does Fizz have something up her nose?

Help Support RabbitsOnline:

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
the title reminds me of when I worked at a daycare with small children.

Anyway - hey there! Usually I just lurk but we had An Incident and I'm a bit worried. The night before last Fizz woke me up in the middle of the night with a sneeze attack. It was just continuous sneezing for a good two or three minutes non-stop. Afterward she came out from under the bed where she'd hidden once she started sneezing and let me pet her and play with her face. Everything seemed fine. All I could think of was that she either got something up her nose or stuck her nose somewhere and got a dust inhale. She's been fine since, maybe two normal sneezes since then just to freak me out. Her breathing seems fine, she's eating and hopping around and alert like normal, there's no nasal discharge and she's not messing with her nose more or less than normal. The nose looks the normal color and size. I can't see anything when I look at her nostrils but I also haven't gone poking because the schematics of trying to hold a bunny still AND lift their nose to check escape me.

BUT while I'm rubbing her face if I get down to her nose and she's not expecting it, she jerks like its sensitive. She'll let me rub it after that (which I only do verrry lightly to test) but the jerk has me a little concerned. The vet is an hour's drive away and Fizz has a bad reaction to vet visits (we got a substitute vet when we went and things went on too long and now she goes limp and non-responsive when we go in). I'm going to call the vet on Monday to get an opinion but he's very hard to get through to and in the meantime I'd like to know if anyone has any experience with bunnies and things up their noses? Any help on this one would be appreciated please. I don't want to worry over nothing but I also don't want to ignore something that's going to be a problem if I leave it alone.

rabbit tax
yum toes2.jpg
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
10,798
Reaction score
6,289
Location
Utah, , USA
Certainly they can get dust up the nose. Some rabbits have even been known to get a strand of hay stuck up there. Bonking their nose on something, scratching it on something, a bug bite, all of these could cause some initial irritation and sneezing too.

None of my rabbits would like me touching near the bottom part of their nose, and I'm sure would jerk away if I tried. It's just a sensitive area. I wouldn't worry about it unless the sneezing or irritation continues to consistently happen. Then it could be something is continuing to irritate the nose.
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
Certainly they can get dust up the nose. Some rabbits have even been known to get a strand of hay stuck up there. Bonking their nose on something, scratching it on something, a bug bite, all of these could cause some initial irritation and sneezing too.

None of my rabbits would like me touching near the bottom part of their nose, and I'm sure would jerk away if I tried. It's just a sensitive area. I wouldn't worry about it unless the sneezing or irritation continues to consistently happen. Then it could be something is continuing to irritate the nose.
oh thank you! That's a relief to hear. Fizz is usually so mellow, she lets me play with her nose without an issue, so the jerking away was new and alarming to me. I was worried something like a piece of hay might be in there and if it worked its way up instead of down things would go bad. I hadn't even thought that something could have bitten her! We are in mosquito season no matter how hard I try to guard against it in the house. There doesn't seem to be anything ongoing with it, just that she's now sensitive on the right side of the little pink part of her nose. If she got bitten or it got scratched or bumped that makes a lot of sense. There doesn't seem to be anything continuing to irritate her nose and if something was stuck up there I'd assume it would. As silly as it makes me feel I didn't even think that she might have just hurt it somehow (and this IS the rabbit that sprained their knee by scratching too hard). I'll keep an eye on her for irritation like you said but boy, did you make me feel better! And you made Fizz feel better too because now her mom will stop following her around and putting her ear near her nose quite so much lol. Thanks for responding and so quickly too!
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
so we've got an update.

Fizz has stopped eating.

Or she'll pick up and chew a piece or two of something (mostly hay or parsley, she won't touch her pellets and I'm limiting the papaya treats I give her) but she's not really eating so much as sampling. Took her to the vet and he put her on antibiotics. He thinks she's got a stuffy nose (first time pasturilla flare up he thinks) and says that until her nose clears up she won't feel like eating. I've got her home, have done a deep clean on the bedroom to get rid of all dust and fur floofs and she's taking the medicine twice a day. Here's the thing - she's still not eating. So that means I'm feeding her critical care. She is VERY much NOT taking this calmly. There's nothing wrong with her energy levels. I can get about 12ml into her per-feeding and that seems to be about her limit (mine too). Still, looking at the 12ml in the syringe it seems like it would be a full bunny belly for a five pound bun. However what I've read says she needs 112ml a day. That's a fight feeding every two hours plus the water I syringe into her from time to time as well. I dont' want to overstuff her but 112 sounds like a lot.

any tips to make feeding easier? It's just me and even a bunny burreto only seems to work just so far. And IS that enough/too much/how often I should feed?

help?
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
10,798
Reaction score
6,289
Location
Utah, , USA
My 2.5 lb rabbit would eat about 12ml per feeding, and fed every 4-6 hours. So minimum 50ml per day. But feeding a rabbit that isn't having it, can be difficult to get it down them. You could try the floor method. That can sometimes be easier. You could also see if she'll eat it on her own, by offering it in a dish or on a spoon.


It seems odd to me for your rabbit to be having a lack of appetite due to a mild URI. That's just not typical, unless a rabbit has developed pneumonia. Usually it would have to be pretty bad with thick white snot constricting the nasal passage significantly, or to have developed pneumonia and difficulty breathing, for it to cause a rabbit to stop eating. And you haven't described anything like that, just some minor sneezing correct?

I'm just wondering if there might be something else going on here. Have you noticed any mouth breathing or increased respiratory rate or effort? Or your rabbit seeming to try and rest with her head in an elevated position? Did the vet listen to your rabbits lung sounds? Did the vet actually find evidence that it really is a bacterial infection, such as finding white snot up in her nasal passage, or noisy lung sounds?

Was a thorough dental exam done as well? Dental problems can sometimes cause sneezing and a lack of appetite? Does it seem like she wants to eat but then stops after chewing a bit? Or is she having any odd chewing behavior or dropping food from her mouth?

Because your rabbit isn't eating on her own, along with the antibiotics, did your vet also prescribe the usual GI stasis medications(gut motility med, meloxicam anti inflammatory pain med)?
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
My 2.5 lb rabbit would eat about 12ml per feeding, and fed every 4-6 hours. So minimum 50ml per day. But feeding a rabbit that isn't having it, can be difficult to get it down them. You could try the floor method. That can sometimes be easier. You could also see if she'll eat it on her own, by offering it in a dish or on a spoon.


It seems odd to me for your rabbit to be having a lack of appetite due to a mild URI. That's just not typical, unless a rabbit has developed pneumonia. Usually it would have to be pretty bad with thick white snot constricting the nasal passage significantly, or to have developed pneumonia and difficulty breathing, for it to cause a rabbit to stop eating. And you haven't described anything like that, just some minor sneezing correct?

I'm just wondering if there might be something else going on here. Have you noticed any mouth breathing or increased respiratory rate or effort? Or your rabbit seeming to try and rest with her head in an elevated position? Did the vet listen to your rabbits lung sounds? Did the vet actually find evidence that it really is a bacterial infection, such as finding white snot up in her nasal passage, or noisy lung sounds?

Was a thorough dental exam done as well? Dental problems can sometimes cause sneezing and a lack of appetite? Does it seem like she wants to eat but then stops after chewing a bit? Or is she having any odd chewing behavior or dropping food from her mouth?

Because your rabbit isn't eating on her own, along with the antibiotics, did your vet also prescribe the usual GI stasis medications(gut motility med, meloxicam anti inflammatory pain med)?
ah, good! I am glad I'm not just being paranoid. I've had Fizz for over six years and I feel like I know her well but I've also been going to this vet for even longer and he's always been so good up until now (except recently they've expanded and he never seems to have the time anymore). He did not give me any medication beyond the antibiotics and tell me to get her on critical care because she wasn't eating on her own. I have some pain medication at home already but he said she didn't need it. (I gave her a dose last night just in case but it didn't seem to make any difference since she doesn't seem to be in pain) He did listen to her lungs and he said they sounded good and clear. He did not take any snot samples though he did look up her nose with a flashlight. She's not doing anything unusual, no struggling to breath, no resting with her head up, no excessively cleaning her nose or anything and I still don't see any discharge on her fur or her nose. She does seem to have a bit of a sniffle going on but its intermittent and its not something that's going on constantly with her (ie. I can't hear it when she breathes/she breathes clear and the only time I'm aware of it is every now and then (couple of hours) she does that little snot nose pop noise (also as a lionhead she's got a shorter snout and if I don't keep things regularly clean and dust free the nose sound is exactly what happens). While she flaring her nostrils at me while I feed her the airways look as clean as I can tell while distracted by other things. She's still acting sensitive about the right side of her nose. She'll pick up a piece of hay or parsley and chew the whole thing like spagetti (as usual) but the unusual part is she won't then going back for another piece. One piece is usually all she'll do before losing interest and she only does her sampling once or twice an hour. So she's eating, just not at all what a bunny needs to eat. When I gave her her treats she did take a lot longer to chew them than her usual inhale. She's attentive, alert, grooming and VERY fiesty. Doesn't seem to be in any pain, isn't doing the bun loaf she does if her stomach is bothering her, isn't favoring any part of her face or body that I can tell. Peeing fairly regularly but her poops are very few and far between and teeny tiny. I've only gotten about four out of her today so far and yesterday we probably got about two dozen. Her stomach doesn't feel hard.

I've got an appointment with a different vet set up for early Thursday morning so I've got to get her through today and tomorrow. I figured I'd go ahead and keep going with the antibiotics during that time? And with the force feeding if she doesn't start to eat as well as much as we both hate it (she does NOT like critical care and will not eat it on her own - is there anything else I could use instead like baby food or pureed pumpkin or something?) How much should I give her and how often for a 5 pound bunny that's nibble eating as well? I'll give the kneeling method a try. I'm terrified she's going to hurt her back struggling if I do this for too long or wrong.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
10,798
Reaction score
6,289
Location
Utah, , USA
You could try making her usual pellets into a mush, by soaking in warm water(needs to be made up fresh and not left out for too long). If it's mouth pain causing her eating issues, they can sometimes be more inclined to eat their pellets when they've been softened up.

With her intermittently continuing to nibble on food, it's sounding more and more like a possible dental issue. If so, if nothing is found on a visual exam of the mouth, your vet may need to take xrays as well. It might even be she just smashed her face into something and now it's sore and bruised, and makes it painful for her to chew the harder foods. So it could just be soft tissue and not even an actual problem with her teeth. In which case, it would be good to talk to your vet about giving meloxicam twice a day for a few days, to help manage that pain and reduce inflammation.
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
You could try making her usual pellets into a mush, by soaking in warm water(needs to be made up fresh and not left out for too long). If it's mouth pain causing her eating issues, they can sometimes be more inclined to eat their pellets when they've been softened up.

With her intermittently continuing to nibble on food, it's sounding more and more like a possible dental issue. If so, if nothing is found on a visual exam of the mouth, your vet may need to take xrays as well. It might even be she just smashed her face into something and now it's sore and bruised, and makes it painful for her to chew the harder foods. So it could just be soft tissue and not even an actual problem with her teeth. In which case, it would be good to talk to your vet about giving meloxicam twice a day for a few days, to help manage that pain and reduce inflammation.
I've got the meloxicam. Fizz sprained her knee a while back (from scratching too vigorously as far as I can tell). The vet had me giving her 0.3ml once a day before. I did ask him about pain meds and he said he didn't suggest it but it wouldn't hurt if I did. He just said it might upset her stomach but it didn't bother her when she was on it before. Should I do the 0.3 once or break it up in halfs or something else?

I'll give the pellets a try! She'll take, after a brief fight, the antibiotics, the water and the pain meds so I think its really just the Critical Care she considers a nemesis. How much and how often would you suggest it for a 5 lb bunny if I have to syringe it?

also the new place does have an xray machine. I checked when I called. I was a little surprised my regular vet didn't use theirs, even when I asked about it and just went straight to 'its a sinus infection'.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
10,798
Reaction score
6,289
Location
Utah, , USA
Since I'm not a vet, I can't tell you if you should use a prescription med for your rabbit. But I can give you the dosing info for meloxicam in rabbits. And you could always phone your vet and they could give you that dosing info.

If your meloxicam is the 1.5mg/ml(the usual one prescribed), then 0.3ml is 0.45mg. Usual dose for rabbits is 0.3-0.6mg/kg(approx. 0.15-0.3mg/lb) twice a day(or about 1mg/kg/per day). For a 5lb rabbit, the usual dose would be about 0.75-1.5mg, twice a day. So by any usual rabbit standards, your 5lb rabbit wouldn't have been receiving an adequate amount to provide much pain relief at all at the dose of 0.3ml(0.45mg).


Rabbits need at least 3 times the amount of meloxicam that dogs need, because of how fast rabbits metabolize the med. The usual dose for a 5lb rabbit for short term pain management, would be about 1mg, twice a day. So even giving the 0.3ml twice a day, is still way under the usual dose for a rabbit that size.

If it was me, and if my rabbit didn't have any kidney problems or possible stomach ulcers(that giving a NSAID would be contraindicated for), I would give a second dose, with food and water in the stomach to lessen the chance of possible stomach upset(same as when us humans take a NSAID). With rabbits that aren't eating and have the onset of GI stasis, meloxicam is one of the meds commonly prescribed in this situation. So I'm not sure where your vet is coming from with the whole stomach upset. That would only be if a rabbit had a risk of stomach ulcers.

So, that is just what I would do, but it's always advised to consult with a knowledgeable rabbit vet. I am glad you're seeing a different vet Thursday. That other one doesn't sound very experienced with rabbits to me, based on not prescribing the usual meds for a rabbit with GI stasis(not eating), and giving such a low dose of meloxicam previously.
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
thanks for sticking with me through this. We made it through the night and she's still hopping around, albeit a bit less, acting like everything's fine. We got about a dozen straggly poops last night and she was drinking water just fine on her own. She's still fighting the feeding though the floor method does keep her from moving her back legs a bit. She turtles and twists like a villain though. She'd not getting as much as I'd like but she's getting something in her stomach fairly regularly at least. I tried the soaked pellets but they're still too much/thick/textured? to fit through the syringe's mouth even with the tip cut off so we're stuck for now with the Critical Care. I'm going to see if I can find a wider mouthed syringe later today. The vet has never mentioned any problems with any of Fizz's organs so I've upped her dose of pain meds. Her ears have been a bit cold a few times so she's gotten bundled up in a blanket and we've gotten some snuggle time until they warm (and she usually gets food forced on her afterward). She WANTS to eat, she's still nibbling, still begging for treats when she hears a bag russle, she just doesn't seem interested in doing it for very long or for very much, today even less than yesterday. I'm glad I'm seeing that vet tomorrow, both of us are getting pretty worn thin.
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
Since I'm not a vet, I can't tell you if you should use a prescription med for your rabbit. But I can give you the dosing info for meloxicam in rabbits. And you could always phone your vet and they could give you that dosing info.

If your meloxicam is the 1.5mg/ml(the usual one prescribed), then 0.3ml is 0.45mg. Usual dose for rabbits is 0.3-0.6mg/kg(approx. 0.15-0.3mg/lb) twice a day(or about 1mg/kg/per day). For a 5lb rabbit, the usual dose would be about 0.75-1.5mg, twice a day. So by any usual rabbit standards, your 5lb rabbit wouldn't have been receiving an adequate amount to provide much pain relief at all at the dose of 0.3ml(0.45mg).


Rabbits need at least 3 times the amount of meloxicam that dogs need, because of how fast rabbits metabolize the med. The usual dose for a 5lb rabbit for short term pain management, would be about 1mg, twice a day. So even giving the 0.3ml twice a day, is still way under the usual dose for a rabbit that size.

If it was me, and if my rabbit didn't have any kidney problems or possible stomach ulcers(that giving a NSAID would be contraindicated for), I would give a second dose, with food and water in the stomach to lessen the chance of possible stomach upset(same as when us humans take a NSAID). With rabbits that aren't eating and have the onset of GI stasis, meloxicam is one of the meds commonly prescribed in this situation. So I'm not sure where your vet is coming from with the whole stomach upset. That would only be if a rabbit had a risk of stomach ulcers.

So, that is just what I would do, but it's always advised to consult with a knowledgeable rabbit vet. I am glad you're seeing a different vet Thursday. That other one doesn't sound very experienced with rabbits to me, based on not prescribing the usual meds for a rabbit with GI stasis(not eating), and giving such a low dose of meloxicam previously.
thanks for sticking with me through this. We made it through the night and she's still hopping around, albeit a bit less, acting like everything's fine. We got about a dozen straggly poops last night and she was drinking water just fine on her own. She's still fighting the feeding though the floor method does keep her from moving her back legs a bit. She turtles and twists like a villain though. She'd not getting as much as I'd like but she's getting something in her stomach fairly regularly at least. I tried the soaked pellets but they're still too much/thick/textured? to fit through the syringe's mouth even with the tip cut off so we're stuck for now with the Critical Care. I'm going to see if I can find a wider mouthed syringe later today. The vet has never mentioned any problems with any of Fizz's organs so I've upped her dose of pain meds. Her ears have been a bit cold a few times so she's gotten bundled up in a blanket and we've gotten some snuggle time until they warm (and she usually gets food forced on her afterward). She WANTS to eat, she's still nibbling, still begging for treats when she hears a bag russle, she just doesn't seem interested in doing it for very long or for very much, today even less than yesterday. I'm glad I'm seeing that vet tomorrow, both of us are getting pretty worn thin.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
10,798
Reaction score
6,289
Location
Utah, , USA
Instead of trying to syringe the pellet mush, see if she might eat it willingly. Because it sounds like she wants to eat, or at least is trying until it probably starts hurting her mouth too much, she may take the pellet mush on her own and hopefully it won't hurt her too much to chew it. I would try offering it in a little dish or on a spoon.
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
Instead of trying to syringe the pellet mush, see if she might eat it willingly. Because it sounds like she wants to eat, or at least is trying until it probably starts hurting her mouth too much, she may take the pellet mush on her own and hopefully it won't hurt her too much to chew it. I would try offering it in a little dish or on a spoon.
HOLY CROW! It's the pain medicine! Or, what's wrong with her isn't the pain medicine but putting her on a full dose of the pain meds has her acting almost like everything's fine. I just waved a green leaf lettuce leaf in front of her and she VERY emphatically RIPPED a chunk off and ate it - and then went back for more. She's been eating more all evening in fact. Still sticking to the greens and avoiding the hay and pellets and she's not mowing through them but she's worked her way through three romaine leaves in the past two hours and is harassing the green leaf from time to time. She's also much more alert and her ears are staying at the normal warm temperature. Her stomach isn't hard but its a bit tighter feeling than usual so I figure I'll give her a dose of the infant gas medicine I've got but wow, the difference is incredible. I'm feeling so much more hopeful than I thought I would tonight. I'll offer her the pellet mash later on too. Thank you, thank you for telling me to up the dosage. We're both doing a lot better tonight because of it than we were yesterday. And tomorrow we'll see the new vet and hoping things will get sorted.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
10,798
Reaction score
6,289
Location
Utah, , USA
It really is amazing what a difference it makes when the proper dose of pain medication is given to rabbits. And your rabbit would still be at the lower end of the dosing range, with only being given about 1mg total for the day and being over 2kg. I'm glad she's feeling better and I'm glad it worked.
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
so we just got back from the vet. It wasn't a sinus infection. This vet did some x-rays. It looks like Fizz's teeth all or mostly have overgrown roots. Seriously overgrown. The specalist is going to call me tomorrow but it looks like they might all need to be extracted.
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
It really is amazing what a difference it makes when the proper dose of pain medication is given to rabbits. And your rabbit would still be at the lower end of the dosing range, with only being given about 1mg total for the day and being over 2kg. I'm glad she's feeling better and I'm glad it worked.
sorry I keep forgetting the reply button

so we just got back from the vet. It wasn't a sinus infection. This vet did some x-rays. It looks like Fizz's teeth all or mostly have overgrown roots. Seriously overgrown. The specalist is going to call me tomorrow but it looks like they might all need to be extracted.
 

JBun

Jenny - Health & Wellness Mod
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
10,798
Reaction score
6,289
Location
Utah, , USA
Shoot! Well, at least you know what the problem is now. I hope this vet put your bun on a good dose of meloxicam for now. If she does end up having to get them extracted, she better learn to like critical care :p Have you been feeding the apple banana flavor or the anise?
 

Tam O Ham

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
150
Reaction score
57
Location
Naples, Florida, USA
Shoot! Well, at least you know what the problem is now. I hope this vet put your bun on a good dose of meloxicam for now. If she does end up having to get them extracted, she better learn to like critical care :p Have you been feeding the apple banana flavor or the anise?
yep! we've got her on meloxicam and Fizz is currently stress eating (just like her mother) so I'm not worried about food intake currently lol. I've ordered the apple banana which should be in tomorrow but she's been getting the 'small animal papaya' because it was the only thing I could get my hands on in short notice.

is it possible for a bunny to live a good life without her back molars? What should I expect?
 

Niomi

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2009
Messages
550
Reaction score
297
Location
Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
is it possible for a bunny to live a good life without her back molars? What should I expect?
That is a problem I have had to deal with before. Once some teeth are gone, the remaining teeth might spread out and get out of alignment. Then he may have to go in about every 3 months for teeth trims. Some vets just grind the molars down and sometimes that gives some relief. That is what I am going through right now with my Netherland Dwarf. This is one of those things that can't be fixed. It has to be managed. My rabbit will have a good quality of life as long as I can have his teeth trimmed every few months. I was told that at some point, the trimming may stop working for pain control, and then he will need to be euthanized. I hope you get better news.

When I run out of Critical Care, I crush up pellet and add water. Then I add some canned pumpkin to the pellets to make them slippery enough to go through a syringe.
 
Top