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Question
Hello, I have had my lop ear male rabbit for about 2 years now. I am unsure of how old he is as I adopted him from someone who no longer wanted him. He is indoors and in a large cage by himself. I had him out a couple of weeks ago and didn't notice anything wrong with him. A few days later after coming home from work I noticed he wasn't really using his hind legs. I immediately got him out of the cage and checked him out. I found that his stomach had been chewed up and that he was unable to use his hind legs. I took him to the vet and was told that he probably had an infection and was prescribed antibiotics. A week went by with no improvement. I took him back to the vet. This vet did and x-ray of his back to make sure there wasn't some kind of back damage. The x-ray didn't show any problems but the vet said that there still could be some damage. She prescribed another round of antibiotics and pain medication. She said that he might be chewing himself because he is in pain and if we can get his back better he will stop chewing. This is about a week since the last vet visit however he is still chewing. He has a large patch red, bleeding, and scabbed over on his stomach. I also noticed he now has ear mites. Can these things be connected? Do you have any advise as to why he would be chewing himself raw?

Answer
Hi Sarah,

Did your vet give you any medication for fur mites?  If he/she didn't notice the ear mites then they probably didn't check to see if there were fur mites.  The best thing you can do is get the bunny to a rabbit savvy vet.  You can find a list here:

www.rabbit.org/vets

If it looks likes mites and feels like mites then he probably has mites.  I would ask the doctor to check for mites and even if none are seen I would still treat for them.  We have had rabbits and even cats that constantly scratch and dig at themselves for no apparent reason.  Once they were treated with Revolution the itching stopped.  I would also be concerned about E. Cuniculi.  I hate to bad mouth any medical professional but in this case I would STRONGLY suggest a second opinion.

Good luck

Pam

Rabbits

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Paula Murdock-Briggs

Experience

I am a licensed American Rabbit Breeders Registrar. I do not show rabbits anymore nor do I breed them. I do believe it is important that people that chose to breed rabbits do so with only purebred and genetically sound animals or that they have a thorough understanding of genetics prior to breeding. I have chosen to keep my registars license to help the 4H youth in my area. I do stay current on all breeds, varieties, show rules, regulations of the ARBA. I have spent the past 8 years focusing on rescuing and caring for PET bunnies who were no longer wanted. I am the current CEO of Little Angels Animal Sanctuary, Inc. I was appointed CEO of the rescue organization and sanctuary in 2008. We gained our 501(c)3 IRS tax exemption status in 2012. We have taken on the task of rescuing unwanted PET rabbits as well as some farm animals. I teach genetics and health to the local youth as well as register and promote the breeding of only purebred and genetically sound animals. I rescue PET rabbits. These are rabbits that lived in peoples homes and were either surrendered to us or sent to the auction for meat. While I believe that all bunnies should be pets, I understand that people raise them for other reasons. I will answer questions from anyone, regardless of their purpose. I will reject any questions that are considered unethical or inhumane.

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Little Angels Animal Sanctuary.

Education/Credentials
President and CEO of Little Angels Animal Sanctuary, Inc. I have over 10 years of experience working closely with a veterinarian that treats rabbits. We have studied and treated nearly every illness that can affect rabbits.

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