Disabled Bunny advice please

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Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:53 pm

HI Everyone,
I have a few questions..
Tia (pictured right her younger days), is a 6 y/o rescue female who has been with me for about 4 years now. Sadly she has become weak and wobbly on her back legs and can now no longer stand up. I havnt had a bunny with this before, although i do hear it is quite common in older buns.

She is a bonded pair with her toy boy of 2, devoted to each other, although at times he does get a bit amourous so she has a 6 foot square fenced off corner in the run where she can sit and be shut in when he gets too much and i am always on hand to stand her up when she falls over - multiple times a day.

My questions are -
I have used Homoeopathy on rabbits and other pets in the past, and am thinking of Arnica as an anti inflammatory but am unsure what potency to use or how frequently, i have also hear that Turmeric is a good anti inflammatory - has anyone any experience with either?

Also, has anyone ever made a 'wheelchair' for a bunny? My partner is very good at making/mending/repairing, and home made is something we do all the time from recycled materials, so to us it makes sense to make some wheels for her to get used to getting about in.

Has anyone any tips on making one, or if not, once she has it, how do i start getting her used to it?

Any advice greatly appreciated thank you x
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by woodwench on Thu Jul 16, 2015 10:44 pm

I would discuss this with a good rabbit savvy vet.
Personaly I've never heard of a "trolley"/"rig" for rabbits but have often seen it for dogs. I would have two concerns about this. First is the fact that rabbits are prey animals and attaching/fitting Tia to her wheels might prove stressful to her as she wouldn't be able to escape from it and it could possibly feel, to her, like a predator siezing her rear quarters. Second, I would worry about the stability of the rig; should Tia tip it over it could damage her back. Rabbits are very sussepible to spinal injury.
These things I think you should discuss with a vet.
You say you have used homoepathy ... have you ever thought of accupuncture? This might be worth a try.


Last edited by woodwench on Fri Jul 17, 2015 11:09 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:15 am

HI,
stability is certainly something to consider, and i hadn't thought of the prey idea, which again is something to think about.
I havnt known a rabbit personally with wheels, but have seen it a lot in various Facebook rabbit groups. Come to think of it it may be more of an american idea than British. So far the rabbits i have seen with it all seem to be indoor buns, and Tia is an outdoor girl, which could also cause problems with not so smooth ground, however she has always lived outside, and gets quite hot and stressed whenever she has to come in, so i would prefer to keep her outdoors for at least as long as possible.
Acupuncture may be something to consider for her, worth a thought, thank you.
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by KatieB on Fri Jul 17, 2015 6:22 am

Where abouts in the country are you hun?

Does she have pain releif for Her (I'm assuming arthritis??)


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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by Patrik Anastas on Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:00 pm

Yes, Acupuncture can cure and restore your Tia.

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by jolovesbunnies on Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:18 pm

Oh I am so sorry love, poor little Tia. Lots of cuddles on their way.

Hugs
JO xx

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by cheryl'n'bruce'flo on Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:53 pm

So I am think that 6 is not that old (but it depends on the breed). Have you ruled out underlying causes such as E.C. or pasturella? Have you got Tia on metacam? It is more effective than any alternative therapy that I have tried (and I have tried alternatives with my 11yr old).

The book 'when your rabbit needs special care' gives some info on the use of buggies for buns. A friend of mine made a sort of buggy using plastic plumbing pipes and joints and some material for a sling. There are some ideas here http://www.disabledrabbits.com/wheelchairs.html


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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Sat Jul 18, 2015 11:57 pm

HI, Thanks for the replies.
Tia saw the vet again today. The last time was back in April and she was stiff but mobile then. She had a urine infection at the time so had antibiotics, and stiffness was put down to probable arthritis.
So seeing as she is now not mobile, i took her for another consultation to discuss treatment on a budget as we have very little income due to my partner now being out of work and disabled.

So, a different vet this time, examined her thoroughly and said she is stiff, which is quite likely arthritis, but there does also seem to be neurological problem in her left hip, which is the one she has problems with most.
She now has some metacam, to see how she does on that for a couple of weeks. We also have a prototype cart made up for her today, just need to get the final details sorted, which relies on Tia feeling cooperative enough for fitting - which she didnt today. Smile
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by jolovesbunnies on Sun Jul 19, 2015 8:02 pm

It is wonderful all that you are doing for her love, and I am keeping everything crossed that the Metacam works. Lots of love

Jo xxx

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by FluffSlave on Sun Jul 19, 2015 8:39 pm

Tia's a very lucky girl that you are all trying your best to make her life easier. What fab bunny parents you are Hugs
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:03 am

Aww thank you for your kind comments, i do feel guilty that i cant give her everything.

She is a lot better today on Metacam, after just one dose, although she is proving extremely difficult to administer it to. She is much more mobile, her left hip still collapses, but she is obviously in a lot less pain and much happier. It is lovely to see the difference in her.

I now have a dilemma.
The vet is only willing to prescribe metacam for 2 weeks, after that, if i want to continue it she wants to do blood tests at 90 - which i cannot afford. Added to this, she will only continue to prescribe with a blood test every 2-3 months, again at 90... Sad which makes it prohibitively expensive.

Is anyone aware of any charity that would help towards the cost? I appreciate all charities have limited funds, and everyone these days thinks they are 'entitled' to help left right and centre, but i dont know what else to do.

Having seen the difference in her after just one dose, i feel guilty that i cannot afford to help her.

Any suggestions?
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by c.bolduan on Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:03 am

Not sure about charity support. But some of my buns have been on metacam for extended periods of time and never had a blood test for it. Do you think you can discuss this with the vet. It seems daft to withhold a treatment that is working. Other Hoppers your opinions please.

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:24 am

I did try explaining i was on a limited budget, but hoped i could just about afford the metacam prescription.
It was then her compromise was to send her home with 2 weeks of metacam, and to offer the 'cheap' blood test of 90. She wanted to book the blood test there and then for 2 weeks time, but i had to decline due to cost. Sad

On a brighter note though, day 2 of metacam (second dose yesterday evening) Tia is full of beans and nearly launched herself out of the hutch from her side this morning rather than waiting for me to help her up. Very Happy Left hip still not working, but the vet did say there seems to be neurological problems there too. Think she needs to try her wheels again today Smile

Thanks for your advice, would be interested to hear others opinions on this
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by c.bolduan on Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:43 am

Has the vet mentioned how they gonna treat the neurological issues?
I just can't understand why they need a blood test.
How would you feel to try a different vet? No offence but on the info so far this doesn't seem very bunny savvy. If it would be me I would ask whether they are interested in the rabbits welfare and well being or rather making money on this. Sorry this might sound harsh but that's how I see it. Metacam is with a lots of vets under dosed and under recognised.
I also would wait with any exercises until she is pain controlled.Rolling EyesRolling EyesHugs

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Mon Jul 20, 2015 12:14 pm

She didnt say much about the neurological problem, but i think that was because i said i was on a tight budget. When talking about metacam, she said it would relive pain and inflammation, but wouldn't cure anything.
The blood tests apparently are to make sure she is in good health, and the minimum 'cheap' one is specifically to test her kidneys.

I agree, she does seem more interested in the money than the animals welfare. At least she doesn't seem to be getting the 'no money ' bit .
I would happily try another vet, have already thought of that, problem i have now, is another vet would want to do their own diagnosis and consultation, which will cost another fee... all come back to money again Sad
I may have to do some ringing around, perhaps see if a second vet would be happy to go by notes from the first, which i am assuming 1st vet cant refuse...

Tia is so much brighter today, metacam obviously taking pain out, and just leaving wobbly leg. She is so much happier, she is just using me to sit with her and prop her her up while she has a wash - so i prop her up with a block and some shavings so i can get on and do things, in between Tia visits Very Happy
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by c.bolduan on Mon Jul 20, 2015 1:56 pm

Where do you live exactly only town or district. I might be able to find a savvy vet via RWAF if you are not a member! A blood test for U+es that's kidney and liver function includuded seems steep at this price.
Yes they may charge you a consultation fee which with my vet stands at 23.00. Affordable?
Anyone else with ideas or experiences?!?

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:09 pm

I am near Ashford, Kent. I am not a member, so yes please would be interested in a rabbit friendly vet.

The vet i have just seen, the consultation was 28..

Will see what next week brings, financially, (pay weekend coming up). Tia has Metacam for a few days, which will tide her over pain wise.

Thank you x
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by c.bolduan on Mon Jul 20, 2015 2:56 pm

Send you a pm:thumb:Very Happy

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by FluffSlave on Mon Jul 20, 2015 7:37 pm

I am so sorry. I know this struggle only too well Sad Hugs

I can't see what grounds your vet has to stop the Metacam. It is not detrimental to their health to be on it long term. My Willow was given an enormous bottle of the stuff for me to take home as an alternative to loads of expensive diagnostic tests etc. I don't see why your vet can't do this for Tia.

I agree with Claudia - I'd start looking for another vet. Yours sounds to be in it for the wrong reasons!

Please let us know how you get on. I am glad the Metacam is making such a difference to her though Hugs
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by jolovesbunnies on Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:04 pm

Top up vibes are on their way hunny.

Hugs
JO xx

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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by cheryl'n'bruce'flo on Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:25 pm

Metacam has been found to be less toxic in rabbits than cats and dogs so does not require frequent bloods. As the others have said you sound like you need a new vet. Also you want to make sure you are giving the right dose as many non rabbit savvy vets do not advise to give enough.


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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by woodwench on Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:30 pm

Yes, find another vet. Don't do like I did and stick with a practice through loyalty.
Metacam needs no blood tests. And though some vets still hang on to old outdated and, I believe, disproven ideas that rabbits can't cope with higher doses and that it harms their organs, they are fast becoming the minority.
My old vets, whom I had had such confidence in for over thirty years, let me and my rabbit down badly with their outdated ideas.
It was too late for Loll but I now have Henry with a good rabbit savvy vet and should he need metacam (or any other drug) I know he will be treated properly.
As a member of the RWAF you could get free information about metacm (and any rabbit realated issue) from Richard Suanders ... he would advise your vets.
Joining the RWAF as many advantages.
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by cheryl'n'bruce'flo on Tue Jul 21, 2015 8:18 am

Re. The getting metacam into her - mini shreded wheat is the way to go. Metacam is made to taste honey like so buns love the taste but a lots of buns don't like having stuff squirted into their mouths. So instead squirt the metacam into the centre of the mini shredded wheat and it becomes a fab treat that they love. If you get a closed ended sw just break the end off. I have yet to hear of a bun that this doesn't work for with metacam.


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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by freecycle_rabbit on Tue Jul 21, 2015 9:32 am

Hi and thanks again for all the advice.
I am definitely going to ring round a few vets next week and talk to them all, and ask their opinions on Tia and metacam and see who sounds the best. I have no loyalty to the practice, they were just convenient, and up until now i've had no problems with them but i am more than happy to change. At least Tia has metacam for the moment, which gives me a few days to sort something else out for her.
Last night was a bit easier with the Metacam, i put her to bed a little earlier with her dinner, she does have food all day too, just going to bed seems quite restful for her after a day out in the run, then gave her the metacam after she had been in for a while. I will try the shredded wheats on her too.
I will look into Joining the RWAF at some point, sounds like its worth it.

Thanks again for your advice Smile
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Re: Disabled Bunny advice please

Post by FluffSlave on Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:31 am

cheryl'n'bruce'flo wrote:Re. The getting metacam into her - mini shreded wheat is the way to go. Metacam is made to taste honey like so buns love the taste but a lots of buns don't like having stuff squirted into their mouths. So instead squirt the metacam into the centre of the mini shredded wheat and it becomes a fab treat that they love. If you get a closed ended sw just break the end off. I have yet to hear of a bun that this doesn't work for with metacam.

This Thumbs Up

Mr Mo is an absolute nightmare to syringe any meds into. I always put his Metacam/any other meds into a Mini Shredded Wheat and nine times out of ten it works perfectly xx
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