Welcome to hampton park veterinary hospital
Your caring local Vet and friendly team
Hampton park doggie wash for all pets
Serving the community for over 20 years
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Open Mon - Fri: 8am to 8pm Sat: 9am to 3pm | Hospital Address: Cnr Somerville Rd & Outlook Dr Hampton Park 3976

Rabbit Hampton Park Vets

Caring for your Rabbit

For the health of your rabbit it is important to get the basics right.

Download your rabbit wellness schedule

Housing

Rabbits are naturally preyed upon. When scared  your rabbit’s instinct is to to hide. Whether your rabbit is indoors or outdoors they need the protection of a nesting box to take refuge in when scared.

Outdoor rabbits can enjoy the  run of the garden or but  should be housed at night between dusk and dawn. The hutch should be warm, well ventilated, draft free  and provide protection from extremes of temperature.

As for indoor rabbits , watch those power cords. Rabbits love to chew on things .

Diet and Dental disease

Where as dental disease in dogs and cat can sometimes be very obvious, rabbit dental disease is sometimes difficult to detect. Rabbits’ teeth continuously grow and require constant wear to prevent overgrowth. Inadequate wear can result in the back teeth developing spikes that will ulcerate the tongue or cheeks. The front or incisor teeth can overgrow and prevent the mouth from closing. Imagine every time you chewed you hurt your mouth? Ouch

Signs of dental disease in rabbits include:
Nasaldischarge, inability to close the mouth, facialswelling and protruding front teeth. They often stop eating and dribble from the mouth.

To adequately wear teeth rabbits need to eat plenty of fibre this is found predominantly in grass and hay.

Rabbits need a diet Stick to the 80:20 rule. 80% quality hay and pellets and 20 % quality greens Remember not all hay is tasty: try quality oaten, lucerne or timothy hays. Stay away from straw. Rabbits loose condition quickly if you notice any of these make an appointment to see us. Unsure what to feed we stock the full range of Oxbow rabbit diets and are pleased to help.

Desexing

Rabbits are social animals and live happier, more fulfilled lives  with a mate  But beware….

You have heard the saying. Bred like rabbits… it’s true!

Many male rabbits or bucks are  mature by 4 months old . Female rabbits  or does are generally sexually mature  from 4-6  months old. Does  do not have an obvious defined heat period but cycle in waves or 7-10 days. Pregnancy lasts only a short time, 31 days on average.  So  you can see  without desexing how your rabbit population can  expand very quickly.

Apart from unwanted pregnancy  there are many more benefits to desexing.  Both  sexes can often urine spray . This can be very anti-social and  smelly. Imagine trying to pat your rabbit that smells like wee all the time .

Health benefits are numerous. Does, later in life have a high incidence of  womb cancer  and infection.  Speying  a female , or removal of the womb and ovaries provides protection against this. Male rabbits are neutered by removal of the testes or castration. Male desexed rabbit avoid cancers of the reproductive organs.

You can see the irony… rabbits might be  social but, they often can be very territorial,  prone to fighting  and inflict serious  even life threatening wounds on each other.  Desexing will reduce territorial behaviour  and make rabbit ownership more pleasurable  experience.

Book your pet’s desexing today. It’s a day surgical procedure  and give your rabbit the best chance  live a long and happy life.

Flea, Fly & Mosquito Control

Myiasis (Fly strike)

During the warmer months flies will be attracted to urine and faecal soiled breaches.Rabbits  with soiled fur from poor grooming, diarrhoea or illness can  also attract  to flies to lay eggs in these areas.  The eggs hatch to be maggots  that then  eat away the layers of the skin and bury into the body. This problem can arise quickly. Myiasis can result in death or euthanasia of your rabbit!

Vigilance: check your rabbit twice daily for any soiled areas.

Tip 1 : Vigilance: check your rabbit twice daily for any soiled areas and clean them if needed

Fleas and Mosquitoes

Did you know rabbits get fleas.? Controlling biting insects  is an important factor in reducing exposure  to the dreaded myxomatosis.  No doubt many of us have seen the blinded bunny at the side of the highway. This viral disease is spread mainly through mosquito and flea bites.

There is no cure or vaccination for this disease in Australia.

The easiest way to prevent Myxo is to reduce exposure of your rabbit to fleas and mossies. Avoid  the outdoors during risk periods : Dawn and Dusk. Mosquito netting over the hutch helps but I have seen many rabbits with Myxo that have been in seemingly well protected cages .

Rabbits get fleas. Controlling fleas is an important factor in reducing exposure to myxomatosis. Advantix Flea control is recommended. This not only kills fleas, fly larvae but assists in repellining mosquitoes.

Viral Diseases

Myxomatosis

Originally introduced as a biological control of rabbits it is spread through mosquito and flea bites. This disease is more prevalent in warmer months. It causes swelling of eyes, face, genitals and skin. Often the animal is blinded by the swelling. There is no vaccination against the disease in Australia and recovery unlikely even with supportive veterinary treatment. Prevention of mosquitos and fleas is our one defence:

  1. House in hutch with mosquito proof netting at peak mosquito periods of dusk-dawn.
  2. Keep rabbits away from high populations of mosquitoes i.e. ponds, stagnant water
  3. Repellants: Advantix, an easy to apply spot-on application,  has both a fly/mosquito repellant activity.
  4. Prevent fleas: Advantix will kill fleas.

Calicivirus( HVD, RCD, VHD)

HVD was released as a biological control at towards the end of last century . This virus is responsible for sudden death in rabbits. The disease only affects the European rabbit which is the base for our domestic pets. The disease is spread through direct contact with wild rabbits but, can spread indirectly on clothing, footwear, feed, other animals and possibility of insect transmissions.

Annual vaccination against the disease is the only was to prevent this disease.

The good news though is we can treat rabbit for fleas like we treat dogs using  ADVANTIX . This will kill fleas and repels flies and mosquito.

Tip 2 reduce exposure to  Mosquitos and Fleas limits the chance of contracting Myxo

Most importantly rabbits are great actors. If you notice an illness act quickly. It is bound to be more serious than your pet rabbit is indicating.


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