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Rabbits/Suggestions of immobilizing rabbits femur

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Question
My rabbit jumped out my daughters arms. The vet stated his femur is broken. I am financially unable to pay for surgery or amputation. She did explain we could try to see how it heals itself and immobilization is possible solution for healing because she did feel what she believes to be the bone already trying to mend itself. Please inform me of any suggestions to immobilize his femur. He fell Tuesday and I just left the vet. Thanks for your time and help.

Answer
Dear Kila,

It is very, very difficult to stabilize a femur.  As you already have seen, the thigh is appressed to the abdomen and there is really not a good, loose area where one could tie a splint.

I know of vets who have stabilized the leg by actually using VetWrap to gently fix the thigh against the abdomen--but results are iffy.  If you stabilize it in the wrong position, then you could make things worse.

In a situation like this, cage rest is probably your best option, limiting movement as much as possible so the bone doesn't have a chance to move around.

Rabbits *can* heal breaks like this, as long as the bones are not shattered.  There is a risk of infection in some cases, so ask the vet about putting the bunny on rabbit-safe antibiotics is a good idea in this case.

I hope the bunny will heal on her own, and quickly.

Dana

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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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