IMPORTANT Information For Rabbit Owners - Spaying Your Rabbit: What To Expect After The Operation
After your rabbit has undergone her spay, be prepared to provide lots of TLC. Surgery is a big deal for a rabbit, and she has experienced a great deal of trauma to her body. You might be surprised to find when you pick your rabbit up from the Vet (or you may have been surprised had you not read this first) that the wound is not stitched together. Instead, most rabbit spay wounds are held together with a kind of adhesive tissue paper that dissolves over time. It's often a strange and bright color, such as green, so be prepared for the underside of your rabbit to look pretty strange!.
When you get your rabbit home, make sure that there is a quiet, pleasantly warm, and most importantly clean and confined place for her to rest. Over the next few days you should be even more vigilant than usual when it comes to cage cleanup, as the wound could be at risk of infection. Your rabbit will probably be quite quiet and want to rest, and she should be allowed to do so.
At this stage it is VITAL that she be eating. If you notice that your rabbit is not eating, contact your vet very quickly. There is some risk that when a rabbit undergoes surgery, their gut goes into stasis (ie, stops moving along), this can be fatal, and your veterinarian has a drug that can get the gut moving again, so be vigilant when it comes to monitoring your rabbit's food intake.
Check the wound regularly. If there is any sign of bleeding or seeping, you should also contact your vet. In rare cases, internal parts of the wound may not fully have healed, and there may be some bleeding after the fact. Your veterinarian should have already monitored for this however, so once you bring your rabbit home, the risk is low that she will develop such a problem. If she becomes stressed and overly active, there is a chance that she might pull at her wound though, so be sure to keep her as quiet as you can, and watch for any signs of bleeding.
Your rabbit should have been given painkillers, and she should be comfortable. Though it is hard to tell if she is in pain, sitting hunched up and breathing rapidly is a good indicator that she is in pain. If she appears to be hurting badly, do not be afraid to take her back to the vet and ask for more painkillers. After a major surgery we would all like our pain to be well managed, and rabbits are no different.
Over the next few days, continue to keep an eye on your rabbit and her wound. Any sudden behavior changes, a deterioration in condition, or stopping eating, should be reported to your vet immediately. I really can't stress enough the importance of eating. A rabbit is a little bit like a siphon, or a water pump, they really do need to have a near constant stream of food going through them, which is why it is always recommended that they are free fed hay. If your rabbit stops eating, or never really starts to eat, get her back to the vet quick.
Fortunately, most of these problems should not arise, and within a few days to a week, your bunny should be getting back to her old self.
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