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Question
My little Bandit will be 8 years in March.  He has been receiving adequan injections for his arthritis every 3 weeks, he is also on Metacam 0.35 ml. He has problems with his front legs sliding to the side. I noticed a couple of times during the recent weeks that he suddely fell to the side and seemed to attack his hind legs.  Is it possible that adequan can cause seizures or allergies?

Answer
Dear Ute,

This could be more than arthritis.  In rabbits this age, we sometimes see the first onset of neurological signs due to infection by a protist parasite, Encephalitozoon cuniculi.  This can be treated with ponazuril and/or fenbendazole (NOT albendazole!), but treatment should be started as soon as signs start to develop to arrest further degeneration.

You can read more about this parasite and the signs it causes in rabbits here:

http://www.rabbit.org/journal/3-2/e-cuniculi.html

http://www.rabbitnetwork.org/articles/treatment.shtml

And if you Google "encephalitozoon cuniculi" or "E. cuniculi" you'll find a lot more information.

If you're not sure your current vet is very experienced with rabbit medicine, you might want to check here for a rabbit savvy vet who can give you a second opinion:

http://www.rabbit.org/vet

I hope this helps.  Sending healing thoughts.

Dana  

Rabbits

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Dana Krempels, Ph.D.

Expertise

I've lived with companion rabbits for more than 35 years, and consider them members of my family. I can answer any questions about the biology and health of rabbits, from the commonplace to the unusual. But please note:

RULE #1:
THE INTERNET IS NOT THE PLACE TO SEEK HELP IN AN EMERGENCY.

...it is an EMERGENCY.

Find a rabbit vet at www.rabbit.org/vet for immediate help, and don't risk your bunny's life by spending time asking questions online! If you can't get in touch with your vet, read these Emergency Sick Bunny Instructions.

If you have found a wild baby rabbit, please read these EMERGENCY INSTRUCTIONS FOR WILD BABY RABBITS and then use this link to FIND A LOCAL WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR who can give you the right advice.


RULE #2:
Help me help you! Please make your subject line informative if you have an urgent question. then LET ME KNOW IN THE SUBJECT LINE so I can give your question highest priority over non-urgent questions. If you don't do this, then I can't guarantee timely assistance!

For all the best, most accurate rabbit health, care and behavior information, visit The House Rabbit Society.

Experience

I have been rescuing and rehabilitating domestic and wild rabbits for about 30 years. I have written articles for many rabbit rescue publications, as well as for the veterinary journal, Exotic DVM. I own EtherBun, the internet's largest listserve dedicated to health, care, and behavior of domestic rabbits.

Organizations
Houserabbit Adoption, Rescue, and Education, Inc. (H.A.R.E., Inc.) president National House Rabbit Society (Board member)

Publications
Exotic DVM
Warren Peace (Journal of the House Rabbit Society of Miami)
Various newsletters of the House Rabbit Society, nationwide

Education/Credentials
Ph.D - Biology
B.S. - Biology
B.A. - English

Awards and Honors
Lightspan Academic Excellence Award for web site on rabbit health and biology
(http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare)

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