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Anna
Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11129
Experience:  40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
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My bunny can't support her own weight. Not sure if her leg

Customer Question

My bunny can't support her own weight. Not sure if her leg is hurt or it is more First, it seemed to be her leg, but tonight, it seems like more of a control issue.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Have you looked to see if there is a wound on their foot?
Customer: We can't find anything wrong on the outside of her body.
JA: What is the bunny's name?
Customer: Asher... She is 14 months old and was born here with us. Her mom is a Norwegian Albino and her dad was a dwarf rabbit. He passed away last month from a blocked intestine, the vet thinks.
JA: Is there anything else important you think the veterinarian should know about Asher?
Customer: Not really. She's a healthy, active rabbit. She goes out in the backyard during the day when the weather is nice, but is caged at night. She lives in rabbit hutch with her mom and brother, who is neutered. The other two bunnies are fine.
Submitted: 18 days ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Anna replied 18 days ago.

Hello and welcome. My name is ***** ***** I'm a biologist with over 40 years of experience raising and showing rabbits. I'm sorry to hear that Asher is not doing well. In order to figure out what is going on, I will need more specific information. what do you mean by a control issue - is she falling to one side, rolling uncontrollably, head tilted to one side, dragging her back end, etc.?

A picture would also be useful.At the top of the area where you would type is a tool bar with icons. Click on the little paper clip icon. Instructions will pop up. On some browsers, this doesn't work. if that happens, you can put your photo on one of the free photo sharing websites, such as www.photobucket.com. Then come back here and paste the link to your picture.

Thank you.

Customer: replied 18 days ago.
I don't want to bug her, she seems to be comfortable in the corner of her cage. So, I can't get a picture right now. She is dragging her back legs,I think.
Expert:  Anna replied 18 days ago.

Thank you for getting back to me. That means her back end has become paralyzed. There are a number of potential causes.

It's common for injury to the spine, pelvis, or limbs to result in hind leg paralysis. A rabbit can easily be injured. Just jumping and twisting the wrong way while playing can cause a serious injuery. Sometimes administering corticosteroids can help the rabbit heal.

Arthritis is another possible cause, but in a rabbit as young as yours, this is less likely. It can be treated with Rimadyl and/or glucosamine supplementation.

Degenerated or ruptured vertebral discs also cause this condition.

The sporozoan parasite, Encephalitozoon cuniculi, is yet another possibility. It is treated with anti-parasitic medications, such as febendazole. This is a very common infection in younger rabbits.

Here's a site with much more information on hind leg paralysis and weakness:

http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare/paresis.html

You'll need to take Asher to a rabbit vet to diagnose the problem. A hands-on exam, and probably x-rays will be needed to reach a diagnosis. The above causes are very different in their treatment, and the necessary drugs are available by prescription only. Here's a directory that will help you find a rabbit vet near you:

http://www.rabbit.org/vets/vets.html

In the meantime, let her rest. Be sure to keep her food and water within easy reach. If you have further questions, just let me know. I hope Asher will recoverquickly.

Anna

My goal is to provide you with excellent 5 star service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back, I am happy to address follow-up questions. Please remember to rate my service after you have all the information you need. I will greatly appreciate a positive rating as that is the only way I am compensated. Thank you!

Expert:  Anna replied 15 days ago.
Hi,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Anna