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Thread: An Eye Query 👀 *UPDATED*

  1. #1

    Default An Eye Query 👀 *UPDATED*

    Hello everyone 🙂 I was a member of this forum a few years ago when my little buns were spayed, and everyone was so helpful and supportive so I thought I'd come to you all for some new advice!

    Miffy and Floss are both still doing well and are now 3.5 years old. Just before Christmas on 19th December, Floss got a small piece of soft hay stuck in her right eye, causing her to close it. She let me gently remove it (she's a really good girl) and it luckily just slipped out. I wouldn't have pulled it if it was resisting at all. Anyway, I took her straight to the vet for a check over incase she had any abrasions or ulcers and it was confirmed that luckily, there was no damage. We were given some eye drops (which she let me administer with no issues) and within a day or two her eye was fully open and the redness had subsided. Throughout, her behaviour hadn't changed and she was still guzzling hay and water, and playing as normal.

    On the 2nd Jan I noticed in the same eye some more watery discharge, though not much, but enough for me to take note. I used some of the eye drops I had left and it cleared up. The next time I noticed anything major was the 15th!!! She again had a small bit of water in the corner of her eye. I considered taking her back to the vet, though it was completely clear an hour later and I thought perhaps I was overthinking things. However on the 18th, I noticed more watery discharge and decided it would be best to book her in.

    We went to our vet this morning, who is fairly rabbit savvy. Typically there was hardly anything to see today but she checked her ears for infection, managed to check her teeth (Floss let her access her mouth using a telescopic torch thing) dyed her eye again and basically concluded there was nothing obviously untoward. I asked about E. Cuniculi (I've done my research) and she said that with no other symptoms and with the discharge so intermittent (and clear water when it does occur) she isn't presenting as having this or any other infections. X-rays weren't an option to check her roots at this point, as the vet said her tear ducts do not seem blocked (the orange dye came out of her nasal cavity within a few minutes so this does seem sensible) and so doing anything more intravenous would be a bit excessive at this stage. She suggested it might be an allergy to changes in hay quality and said I should try it soaking before offering it to them. I have been told to just monitor her, and go back if the discharge changes or if her behaviour changes.

    Of course I'm overjoyed that nothing 'obvious' was found, but it does make me anxious that clearly, something is causing this discharge and may have been missed. Does the vet's assessment sound reasonable to you guys, at least for now? Or would you also be panicking? Also, is there a chance that it could still be occasionally irritated from the foreign body incident before Christmas? Neither bun has ever had eye issues before, so it seems coincidental that this would only be happening after the hay incident.

    I'm sure I'm panicking/overthinking but definitely open to ideas/opinions as to whether I should still be concerned at this point or just see what happens?

    Sorry for the essay 🤦🏼😂 Claire
    Last edited by Claireyeddy; 24-01-2022 at 01:27 AM.

  2. #2
    Wise Old Thumper InspectorMorse's Avatar
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    Sounds a very reasonable assessment by the Vet. I would just continue to monitor things for now.

    I would have thought that both eyes would be effected if the problem was allergy related, but it won’t do any harm to try to minimise dust in her environment.


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  3. #3

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    Thankyou for your reply! I asked that about the allergy being in one eye too, as I would have also thought it would be irritating her if it was an allergic reaction, which it doesn't seem to be - no redness or scratching or overgrooming. She kind of shrugged it off and said that she couldn't see any infection or other reason for it at this stage and she's presenting as a completely healthy bunny, other than the odd watery eye. I'm of course really happy she thinks this and relieved on the face of it everything is great, but my worry is that, 'at this stage' for a bun can mean healthy one minute and not the next as well all know! But I guess it was sensible to not do anything more invasive at this point if she thinks there's no need for it🐇

  4. #4

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    An update...

    Something in my gut was telling me that an allergy wasn't what was going on, and on Saturday Floss could barely open her eye when I came down in the morning! It wasn't crusty or stuck, it was just irritated. So I called the vet back yesterday morning and said although her behaviour hadn't changed and she was still ok in herself something is obviously wrong beyond an allergy. As luck would have it, they had an eye specialist on site yesterday and so gave Floss an urgent referral. He was fantastic. He spent an hour with her checking everything from her tear ducts (she had them flushed and they were fine) to her third eyelid (again she was as good as gold!) He did find a huge ulcer on her cornea though, near to where the hay had been stuck before, and although he couldn't be sure it was there all along said it looks consistent with a foreign body. This ulcer was not picked up by either of the previous vets, so if it was there all along, my poor baby has been getting worse when it could have been caught. Anyway. That's not the worst part. On Wednesday the 'hay allergy' vet also told me she got a good view of Floss's teeth and they looked great so 'nothing to be concerned about there'. The specialist believes she in fact has the beginnings of spurs, and is now sedating her on Friday to take a good look at everything else incase her teeth were contributing to the eye weeping and simply coincided with the ulcer. He's also going to file any spurs he finds at the same time. I'm dumbfound by the previous vet who clearly had no clue. I appreciate bunnies are 'exoctic' and it's hard to check their teeth in addition, but surely some of it is common sense?! And if she had had a good view of the teeth how did she not come to the same conclusion? I would rather she had said she couldn't see properly so we need to do a thorough check, which is what is now happening anyway.

    I'm quite worried about her sedation 😞 She's such a gorgeous bun and it would be just my luck that it gives her a turn or worse. In the meantime we've been given antibiotic drops plus separate cleansing drops (oryx?), as well as Metacam. I've also been told that she isn't allowed to scratch her eye and Miffy shouldn't lick it! It's impossible to separate them in their room as they both only go to the toilet in one place, so I'm currently 40 hours into sitting in their room monitoring them and stopping them scratching or grooming! Exhausted isn't the word and I have no idea how I'm still awake. I've actually just given her an extra drop of the oryx cleaner/soother as she was constantly trying to scratch so it was obviously irritating her and I've maxed her Metacam dosage in the day already. She seems a bit more settled now, but they're so confused that I'm here constantly and it's really throwing their routine out. I'm tempted to leave them for an hour or so and get some rest but so scared of her scratching her ulcer! What an absolute nightmare! 😩
    Last edited by Claireyeddy; 24-01-2022 at 01:36 AM. Reason: Error

  5. #5
    Wise Old Thumper InspectorMorse's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear that Floss does have a corneal ulcer and also some dental problems. Now that she is under the care of a more Rabbit Savvy Vet she will have the best chance of making a good recovery, even if the eye ulcer does take some time to resolve. Best wishes to her for her dental treatment on Friday.


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    Moderator Zoobec's Avatar
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    Sending lots of vibes, I hope the dental goes well on Friday xx

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    Wise Old Thumper keletkezes's Avatar
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    Big hugs and best of luck. My vet says spurs/hooks affect some rabbits differently, so you previous vet(s) may have seen spurs that most rabbits wouldn't care about, but perhaps there's something more sinister going on. Aboleth and Lopsy both had spurs and Chibbs has hooks that can be seen without sedation, but it never bothered them and they never changed. Some will get to the ulceration stage before they get fussy about food, some just need a slight growth on the teeth! Xrays are a better way of finding out about eye issues though.

    I was lucky with Lopsy, his ulcer, although hidden under his eye, was really visible on the dye test, and he recovered quickly with just drops and metacam. It was caused by the most ginormous grass seed the vet had ever seen! I also had Aboleth who only had one eye, and she coped fine without, it was better out than in! Although the surgery was done by the rescue so I can't give proper details
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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by keletkezes View Post
    Big hugs and best of luck. My vet says spurs/hooks affect some rabbits differently, so you previous vet(s) may have seen spurs that most rabbits wouldn't care about, but perhaps there's something more sinister going on. Aboleth and Lopsy both had spurs and Chibbs has hooks that can be seen without sedation, but it never bothered them and they never changed. Some will get to the ulceration stage before they get fussy about food, some just need a slight growth on the teeth! Xrays are a better way of finding out about eye issues though.

    I was lucky with Lopsy, his ulcer, although hidden under his eye, was really visible on the dye test, and he recovered quickly with just drops and metacam. It was caused by the most ginormous grass seed the vet had ever seen! I also had Aboleth who only had one eye, and she coped fine without, it was better out than in! Although the surgery was done by the rescue so I can't give proper details
    Thankyou so much for this 💜 Her ulcer is on her eyeball! They think from the hay that got stuck in there. Fortunately the specialist doesn't think the spurs are causing an issue currently as they're eating so much hay, both soft and hard bits, that he thinks possibly her eye issues could be completely unconnected. But we shall see. I'm pleased he's checking her thoroughly as I'd rather catch anything early if we can!

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