8 Most frequent rabbit diseases


If you already have a rabbit, You may have recognized some of these diseases, if you are new to the world of pet rabbits, find out well! The diseases that most affect rabbits at home are:

Although it may seem somewhat light and routine, A diarrhea can be lethal to a rabbit, as it dehydrates it very quickly. And yes, it is one of the most important diseases of domestic rabbits, so watch out!

Diarrhea can be caused by different causes, such as viral or bacterial infections, parasites or improper feeding, as well as food poisoning and lack of hygiene in the environment (cage). It can be more or less serious depending on the cause, but don't let days go by without asking for a veterinary diagnosis. We must act as soon as possible to prevent it from getting worse!

If your rabbit has diarrhea, it is normal for him to also be depressed, to have a swollen belly and not want to eat. Make sure you drink enough water to stay hydrated.

The cold as such is not frequent, but distemper is a fairly common disease among domestic rabbits. You will see that he sneezes, has snot and his eyes cry.

Although colds are not very common, when they occur they often lead to worse pathologies such as pneumonia. Therefore, prevention is very important: never expose your rabbit to cold currents or sudden changes in temperature, or wet it.

A rabbit that has had a cold for days may suffocate from the mucus accumulated in the nose. You need veterinary attention!

Scabies is caused by a mite and It is one of the most common parasitic diseases among rabbits. It is really contagious, so if you have several bunnies, do not hesitate to separate them before they are transmitted.

In rabbits there are two types of scabies: one that extends throughout the body and another that is located exclusively in the ears. Both are equally dangerous and need immediate treatment. It is really dangerous if you let it spread!

Eye problems

Conjunctivitis and other eye infections are some of the diseases of domestic rabbits that you should worry about preventing. It is especially common when rabbits do not have in their environment the hygiene they should and can be really annoying.

If your rabbit has conjunctivitis, you will see that he does not open his eyes well, has them reddened and does not stop tearing. In severe cases, Pus may even accumulate under the eyelid. Of course, you will need a treatment to recover.

If your rabbit is affected by any of these diseases or you find symptoms of any other, do not hesitate to go to your veterinarian! Rabbits are quite delicate and vulnerable animals and their health worsens easily. Don't let your disease get worse!

Teeth too long

Rabbits teeth grow nonstop! Therefore they need to gnaw often to wear themIf not, they will grow more from the account to the point of harming and making life difficult.

The tips of the incisors can hurt you and in serious cases, they even grow out of the mouth and prevent it from opening and eating. If a rabbit stops eating because it is impossible, he will die!

Therefore, if you have a rabbit, make sure that you always eat enough fiber and frequently spray untreated wood or cork.


It is one of the most common rabbit diseases. The pasteurella It is characterized by watery eyes, runny nose, watery eyes, sneezing and tangled legs. It is a bacterial infection and usually appears in stress situations or later.

It can be treated with antibiotics, but they don't always work, because there is a risk of becoming chronic. In addition, it is very contagious. The best way to prevent it is to offer the rabbit a stress-free and very clean environment.

Leg problems

It is more common in large rabbits, but Really any rabbit can have leg problems if he doesn't live in the right conditions.

For example, rabbits that live in a cage with a grid floor end up having ulcers and other leg injuries due to the constant pressure exerted by the bars. Boards or nests avoid this problem.

Ear mites

If your rabbit has scabs in his ear, he scratches and does not stop shaking his head, It is very likely that he has mites in his ears. Sometimes, in addition to all this, they also lose hair.

If your rabbit has mites in his ears, you should take it to the vet as soon as possible. If you do not get treatment soon, you are at risk of serious infections.

Types of diseases and basic prevention

Rabbits can suffer from diseases of very diverse origin like any living being. Next, we will classify and describe the most common diseases according to their origin in bacterial, fungal, viral, parasitic, hereditary and other health problems.

most of rabbit diseases are specific to them, that is, they are not transmitted between different animal species. So if we have another animal living with our jumping buddy we do not have to worry, in principle, about possible infections of serious diseases.

To prevent the vast majority of common diseases and problems, we must follow the vaccination schedule that our specialist veterinarian tells us, maintain good hygiene, adequate and healthy food, provide exercise at the same time as a good rest, ensure that our rabbit is free from stress, check his body frequently and fur, in addition to observing their behavior so that the minimum detail that seems strange in their individual behavior, attracts our attention and we go to the veterinarian.

Following these guidelines we will easily avoid health problems and in case they occur we will detect them early, helping to make the recovery of our hairy faster and more effective. Next we will expose the most common diseases of rabbits according to their origin.


Rabbits are really sensitive to high temperatures, so It is important that you take good care of your rabbit's environment, especially in summer.

Avoid spending a lot of time in the sun and make sure they always have fresh water available. To be cool in summer, You can place a bottle of frozen water in its cage. You can also use a fan, as long as it does not directly give the rabbit.

G. I. Stasis

This is a rabbit disease that It consists of slowing down or complete paralysis of the digestive tract. If you see your rabbit very apathetic, he does not eat or drink, nor does he poop, he may be suffering. Run to the vet! It is a dangerous disease, it could even be fatal.

To avoid it, always try Give your rabbit all the fiber and hydration it needs.


This virus It is transmitted by a mosquito bite, but it can also be transmitted by an infected rabbit to a healthy one by direct contact. It is a disease that damages internal organs and causes bleeding.

The rabbit stops eating, is depressed, not very active and sometimes bleeds from the nose. If you detect this, run! Calcivirus is one of the most dangerous rabbit diseases, it is often fatal.

To prevent calcivirus, there is a vaccine that is renewed every year.

Did you know these diseases of rabbits? Ask your veterinarian for advice to prevent them all.

Rabbit diseases

Its symptoms are very similar to those of a cold, from sneezing and mucus. It is a very annoying disease since the rabbit ends up suffering a acute respiratory failure and large amounts of internal pus appear. If it is detected in time, it is easily treatable based on antibiotics, the important thing is to monitor the symptoms and, at the slightest doubt, go to the doctor.

Pneumonia, to avoid this type of disease, should be vaccinated at rabbit every six or twelve months, since otherwise, and such an infection, can bring very serious complications (alterations in the droppings, cyanosis, fever) that cause internal bleeding, seizures and, finally, death.


This disease is transmitted by insect bites, contagious, and without effective cure. The best way to combat it is preventive vaccination. The symptoms are evident within a few days after infection, and consist of inflammations in the face (acute conjunctivitis) and genital parts, and then at subcutaneous levels, causing visible deformations in the body of the rabbit.


It is a common disease of domestic animals, and it is spread by the consumption of food with coccide droppings. Faecal disorders (diarrhea, blood in stool ...), loss of appetite and acute dehydration occur. Although treated with antibiotics, it is one of the most common causes of death for rabbits.

Very common disease in both rabbits and any other pet. Scabs appear on the body, which causes a lot of itching and scratching infections. Scabies comes out by the presence of mites that lay their eggs on the animals. It can be of two types: scabies in the ears, or scabies in the skin. In both cases, the symptoms are irritation, thick secretions and yellowish scabs, which can reach the mouth, eyes and nostrils. It is very dangerous, but can be easily treated topically, or with subcutaneous injections. Look very well if the rabbit twists its head and loses its sense of direction, because it means that the ear infection is very advanced.

This disease is common in many animals. It occurs when the larvae of flies that have left their eggs in a wound of the pet, begin to feed on a wound, can cause death after a state of shock.

Rabbits, especially the youngest if they have abnormalities in the stool, dehydration, too low body temperature or an unusual mood, may be due to this intestinal infection, which said step must be taken care of quickly and aggressively and with Nutritional support for the animal.

When we talk about diseases, we always get a little scared. But we are trying to inform to prevent, we hope that does not discourage you to have a rabbit, because you would miss many things.

1.- Teeth too big

A rabbit's teeth grow continuously throughout its v> the rabbit cannot close its mouth or eat at all. Once a rabbit stops eating its intestine stops working and can die.

To treat this, one of the diseases of rabbits is to use general anesthesia and lower the teeth until they are flat. This is the only treatment that can correct too large teeth.

4.- Ear mites

If you find a crusty substance inside your rabbit's ears, this is the ear canker and is caused by the ear mites. Other symptoms may include shaking the head and severe scratching. Hair loss is also seen occasionally.

The ivermectinIt is a common treatment option, so p> Mineral oil, two drops in each ear once a month is an option to prevent a mite infestation. An underlying infection can often accompany the symptoms of mites, so always consult your veterinarian about treatment.

5.- Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is a dangerous problem for rabbits, particularly those housed outdoors. Rabbits are extremely sensitive to high temperatures, and your outdoor rabbits will need extensive protection in order to stay cold enough during periods of warm weather.> Protection from the sun, of course, is of paramount importance, but so is continuous access to fresh air and water. . You can provide frozen water bottles so that rabbits sit next to you and absorb the cold on hot days. You can also place a fan that blows near (but not directly) your rabbits to help circulate fresh, fresh air.

By keeping your rabbits fresh and comfortable, you will help prevent heat-induced diseases. For a rabbit that is suffering from heat stroke, an immediate reduction in body temperature is necessary. Moisten the rabbit with warm water and immediately transport it to a veterinarian. You may need to treat the rabbit with intravenous fluids.

Don't forget how many breeds of rabbits there are

6.- G.I. Stasis

Essentially it is a slowdown or paralysis of the digestive tract. Gastrointestinal stasis is a dangerous and often fatal disease. Signs may include lack of stool, lack of appetite, not drinking water, swollen abdomen and general apathy. If your rabbit exhibits these symptoms, it should be evaluated immediately by a veterinarian.

There are a range of treatment options for G.I. stasis which include surgery, oral fluids, hay of free choice, abdominal massage, and simethicone in drops or tablets. The course of treatment will depend on whether an intestinal obstruction is involved.

The prevention of G.I. Stasis in your rabbits is> a diet high in fiber, including a lot of hay and a high contain> unlimited supply of fresh water helps prevent this disease. Fresh vegetables can also be a beneficial addition to the rabbit's diet.

Learn about the correct feeding of rabbits

7.- Uterine Tumors

Whole female rabbits can develop a cancer called uterine adenocarcinoma and should be suspected at any time when an unsterilized rabbit becomes ill. Some of the most common clinical signs include vaginal discharge with blood spots, aggressive behavior, mammary gland cysts and lethargy.

The best way to prevent this is sterilize your rabbit before it reaches 6 months of age. If the disease is diagnosed, the treatment will include surgery to remove the reproductive system. This is done in the hope of preventing cancer from spreading to other parts of the body.

8.- Calicivirus

Calicivirus is transmitted by mosquitoes or by direct contact with an infected rabbit. This is a disease that damages the internal organs of the rabbit such as the liver and intestine. It can also cause bleeding or bleeding. Symptoms include stopping eating, being depressed and silent, and it is possible to notice some bleeding from the nose. The disease can progress very quickly and It is often fatal.

Luckily there is one calicivirus vaccine. It must be given annually to ensure that your rabbit's immunity against it is maintained. A mosquito-proof mesh is also advised, as well as avoiding contact with infected rabbits.

These diseases of rabbits are the most common to be diagnosed. Always remember to go to your trusted veterinarian to get a good diagnosis.


crooked neck disease It mainly affects crowded and / or unhealthy rabbits. So the probability of having it in a home where there are no more animals and there is no possibility of contact with them, is low.

If you notice that your rabbit keeps your head bowed to the side, or that scratches one ear insistently, go immediately to your veterinarian, since only he will be able to provide you with the appropriate treatment. Never try to cure it on your own ...

The otitis in the rabbit by Pasteurella Multocida It is produced by the migration of the bacteria from the pharynx or nose, through the Eustachian tube, and subsequent colonization of the middle ear. Then, due to ruptured eardrum, progress to the inner ear, producing the classic vestibular signs of the process.

In this case, your veterinarian will proceed to eliminate the etiologic agent involved (Pasteurella), by means of a appropriate antibiotic, established through an antibiogram and sensitivity tests, while trying to mitigate the inflammation of the middle ear of your rabbit using a anti-inflammatory.

Contagious for other pets that live with the rabbit, if you have to put it into treatment, you should also treat all the pets that you have living in your home.

If your rabbit has diarrhea you must act fast. Diarrhea is very dangerous, especially in rabbits and can end the life of our rabbit in just a few hours.

If you have recently acquired your gazapo (less than 2 weeks) and have abundant diarrhea, in addition to loss of appetite and apathy, it is very likely that you have a coccidia infection.

When we are faced with a gazapo with diarrhea, it is vital to take an exotic veterinarian as soon as possible, to determine by a coprological analysis if our rabbit has coccidia, what species and in what quantity.

Today, few veterinarians know how to treat a coccidiosis in a gazapo properly, so we must pay special attention to the treatment you give us.

Its transmission to people is practically impossible.

Treatment: Toltrazuril, clazuril, sulfonamides, amprolium, feeds with coccidiotatics.

The rabbit will not die of coccidiosis itself. The main dangers of diarrhea in rabbits are dehydration and enterotoxemia.

The coccidiosis It is one of the diseases that more deaths provoke between rabbits. It is produced by some parasites called coccidia, which attack from the stomach to the colon, verifying very characteristic symptoms such as digestive disorders, gas Y diarrhea.

The rabbit affected by this disease stops eating and drinking and dies from dehydration. Under normal conditions coccide coexists in equilibrium with the rabbit, and it is the stress which violates the animal's defenses and allows the exorbitant multiplication of this parasite.

Basically, there are two types of coccidiosis: hepatic cocciodiosis, which is detected by some striking white spots on the liver, is not fatal, but the rabbit thins a lot. And the intestinal coccidiosis, which triggers in gallops weaned a galloping diarrhea, causing a rapid death from dehydration.

The danger of coccidiosis is that it is a disease extremely contagious. The rabbits are immune until weaning, and then suddenly contract the parasitosis. Adult rabbits are healthy carriers, but they are precisely mothers those that spread their young, from their faeces.

It's relatively simple to prevent Y cure coccidiosis, under the supervision of a vetObviously, since there are medicinal products on the market, called coccidiostats, which greatly facilitate the treatment. It is also essential to maximize the cage hygiene

Dental overgrowth

Rabbits have the special characteristic that their teeth grow continuously throughout their lives. The normal gnawing action keeps this growth at bay. This is one of the reasons to feed your rabbit with hay. A rabbit that has a bad occlusion cannot gnaw or feed normally. This problem can be serious enough to cause total anorexia in the rabbit.

The rabbit shown below has an overgrowth of the lower incisors. They need a periodic cut every 2 to 4 weeks, so that the problem does not recur.

They are cut with a special type of scissors that do not break them. This technique should not be performed by inexperienced people because the tooth is brittle by nature, and in these cases it is weaker than normal due to the abnormality they present. They can be easily fractured by these two factors.
Although the upper incisors are not as long as the lower ones, they also need to be cut, because they are growing into the mouth.
The rabbit feels much better, and they can return to their normal rabbit activity. Subsequently a periodic dental checkup will be necessary every 2 or 4 weeks.

Rabbits are susceptible to flea infestation. To discover the flea infestation it is necessary to make a careful inspection, checking the base of the fur. Although in rabbits the frame is weak and only causes irritation there is to treat our bunny as soon as possible with a product suitable for rabbits that eliminates fleas completely. Currently there are no specific products for rabbits on the market and it is important to know that there are products for dogs that applied to rabbits can cause serious disorders and even death. On the other hand we can recommend a product that until now has not caused problems in rabbits, they are the Pipettes (Stronghold (Selamectin) from Pfizer) for cats, the presentation for animals less than 2.5 kg, apply one third of said pipette on the skin of the neck just behind the base of the skull so the rabbit can't lick it. Eliminate the population of existing fleas in 24 hours and protect the animal for a month.

IMPORTANT! Failure to use the FRONTLINE product has been shown to CAUSE PROBLEMS AND EVEN DEATH IN RABBITS. (Source: Vetex)

The San Diego House Rabbit Society has alerted us to the use of Frontline®, a topical product to control fleas, which has resulted in serious problems for domestic rabbits.

In the fall edition of the San Diego Rabbit News, Dr. Jeffery Jenkins confirms the death of several rabbits due to the use of Frontline® and warns that the manufacturer (Rhone Merieux, Inc.) has received reports that its product causes “adverse reactions” in rabbits.

Frontline® DOES NOT indicate on its label that this product is to be used in rabbits and the manufacturer does not recommend that it be used in rabbits. Frontline® is achieved only through veterinary prescriptions. Since its active ingredient should not enter the central nervous system of mammals, it is possible that veterinarians who prescribe it, mistakenly think that its use does not endanger the rabbit.

Dr. Jenkins adds that Advantage®, another topical medication prescribed to control fleas, has also caused some adverse reactions in cats and domestic rabbits. The manufacturer ((Bayer) has reported gastro-intestinal diseases in cats that lick a large amount of their partner who had recently smeared Advantage®.

If you choose a treatment with your rabbit or cat Advantage®, Dr. Jenkins recommends that the animal that received the treatment be isolated from the other rabbits or cats at least 12 hours after they have been smeared.

Advantage® is also not classified for use in rabbits. (Only a few drugs are classified as such.)

As an owner who cares about the welfare of your rabbit, you should ask yourself if it is worth putting your pet's life at risk using topical products against fleas, especially when there are other alternatives. Program® is a product prescribed by the veterinarian that is taken orally and that no problem has been documented to date.

Many years ago, the House Rabbit Society and Rabbit Rescue recommended the use of pyrethrin-based products for use in rabbits, but many are synthetic and / or carbaryls with disguised lethal potential. I have also recently learned that a 5% Sevin powder is even more toxic than Diazinon! So they are no longer recommended for flea treatment in your rabbit.