Rabbit running into walls

by Amanda
(College Station, Tx, USA)

I have a 3 year old Mini Rex spayed female. Two days ago she was acting normal, running around eating and drinking. Yesterday I came in and found her moving around still but not really interested in her fresh greens; which she normally jumps right over to and starts to chow down. I thought well maybe she just is not hungry, right now.

Today she is not moving very well, keeps running into walls, stepping in her water bowl (which now her feet and stomach are all wet), has a slight yellow discharge coming from her eyes, and looks much thinner then she did two days ago and she has not pooped since yesterday.

A little about her back ground, she is an inside rabbit (never been outside), I had her spayed over 2 years ago as she lives with a neutered male rabbit for the past 2 years (he is showing no problems). They both have fresh water, timothy hay and pellets available daily and I feed them fresh greens once a day also. They have their own room and the position of the items in their room has not changed since they have lived in their for over a year. She has never shown any of these symptoms before and I have not changed their hay, pellets or diet at all.

Any help would be great, I have tried to contact my vet but because it is a Sunday no one answers and tomorrow is supposed to be a holiday.

***** Karen Sez *****

Oh dear, the symptoms point to a possible respiratory infection (possibly Pasteurella multocida), with eye and also inner ear involvement. Another possibility is a parasitic infection that sometimes affects the brain. Either of these options carry very unpleasant consequences.

But I'm not a vet; I sure hope you can get your doe a professional veterinary opinion, and that the diagnosis is not alarming. In the meantime, your rabbit needs to be drinking at the very least. To coax her to drink, try flavoring her water with a little bit of black or green tea and a pinch of sugar or stevia. You could also tempt her to eat with fresh washed parsley.

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Jan 22, 2014
There is no time to lose!
by: codrina miculit-maniu

Can you find another vet, Amanda? Vets should be available for emergencies, too. Your bunny needs urgent help! Do everything you can to find a bunny-vet now. A good diagnostic is essential and you need a vet for this. If you can't find anyone around, try to find one here:


I'm not a vet, but as far as I know, any kind of discharge from eyes or nose is a sign of infection - bacterial or parasitic. The fact that she is bumping into things could point to a vision or neurological problem.

The other emergency you have now is the possible GI stasis - the fact that she has not pooped since yesterday is a strong indicator for stasis. You have to convince her to eat and drink without delay. I have a "protocol" for eating problems I have posted as a comment here:


I've treated discharges from the eyes of my bunnies (whitish and colorless, not yellow - another kind of bacteria) with oral enrofloxacin (relatively safe, general antibiotic) and eye-drops with gentamicin, a protocol recommended by many vets. But other kind of bacteria might need another treatment. For a possible parasitic infection, many vets recommend Fenbendazole - very efficient against a dangerous parasite affecting the nervous system.

You can find a lot of useful information on medirabbit.com. But finding a vet is your priority now.

I hope everything will be OK. Don't lose your hope and do everything you can.

(***** Karen Sez *****)
Thank you Codrina, well said.

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