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Thread: Pneumonia recovery timeline in rabbits

  1. #1

    Default Pneumonia recovery timeline in rabbits

    I have a rabbit that is recovering from near death. Its 4th day today, he is lethargic and sleepy mostly but is eating/pooping fine. He had a pain killer injected that provided him with quite a bit of relief but since yesterday he is a bit uncomfortable, probably due to no more pain killer in his system.
    Does anyone know how long recovery from a bad Pneumonia takes for a rabbit that is eating and sleeping normally? Is it 1-2 weeks or much longer? Do the rabbits become energetic and start moving around within a week or does it take few weeks?
    Also is phlegm and cough likely to become worse as disease comes under control due to baytril or is it not a good sign.
    Would be nice to have some idea of recovery timeline so I can keep an eye on the rabbit and take him to the vet if i sense that recovery is not fast enough.

  2. #2
    Forum Buddy Liz47's Avatar
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    I'm sorry you have a rabbit that is so poorly. I have no experience with rabbits but had a rat with pneumonia, his treatment was about 3 months long as far as I can remember. He had a strong combination of antibiotics, alongside metacam as a NSAID. To help with his breathing we also took him into a steamy bathroom several times a week and nebulised him (careful to watch for stress when doing this). Has your rabbit got any follow ups booked with your vet? I would also for pain relief and perhaps he needs a stronger/combination of antibiotics?

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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Liz47 View Post
    I'm sorry you have a rabbit that is so poorly. I have no experience with rabbits but had a rat with pneumonia, his treatment was about 3 months long as far as I can remember. He had a strong combination of antibiotics, alongside metacam as a NSAID. To help with his breathing we also took him into a steamy bathroom several times a week and nebulised him (careful to watch for stress when doing this). Has your rabbit got any follow ups booked with your vet? I would also for pain relief and perhaps he needs a stronger/combination of antibiotics?
    Thank you for replying and the information Liz47.
    I have read elsewhere that treatment may last a while, however since he was feeling a bit yesterday, I thought he would be even more better today. I did talk to vet and will take him back for pain medication.
    I was wondering about using a humidifier near his room. He often wets his tongue in water bowl, often for several minutes. I guess this is his way of seeking relief.
    Does anyone have any recommendation whether it is helpful to use a humidifier in or near their room while they are recovering, considering that room is at 21 22 degrees C. (72 F)?

  4. #4
    Wise Old Thumper joey&boo's Avatar
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    I'm sorry everything here is beyond my experience but I just want to send well wishes to your brave little bunny, I really hope he can pull through

  5. #5

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    Sorry this will be a rushed reply

    IME cases of pneumonia require aggressive abx treatment for several weeks. Usually a combination of an injectable penicillin and oral enrofloxacin or Trimethoprim / Sulfamethoxazole. Nebulising with a sterile saline solution (in the absence of a nebuliser letting Bunny hop about in a steamed up bathroom may help, assuming Bunny is no too debilitated to do so ). A NSAID such as Meloxicam to reduce inflammation , a bronchodilator such as Theophylline to open up the airways in the lungs.

    Optimum nutrition- so assisted feeding if Bunny is not eating well. Great care needs to be taken when syringe feeding to avoid Bunny aspirating a feed.
    Last edited by InspectorMorse; 29-10-2020 at 06:08 AM.


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    Forum Buddy Pets mum's Avatar
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    I've no experience of this, but want to wish you and your bunny well. I really hope he can pull through, sending him a million vibes x
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    Moderator Zoobec's Avatar
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    I don’t have any experience of this but I’m sending lots of vibes xx

    Binky free at the bridge Boots, you will never be forgotten xxxx

  8. #8
    Mama Doe
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    I have found a nebuliser to be very useful before, just using sterile saline. They are easy to get hold off (Amazon, Lidl, maybe some pharmacists) and easy to use. I've got this one:
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0081EL4...v_ov_lig_dp_it

    I hooked it up to a cat carrier, put the animal in the carrier and threw a towel over the whole thing (except the motor unit). It only takes a few minutes at a time, maybe 2 or 3 times a day if needed. Feeding bunny with his favourite things in the carrier makes it a better experience.

    I would ask your vet about additional treatment options - go armed with the suggestions given on here and see what they suggest.

  9. #9

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    Well, unfortunately the little one succumbed to Pneumonia last night despite our best efforts.
    Sharing his time line here, hope it will help someone.
    We got him exactly 2 weeks ago from a place that seemed a bit overcrowded and not taken well care of. He hid his disease very well when we looked at him at seller's place and also during 90 mins car journey but started sneezing and wheezing as soon as he arrived home. I initially wanted to return because of this but thought he would get better with time and tender care. He was just 2 months and quite skinny and light for a NZ Rabbit. He snored very heavily on first night with all kinds of sounds coming from him indicating something serious was wrong with him.
    His sneezing, coughing worsened in next 2-3 days but he was eating and playing normally. After a week, he became lethargic and next morning was crying at top of his voice and having difficulty breathing. We took him to vet who said it is too late and he may perish in an hour or today itself.
    We started giving him baytril and each day his situation seemed to change. The snoring disappeared. Then cough became severe after two days of starting treatment but went away after another two days. In 2-3 days wheezing died down. By 4th day from his treatment his sneezing became very light and infrequent. But mucous started showing up and increased quickly by end of the day. Everyday his situation seemed different but unfortunately on Sat. morning (1 week after treatment started) he was unable to lie down and kept on sitting most of the time and breathing thru mouth because his nose was getting clogged frequently. he was beginning to lose normal consciousness, was afraid of seeing us first thing in the morning and did not eat or drink on his own. he was crying a lot (like a crow) on last day while breathing thru mouth.
    He was in distress on last day, desperate to go outside to backyard even though it was very cold. his frantic running and this odd behavior was a clear sign that his time is coming. He wont stay behind barriers and even tried to jump over them.
    These past two two weeks have been nightmare for us - I wish we were more careful when choosing him. But whatever little time we had with him, he made sure to leave us with some everlasting sweet memories. I hope he is in a happier place now.

  10. #10
    Wise Old Thumper
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    I am so very sorry that he didn't make it

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