Looking for opinions/similar situations! (Head tilt)

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Bugz0130

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On May 30th, 2021 I purchased a bunny from a local Pet store. about a week ago, I came home from school and noticed that she had a head til it and could not walk. After examining her more, I noticed her eyes were shaking and she could not walk. when This happened, I offered her water and she nearly drank a quarter of the bottle. I immediately panicked and tried taking her to the vet hospital. NO ONE in my area would see her due to their not being a rabbit specialist. The following day, I called every vet within a 3 hour drive and the closest appointment I found was in OCTOBER. At this point, she is still drinking, eating and started walking again but its like she was wobbly and very disoriented. I called my vet who sees my dogs and cats. At this point I was desperate. She ended up letting me come in and gave my bunny a quick head to toe. My bunny had fluid in both ears and discharge in one. She sent me home with baytril drops and my bunny is on day 4. she shakes her ears every once in awhile and I catch her staring at the corner of her cage a lot. She also still does not have the best balance and I am still worried. has anyone had a similar situation.? How long until the drops are fully effective?
 

dogwoodblossoms

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So, I had a bunny pass away from something similar a year ago.
The tilt is called wry neck and happens when ex: ear mites (that’s what my rabbit had) ear problems often trigger wry neck. If the drops aren’t working (you said it’s been a week?) I’d check in with your vet and see how long the meds take to work.
 

JBun

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When an ear infection is severe enough to cause head tilt and affect their balance, it means it's progressed to the inner ear. The abx ear drops will help, but I would suggest phoning your vet and requesting oral baytril as well.

Ear infections can be very difficult to clear up, so a long course of antibiotics is necessary. I would expect to give the ear and oral antibiotic a minimum of 4 weeks. Though much longer may be needed. You want your rabbit clear of symptoms for at least 2 weeks.

If you don't see improvement after the first week or your rabbits condition worsens, you may want to discuss with your vet about switching to oral azithromycin. I've had good success with it and have read of similar accounts from others. It has good tissue and bone penetration. Though do be aware that in rare cases it can cause lack of appetite and/or severe digestive upset for some rabbits. With my rabbits it did cause some initial cramping, but subsided after a few hours and didn't affect their eating significantly.

If your rabbit isn't continuing to eat and drink well at some point, you'll need to start syringe feeds. If your vet doesn't carry Oxbow critical care for herbivores(preferably apple banana flavor), then it might be a good idea to order some now to have on hand just in case, as well as some large tip feeding syringes(small ones clog). Amzn prime would probably be the fastest delivery.

Medirabbit: ear infection clinical signs and treatment



Just be aware, since you aren't seeing an experienced rabbit vet, it's advisable to first double check any antibiotic they want to give to your rabbit, and make sure that it's safe for rabbits. Some abx like amoxicillin, can be fatal to rabbits if given orally.

Medirabbit: safe antibiotics
Medirabbit: dangerous antibiotics
 
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JBun

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When you phone them, I would also suggest asking for meloxicam/metacam. It's an anti inflammatory pain med that can help bring down damaging inflammation, reduce pain, and help reduce symptoms a little.
 

Bugz0130

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thank you for the replies! I took Bugs to a rabbit specialist who ended up doing a thorough exam and found nothing wrong with her ears. when he checked her, everything was perfectly fine so the only thing he could think of was that she was not treated fully for the parasite when I got her from the pet store. He then gave her another dose of it intramuscularly and all has been well since then. Knock on wood. he also gave me an ear wash to use weekly. She is finally back to herself and being the crazy little bunny I missed. i Just wanted to thank everyone for the advice!!!
 

JBun

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That's great she's doing better! Do you know what medication the injection was?
 

JBun

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Same reason it happens in people. Most commonly due to a blocked artery or burst blood vessel interrupting the blood supply to the brain. Though with rabbits you also have to factor in the parasite e. cuniculi also being involved.

But I do disagree with the suggestion above, that it could have been a stroke with your rabbit. The symptoms of a stroke are different. Is your rabbit still continuing to do well?
 

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