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Last Post by BB at 7/27/2006 11:21 PM (31 Replies)
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User is Offline Sarah Jones
London, UK
99 posts Send Private Message
7/06/2006 1:00 AM
Hello, I'm new on here - great site!

I bought my first house bunny a couple of weeks ago, a dwarf lop (though i think there may be a bit of mini in there!). We've kept bunnies for a long time, but usually free in the back garden of my parents house, and usually french and german lops.

My new baby, Dougal, seems to be having a few issues though! He keeps sneezing. This is the only syptom he has, he just sneezes and sneezes and sneezes, sometimes 10 times in a row. I think its allergies, I say this because I have them also and this morning we were sneezing in unison! But wanted to check if any other causes...

The other problem I have is a bald patch on Dougal's ear. He keeps scratching at it and it's starting to get a little bloody.

Now I don't want to rush him down to vets - I'm fairly sure he's just got mites or something, but I can't find small animal mite spray anywhere! I also wanted to know, is there small animal cream I can rub in it? He doesn't seem overly bothered by any of this - he is eating well, sleeping well, being a massive pain all the time with gusto etc, so I don't want to rush him to the vet when I think this is probably fixible with medication if I can just find it! Anyone in the London area or online know where I can pick some of this stuff up for my wee dude?

User is Offline Sarah Jones
London, UK
99 posts Send Private Message
7/06/2006 1:25 AM
do you think this would be ok:

http://www.petplanet.co.uk/product....pf_id=3258

could be the answer to the itching and potential buggy itchingy things!

User is Offline HoppyBunny
Western U.S.
36 posts Send Private Message
7/06/2006 4:40 PM

Rabbits can and do have allergies. It is usually the hay, so I try and shake it a bit before putting it in the cage. The ear might also be an allergy as well or infection. It is worth taking him to the vet as any ear type of problem for a rabbit is serious. It's not a far trip to their brain and can cause head tilt that may turn to be permanent.

It sounds like you really care about your bunnies, but I urge you not to free them in the backyard. They have no chance of survival and predators will get them easily. Any particular reason why you "free" them? They are quite loving companionable pets, especially when they are fixed, their personalities are more likeable. Which I think may be part of the problem with Dougal. He's got all his hormones which makes them a little difficult to deal with.

 


User is Offline Sarah Jones
London, UK
99 posts Send Private Message
7/07/2006 12:22 AM
Dougal is only 7 weeks so can't be fixed yet! He is down at the vets today as his ear got a lot worse and he got slightly watery eyes. The vet needs to take some cultures. Hopefully he will be ok It saved me catching the tube in at primetime today anyway after my parents rang me telling me to walk all the way to work today!

The rabbits used to live in the backgarden of our house in the countryside. My parents haven't had rabbits for about 4 years now, only Dougal who lives in my flat in London as a house bunny. The bunnies loved the garden, were bigger than cats, and lived long, healthy and fun lives outside. We never felt the need to bring them in at all - and when we went out we would call to them and they would come and sit and play with us. They had a little home to live in when they wanted... It was just preference for us. Our house didn't have loads of predators nearby. However, our last two died on the same night with one getting eaten and one dying from shock. This had quite an effect on us and we didn't get anymore after that... I know some would be against us having done this. But our rabbits all had long healthy lives, that were much more fun for them outside when they were bigger than cats, than in little hutches (that fifteen years ago, were all that was available)... I don't think any of us would have changed the way we kept them!

I can certainly see where you are coming from, but my childhood memories of our flower named babies were all good! We only every vaccinated one rabbit as well, and none were spayed... The one we vaccinated died from it and my mum wouldn't do it again. None of them caught anything at all. Despite Dougal being a house rabbit, I expect he'll get some vaccinations though. But I do worry...

Gosh. I'm getting so many grey hairs from all of this, and I've only had Dougal for two weeks!

Today he was a little pet though and did exactly as he was told and sat quietly on the vet table. I was very proud of him!

Feel free to rant back at me about how we kept our pets - it's actually very interesting how people do things differently! Our pet policy has always been, they may have shorter lives, but they'll be very fun! (Of course, our dog is now 14 and doesn't have any ailments at all! She's crazy!)

User is Offline HoppyBunny
Western U.S.
36 posts Send Private Message
7/07/2006 4:37 PM
Oh hon, I won't rant, I was just curious. I'm glad that Dougal was checked out, poor little fella. How is he doing now? The link that you gave is not working.  

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8677 posts Send Private Message
7/07/2006 6:55 PM

Welcome!  I am glad the vet was able to get a culture.  Hopefully it is something that is easily treatable.  

Wow, so sad about your bunnies dying from being eaten and the other from shock.   How terrifying for them. EEEEK!!!  That's one of the  reasons I would rather have my bunny inside, but with supervised visits outside. 

So here's my little rant.  But you seem open to it, so I'll share.   I do believe they can have a wonderful fulfilling fun life inside, with supervised outside visits.   I have also seen large outside pens that  were made in such a way with that protected bunnies from predators.   I know people are continuing to learn more and more about the domestic rabbits and so much has changed in the last 10 years.  I've learned so much over the years, and I know I would have done things differently in the past.  So I do admit we see thing differently when it comes to outside hutch bunnies,  but that's okay.   We can still help each other out when it comes to diet, health, etc.   Okay, so now I'm off my soapbox - now you are rant free. 

What made you decide to have a "house bunny" now?   SO cute by the way.   What's Dougal like?

I hope all is well with your little guy!  I'll keep you and Dougal in my thoughts.


User is Offline barbara elliott
21 posts Send Private Message
7/07/2006 8:53 PM
Hi there!

We're new (my little friend Jhumpa and I) and we think this sight is the best. Unfortunately, we've got a baldy problem, too. Here's the story:

Jhumpa's about 5 months old (a beautiful, sassy mini-lop), and I've had him for about 3 months. When I got him from the pet store, I noticed a small spot at the back of his head where you could kind of see his pink skin, but I thought maybe it was normal for a bunny to have thinner fur there. By the time he was neutered--three weeks ago--this spot was just a little less than 1" in diameter--and it's not like it's totally bald, but just thinner, like baby-fine fur, which you can see the skin through easily when parted. When I brought him in for the neuter, I mentioned it to the (rabbit-savy) vet, who did a fung-assay for ringworm (I think); two weeks later when I brought him in, the fungassay was negative, but it seemed to me the spot was getting bigger. The vet said that sometimes the anisthetics from surgery can cause hair loss, and it being shed season, too, she didn't want to treat for something that might not be a problem, so she advised that if his hair hadn't grown back in a month, we'd give him a shot for mites. I'm sure the spot is getting bigger, but I've read about bunnies and mites, and the skin isn't crusty or sore looking at all, it looks perfectly healthy apart from the fur being thin. I read that some mites are subcutaneous (?), though, and can have almost no outward signs. And he certainly acts healthy: spunky, hoppy, eating well--but now that I watch for it he does seem to be itchy behind his ears (but not obsessively itchy. but I notice him giving his ears a good scratch half a dozen times a day). I was planning on making an appointment for him in the next week or two, but the mention of head tilt frightens me. I didn't think this was a serious matter. Any thoughts? We'd sure appreciate it!

User is Offline Sarah Jones
London, UK
99 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2006 6:23 AM
I bought my own flat which is why I have to have an inside bunny! i have no outside! he just had a few minutes out front on his lead though. but doesn't like it at all. he hates being touched really our other bunnies were a lot nicer! but that's what you get with a wild coloured bunny! they've all been little monsters! it does make for amusing companionship and a challenge though!

our guinea pigs live in an outside run - they have the door open during the day and get to run around our orchard... they get shut in at night and have little hidey holes everywhere though. no evil deaths to guinea pigs in this way!

sooooo - two weeks in and i've spent £200 (that is about $400) at the vets. i don't have pet insurance. i hadn't bought it yet! i live in a zone 1 area which equals rich vets for sure. and he's done all the cultures and said "i know you've paid for the fungal tests" but i think it's bacterial. i was a bit like "glad i could give you the extra £60. my mum has never had to spend more than 75 pound on our other bunnies, so from now on i'll drive him home! however, he does have a check up next week...

his other ear is starting to look iffy to me, and the vet noticed crustiness on the inside. the outside stuff popped and pus came out. this happened at vets. he thinks it may be a wound. i'm not sure. he also itches his ears a lot. but the vet did a test for mites and he doesn't have them, even though the signs are there. i will mention it all on thursday...

now his ear is just a big blobby bloody mess. it worries me. he also keeps sneezing still, and is on eye drops as his ear thing may have moved to eye. he's on antibiotics too. the poor thing HATES me now because i keep shoving stuff at him morning and night! and it doesn't seem to be dong much either... i have to wash my hands a lot too because if it is fungal then i can catch it!

so he has a lot wrong with him right now and it's all a bit worrisome, but then it could just be a wound and an allergy. i just don't think my vet has a lot of experience with them... i can't keep affording this anyway. it's a joke those sort of costs...

tabby - your vet should have tested for mites first, that way he'd know whether he needs a shot or not. i would get him mite tested, it sounds like it is. and then you can treat it accordingly... mites are pretty common and i'm surprised your vet didn't. and as rabbit savy as vets seem, they often aren't with rabbits. cats and dogs yes, rabbits, they are still learning as they go along! it could also be inner ear things that make him scratch his ears. crustiness usually does suggest mites (but then look at mine), and if it isn't then it could be waxy build up or such stuff. mine is continuously itching and scratching at the moment which i'll be telling my vet about on thursday. but it's unlikely to be head tilt so don't panic! it could just be that your bun is a baldy bun naturally! if you're worried, get another appointment sooner rather than later!

ps. just to add. inside of my rabbits ears are now cut and bleeding. ARGH! sounds like ear mites to me. why did my vet not get this! just making me panic this!

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8677 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2006 5:35 PM
Welcome Tabby!  Now you're entered into the drawing for the bunny goodies.

I agree with Sazemoo that your vet should have tested for mites, but don't panic, just keep an eye on him  My bunnies scratch their ears a few times a day as a normal part of grooming  Many times they dig in their ears with their foot and then lick their foot, and scratch It's just a way to clean out their ears.   And the hair behind the ears on the back of the their neck area is normally thinner  and  that can really thin out during molting. 

My Bailey molts in spurts, and she is definitley balding on her backside, but then I am beginning to see the new hair growing back.  

I don't know if I would wait  a month if he seems to worsen, but a couple of weeks should be fine unless you really notice an irritation in the ears, an increase of itching, more hairloss without regrowth..   

Does your bunny shake its head a lot?
  

User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8677 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2006 5:55 PM
Oh Sazemoo,  I'm so sorry!  I can understand why you are worried.   Dougal sounds miserable.   What a pain to have spent so much and they still don't know what is exactly wrong.     The  pus thing sounds like an abscess.  Where was that located?   Inside of his ear?  Did the doctor think it was an abscess created from scratching?

I'm thinking that if he doesn't have mites, could he be suffering fr0m some kind of infection like  "Snuffles".    Does he also have discharge from his nose and eyes?

What kind of antibiotic is he on?

What color is the crusty stuff in his ears?    Do you have pictures of it that you could post here?

I'm keeping  you and your bunny in my thouhts and sending healing vibes your way. 

Regarding your bunny and not being affectionate.  I know some bunnies are independent, but there are some tools to help you bond more with your bunny.  What is your routine right now with Dougal?

Also, regarding the lead.    How I was able to get my bunny to be okay with the  lead was first put the harness on him, and let him run around the house for about an hour with it on (without the leash part), I would do this daily, until he didn't even care about it. 

Once he didn't even notice it was on himt,  then I added the leash part.  Of course he wasn't liking that at first at all.   And of course, I never expected to walk him like a dog, but I just wanted to make sure he couldn't scramble out of the harness so I could make adjustments before we ventured outside.  

It took  some time for him to tolerate it because I'm sure that once the leash prevented him from going further, he felt caught, and didn't like it.  But then, once he got used to it, he LED me.   I would take him to this grassy fenced in area where it  was pesticide free and no dogs were allowed in there.

Where do up take your rabbit?

User is Offline barbara elliott
21 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2006 6:55 PM

Oh, Sazemoo, I'm so sorry to hear about your bunny having such a hard time. Jhumpa and I send the best of wishes. I wish there was something I could do! We hope he gets better soon!

Thank you both for the reassuring thoughts--the mention of head tilt just scared me, that's all. I don't think he shakes his head, except to sass me when I smell of perfume he doesn't like. It sounds like he should be fine, we'll check on the mites in a week or two.

Take care, everyone!!!


User is Offline barbara elliott
21 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2006 6:58 PM

p.s. Bailey is beautiful! All of your buns are beautiful! I really enjoy your site, the narration and the pictures. Bailey's helicopter ears are awesome!

User is Offline Christine Sholl
4 posts Send Private Message
7/09/2006 8:52 PM

Hello.  Poor bunny!  The only thing I can think of with this is to go to

http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare/rabbithealth.html

The lady who runs the site is one of the top rabbit health experts I know of in the states.  You could e-mail her your bun's symptoms and course of actions taken and she might be able to suggest something.  Good luck.

--Christine

User is Offline Sarah Jones
London, UK
99 posts Send Private Message
7/11/2006 12:09 AM
thanks for the links and good thoughts. i had a bit of a tearful time with him the other day because he bit me as he's not enjoying the oral antibiotics at all. it appears the inside of his ears are just where he is scratching! it's very strange. i've decided to ignore the vet a bit and have been putting on tea tree cream and it seems to be soothing it a bit. i think he may just be over zealous. and it might have been an abcess but he suggested it was a bacterial infection, which i'm starting to believe. i think he scratched to hard and caused a lump to grow or something. now the lumps are just big scabs. the big scabs are at the top of the left ear on the outside. he has eyedrop for left eye because he's been moving the infection across with cleaning. he still seems very happy though and not bothered too much!

my daily routine (i've only had him two and half weeks mind!) is to open is cube palace when i wake up in the morning. he then gets to hop around for an hour in the morning before i "urge" him back in to go to work. i get home at 6ish and then he is out til 1am. he is less than friendly right now because when he hops on me at all that is when i go for it and grab him to antibiotic him up! still. he does seem to still hop on my ocassionally despite this and yesterday he ate his first bit of broccoli!

with the lead, he has no problem with this and loves it actually. he especially loved it in the front garden of my parents. now at mine i've been letting him out on the concrete balcony (all bricked in - it's a london georgian front balcony with the front doors leading out onto it) and he just ducks and hides. i'm not sure if it's the concrete or what! i'm going to do it a few more times just to get him more used to it then carry him downstairs to the courtyard and put him on some mud. maybe he will prefer that!

unfortunately i think dougal bun is just a bit independent and hateful of humans! some of our rabbits have been like that, and if truth be told, i knew it when i bought him as a white bunny with blue eyes was lovely and then he looked at me scornfully and i just thought "ah! attitude! i'll take him!"

i quite like the challenge

User is Offline Shannon Marcum
San Diego, Ca
5 posts Send Private Message
7/11/2006 12:24 PM

I bought my first house bunny a couple of weeks ago, a dwarf lop (though i think there may be a bit of mini in there!).

Dwarf breeds (4 lbs and under) will have a dwarf gene from one parent. "Mini" and dwarf  are the same thing in rabbit genetics.

My new baby, Dougal, seems to be having a few issues though! He keeps sneezing. This is the only syptom he has, he just sneezes and sneezes and sneezes, sometimes 10 times in a row. I think its allergies, I say this because I have them also and this morning we were sneezing in unison! But wanted to check if any other causes...

Is there a discharge? If so it is pasturella or snuffels. Get him to a vet IMEDIATLY. Pasturella can be deadly in most cases let alone uncomfterble. There is no cure for it, but there are things Natural and senthetic that can help and or put in in rumission. 

Do NOT allow him around ANY other rabbits until you have him checked out. Respratory problems in rabbits and rodents in general are VERY contagiouse.


The other problem I have is a bald patch on Dougal's ear. He keeps scratching at it and it's starting to get a little bloody.

Could be fur mites. Still will need to go to a vet. Email me privetly. I know some breeders in London and other parts of england that can give you better advice on where to get your remedies.



User is Offline Sarah Jones
London, UK
99 posts Send Private Message
7/12/2006 3:41 AM
hi - as noted in my first few threads here, he has gone to the vet, and has his check up tomorrow. he doesn't have discharge, and he doesnt have mites as he was checked for it! tomorrow he will be looking at his ear again, and also give him some mite jabs.

mini lops and dwarf lops are two different breeds of rabbits with different face shapes and different weights. mini lops are usually half the size of a dwarf lop. my dwarf lop has a flatter face than pure breed dwarf and this is why i believe he has a mini lop parent as well.

dwarf lops are USUALLY over 4lbs, not over. minis are almost always under. they are definitely two different breeds, and it's like mistaking a french for a german lop!

i also have a single rabbit on his own, and my neigbourhood doesn't seem to have a massive exodus of house rabbits for him to mingle with

i actually think today he is doing much better! inside his ears have got better with tea tree cream, and on the outside only the big scab is still the problem.

the vet should ok him i hope, if not, he has a specialist he will bring in.


User is Offline BB
San Francisco Area
Forum Leader
8677 posts Send Private Message
7/12/2006 6:45 AM

And let me add to the whole mini-dwarf chaos.  I always thought that the smallest lop was called the Holland Lop (about 4 pound and under) and the Mini-lop was the next largest.   I also think depending on where in the world we actually reside, the names differ slightly.   

I am so glad to hear that Dougal is doing better.  You two have been in my thoughts.  The abscess is always a worry, but at least you are seeing improvement on the inside, and I hope the healing will continue.  Keep us updated with what the vet says.    

 


User is Offline Christine Sholl
4 posts Send Private Message
7/12/2006 8:57 PM
As an aromatherapist for humans and animals, I would not use tea tree cream (with tea tree oil/essential oil) as an ingredient.  Essential oils from the pine and citrus family particularly are not good for use on buns, other small animals and cats.  Their livers have difficulty breaking down the compounds and in the case of cats, are unable to break the essential oils down at all.  (Cats lack glucurony which is an enzyme that breaks those substances down.)  Hydrosols are the way to go with these critters since they haven't any contraindications.  If this were my bun, I would get some Bach rescue remedy cream (readily available in the UK) and apply that.  It does a nearly miraculous job of healing (it's the only thing I will apply topically on my buns).  It is safe if they happen to ingest it via grooming as well.  You could also add a couple of drops of rescue remedy to your bun's water as well.  It may have a side effect of improving his disposition too.   I am glad that  your guy is perking up!

User is Offline Sarah Jones
London, UK
99 posts Send Private Message
7/13/2006 5:21 AM
i used to use rescue remedy on me i think!

well, i have been given surolan cream for dougal at the vets this morning. he looks like he's doing much better, and also seems to be sneezing less. i don't think it was ever an abcess. i think he scratched too hard and it was a wound. anyway, the ear is now just a pink colour and most of the scabbing is going! i told the vet, that from what i could see he was scratching his ears more than necessary etc and that i think it was something in the ears. he checked inside and said they were a bit red, so i'm continuing with antibiotics and will swap to the surolan cream (though it's for dogs, it should be ok, after all he's a vet and hopefully knows what he's up to!). he also doesn't need eyedrops now.

so i'm happy

i will keep letting you know what happens and how well certain stuff works on him in case any of you have similar wound issues!

will try and get a picture of his ear as well to show how it is improving

he's off on holiday tomorrow to my mummy's where he's going to get to live in a mean horribe outside hutch for a couple of days (when he's not hopping about inside of course) - which will be good in this weather and he can get started on more grass! i myself am off to bristol, then wales, to celebrate my grandpa's 90th! yay! go grandpa!

User is Offline barbara elliott
21 posts Send Private Message
7/14/2006 8:56 PM

Sazemoo, I'm so happy to hear your bunny is feeling better! We were worried, too! Go, Dougal! Go, grandpa, too!

By the way, I think Jhumpa's fur is growing in, so it was just a silly shedding thing, after all. Go bunnies!
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