need help,gastric stasis

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iliketobinky

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hi everyone,i am brand new to the website and am absolutely desperate for advice.

i have two buns,both of them lionhead crosses.
over the past week or less,mabel [in my avatar] stopped eating and was lay down looking lethargic so i took her to the PDSA vets [bare in mind im in the UK] out of hours service and she was diagnosed with both dental spurs and gastric stasis.
she had an operation to remove the dental spurs but the stasis remains and ive been feeding her recovery syringe feed,and liquid parafin prescribed by the vets to help with her bowels,,the vet also prescribed an anti biotic although im not sure what that will do for her issue.

the problem is she wont swallow the liquid feed so it just spurts back out, i think a little is getting down each time but thats it.
i found out through experimentation that she will wolf down fennel,so i have been to my dads allotment to raid his fennel and i hand feed her some every couple of hours,i cant leave it on the floor for her as binky will eat it off her.

i am just wondering how i can get my baby girl to eat food other than fennel, i dont want her to die,i have classic autism and mild intelectual disability and mabel is my best friend.
 

JBun

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Did the vet prescribe a pain reliever like metacam or a gut stimulant like emperid, for you to give to her at home? It is common for there to still be some pain following a dental, and a pain reliever can help with this. And the emperid will help stimulate the digestive tract and help improve appetite.

Have you tried offering her other soft foods like leafy greens, other herbs, fresh grass, or (rabbit safe) forage? You can also try softening her food pellets in warm water to see if that encourages her to eat them. Or offer her the recovery food in a dish and see if she will eat it on her own.

If you cannot get her to eat enough at home, it may be necessary to have her admitted. It's also possible there may be some other underlying health problem causing the continued lack of appetite and stasis, and if so she may need additional testing done. I don't know how rabbit savvy your vet is, but I would recommend taking her to a rabbit specialist if you aren't currently seeing one and you can't get her to eat. You have an excellent one near you. The vet is Aidan Raftery at Ashleigh Vets.
http://ashleigh-veterinary-centre.com/
 

iliketobinky

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Did the vet prescribe a pain reliever like metacam or a gut stimulant like emperid, for you to give to her at home? It is common for there to still be some pain following a dental, and a pain reliever can help with this. And the emperid will help stimulate the digestive tract and help improve appetite.

Have you tried offering her other soft foods like leafy greens, other herbs, fresh grass, or (rabbit safe) forage? You can also try softening her food pellets in warm water to see if that encourages her to eat them. Or offer her the recovery food in a dish and see if she will eat it on her own.

If you cannot get her to eat enough at home, it may be necessary to have her admitted. It's also possible there may be some other underlying health problem causing the continued lack of appetite and stasis, and if so she may need additional testing done. I don't know how rabbit savvy your vet is, but I would recommend taking her to a rabbit specialist if you aren't currently seeing one and you can't get her to eat. You have an excellent one near you. The vet is Aidan Raftery at Ashleigh Vets.
http://ashleigh-veterinary-centre.com/
hi JBun!
thankyou so much for your help.
the vets never gave her a painkiller,apart from when she was first admitted to the out of hours clinic in worsley,im very useless with remembering dates so i cant remember what day that was.

can i go back to the vets and ask her for the emperid and metacam or do you think they will encourage me to put her to sleep? the PDSA have always been like this with my animals, they always start with 'we arent specialists in x animal so cant offer her/him much',it really does my head in.

she seems to have an aversion to eating anything unless hand fed,but i will try her with the recovery food in a bowl!
however,today i coudnt believe it;she ate some curly kale off one of my support staff,mabel must have sensed how upset i was about her not eating so woudnt take anything off me.

just now,i went out in the garden,pulled up a pile of clover and grass and put the pile next to her,she began munching away.
ive also gave her a bit of fresh out of the bag bird seed,i have a bird table that often over flows and its the first thing mabel goes for when shes free ranging in the garden-shes gone crazy for it.ive read up on rabbits eating bird seed and they recommended not letting overweight buns eat it-not a problem as poor mabel is losing weight.

thankyou very much for the vet specialist recommendation! you dont know how much i apreciate it :) i will speak to my support staff about sorting out an apointment with him.
 
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JBun

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I would definitely insist on pain relief. Pain relief is extremely important with rabbits. A rabbit in pain will not want to eat, so it really is essential. All good rabbit vets know this and prescribe it.

Meloxicam is usually what is prescribed to rabbits for moderate pain relief. It is a NSAID and is well tolerated by them. There are a few different brands, Metacam being the most common used. Vets can give injections of it, but that is more expensive. The oral suspension is what should have been sent home with you for her. As long as you are able to syringe it to her, it is pretty well tolerated by rabbits and most like it.

You should be able to just phone the vet up and say you would like to come pick up some oral metacam for your rabbit as she is still reluctant to eat. They really shouldn't have a problem with it, but sometimes you do have to be insistent for what you know your rabbit needs. You can ask for emperid too if you feel she needs it, but most important is getting the pain reliever, as that is what will help her to start eating again on her own.

Many vets that are inexperienced with rabbits, under dose metacam, so you will want to make sure the dose is at least 0.3-0.6mg/kg, twice a day, preferably closer to the 0.6mg/kg(from the Textbook of Rabbit Medicine, Molly Varga, 2014).
http://vgr1.com/metacam/

Since she seems to be eating some soft foods, keep encouraging her to eat them. If she is eating the fresh grass and you have plenty available to you, just keep cutting some and offering it to her throughout the day. You probably won't want to give her too much bird seed as this can slow down her digestion, but if she is used to it then eating a little should be fine since it seems to be helping to get her to eat.

Her reluctance to start eating may be because she has some mouth ulcers from the dental spurs, making her mouth more sensitive, and these just take some time to heal. If you get the metacam, that will help her as well.

Also remember that even if a vet suggests putting your rabbit to sleep, you don't have to take that advise if you feel that there is still hope for your rabbit. Especially when that vet isn't rabbit savvy, as non rabbit savvy vets tend to jump the gun with this because of their inexperience with rabbits. You can always get a second opinion from a good rabbit vet, and I would always suggest this if there are any doubts and the vet isn't a rabbit specialist.

If she continues to have problems with not wanting to eat, I would definitely book an appt. with Aidan. I have read many recommendations for him from other rabbit owners.

I hope your bun gets back to her usual self soon. Please keep me updated on how she does.
 

mike158

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Critical Care: When you get the (light brown) powder, this is the way to mix it:
1. Use 1:4 with hot (boiled but cooled) water; put it in the plastic container, apply the lid and shake like hell till it is a nice mixture.
2. Let it cool.
3. Mix some tinned condensed milk (a little) with some hot water.
4. Get a large plastic syringe - the size that you put ink into your printer.
5. Use 4: 1 Critical Care mixture and mixture in (3) above.
Good luck; it saved my male Lion Head last year; he was down to 1.7 kg, recovered and is now 2.7 kg!!!
 

mike158

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Critical Care - revision
No. 3: strike condensed milk (my mistake) it should read UNSWEETENED PINEAPPLE JUICE.
However, I did use to mix the (original No. 3) mixture with his pellets... and this got him to start eating the SOFTENED pellets. The good news was that as soon as he got better, he lost interest in the condensed milk, although he won't touch water now unless it has a teaspoonful of pineapple juice in it; in fact he drinks 3 bowls (small bowls) every day.
 
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