Rabbits/Bunny Eye


Bentleys eye
Bentleys eye  
Our 7 month old bunny Bentley started with a slightly red eye.  We tried over the counter Polysporin eye drops for a few days without much success. We took our bunny to the vet we use for my dog....who is awesome, but admits he doesn't see many bunnies and often refers people to vets in the city-an hour away.   Any way the bunny is eating fine, pooping and has no other symptoms but the ugly red eye.  
Vet prescribed Tobramycin  and said if there was no improvement in a few days he would change the antibiotic.   The eye doesn't look a whole lot better, so today we got ofloxacin.   Hope this works.   We have noticed that the coloured part of the eye appears a bluish in appearance, and slightly cloudy.   He has a lot of white discharge also.   Vet does not suspect anything other that conjunctivitis at this time.   Wondered if this infection could be more, and can this cause blindness in an eye if it's just bacterial in nature?   
Also, what do you suggest for our bunny.... He won't eat hay!   Tried various types, no go.  Will eat lots of veggies and fruit,  and pellets... But we have heard that pellets shouldn't be his main food.       Any help is appreciated.  I have sent a photo, but it certainly looks worse in person.   


Dear Karen,

There are many possible causes for a red, runny eye in a rabbit, and you can find an overview here:


If the eye looks cloudy/bluish, it could be that the cornea is edematous (swollen/inflamed) from an injury, or from bacterial overgrowth.  If the eyes are runny and red, it's possible that he has a mild bacterial overgrowth blocking his tear duct.  But it's also possible he just injured his cornea, and this will resolve with the treatment you describe.

Sorry for the delay in answering.  Classes are just starting up at UM, and I forgot to put myself on Allexperts "vacation".  But please let me know how he's doing now, if you have time.  If you need a bunny vet, check the list here:


Eye problems are often related to dental problems in rabbits, so it's good to have a rabbit expert do a good exam to determine the source of the problem.  If it's strictly the eye, then the vet might be able to refer you to a veterinary ophthalmologist, if necessary.

Hope bun will be fine soon.



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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:

...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.


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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