The real scourge of professional rabbit breeding is the disease of rabbits, many of which carry the threat of extinction of the entire livestock. In the course of long-term breeding, representatives of meat, fur and ornamental breeds lost most of their immunity. Home-bred animals are characterized by increased morbidity and often cannot resist dangerous viral infections that quickly spread throughout the rabbit, infecting all its inhabitants.
Signs of a healthy domestic rabbit
Due to the high fertility and the rapid rate of muscle growth, breeding rabbits is a very profitable occupation that most domestic farmers would be ready to do. The only and at the same time main problem remains the increased pain of these animals and the need to provide them with special care.
Along with providing pets with high-quality fodder and soft bedding, the breeder should regularly inspect the wards, identifying the smallest signs of disease. Healthy animal:
- has a sleek and shiny fur;
- it is mobile and not afraid of light;
- eyes shine and do not water;
- no nasal mucous discharge;
- fecal stools are small balls of dark brown or black color;
- average body temperature ranges from 38.5-39.5 degrees Celsius;
- respiratory rate is about 60 breaths per minute;
- heart rate 120-160 beats per minute.
Any deviations from the norm may indicate animal health problems. About the most common diseases of rabbits, and their symptoms and treatment, we will discuss in this article.
Types of diseases and their symptoms
From the very first days after the felling of the female, the owner should pay special attention to the health of the pet, conducting their daily external examination. If the babies are lying with their eyes closed, breathing hard and often, or drinking a lot of water, this may be a sign of the onset of the development of the disease in rabbits.
If the problem becomes more serious, then the animals begin to have a lot of tearing, nasal mucous discharge, the wool dims and begins to fall out in clumps, swelling and neoplasms appear on the head and body. In some cases, diarrhea and constipation are recorded, trembling, convulsions and body paralysis occur, leading to inevitable death.
In the presence of similar signs of disease, rabbits and their treatment may be different. It depends on the nature of the disease and its pathogens.
There are infectious diseases of rabbits, non-infectious diseases, as well as invasive or parasitic pathologies.
Parasitic invasive diseases
Most often, rabbits suffer from invasive or parasitic diseases caused by worms, ticks, lice, and fungal infections.
Signs of such diseases are easily identified by the onset of hair loss, the constant feeling of itching, tearing and the presence of intestinal disorders. Animals lose their appetite, begin to fear the light, and their fur loses shine. Next, we will tell you what rabbits are sick with.
A dangerous disease is cysticercosis. An adult parasite or cestode lives in dogs, and the larval form develops in rabbit liver. The infected animal quickly loses its appetite, weakens and dies.
Treatment of rabbits from this disease is impossible. The only thing a farmer can do is isolate a sick animal by moving it into a quarantine cell. It is much more practical to score such a pet than to heal, and after slaughter the carcass is destroyed by burning.
That is why it is forbidden to keep dogs on a rabbit farm, with the exception of watchdogs. For the prevention of cysticercosis, 10% of mebenvet granulate is added to animal feed for 30–40 days.
Symptoms and treatment of ringworm
Such a disease of rabbit as ringworm represents a serious danger. It is caused by a fungus that affects the skin and is a thin filament that is invisible to the naked eye.
Symptomatology of the disease is manifested in severe itching, especially in the area of the head and ears, in rabbits hair begins to fall out in shreds. When one of the varieties of ringworm - ringworm - wool falls on large areas of the body.
Due to the fact that the animal constantly combing itchy place, it is covered with wounds and scabs, through which other dangerous infections can get into the body of the rabbit. If you do not start treatment in a timely manner, your pet will feel depressed and will surely die.
For the treatment of ringworm, Saprosan and Unisan antimycotic ointments are applied to the affected areas, as well as preparations that relieve itching are used.
Rabbit mite intoxication
The parasitic diseases of rabbits include the infection of animals with blood-sucking insects. Fighting head lice, mosquitoes and mosquitoes is easy. This requires systematic sanitation and hygiene measures and cleanliness.
It is much more difficult to fight ticks, which are divided into fur, subcutaneous and scabies. The first have large sizes. They feed on the hair of a sick rabbit, causing it to fall out in the back and neck.
Subcutaneous mites carry out their livelihoods in the deep layers of the skin. They gnaw through the channels and emit toxic products of their vital activity that poison the rabbit. A sick animal experiences constant itching and itching. It is stressed and loses appetite.
The most dangerous parasites are scabies mites, which also live in the subcutaneous layer, but lay their eggs on the skin. To do this, they gnaw through numerous channels, causing severe itching in a rabbit.
If you notice signs of tick-borne infection, you should start treating these diseases of rabbits and their symptoms. To do this, the skin of the animal is treated with sulfuric lime or injections of the drug "Ivermectin" (200 µg per 1 kg of weight).
Infectious diseases of fatal pathology
If the widespread invasive ailments can be effectively dealt with using a drug treatment, then with the rabbits infected with infections, everything is much more difficult. Rabbit breeding annually incurs serious losses due to the need to dispose of tens of thousands of infected animals.
The most dangerous diseases that cannot be cured of rabbits are myxomatosis and viral hemorrhagic disease.
Myxomatosis virus is transmitted by blood-sucking insects, and is also transmitted through direct contact of animals with each other. Rabbits have swollen eyes and point tumors appear throughout the body. Natural death in 70-100% of cases occurs in 1-2 weeks. Survivors become carriers of infection.
When VGBK pathogen enters the cell with litter, feed and contaminated water. Can be carried on a person’s clothing. Symptomatic bleeding from the nose, mouth and anus, inflammation of the eyelids occurs. Mortality reaches 100%.
If you find the first signs of infection of rabbits with myxomatosis or UGBC, you should immediately isolate these animals so that other inhabitants of your rabbit will not be infected.
Treatment of such diseases by specialists has not yet been developed, so sick animals are subject to slaughter and immediate disposal. Their carcasses need to be burned, as rabbit meat becomes unsuitable for human consumption.
Both viruses are highly resilient and often have to destroy all the livestock of the farm, burning along with the carcasses even the cages in which the animals were kept.
The only effective way to protect is to prevent infection through timely vaccination. To do this, at the age of one and a half months, the associated vaccine against myxomatosis and IHD is introduced into the body of rabbit males and females. She can vaccinate toddlers as well as adult animals, including sukrolny and nursing rabbits.
Remember that such a vaccine does not cure an already infected animal, but only produces antibodies that can resist infection.
Read more in the article "Use of the associated vaccine for rabbits."
Pasteurellosis and infectious stomatitis
There are other contagious diseases that quickly spread among rabbit dwellers and can lead to high mortality among your pets.
The main signs of pasteurellosis are a sharp rise in body temperature, the appearance of nasal discharge and increased respiration. The infection carried by small rodents, birds and humans quickly spreads through the body of the rabbit, causing his death as early as 3 days after infection.
A disease such as infectious stomatitis is characterized by the appearance of white bloom in the tongue of a rabbit, which is sick. Ulcers and excessive salivation appear in the mouth. Lack of appetite, lethargy and constant diarrhea can be fatal.
The best way to prevent infection is to prevent rabbit disease with vaccines containing weakened strains of viruses. How to make them right can be found in the article "When and what vaccinations do rabbits."
Rabbit Noncommunicable Diseases
A separate group of diseases that are not infectious and are not transmitted by contact of rabbits with each other, are non-communicable diseases. They are less dangerous than the previous two groups, but they can also cause serious harm to the health of your pets.
Rabbits of any age can suffer from conjunctivitis. Manifestations of this disease consist in increased tearing, swelling and souring of the eyes from the pus produced.
Conjunctivitis accompanies almost all infectious diseases, but there are often cases of the non-infectious nature of this disease.
If rabbits are kept in group cages or they use hard bedding, they periodically injure their eyes, which begin to water and fill with pus. With mechanical damage, as a rule, only one eye begins to water.
It is impossible to start such a disease, because the body weakened by conjunctivitis is poorly resistant to other infections that constantly attack it. First of all, you need to get rid of pus, wiping the aching eye with a gauze pad soaked in furatsilina solution. For the treatment, 2-3 times a day, Cypromed, Gentamicin, children's Albucidum and tetracycline ointment are used.
Caused by mud poddermatit
In adult rabbits, meaty breeds often develop pododermatitis, accompanied by the formation of ulcers and fistulas on the plantar surfaces of their paws. Pathology refers to non-communicable diseases.
The main reason for the formation of this disease is the non-compliance of the farmer with sanitary and hygienic norms, as well as constant dampness and high temperature in the rabbit.
The appeared wounds need to be processed by 10% lead or zinc ointment. If the wounds are covered with a crust, then it must be removed by stopping the bleeding with iodine. For treatment use Vishnevsky ointment, "Tetracycline" and "Oxytetracycline".
Since the treatment differs in duration, many rabbit breeders prefer to send such animals for slaughter. If the slaughter was at the initial stage of the disease, then the carcass, with the exception of the affected areas, can be eaten. Otherwise, it is best to burn it, after removing the skin, the use of which restrictions do not apply.
Rabbits can suffer from respiratory diseases. If the temperature of the rabbit is not observed, drafts are present, and the air is filled with ammonia vapors and dust, then the animals may suffer from bronchitis, rhinitis, pleurisy, or catarrhal pneumonia.
The causes of these diseases are non-compliance with the temperature in the rabbit, the presence of drafts, the presence of dust, fluff and smoke in the air, as well as an increased content of ammonia in the cells that are rarely removed.
Rabbits breathe hard and very often, they begin to sneeze, and mucus is released from the nose. When listening with a phonendoscope, characteristic wheezing and whistling are heard in the chest of a sick animal.
Clean, air, and disinfect the rabbit. For treatment, a solution of furatsilin is used, which contains from 15 to 20 thousand units of the antibiotic "Penicillin".
At the advanced stage of bronchitis, intramuscular injections of "Penicillin" are prescribed, and "Norsulfazole" or "Sulfadimezin" are added to the feed. The dosage is determined by the veterinarian, taking into account the weight of the rabbit and the stage of the disease.
Heatstroke and frostbite
During hot periods of the year, care must be taken to ensure that the rabbit’s room does not overheat, and that it needs to be well ventilated. If the animal's body overheats for a long time, the rabbit can get a heat stroke.
Animals become lethargic and lose their appetite. They lie on their sides or stomachs for a long time. Often this is accompanied by convulsions and leads to death. A similar condition is manifested as a result of the long-term presence of rabbits in the sun, when animals get sunstroke.
The animal should be immediately moved to a cool place. You can bring ice to his ears for a few minutes. In order not to provoke frostbite to the body of the rabbit ice is not recommended to bring ice. It is best to just pour it with cool water.
If the condition of the rabbit is severe, then it is recommended to inject intramuscularly with 1-2 ml of a 20% caffeine solution.
When hypothermia in rabbits often develop frostbite. On the body appear bubbles with a clear liquid, which burst forming poorly healing wounds, open to the penetration of various infections. It is required to clean all of the pus and crusts, and then treat with anti-inflammatory ointments mentioned above.
Rabbits also suffer from congenital diseases, diseases of the digestive, circulatory and musculoskeletal systems. All of them belong to non-communicable diseases.
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