Rabbit illnesses are unfortunately very common, largely due to their delicate and complex health systems. Read on to arm yourself with valuable information.
If you notice that your pet is presenting symptoms that match those of the illnesses listed below, you should consult your vet straight away as a matter of importance.
Myxomatosis: the most common of rabbit illnesses
This is an illness that is caused by a poxivirus. It affects domestic rabbits as well as those living in the wild. Myxomatosis is more often found in rural zones.
There are unfortunately no treatments for this disease, so it highly recommended that you vaccinate your pet against the most common of rabbit illnesses.
Symptoms of myxomatosis
The acute form presents as a fever, loss of appetite and ocular symptoms. This can be either an inflammation of the eyelids, the appearance of nodules on the nose, eyes or ears.
As for the chronic form, this presents as a coryza. The symptoms are very similar, physically: an inflammation of the eyelids and the appearance of nodules.
A fatal disease: la RHD (Rabbit haemorrhagic disease)
RHD affects mostly European rabbits (both domestic and wild). It is extremely contagious but is not dangerous for humans or other animals.
Just like myxomatosis, it is recommended to vaccinate your rabbit against this disease.
Symptoms of RHD:
Unfortunately, the symptoms of this disease are not always visible. Sometimes, RHD can present as a fever, difficulty moving, eyes watering, blood in the faeces and shaking.
Rhinitis, otherwise known as coryza, is a respiratory illness that is very common in rabbits. In order to prevent its spread you should keep your pet in a clean, dry place that is protected from air currents.
The symptoms of Rhinitis:
If you notice that your rabbit is sneezing and that their nose is running, they probably have rhinitis. Rhinitis can also present as ulcers and abscesses. You should consult your veterinary as soon as possible in order to treat your rabbit.
Pasteurellosis: a disease that affects rabbits' organs
This is one of the more common rabbit illnesses. Pasteurellosis is caused by the Pasteurella multocida bacteria, which can manifest in many different ways.
In order to prevent pasteurellosis, it is important to clean your rabbit's habitat. You should also keep it away from humid places and air currents.
The symptoms of pasteurellosis:
According to the virulence of the bacteria, there are different symptoms: otitis, respiratory problems, blood infections, subcutaneous abscesses, amongst others.
Diarrhea and other digestive illnesses
Rabbits' digestive systems are fragile and the quality of their food is of primordial importance.
Diarrhea is dangerous for your pet because they can become dehydrated very quickly. Diarrhea is due to intestinal parasites, bacteria or viruses.
Symptoms of digestive illnesses:
If having contracted a digestive illness, your rabbit will have diarrhea. They may also stop eating because of an intestinal problem or an obstruction.
Dental diseases: malocclusion
If your rabbit's teeth are not filed naturally and continue to grow, they will not be able to eat and abscesses will appear in their mouth.
Just like for digestive issues, your rabbit's food could have a part to play.