Medicine Cabinet For Bunny Owners
Things to have on hand for emergencies
Whether you share your life with a barn full of rabbits or have only one or two pet bunnies, you should always have a few emergency medical supplies on hand.
Depending on your experience and need, your medicine cabinet might include sutures, injectables, and scalpels. Large wounds or injuries and any unfamiliar illness should be treated by a qualified veterinarian, preferably one with knowledge of rabbits. A rabbit breeder has oftentimes gained enough expertise through years of experience to treat many minor problems themselves.
I have tried to compile a list of useful items to be included in the “beginners and pet owners” medicine chest. Many of these items are probably already present in most households and are perfectly safe to use on your bunny. A good rule to follow when obtaining medications not specifically for rabbits is – Just about anything you can use on cats, you can use on rabbits. Like cats, rabbits continuously groom themselves, thus ingesting whatever is on them.
TERRAMYCIN SOLUBLE POWDER
A mild broad spectrum antibiotic in soluble form, to be mixed with your rabbits drinking water. The product that I use is made for poultry and sold in Feed & Seed stores. Dosage is 1/4 Teaspoon per 32 ounce water bottle, no longer than 10 days. It is safe to use with young bunnies and helps alleviate certain respiratory infection and enteritis problems.
EAR MITE MEDICATION
Widely available in pet stores and super markets, this is an essential product to have in case of ear mite infestation. Follow the directions given on the bottle and gently cleanse the affected ear with a Q-Tip afterwards.
KAOPECTATE OR PEPTO BISMOL
Administer just a few drops every 4 to 6 hours to any young bunnies showing signs of diarrhea. Older animals can be given more, about 1cc. Withholding treats and pellets for 8 hours and offering large amounts of good quality hay is beneficial during treatment. Dry oatmeal will also help with an upset tummy.
FLEA POWDER (cat)
Again purchase only products designed for cats and kittens and only use when needed. Bunnies in short coat are good candidates for this treatment if you notice any fleas or fur mites ( indicated by very oily bare spots, covered in crusty dandruff ). Watch for any allergic reactions, just to be on the safe side.
It is very important to clean any small injuries, such as scratches or minor cuts to prevent infection.
Apply to any injuries after they have been cleaned.
Alleviates the discomfort of sore hocks and reduces swelling. Apply the ointment twice daily to the rabbits hocks if the foot pads look red and sore. Thoroughly disinfecting the cage floor, keeping it spotless and adding straw to sit on is important during treatment.
TERRAMYCIN EYE OINTMENT
This is a must if you have babies! Use when an eye infection is indicated ( red puffy eyes that run, or are matted shut ). Clean eye thoroughly with warm water, then apply ointment once a day until infection and signs are gone.
These are just a few basic first aid items that every bunny owner should have. Remember, when in doubt please call a vet or a breeder you trust.
Keep Super Glue on hand to repair little cuts that you might inflict when clipping your bunny. Don’t feel bad if you happen to do this, everyone does it from time to time. Put a couple drops of glue on either side of the cut and stick it back together. I learned this from my vet!