Common Health Problems in Rabbits

Malocclusion (misalignment of teeth) of incisors and/or molars can be a common problem in many rabbits. They have teeth which continuously grow and if they are not aligned properly they do not wear normally, causing sharp points to develop. Symptoms include excessive drooling, wet dewlap, or decreased appetite.

Abscesses can result from wounds or injuries. Rabbits can also develop large abscesses from a bacteria called pasteurella. This organism is very difficult to treat and eradicate. Infections often recur and in some cases, surgery may be needed cases.

Gastrointestinal stasis is a slowing or stoppage of gut movement. It can often result from a blockage due to accumulation of hair or fibers (like carpet). You will normally notice a decrease in appetite and small to no stool production. This can be very serious and your rabbit should be seen as soon as possible as it can be fatal.

Upper respiratory infections are also common in rabbits. They will have a runny nose/eyes and sneezing. Often the organisms which cause these infections are highly contagious and difficult to treat. Your pet should be seen as soon as possible to start proper medications, as early detection and treatment greatly reduces the severity of the disease.

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