Since a rabbit has to breathe through its nose, any medical condition that restricts or blocks the nose is life-threatening. An infection of the nasal passages, also known as bacterial rhinitis, is often due to Pasteurella multocida but may be caused by many other species of bacteria. This infection is commonly known as "snuffles" for the congested breathing sound and watery mucus that drips from the nostrils. It is part of an upper respiratory disease complex in rabbits which may include sinus infections (sinusitis), eyelid infections (conjunctitivis), ear infections (otitis), and trache
An ill rabbit may not drink enough water on its own to do well. Your rabbit may be dehydrated if you see any of these problems: thick sticky saliva, crusty eyes, poor appetite, small amounts of dark colored urine, or hard dry fecal pellets.
In order to correct dehydration, extra water must be given to your rabbit. Sometimes this can be done by helping the rabbit drink. Some rabbits need to have fluids given by other methods, either by subcutaneous fluids, intravenous fluids, or intraosseous fluids.
The image to the left shows a small molar spike within the mouth of a rabbit. This bunny has started to eat less because that small sharp corner of this cheek tooth is starting to irritate its tongue. If not corrected, this may create a painful ulcer on the tongue and lead to a crisis situation.
Rabbits often develop a cloudy appearance to their eyes. The eyes may become cloudy on the cornea (surface of the eye), the lenses, or any of the chambers inside. There may be many different causes for this disorder ranging from a parasite, Encephalitozoon cunniculi, to a corneal scratch or ulcer, cataracts, or various infections. A rabbit eye can quickly get damaged beyond repair so any time you see a change in an eye, a health consulta
Pets may be sent home with liquid medications. An oral liquid medication must be given by mouth to be effective. An injectable liquid medication must be given by injection beneath the skin to be useful. Some injectable medications require that the medication is inserted into the muscle to be most effective. It is important that you understand how to read the syringes that are sent home so your pet gets the proper amount of medication at each dose.
All exotic pets, even ones that appear to be outwardly healthy, have the potential to carry and spread contagious diseases that can impact the health of people. This sort of disease is called a "zoonosis", "zoonotic disease", or "zoonotic infection".