Having a first aid kit for your bunny is a great idea, and I recommend that you put one together!
When your bunny gets sick, there are some remedies you might try at home while you are trying to get in touch with your vet for an appointment. You may already have some of these items in your home that you use for yourself. Others can be purchased in pet supply stores, drug stores, grocery stores, or department stores (like Target or Wal-Mart).
Keep in mind, however, that this information is not intended to replace expert veterinary care and should not be used to make a “do-it-yourself” diagnosis. Only a qualified, rabbit-knowledgeable vet can determine exactly what your bunny’s illness is and can recommend treatments for you.
Here is what we have in our first aid box:
- Styptic Powder/Quick Stop – Stops the bleeding of nails cut too close to the quick.
- Neosporin – used to treat wounds (do NOT use Neosporin Plus). Consult your vet before treating a wound since a wound can lead to abscesses.
- Infant Gas Drops – Relieves minor gas symptoms. We always use this when it looks like one of the bunnies is about to start going into G.I. Stasis.
- Plain Desitin Diaper Ointment – Used in the treatment of sore hocks or other sore areas on the rabbit’s skin. Be sure to use only original A&D and plain Desitin – not a variety with zinc, aloe, or other additions. These additives can cause harm to rabbits, in some cases.
- Oral Syringe – To administer liquids, medication, or foods that have been liquefied in the event bunny stops eating (3cc for medication, 40cc for hand feeding).
- Vet Wrap Bandage – We have used this to dress sore hocks.
- Metacam (From Vet) – This is the pain reliever that we use for the bunnies. Our vet has given us a larger bottle to have on hand for emergencies. We use it before we are able to get to see the vet. Our vet recommends a 0.2ml dose.
- Critical Care by Oxbow – We use this when our rabbits refuses to eat when they’re sick. Available through your vet’s office or at Petsmart.
- Revolution (Kitten Dose) – We use Revolution every three months, but I also keep an emergency dose on hand in case of a parasite emergency. Revolution is a bunny safe (when the Kitten dose is used) flea, tick, parasite and worm medicine.
- Nail Clippers – To trim nails.
Other things that we have in the house, but not in this particular box:
- Baby Food – We keep this in the pantry, and use it when the bunnies are sick. We mix it with critical care because it helps make it more appetizing for them. We also use the babyfood to give certain medicines that they refuse to take.
- Benebac – This is a probiotic that we love to use, and we give it to the bunnies about twice a week. It helps keep their guts moving, and I believe that it has kept them from getting into G.I. Stasis before.
- Saline Solution – To rinse out eyes and/or irrigate wounds, you might want to have a special narrow tipped syringe for this.
- Pedialyte – Plain, unflavored Pedialyte is safe for bunnies to have when they seem dehydrated. We have force fed this to the bunnies’ before when they were sick and not drinking water. Always be very careful when force feeding water or liquids, make sure your bunny doesn’t inhale it.
Please keep in mind, a first aid kit is not an option instead of vet care. The intent of having these kits around is that this is the first thing to make sure they live comfortably on the way to seeing a vet. NEVER try to diagnose on your own. You always need to call your vet and get instruction from them. First aid is to buy you time to get the medical assistance you need.
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Details on a First aid-kit for UK products is found here… http://www.whatapet.net/the-rabbit-emergency-kit/
I would volley an first aid pet emergency but caution everyone this does not replace the knowledge and expertise of a licensed professional veterinary. Our dwarf “chewy” bunny suddenly became stiff, dozy, unresponsive and feverish. It seemed like death was knocking on it’s door and time was running out. The animal doctor in another country (used whataspp to communicate the problem to a relative who them contacted a local expert) said to give it a 1/4 of an aspirin and feed it water through an eye dropper with some leafy liquidified veggies. It looked like it was the end for out pet. Within 30 minutes of giving the rabbit the aspirin and a veggie shake she was perky, pesky, mooching for treats, bouncing around and was back to normal. Thanks for the in-law and that vet. If this helps your pet emergency, then we all win with open minds and shared information but a animal doctor knows far better. Rabbits are cute, but they are a relative of the rodent so be wary they love to chew and anything is fair game if you let them wander about and that includes: television wires, baseboards, cable wires and more. Give them lots of room to play but always keep your eye on them as they can be destructive despite their cuteness.
Great idea! Would love to see more of this type of helpful info on bunny care on the internet. I find it useful to keep a supply of Metacam and Infant Gas Drops in particular, as my bunnies have had a number of episodes of Slow Gut, possibly heading into Gut Stasis last year