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Rabbits/Saline Contact Solution

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Question
My rabbit has been prescribed Bicillin injections diluted with saline. I am supposed to give him his second injection today but noticed the bottle of saline the vet gave me is the saline solution you use to clean contacts. Is this safe to inject? I've called my vet but they are not in the office for the 4th of July weekend.

This is a relatively new exotics vet in my area that is supposed to be more rabbit savvy than the vet I was using. But when I have given Bicillin injections before they were always premixed in the syringes.

Answer
Dear Carrie,

If the solution you have contains anything other than water and sodium chloride, then I would NOT use it to dilute the dual-acting penicillin.  Contact lens cleaning solution contains detergents and other ingredients that might be harmful if injected.

I suppose the vet is having you dilute the penicillin because of its viscosity.  But still, be sure to draw back on the plunger after the needle is under the skin, to be sure you have not hit a blood vessel.  NEVER inject into the muscle.

We don't dilute the penicillin, but I suppose it would be harmless to do so as long as you use just pure, sterile 0.9% saline, not contact lens cleaning solution.

Hope this helps.

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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