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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 23810
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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My rabbit just developed a severe head tilt and is

Customer Question

my rabbit just developed a severe head tilt and is constantly rolling over. I assume he is trying to move around and get back and forth but is loosing his balance. he is eating fine and drinking fine. he is going to the bathroom fine. the rolling over seems to be getting worse. could it be an inner ear infection or wry neck?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 4 months ago.

I'm sorry to hear of this with Clover. Encephalitizoon cuniculi infection is most often associated with rabbits experiencing head tilt and rolling. Nystagmus (eyes flicking back and forth) and seizures may also be seen. E. cuniculi is a microsporidum parasite which appears to be endemic in the majority of rabbit colonies. The cerebrum is most frequently affected; the vestibular areas of the brain including the cerebellum are less commonly affected although vestibular (balance) symptoms predominate.

Fenbendazole (as found in Panacur) has been used successfully at a dose of 10 mg/lb orally daily for 30 days.

Otitis interna/media (internal/middle ear infection) by a number of bacteria can cause the same symptoms and so it's not unreasonable to also treat these rabbits with a broad spectrum antibiotic such as the prescription enrofloxacin at 2.3 mg/lb subcutaneously twice daily for 14 days. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Where would I be able to get a prescription for the antibiotic. I am not able to afford a vet and am hoping to buy something over the counter.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 4 months ago.

Patricia, I regret that we're not allowed to prescribe through this venue and enrofloxacin is a veterinary drug and not available in human pharmacies. It's reasonable to see how 30 days of over the counter Panacur affects Clover when dosed at 10 mg/lb orally daily. Please continue our conversation if you wish.