Shope Fibroma
A tumor caused by a virus; found on the legs, feet, and ears.

Papilloma - manifest in two forms:

  1. The oral papilloma lesion consists of small, grayish-white warts on the lower surface of the tongue or floor of the mouth.
  2. The second type is characterized as horny warts on the neck, shoulders, ears, or abdomen.

Rabbit Pox

Symptoms: Shows fever, nasal and conjunctiva (eye) discharge, and skin rash.

Myxomatosis
This viral disease is transmitted by mosquitoes, fleas, and direct contact.

Symptoms: Conjunctivitis which will turn to milky ocular discharge. Infected rabbits refuse to eat, are lethargic, have a high temperature, and death is possible. The rabbits who survive will have rough coat and swelling of the nose, eyelids, lips, vulva or scrotum.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of the causative agent.

Treatment: No treatment is available.

Rotavirus Infection
It causes diarrhea in rabbits. It is transmitted by direct contact.

Symptoms: Thick discharge or watery diarrhea, loss of apatite, and dehydration.

Diagnosis: Based on isolation and identification of the causative agent.

Treatment: Not available, but the disease is self-limiting.