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Rabbits/My rabbit has a very RED EYE AND WONT OPEN ONE OF THE EYES


What should I do if my rabbit has one red eye and womt open it at all???? Please answer urgently!

Dear Gary,

Get him to a veterinarian, immediately.  An mammal eye is a mammal eye.  There may be a foreign body in the eye that needs to be flushed out.

If possible, get some sterile saline ophthalmic solution (0.9% saline, no other ingredients!), warm it slightly, and then flush the eye by holding the eyelids away from the eyeball as much as possible and squirting the liquid into the eye, rinsing it well.  DO NOT TOUCH THE TIP OF THE BOTTLE TO THE EYE.  Keep it sterile for future use.

If there is a corneal scratch, the vet might want to prescribe antibiotics eye drops.  Avoid anything with penicillin.  Drops such as gentamycin or ofloxacin, or ciprofloxacin or moxifloxacin are all safe.

For fungal problems, miconazole or ketoconazole creams can be used with the supervision of your vet.  But best to have the vet check the situation first, to see what the problem actually is. Many things can cause a red, runny eye, and knowing how to treat depends on determining the actual problem.

Some eye problems can even be caused by dental disease.  Please see:

I hope this helps.



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Dana Krempels, Ph.D.


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:

Find a rabbit vet at 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.


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.

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

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

Ph.D - Biology
B.S. - Biology
B.A. - English

Awards and Honors
Lightspan Academic Excellence Award for web site on rabbit health and biology

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