Shock is a dangerous rabbit condition. A sudden loud noise or horrible situation can end up frightening the rabbit so much that its body begins to shut down and it is one of the signs of shock in rabbits. Although this is not uncommon for indoor rabbits, it is often enough that rabbit caregivers should be aware of the signs and symptoms. In this way, we can respond quickly to the situation, and help our rabbits recover.
If the rabbit is scared, its body will be quiet or limp. The heart rate will be down and hard to detect and the rabbit will have pale white gums due to heart rate problems. Frightened rabbits will also have cold ears because their body temperature drops.
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What is a shock in rabbits and what are its signs?
Shock is a condition in which rabbits fall when they become very frightened in a situation where their body begins to close. The temperature of the body will drop speedily, and the rabbit will not completely respond to the situation happening around the world sometimes for just a few minutes, and sometimes for several hours. Although most rabbits can recover from shock if they are cared for and comfortable, this condition can be dangerous for rabbits as well.
What causes shock in rabbits
There are few things in your rabbit’s life that cause the shock. Often, the source of the shock is sudden fear, but it can also be caused by pain or other external pressures (such as a sudden change in temperature). Panic may be caused by a flystrike-like attack or even a large number of insects or bites.
You can check your rabbit’s heartbeat by pressing a large vein on the rabbit’s ear between your fingers.
Signs of Shock in Rabbits
The signs mean that the rabbit will be weak, unresponsive, and very cold. The signs of rabbits shock are:
- Pale gums. When you lower your rabbit’s lips, the gums will turn pale instead of healthy pink color.
- Cold ears. Touching the rabbit’s ears will make them feel very cold. This will often be the case at other edges, such as the feet, too.
- Weak heartbeat. You can feel the rabbit’s beat by pressing your fingers into a large vein that runs up to their ears. If you can not feel the heartbeat at all, or just a little bit, that is an indication of a weak pulse.
- Breathing fast. The rabbit will be breathing as if it is hyperventilating. The open their mouth for the breathe ( which is not common).
- Eyes bulging. Rabbit eyes will have a shiny appearance.
- Hypothermia. This is when the rabbit’s body temperature drops below 100ºF (38.1ºC). It is dangerous for the rabbit’s body temperature to remain this low and it is a clear sign that it is beginning to panic.
What to do when your rabbits gives signs that goes into shock?
Usually, my answer to any rabbit emergency is to get in the car right away and go to your veterinarian. It is important to take basic steps at home before you bring your rabbit for an emergency appointment with animals.
Warm-up your rabbit
If you see signs of rabbit panic, the first thing you want to do is warm up your rabbit. Put your rabbit in a towel full around and put it near a hot tub or hot water bottle.
Call your veterinarian
If the rabbit gives signs of shock, warm him and the next thing you want to do is call your veterinarian for rabbits. If you do not have a regular rabbit veterinarian, you can still call the nearest clinic, explain the situation, and ask for advice.
How to know your rabbit’s condition is improving?
After the shock, what signs do you see if the rabbits are improving or not? A clear sign that your rabbit is starting to feel better when he starts eating and drinking alone. You can keep a bowl of water and fresh vegetables next to your rabbit to tempt them to start eating. Your rabbit will also start to regain strength as he recovers.
You can continue to monitor your rabbit temperature from time to time and make sure you return to normal temperature. For rabbits, the average body temperature is between 101-103ºF (38.3-39.4ºC).
How to prevent rabbit shock?
These recommendations can help prevent shocks that can result from infection and temperature changes.
- Keep your rabbit indoors.
- Introduce your rabbit to other pets you do not know gradually.
- Avoid getting your rabbit wet.
- Bring your rabbit for a visit to the veterinarian.
- Raise your rabbit to help them have confidence.
So these are some of the signs of shock in rabbits and what to do next and prevention. We hope that the information was useful for you.