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Rabbits/"time sensitive" ear infection


Hello Dana,

Tao my lop rabbit was diagnosed with an ear infection on 4/6/16 and was prescribed Baytril (tablets). The diagnosis was based on marked yellow, pyrulent, malodorous debris in both ears. ( I only smelled 1 ear that was foul).Swab showed mixed bacterial infection on cytology. Culture is pending but lab isolated Pastuerella, and is culturing other organisms.

The vet suspected mites with my other rabbit, based on dandruff at the base of his tail.( I feel that it is not mites but just dandruff, he has difficulty grooming hind-limb weakness--spinal issues. However we are treating both rabbits with Revolution.

I have concerns with the use of Baytril and Revolution and would like your advice/input..please.

My research shows that Baytril ( alone ) is NOT an ideal(ineffective) treatment for ear infections.??

And what is the proper dosage for Revolution? I am getting conflicting information.

Because of the size of my rabbits --5.77kg and Tao weighs around 11.5 pounds vet prescribed Revolution ( 20-40lb dog size) and I'm to give the contents of one tube per rabbit which contains 1.0ml of 120mg/ml.

Based on HRS recommendation this is very high. Hrs and other chart is recommending if using 120mg concentration dosage is 0.05cc per kg of body weight. large variation between 1ml and 0.3-0.4.
I'm wondering if HRS ETC are outdated on their revolution dosing??

Is Baytril an effective treatment for ear infections?

What is the current guideline for dosing with revolution for mites?
Is dosing 1ml of a 120mg concentration revolution OK for a 5.77kg rabbit? (I need to give next treatment soon).


Do you have any creative trick in dosing a rabbit baytril (tabs)?
I tried crushing the pill and mixing it with banana and I had hoped he would take it from hand, but he said--no way! I was hoping to avoid syringe medicating--he freaks out when I put the syringe in his mouth and will hyperventilate after, which worries me that he will go into stasis.

I hope to hear from you soon--greatly appreciated!


Dear Paulette,

In answer to your questions, here goes.

Is Baytril an effective treatment for ear infections?

Whether any antibiotic is an effective treatment for any type of infection depends more on the bacteria causing the problem than the location of the infection.  If your population of bacteria are sensitive to Baytril, then Baytril is a reasonable choice.  If not, then a different antibiotic might be better.

That said, some abscesses are more difficult to treat than others because of the lack of vascularization (i.e., blood supply to deliver the antibiotics to the site).  An ear abscess is one of those.  A large abscess will have the most active bacteria in the capsule that encloses the bacteria, and that part can generally be reached by antibiotics (though some antibiotics have better inner and middle ear penetration than others; dual-acting Penicillin-G Procaine/Benzathine may have better penetration than Baytril for an ear infection.  But if the bacteria causing the infection are not sensitive to penicillin, then it won't do any good to switch.  And note that ONLY injectable penicillin G is safe for rabbits; no oral penicillins, or really any other type of penicillin is advisable.)

Bottom line:  If the culture and sensitivity test results suggest the bacteria are sensitive to penicillin, and the Baytril doesn't seem to work after a couple of weeks, talk to your vet about switching to dual-acting penicillin injections.  (Dual acting will work better than Penicillin G alone, as the Benzathine salt of penicillin has a longer "hang time" in the body's tissues, and so will have more of a time-release effect.)

What is the current guideline for dosing with revolution for mites?
Is dosing 1ml of a 120mg concentration revolution OK for a 5.77kg rabbit? (I need to give next treatment soon).

There is no published dose for rabbits.  But I can confirm that many of the vets and rabbit rescuers I know are now doubling the manufacturer's recommended dose (6mg/kg) to 12mg/kg and seeing better results.  Not sure whether this is because we're selecting resistant mites, but there it is.

A rabbit who weighs 5.77kg in our household would be treated with 0.5-0.6mL of the 120mg/ml solution.  We have used this dose and seen no ill effects.  But of course discuss this with your vet before changing anything your vet has prescribed.

Do you have any creative trick in dosing a rabbit baytril (tabs)?

We always make a suspension of any antibiotic in a dilute molasses solution.  If you tell me the size tablet of Baytril you have, I can tell you how to make the suspension and what amount to give.  You'll need a good mortar and pestle (available at most pharmacies), molasses, and some syringes (10ml or smaller) for measuring liquid.

For a quicker response on the suspension instructions, you can email me at

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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