First of all, I tried the search function on this forum but it seems to be not working at the moment? I'm not sure if it's just me...
On to the point... nothing out of the ordinary has been happening with Timmy recently. He's eating and pooping and acting just fine. I did notice he started to groom under his feet which he never did before for the past few days but at first I just ignored it. Then today it sparked on me that animals lick their wounds and I got worried. So during his nail clipping session tonight, to my surprise I saw a bright red sore hock on his left foot and his right one was more pink than normal. After finishing cutting his nails, I immediately went to look up some information online about them. I read in a couple places to use things like cold tea bags and neosporin. So I took Timmy and put on some neosporin on his sore hock and he flinched... it was then I noticed he was bleeding a little bit from it. I then wrapped some bandages around so he wouldn't lick the neosporin but of course he took that off in a few hours... I'm hoping that the medicine has sunk in by then.
I'm quite shocked and not sure if I should make an emergency appointment with the vet or not? He is still eating and pooping normally, but he just licks his sore hock once in a while. It's a coincidence that I just got him rug samples for his cage and a 1/4 inch screen for his litter box (for his digging)... I'm not sure what caused it either. Perhaps the hard floor he has had in his cage? Or maybe that his hind foot was periodically drenched in his urine because he always pushes his litter aside before peeing regardless if I fill it up after he does it and that I clean the box up every evening... My house is carpeted and there are no hard floors for him besides his cage which is now lined with carpet. I've heard that carpet can be abrasive so I'll be looking into sheep skin rugs or maybe some straw? I think I've fixed the major problems that may lead to sore hocks... but since he has it now I'm really not sure what my next step should be. Any advice?
Sorry my post is so long but I guess my major concerns are...
Is licking the sore hock really bad for him? Especially since there are remnants of neosporin there... I've been petting him to stop when I see him licking it.
Which may be worse for him regarding sore hocks... a 1/4 square inch screen across his litter box vs him digging out/pushing aside the litter so his pee would drench his feet (I've read somewhere both can do harm to his feet?)
I think my carpet sample is of nylon, I'm not sure... is that bad for him?
Should I be making an appointment with my vet or what is suggested that I should do for his sore hocks? I know they take a while to heal.
This isn't really related in any way... but this is the fourth week of switching him from alfalfa hay/pellets to timothy. He hasn't been eating too much timothy but does when he is hungry. Should I completely stop giving him alfalfa hay and pellets after this week is done with?
Also unrelated but... he is molting big time now and I've been using a cat slicker to groom him. I feel this brush is not good enough... any suggestions?
Thanks alot from an extremely concerned bunnymom!