Help, lump on bunny's face!

Discussion in 'Health & Wellness' started by GarnetsUniverse, Sep 19, 2017.

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  1. Sep 19, 2017 #1

    GarnetsUniverse

    GarnetsUniverse

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    Hi there! I am a new bunny parent to a lovely 3 year old bunny girl named Garnet who I have had for a year now.
    During school today she escaped her cage and knocked over the food bin, and I noticed her fur puffing out on the right side of her face. I inspected it, and found a lump with pus. Eeeek!
    I'm super nervous. She's hopping around, acting fine, trying to get into the food like always..She's only my first rabbit and this is the last thing that I need right now. I'm so worried:cry1:
     
  2. Sep 19, 2017 #2

    GarnetsUniverse

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    I forgot to add that it is about the size of a quarter, and pus frequently comes from it. I assume she's in pain as if I attempt to touch it, she freaks out and hops away to hide. I have a feeling that something may be stuck there, as when I was taking a look at it I noticed something hard and shiny, but I did not want to touch it. I'm so upset, someone please respond :'(
     
  3. Sep 19, 2017 #3

    Munha

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    I would get her to the vet right away. Don't attempt to remove a foreign object if there is one as you could do more damage. I hope she will be okay. Please keep us posted.
     
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  4. Sep 19, 2017 #4

    RavenousDragon

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    I agree with Munha- if it's open and oozing that's actually somewhat of a good thing, but it won't go away without cleaning from a vet and probably antibiotics. Pus means infection every time. Let us know how she's doing after the vet visit!
     
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  5. Sep 19, 2017 #5

    GarnetsUniverse

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    Just came back from the vet.
    The vet gave her a shot of penicillin as well as he cleaned out the hole in her abscess with iodine and hydrogen peroxide. He advised me to continue cleaning out her abscess three times daily, and to come back Friday to see if she needs any more penicillin. I'm just relieved there was nothing stuck.
    Garnet is otherwise doing fine and dandy. I'm trying to just keep her as comfortable as possible.
     
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  6. Sep 20, 2017 #6

    RavenousDragon

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    Yay! Abscesses can take a while to heal up in rabbits- but if you keep at it, it sounds like she's going to do very well!!
     
  7. Sep 20, 2017 #7

    JBun

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    Sounds like you've got a good start on treating the abscess. With facial abscesses, they are often caused by an infected tooth. So if your vet didn't do a thorough dental exam, possibly with xrays to rule that possible cause out, I would suggest discussing it with your vet. Or if your vet didn't rule out dental issues initially, because this should be something any good rabbit vet would do, you may need to find a more experienced rabbit vet to treat your rabbit, especially if your current vet wants to stop antibiotics prematurely(before 4-6 weeks). With abscesses, antibiotics usually need to be given for quite a while to make sure all of the infection is cleared up, usually 4-6 weeks minimum, though sometimes longer. It's never good to stop the antibiotics prematurely. When giving pen g injections, if it is the procaine/benzathine, I would want to be giving injections every other day, based on the information of treating head abscesses in this rabbit study. The vet can show you how to give injections yourself, and that will also lower costs for you.
    http://people.umass.edu/~jwmoore/bicillin/bicillin.htm

    And just something to watch out for when giving antibiotics. Keep a close eye on your rabbits poop. At the first sign of mushy poop you should inform your vet. If your rabbit develops diarrhea where the fecal poop is watery or pudding like, that is an emergency and you should call your vet immediately. To prevent gut upset I like to limit high starch/sugary foods, and encourage lots of hay eating. Also keep a close eye on eating/drinking as antibiotics can sometimes cause a lack of appetite. In which case, you sometimes need to supplement with syringe feeding.

    You might find these links helpful. The first gives a detailed description with pictures, of taking care of abscesses, the other explains abscess cause and treatment.
    http://www.medirabbit.com/EN/Skin_diseases/Bacterial/Absc_treat/abscess_treat.htm
    http://www.medirabbit.com/EN/Skin_diseases/Bacterial/Abscess/skin_abscess.htm
     
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  8. Sep 20, 2017 #8

    GarnetsUniverse

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    Thank you all for your replies, it truly means a lot.
    I'll definitely bring the tooth issues with the vet. He did take a look at her teeth and saw nothing concerning, but I'll double check with him.
    Garnet is doing fine. She didn't finish her pellets which is odd considering they're her favorite part of her meal. I'll keep monitoring her on that.
    She doesn't seem to want to eat her hay, and this was even before the abscess appeared. I do put her hay directly in her litter box, maybe a hay manger will work better?
    She's been drinking and pooping normally. I'll continue watching her and cleaning her abscess-which is an absolute pain in the neck to do!
     
  9. Sep 20, 2017 #9

    JBun

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    If she's not eating her usual foods when she used to eat them fine, it can be due to mouth pain when she chews, which can be because of tooth pain from dental issues. So yes, definitely talk to your vet about it asap. In fact I would call them today and not wait til Friday, just in case it is an infection causing mouth pain and the lack of appetite.

    It might be helpful to ask your vet to prescribe meloxicam/metacam. It's a pain reliever/anti inflammatory, which can help control the pain when prescribed at the right dose, and get your bun eating better again.

    While your bun isn't eating very well, you may need to start syringe feeding Oxbow critical care feeding mix(get from your vet, can also order online). You could also try softening her pellets by soaking them in warm water to make a pellet mush, and see if she will eat that on her own from a dish or you can try spoon feeding it. If it hurts her to chew hard food, it might be easier for her to eat if her food is soft. Of if she was eating fine before the antibiotics were started, it could be the antibiotics are causing her to feel nauseated, in which case you would still need to start syringe feeding to make up for the decreased appetite.
     
  10. Sep 20, 2017 #10

    GarnetsUniverse

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    If she doesn't finish it by the time I get home from school, I'll add some warm water to her pellets to make it a bit easier for her. She's definitely still hungry, she was attempting to open the hamster food drawer.
    How do I get her to continue eating her hay? She's quite the strange rabbit you see, she only eats from plastic bags (besides her pellets). You don't know how many times I've found bags chewed open. It doesn't even matter if it's full of trash or bedding, she will chew through it. I use plastic bins now.
    so perhaps she would do better with a hay bag? Not a plastic one, but one that is fleece or such?
    Also, anyway to keep her relaxed when I clean her abscess? She always panics when I do, understandably, so anyway to just calm her down so I can do it?
     
  11. Sep 20, 2017 #11

    Aki

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    Rabbits are quite sensitive to pain and tend to stop eating or not insist with the food when they are uncomfortable (I know a rabbit who went into stasis because he had bumped his tooth while jumping from the sofa and had a small bruise on his gum ^^'). I second the metacam / critical care / softened pellets recommendation until your bunny is healed - rabbits weaken really quickly when they don't eat enough so it's important to keep her stomach full and the poops going. You say your rabbit hasn't been eating her hay well for a while. Was it from the same bag? Did you try another kind of hay or even another brand? It might just not be very good or not to her taste. Rabbits are often super picky with hay. Mine regularly refuse to eat it, sometimes they dislike 2 or 3 bags in a row from their regular brand (probably from the same batch though) and I have to switch or mix with another bag or second crop to make them. As they grow older, their stomaches are also a lot more sensitive so the hay thing is a constant struggle.:rollseyes
     
  12. Sep 20, 2017 #12

    GarnetsUniverse

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    So good news, Garnet finished all her pellets while I was at school. She decided also to sneak in a few more by eating any I dropped. Still won't eat her hay though, it might be because the hay's been in her litter box for a while, so I'll clean it out and add fresh new hay. I'll ask about metacam on Friday when we go back, I don't want her to be in pain.
     
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  13. Sep 22, 2017 #13

    GarnetsUniverse

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    So we came back from the vet, and he says that the abscess has decreased tremendously from the last visit from the cleaning. It turns out the penicillin lasts 3-7 days, and she didn't need it this appointment, so we go back in four days to see if she does need another shot of it.
    The abscess is pretty flat now, and she didn't finish her pellets last night, but seeing as how it took her a bit to finish it while I was at school, I leave it for a bit. If she doesn't finish it, then I'll add the warm water to it.
     
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  14. Sep 24, 2017 #14

    ladysown

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    wrap her very securely in a blanket. You want it to heal from the inside out.
     
  15. Sep 24, 2017 #15

    Chappythyrabby

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    I'm new to this group but I just recently got my bunny and just the other day one ear sticks straight out and the other straight u. Is this normal? She is 6 weeks old.
     
  16. Sep 24, 2017 #16

    Aki

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    Just to be clear on this, fresh hay has to be given several times a day. Even if there is still left over from the last time - if the rabbit left it sit for more than a few hours, he won't eat it ever, he'd rather starve.
    Also, it sounds like you are giving a lot too much pellets. How much are you giving? Because if your rabbit has pellets all day, it's no wonder she's not eating her hay.
     
  17. Sep 25, 2017 #17

    GarnetsUniverse

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    I forgot to give fresh hay at that point in the day, which explains why she wasn't eating it. I do indeed give her fresh hay multiple times throughout the day, and she only gets a cup of pellets a day, later at night.
     
  18. Oct 7, 2017 #18

    puffs-of-fluff

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    Rabbits eat hay with a strong grinding motion from their molars, this is why hay is important, it grinds down their back teeth. Pellets and other foods don't need as much grinding - which is why a diet too heavy on pellets can create dental problems. Your bunny not eating hay AND having a mystery abscess is a concern. It is possible that the abscess has formed due to a problem with molars, which the vet will probably not be able to see well just by looking in her mouth. So I second the comment about getting an x-ray. It may be that the grinding of eating hay is just too sore for her, due to molar pain. If that's true, the abscess will keep coming back until the tooth is removed.
    I am also a little concerned that your vet may not be that experienced with rabbits. Generally, you would expect a course of penicillin, and some pain relief, not just one shot.

    I don't mean to scare you, but if you look at the thread i've started, you will see just how dangerous dental problems can be. Please get an x-ray, or you might end up in a cycle of abscesses or worse.
     
  19. Oct 7, 2017 #19

    puffs-of-fluff

    puffs-of-fluff

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    And chappy, that sounds normal to me, they can be like that when they are young, as they are still growing. They should fall into position soon. However, if you are concerned about something in future, i suggest you start a new thread, as your comment might get lost in an unrelated one, and don't want you to think we don't care! :)
     

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