Rodney had his operation today

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Eve

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My bun Rodney was desexed this morning. I have just brought him home, and he is lying on some new towels and munching away on his grass mat. He's also been eating some veggies, I'm so happy he is eating straight away.

I just have a few questions, if anyone could help.

I have asked the vet for pain relieving drugs and she said she has given him an injection of Metacam. She said that this will last for two days andthat he does not need any other pain medication after this.I was just a bit concerned as I was under the impression that I shouldhave received something that I can give him at home, as I have read that I am supposed to give him pain medication orally by syringe. Has Rodney been givenenough pain relieving drugs or should I go back and request anything else for him?

Also, I had checked with the vet prior to the operation that skin adhesive is used and not external stitches. When I went to pick my baby up, the vet told me that she had also put in 3 staples over the skin adhesive, as the wound was not closing properly and apparently this needed to be done. I was just worried, as in the documents I have read about the procedure, I had not heard of staples being used. I read thatas rabbits skin is very thin, thatthey were not recommended.

Rodney also keeps licking the area.I have checked thatheis not chewing on it, but I was just wondering if it is okay for him to keeplicking it. The vet gave me a collar for him to wear, but he couldn't eat or drink with it on and seemed distressed by it. I removed it but have been watching himvery closely. Should I put the collar back on him over night time or should he be okay without it?

Lastly, does Rodney need a heat pad? I read that I should be providing him with one, but the vet said that he had one in the clinic and that he does not need one at home. Should I get him one anyway?

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this!


 

RO STAFF

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Here are some excerpts that seem relevant. They say the staples are often used in spaying, so probably not a problem in neutering.

Again, extended pain meds are probably more important for aspay, which is much more intrusive, butif he becomes lethargic after the current meds wear off,won't hurt to ask for more. If he's already eating, though, it shouldn't be a problem. Keeping a close eye on his chewing is more of an issue.

Aheating pad shouldn't be necessary.
[/b]


What Happens at Neutering (Susan Brown, DVM)
http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx?P=A&A=489&S=1&SourceID=43
When a male rabbit is castrated, the testicles are completely removed. There may either be one incision in front of the testicles through which both are removed, or there may be two incisions, one over each scrotal sac. The incisions may be left open which is acceptable if scrotal incisions were made, or closed with suture or surgical glue. The scrotal sacs will swell within 24 to 48 hours after surgery but in another seven to ten days the swelling should be gone. The scrotal sacs will eventually shrink to a very small size over time.
When a female rabbit is neutered, the ovaries, the oviducts, the uterus and often both cervices are removed. ... The incision is sutured with two to three layers of suture material. Since rabbits have incisors that are excellent at cutting through many materials we find it beneficial to bury the final row of sutures under the skin so they are not accessible. In this way the rabbit has nothing to chew on or pull out. These sutures dissolve eventually over several weeks and there are no external sutures to remove. Some veterinarians use skin staples as the final closure, which also work nicely in rabbits, particularly the larger breeds.

Postsurgical Care[/b]
It is important after any surgery to check the surgical site at least twice a day for any signs of unusual swelling, discharges or opening of the wound. Many rabbits will be off feed for a day after surgery, but this should gradually return to normal over the next two to three days. In addition, some rabbits will have unusual stools for a day or two including soft stools, clumped stools, and irregularly shaped or small stools. If your rabbit is acting very uncomfortable, is extremely lethargic, is not eating at all or is unwilling to move, you need to contact your veterinarian right away. Your veterinarian may prescribe a pain medication for your pet postsurgically which will help ease the discomfort of surgery and shorten the recovery time. It is usually not necessary to use an antibiotic after a routine neutering. One may be prescribed if the pet had other problems or if there were complications at the time of surgery. After doing literally hundreds of these procedures over the years we find that the great majority of rabbits return to normal within five to seven days which is a far shorter recovery period then most humans experience!

Pre- and Post-operative care of Rabbits (Dana Krempels, Ph.D)

http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare/opcare.html

4. Watch to be sure that your bunny does not chew out the sutures! Many vets use subcuticular (under the skin) sutures that cannot be chewed out, and may even put a line of surgical glue over the incision for extra strength. You might ask your vet about this before your bunny has his surgery. In most cases, an E-collar is not necessary for a rabbit, and may cause more stress than it is worth, except in extreme suture-chewing cases. If your bunny does end up wearing an E-collar for a day or two, note that you will probably have to feed him his cecotropes, since he will not be able to reach them for normal ingestion.



RABBIT BEHAVIOR POSTANESTHESIA/SURGERY (Dana Krempels, Ph.D)

Your veterinarian should advise you on the specific signs to be aware of in your rabbit after an anesthetic/surgical procedure. Here are some general behaviors that might be observed:


  • Quiet Behavior - Your rabbit may want to sleep and stay quietly in one area. The lack of activity can be caused by residual anesthetic in the body, pain, or medication. Some analgesics have sedative properties and may add to the lethargy. Check with your veterinarian about what you should expect with any drugs you are giving to your rabbit. If your pet is extremely lethargic, is crying out or appears unable to move normally and sits hunched in one spot, you should contact your veterinarian immediately.
  • Poor Appetite - Your rabbit may not eat or drink at all for the first 24 hours after returning home. Analgesics may improve this situation but not completely eliminate it. You can syringe feed your pet thin slurry blenderized fresh vegetables mixed with fruit juice or canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling) one to two times during this initial 24-hour period. If your rabbit still refuses to eat after 24 hours, you should contact your veterinarian immediately.
  • Abnormal or Absence of Stools - Anesthetic and analgesic agents can alter the motility of the GI tract. In addition, the rabbit may have eaten poorly just prior to surgery, therefore, there may be an absence of stools for a period up to three days after anesthesia/surgery. If stools are present, they may initially be smaller than normal, misshapen or soft. This condition should clear up within three days. Watery, diarrhea should not be present and is cause for immediate concern. Please contact your veterinarian should you have any questions about your rabbit's stools or urine.
 

Eve

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Thank you SO much for all the information and the speedy reply, you are a life saver! I can stop stressing now after reading that,thank you again, I am really grateful! :kiss:
 

Maureen Las

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I have had 5 bunnies neutered at various times and have never had any problems . the last two neuters the vet gave pain injections and that was all they needed, Just keep an eye on him..if something is wrong you will know it. I'm sure that he'll be fine.
 

Eve

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Thank you angieluv! That makes me feel much better :). This is the first bun I have ever had/gotten neutered so I guess I'm just overly worried about everything.

I have anotherquestion, is Rodney allowed to lick the wound? He has been trying to lick the area obsessively every few minutes.

The vet had told me to put the plastic collar on him over night, but when I put it on him last night he was VERY unhappy about it. I took it off right away because he was very stressed and kept trying to get it off.

I spent the whole night on the floor with him petting him, to get him to leave the area alone. Thank God bunnys like to nap during the day, I will get a few hours sleep as soon as Rodney decides its nap time.

I was just wondering if there was anything I could do to stop him licking the area, or wether it was ok for him to lick it (it doesn't look like he is trying to chew it). I have to go see my grandma in hospital tomorrow for about 3 hours and I'm really worried about leaving Rodney unattended.

And lastly, Rodney's cage has three levels. I was told he shouldn't be jumping, so I blocked off the two top levels with NIC squares, but heis very persistant intrying to get up there. Would he be better off if I left the area blocked off, or if I made some ramps for him and let him go where he wants?

Sorry if I'm wasting your time with silly questions:nerves1


 

Maureen Las

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While the RO staff wasanswering you I was trying to find out if there would be anything that you could put around the surgical area that would taste bad so he wouldn't lick..so far I can't find anything on this. I did read that it is not good if the bunny is licking the wound excessively . I know that its hard to put the collar on him...what if you placed him in a carrier while you went to visit your grandma. Do you think that he could lick himself in a carrier? Also maybe he could wear the collar part of the time. I think you should probably not make ramps for him to climb because he could always jump off the top without using the ramp to climb down. My rabbits didn't lick after their neuters but they didn't have staples.
 

Eve

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Thank youfor the help and advice angieluv, it looks like Rodney will have to put up with wearing the collar tonight. I guess I will have to try get him used to it, as there is no way I could take him with me to see my grandma in a carrier tomorrow. My grandma has dementia and she is quite violent and difficult to handle.I need to feed and bathe her andhaving a bunny on the scene would make things much harder. There are also many other dementia patients wandering around and I wouldn't want them to get their hands on myRodney .:faint:

Last time I put the collar on him he was thrashing around like a maniac. I hope he calms down after a bit. But I do look forward to getting some sleep and knowing he can't pull his staples out.
 

Maureen Las

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I didn't mean taking him with you..I meant placing him in a carrier and leaving him home. I thought in a smaller space he may not lick.
 

Eve

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Oh sorry, I misunderstood you. I might give that a try tonight and see how it goes, thanks! I may have to get him used to the collar aswell though, because he is still a problem overnight and I also need to leave him on his own when I go to uni on Monday.
 

Eve

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Hi angieluv!

I tried leaving Rodney in the carrier for a bit last night, but after afew minutes of chewing at the door and trying to get out, he was backto his licking. Thank you for the idea though.

My boyfriend and I tried to get him to wear the collar, but he thrashedaround so much with it on that he managed to get it off his head everytime. In the end we wrapped him in a towel and put him on the bed, soat least he was easier to watch over night. We took 3 hour turns atcuddling and patting him, so we both got a bit of sleep, and Rodney gota lot of TLC.

I took Rodney to the vet again this morning just to double check thathe hadn't chewed the staples out. The vet said that everything lookedfine, so I am really relieved. He said that it would be better not tolet him lick the area, but he hasn't done any damage so far, so even ifhe does he should be fine.

I'm going to get my friend to drop in and keep an eyeon himwhile I am with my grandma later today. I think I might just take a dayor two off unisoI can stay home and watch him. Thepositive side of Rodney's behaviour is that all this extra time I'vespent with him has made him much friendlier towards me, I got my firstbunny kisses the other night :)


 

Maureen Las

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:)It sounds like Rodney is fine but you are probably tired. You are a great bunny mom! :D
 

Eve

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Thank you :). Rodney isn't licking the area asmuch today, and he seems more his usual self. He's back to binkying allover the place and destroying my room. I'm so excited for taking himgirlfriend-shopping in a months time.

He is booked in to get his staples removed this Friday. I am assumingthey will have to use the gas on him again to take them out?
 

Maureen Las

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He sounds like he is recovering nicely. Thelonger he can go without getting an infection or pulling out thestaples the better it is. I don't think that they use gas to pull outstaples but call the vet and ask if you're worried. :D
 

Eve

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I took Rodney to the vet today to get hisstaples taken out.The vet said that one side is fine and ishealing very well, but the other incision was a bit open and didn'tlook too good :(. Luckily it wasn't infected. He closed up the openside with heaps more staples and said they have to stay in for anotherweek. Poor little Rodney.
 

Eve

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Thank you LuvaBun and angieluv!

As much as I'd like him to, there is no way I can get him to wear thecollar. I've tried putting it on him a number of times, and no matterhow securely I tied it on, he would run around and thrash about so muchthat he somehow managed to get it off after a few minutes.

The vet put in lots of staples and said even if he licks at it he won'tbe able to open the incision this time. I'm staying home this weekendso I can keep an eye on him, and I'll take him to the vet again to havea look at it mid-week, just to make sure everythings ok.


 
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