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I Remember Miffy
01-03-2006, 12:54 PM
Another post about my poor old bunny :D.

Hope, my nine year old un-neutered female, has had a few health problems lately - weepy eyes, refusing to eat and drink etc. The vet has ruled out tooth problems and has checked her over for any signs of tumours.

Anyway, her eating is slooooowly getting better (thanks to everyone on here who gave me advice - especially the suggestion to try porridge oats, she loves them!). But I've noticed that her back legs seem a bit weak/wobbley.

For the past few months or more I've noticed that she doesn't sit up as straight as she used to to wash her face with her front paws. But lately she falls over whenever she tries to wash her face and has actually started leaning on the edge of her litter tray for support. I've also noticed that her back legs just seem a bit weak and wobbley when she's running about.

I'm taking her to the vet's on Friday anyway, but I wondered whether hind leg weakness is common in older rabbits - could she be getting stiff in her old age or is it likely to be something more sinister? It's come on very gradually, so I don't really suspect a stroke. Is there anything I can do to help her - like giving flax seed oil to ease her joints?

The good news is that she's starting to tolerate the presence of my other rabbit Manny so at least she might have a companion in her old age!

Thanks again!

Anna x

Jack's-Jane
01-03-2006, 05:39 PM
Hiya! Hind leg weakness is a common finding in elderly buns. Sometimes it is due to degenerative changes in the spine causing the vertebrae to press on the nerves which go to the hind legs. An anti-inflammatory like Metacam can help in these circumstances. Also trying to keep Bun as mobile as possible (as long as SPINAL INJURY has been EXCLUDED) will help Bun retain some muscle tone. I use Physiotherapy on elderly Buns with weak hind legs. Maybe your Vet could advise you about how to do this. Buns with weak hind legs also need to have their ears checked regularly as they often find it hard to clean themselves and are prone to getting very mucky ears. You also need to check that your Bun is not getting urine scald. Buns with a weak rear end may also have poor bladder control and may 'leak' wee which irritates their skin. Bum checks are VERY important for Buns with weak back legs!! Jane x

I Remember Miffy
02-03-2006, 02:30 PM
Thanks Jane!

I'll get the vet to rule out spinal injury tomorrow and ask him about Metacam and whether he knows anything about bunny physiotherapy - pretty unlikely I should think :) ! She is pretty active - spends most evenings chasing Manny round the house/garden! I will be extra vigilant when checking her ears and bum - as of last night she looked very clean all over!

Anna x