this posting discusses more than 15 ways to treat rabbit flu
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Therefore, rabbits have an innate inclination to hide their illnesses and injuries.
This can be a good survival tactic in the wild, but for domestic rabbits, hiding their symptoms only fools their keepers and prevents immediate medical attention.
People who live with rabbits should pay close attention to subtle changes. If your rabbit used to greet you with jumps and bounds and is now lying in the back of the cage when you approach, perhaps crouching, this could be cause for concern.
Combine this with no litter in his litter box and lots of hay from the night before, and you could have a very sick bunny.
What is “normal” behavior? Some bunnies jump up to greet you, some don’t. Some rabbits are very active, running around the house; some don’t. In general, rabbits will be a little less excited as they get older. A three-month-old rabbit may seem hyperactive compared to a calmer five-year-old rabbit. Both levels of activity are normal, just different.
1. Teeth grinding
Strong grinding of the teeth is a sign of pain. Note: This teeth grinding is different from the less loud “tooth clenching” you can hear when you cuddle up and kiss your face!
2. Body heat
Rabbits regulate body temperature with their ears, very cold or hot ears can indicate a fever or drop in body temperature. These, along with other warning signs, may warrant a trip to the vet.
3. Watery eyes or nose, shortness of breath, or chronic sneezing
This could indicate an allergy, an upper respiratory infection, a blocked tear duct, or another problem. Visit your vet.
4. Wet chin or drooling
Usually a sign of dental problems or malocclusion. You may also notice a decrease in your appetite and ability to eat hard foods like whole carrots. Consult your veterinarian.
Without treatment, dental problems can lead to an infection in the jaw, which is very difficult to treat. Depending on the severity of the misalignment, your rabbit’s teeth may need to be trimmed regularly. In severe cases, the tooth can be extracted.
5. Loss of balance or head tilt
This is often called a sour neck (or sour neck), usually an inner ear infection. This can happen suddenly. Although treatment can be prolonged, head tilt can usually be cured if treatment is started quickly.
6. One end, out the other
Your rabbit’s litter box contains a lot of information. A healthy digestive tract will produce large, round stool granules. Smaller, irregularly shaped dirt or debris clumped together with the fur (or carpet) can indicate a problem.
Proper care on your part, especially during shedding, and plenty of fresh hay will help achieve optimal digestive tract health, along with a rabbit’s need to chew.
7. Loss of appetite or lethargy
Even rabbits can have “bad rabbit days.” But if your rabbit refuses its usual fresh food or other special treats for more than a day and seems very lethargic, you should call your vet.
8. Watch for changes in behavior
Not all rabbits are friendly. But if your rabbit normally jumps up and waves but suddenly stops doing so, this is an indication that something may be wrong. Watch for signs that your rabbit is moving less than normal, such as squatting or limping, as the easy way to raise rabbits for beginners.
9. Observe eating habits
If your rabbit is not eating normally, it may be sick. Keep an eye out for leftovers from the last meal. Also, check the droppings. If there is no feces in the toilet box, this indicates that the rabbit is not eating. Pay attention to the size and shape of the poop. Ideally, the poop should be large and round. If they are small, bumpy, or runny, your rabbit may be sick.
10. Test for signs of illness
Begin by offering your rabbit his favorite treat. If you refuse to eat your food, you can get sick. Continue testing the rabbit’s temperature. If it’s good, the temperature should be between 101⁰F and 103⁰F.
You should ask your vet to show you how to take your rabbit’s temperature. If you do this before there are signs of illness, you will be prepared for an emergency.
- To find out your rabbit’s temperature, you’ll need to place it on its back, either on a soft surface or on your lap. Support the rabbit’s head and shoulders on your stomach so that its back is arched into a “C” shape.
- Secure the rabbit’s back legs so it doesn’t kick. Once you are calm, insert a lubricated plastic thermometer no more than an inch into your rectum. Make sure the rabbit is well restrained and still while you take its temperature.
- Do your best to cool down your rabbit if he has a high fever by putting cold objects in his ears until the temperature drops below 104 degrees.
11. Feed your rabbit soft food
Until you can contact the vet, try forcing your rabbit to eat pumpkin, baby food, or vegetables. You can buy a syringe at a pet store. This can be used to put liquids directly into the rabbit’s mouth.
- To prepare a feeding syringe, wrap your rabbit in a towel and secure its head with your index finger under the head and your thumb at the opposite end of the head, below the base of the skull.
- Insert the syringe into the space between the incisor and the cheek. Start by adding no more than 0.2 to 0.5 ml of food and never feed more than 1 ml. Too much food at one time creates the risk of the rabbit choking. Go slowly. Then repeat with 5 to 10 ml of water.
12. Take your rabbit to the vet
Eventually, your rabbit will need professional help. Due to the wide range of possible dental problems, treatment varies. If you haven’t already, you should start an annual dental checkup to make sure there are no future complications.
13. Warm up your bunny
You should try to neutralize the rabbit’s drop in temperature. Try placing the rabbit on a warm (not hot) heating pad or hot water bottle wrapped in a towel. You can also warm the rabbit with your body heat, keeping it close to you for about an hour.
14. Massage your bunny
Gentle messages for the stomach can help reduce gas pressure. Massage frequently for a period of ten to fifteen minutes. During at least part of this period, he should have his hind legs elevated.
15. Protect your rabbit
There is nothing you can do to lessen the effects of head tilt at home. But you should do everything you can to prevent your rabbit from getting hurt. Make a soft box out of a towel or other soft object. You want to make sure that if your rabbit falls or jumps against a wall, it does as little damage as possible.
When provided with quality food, clean water, and a safe and comfortable home, the rabbit is very healthy. Although the disease is not uncommon, rabbit owners should do what they can to prevent the disease and be prepared to treat the disease, which sometimes comes on quickly. Just like humans, sometimes animals can get sick and need to be treated right away.
The best solution to the disease is simple prevention. Keeping feeders and water clean, while providing fresh, dry rabbit pellets and quality timothy hay, will promote good health. Keeping the drip tray and the entire cage clean is also important to prevent disease.
Despite the best hygiene and food, rabbits sometimes get sick. Not all vets treat rabbits comfortably, so smart owners seek out a vet with rabbit experience before their pet gets sick.
Although rabbits can get a wide variety of ailments, the most common are eye problems and colds called colds. None of these conditions seem serious when they first appear, but they can progress rapidly and are sometimes fatal. They both respond well to medications that can be obtained from a veterinarian.
Always be careful when giving antibiotics to rabbits. Your digestive tract is filled with millions of microbes that are essential for digestion. Some nonselective antibiotics will kill these friendly bacteria and can be toxic to rabbits.
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