For the public

Dental Problems: Rabbits

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.

Cataracts in Rabbits

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

Tusk Trims

The adult canine teeth, also known as tusks, erupt at about one year of age and continue to grow throughout a pig's life. Tusks grow larger in boars (unneutered males) than sows (females). The tusks of a barrow (a male pig neutered while young) will not grow as quickly as in a boar. Tusks can grow quite large, and are often sharp.

Vaccinations in Pot-belly Pigs

Yearly vaccinations are recommended for most potbellied pigs and miniature pigs.  There are several vaccines labeled for use in production/farm pigs, and your veterinarian will determine which are appropriate for your individual pet.  Several factors will be considered by your veterinarian, including your geographical area, the age and breeding status of your pig, and potential exposure to other pigs (directly or indirectly).

Spaying Pot-belly Pigs

Female pot-bellied pigs are known as gilts if they've never been pregnant, and sows if they have produced at least one litter.  Gilts are usually spayed at a young age to prevent undesirable traits such as odor, aggressiveness, mounting of other pets and people, and urine-marking.  Spaying prevents diseases such as uterine tumors which are common in older intact gilts and sows.  We recommend that a spay is performed when a gilt is between 4 and 6 months of age.  If an intact gilt is already showing these behaviors, she may never lose these traits even once she has been spayed.

Senior Care of Pot-belly Pigs

The average lifespan of potbellied pigs is approximately 10-15 years, with some pigs living into their 20s.  The quality of care a pig receives throughout its life has a great influence on longevity.  Pigs can be considered seniors at 10 years of age.  Senior pigs are a new phenomenon in this country since the first pot-bellied pigs were imported to the United States only about 25 years ago.  Agricultural swine medicine contributes greatly to our understanding of health and disease in pet pigs.

Neutering Pot-belly Pigs

Male pot-bellied pigs (also known as boars) are usually neutered at a young age to prevent undesirable traits such as odor, aggressiveness, mounting of other pets and people, and urine-marking.  A neutered male pig is known as a barrow.  We recommend that this is done between 4 and 6 months of age.  If an intact boar is already showing these behaviors, he may never lose these traits even once he has been neutered.

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