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i have a 2 and half year old mini lop who is losing fur around his eyes, no wetness, he sh…

i have a 2 and...
i have a 2 and half year old mini lop who is losing fur around his eyes, no wetness, he shares a hutch with his brother who is fine, both neutered> he has been taken to the best twice and they couldn't find anything either time. No soreness or bites. The fur has been growing back but i noticed today the fur has gone again.
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
the vet suspected over grooming as his eyes aren't watery, there aren't any signs of mites or soreness. They live together outside in a very big hutch which has removable weather guards and get to play as often as we ca. They have a few toys in the hutch but maybe not enough. they get fresh water, pellets, and lots of hay and fresh veg each day,
Answered in 17 minutes by:
11/25/2014
Anna
Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11,923
Experience: 40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
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Hello and welcome. The expert you requested is not online right now. My name is ***** ***** I'm a biologist who has been raising and showing rabbits for many years. Some additional information will help me to answer your question.
Did the vet do a skin scraping?
Have you noticed the rabbit rubbing or scratching at his eyes as if they itch?
What kind of litter/bedding do you use?
Thank you.
Anna
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
No the vet didn't do a skin scraping, not seen him rubbing his eyes at all. Its wood shavings with some straw as its getting cold here. His brother is in the hutch with him and his eyes are fine
Thank you for getting back to me. I’m working on your answer and will post it as soon as I have it typed up. (I am not a fast typist). Please don’t respond to this post as that can lock me out of the question. I’ll be back shortly.
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Thank you for waiting. There are several common causes of this type of fur loss. The most common is watery eyes that cause irritation and make the fur fall out.But you said there is no discharge. Eye infections, dental problems, and irritations can cause such watering. Sometimes rabbits use their paws to wipe away any wetness. If you can watch Duke for awhile, you'd be able to see this.
Fungal infections are another common cause of such fur loss. A skin scraping is needed to detect them. Fur mites are also a possibility. Fur mites burrow in. They are not visible to the naked eye, and because they burrow, they don't show up in skin scraping. If a vet suspects fur mites, he/she often will treat for them based on symptoms.
Allergies are another potential cause. Wood-based bedding is a common allergen. Both rabbits wouldn't necessarily be allergic. A paper-based litter, such as CareFresh often eliminates allergic reactions. If it is deep enough it will keep the rabbits warm.
To get to the bottom of this, more testing or trying different treatments may be needed. I suspect the vet you saw isn't a rabbit specialist. A second opinion from one who is would be a good idea. Copy and paste this URL to your browser window to see a directory of UK rabbit vets:
http://homepage.mac.com/mattocks/morfz/Vet_EU-UK.html
However, as your vet suggested, overgrooming is a possibility, too. Overgrooming is often done by a cage mate.
If you prefer to try some things before seeing another vet, you can start by dividing the cage so overgrooming is impossible. If the fur grows back and doesn't disappear again, you would have your answer. Another thing you can try is to replace the bedding with a paper-based one. You can put saline solution (the kind made for contact lenses) in each eye several times a day. That can help with any irritation. Dab off any that drips on the skin.
If you have more questions, let me know in a REPLY. I hope Duke will recover from this quickly.
Anna
My goal is to provide you with excellent 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 only after you have all the information you need.  Thank you!
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
thanks for all this, I'm afraid the link doesn't work. i took duke to a normal vets and the 2nd visit was to a rabbit specialist. the fur loss started with his left eye about 3months ago when he had a little cut, which healed very quickly but the fur loss followed almost straight away thats why we think it might be his brothers over grooming him, But this week we've spotted fur loss on his right eye now on the top and bottom of his eye. he seems ok in himself, always licking me and being happy. I am worried though, and am at a bit of a loss. Muffin his brother is a little more nervous and gets bored quicker than duke
The vet directory isn 't a link. There's some bug on the site tonight that makes it so I can't activate a link. Try copying the address instead if clicking on it. However, since you did see a rabbit specialist, you may want to return there. Let them know the problem isn't solved and ask for their opinion on what to do next.
Since that vet suggested over grooming, I think the first thing I would do is separate the rabbits. There is no other way to stop over grooming.
If you have more questions, don't hesitate to ask.
Anna
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago
How do i separate them without breaking the bond?
If you can divide the cage into two sections, they can still be friends through the cage wire. This doesn't have to be permanent. If it turns out over grooming wasn't the cause, which you'll know because the fur won't grow back, you can remove the divider. If the fur grows back, you'll either need to keep them separate or tolerate the overgrooming.
Anna
Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11,923
Experience: 40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
Verified
Anna and 87 other Pet Specialists are ready to help you
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Do you need additional information? If so, let me know.
If you're satisfied with the information you have received, please take a moment to rate my answer so I can receive credit for it. Thank you very much.
I hope that whatever you decide to do for Duke, it will work out well.
Anna
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