Worming your rabbit
Some experts don't
believe rabbits get worms and as a result some vets don't recommend worming at
However it is general practice among the breeders and rabbit show people
to worm their rabbits.
There is very little research that has been done on rabbits.
Most medications used on rabbits today will not have rabbits or rabbit
dosages listed on the labels. This is due to lack of research, and the
need to have the medication approved for rabbit use by the proper
authorities such as the USFDA. Rabbits are consider food so all kinds of
testing would be needed to make a medication rabbit and human
Most breeders give a drop of Ivermectin
in the rabbit's mouth to prevent and kill all forms of
and other types internal
There are three types of
- Fur mites appear as dandruff or
little white specks on a rabbit's coat.
You may notice a bald spot at the back of the rabbits neck around it's
shoulder blades. This can be a mite problem or in young rabbits it may
simply be molting.
- There is a variety of burrowing mite that leaves pimple like scabs and
bumps under a bald patch of skin.
- Lastly Ear mites.
You should check your rabbits
ears regularly for ear mites.
You won't be able to see them unless under a microscope.
However there are plenty of signs to detect ear mites.
The rabbit's ears will appear dirty (dirty colored wax can be seen).
The rabbit maybe be seen scratching at it's ears.
In really bad cases of ear mites you'll see scabs inside the ears.
The Namebrand for Ivermectin
I was informed by the local feedmilI that Ivomec's patetent expired Jan
2008. There are now generic versions of Ivermectin
that cost a fraction of the price as Ivomec does. I used to pay $65.00 and
$76.00 per bottle of Ivomec. Now I use a brand called NOROMECTIN (which is
ivermectin) made by Novapharm Ltd. It costs around $20.00 for the same
Ivomec has dropped it's price down to approx $40.00 to $45.00 per bottle
but I've been using the Noromectin and have had no side effects and it's
I buy the injectable Ivermectin and give it to the rabbit oral (in the mouth with a 1cc sryinge and no needle 1/10 cc per pound).
My friend at the SPCA gives injectable Ivermectin orally to hundreds of cats a year and most rabbits breeders dose this way too.
(namebrand Wazine ) is used by many breeders for Pin
Ivomectine isn't supposed to be effective for Pin Worms, so when the pins
bones on the rabbits butt can be felt I normally give them a dose of Piperazine.
The Bony butt (pin Bones) are also a genetic trait so worming doesn't guaranty
they'll get nice round hindquarters. You will likely have to do some
Giving too much or too concentrated a dose can make you rabbit ill and go off
food and water.
Some rabbits get that reaction anyway. When worming a rabbit for the first time
I give them a half dose, and wait 10 days and redo the dose.
Ivomec and other wormers can cause some rabbits to molt.
I plan my worming at a time when my rabbit is molting naturally.
Hair loss can
be a reaction to worming and is a sign of stress on the body.
This doesn't mean
all rabbits will react to worming medication by molting. Some rabbits don't.
you're new to showing and have only a few bunnies, I wouldn't risk putting
them into a molt by worming them unless I had to. If they molt during the
show season then your show season is pretty much over.
I worm my brood does at
least 10 days or more before I breed them. I do not worm pregnant does.
I only worm weaned kits. Again there's a lack of knowledge in this area,
so I play it safe.
Ivomec does not kill the Coccidia parasite.
I give my bunnies Sulfamethazine (Sulmet is the common brand name) as a preventative against the
You can either put it in their water or I buy medicated Purina rabbit pellets from the feed mill.
The feed has sulfamethazine added to it. It cost $2.00 more per bag and I feed
it for 5 days. I do this twice a year (Spring and Fall)
when the weather is damp and rainy.
If you put sulfamethazine drops in their water, you're
supposed to dump the water out daily, and put freshly medicated water in for a 5
day period. I found that a bit labor intensive when I have 20 e-z crocks to detach
from the cages.
I've also found that some rabbits with not eat or drink the sulfamethazine medication.
I'm now using a 1cc syringe and force feeding 1/10 of a cc per
pound to the rabbits.
I've had no ill effects by doing it this way and I know
that the rabbits have received there full daily dosage.
If I'm getting mysterious deaths, poor weight gain in my kits, or weight loss in
my rabbits, I treat for coccidia using sulfamethazine in the water for 5 days
and then another 5 day treatment 7-10 days later.
Sulfamethazine cures a number of rabbit ailments so even if it isn't coccidia
that is causing the trouble the sulfamethazine is a great answer to urinary
infections, bacteria infections and a wide range of ailments.
As for the age to start Worming and the frequency that differs greatly
from breeder to breeder.
I worm twice a year and
I'm reluctant to worm young Juniors. I don't worm all three meds at the
same time. However I know one top breeder who safely gives both Wazine and
Ivomec at the same time and after every show. They've been in rabbits
longer than me....
So again there is no right answer because none of these meds have been
tested for rabbits by the companies that make them.
information and side effects go to: Motz.com