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How to Treat Urinary Tract Infection in Rabbits
The most important step in treating a urinary disorder in your rabbit is to be able to recognize the symptoms. Symptoms to watch out for are straining to urinate or only urinating a little at a time, inability to urinate, excessive tiredness or lethargy, redness or hair loss around the genitalia area or on the sides of the legs, dribbling urine, a decrease in appetite, or blood in the urine.
If you suspect that your rabbit has a urinary disorder, it’s important to make an appointment with your local veterinarian. With times being financially hard, this may seem hard to do. However, as an owner, your responsibility is to seek medical treatment for your rabbit. If paying for the visit is a problem, call the veterinarian office to let them know. Some veterinarians take charity cases, and even if they don’t, the office may be able to refer you to a free animal clinic or offer advice for treating your rabbit at home.
At the veterinarian office, the veterinarian will probably run a number of tests to find out what kind of urinary disorder is affecting your rabbit. A Urinalysis will most likely be performed to look for bacteria that may be causing the urinary disorder. An Ultrasound, blood profile, or X-ray may also be preformed.
Once the type of urinary disorder is discovered, it can be treated. For urinary tract or bladder infections, the veterinarian may prescribe antibiotics. For small stones or calciuria, your veterinarian may recommend a diet change that will be lower in calcium. However, large stones may require surgery.
Follow your veterinarian’s treatment plan to the best of your abilities. If antibiotics are prescribed, do not allow your rabbit to miss doses. Missing doses can cause the infection to not go away or reoccur easily. If your rabbit’s diet needs to be changed, make sure to keep his calcium levels low and follow up visits with your veterinarian may be necessary to be sure the disorder has been resolved.
Even when the urinary disorder is cleared up, the battle is not over. A rabbit that has already had one urinary problem is very likely to get another sometime in their life. Prevention is important in helping to keep your rabbit healthy and free from urinary disorders. You can do this by keeping their bedding dry and changed regularly.
Be sure to keep in mind that ignoring your rabbit’s urinary disorder can cause permanent damage to your rabbit’s health or even eventual death.