Help! Sores on fryers feet

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by Tsaraph, Oct 24, 2003.

  1. Tsaraph

    Tsaraph New Member

    Dec 20, 2002
    Alberta, Canada
    When I did my morning rabbit run, I noticed one of my fryers had a nasty sore on its foot. I checked the rest of my fryers, and three others also had sores. One had a swollen foot, and the others had various degrees of raw skin. It's awful. My mother suggested that they are bored/crowded and are chewing their feet, is this possible? Can I still butcher them for meat, or should I just kill and dispose of them?
    I feel absolutely horrible about this, especially if it's something that could have been prevented. I really enjoy taking care of my rabbits and would never knowingly let them suffer. I would welcome any and all advice and suggestions.
    I have moved these rabbits into the rabbit shed (they were in an outdoor hutch with a few others waiting for butchering day), where they have a lot more room to run around.
  2. stoney

    stoney Member

    May 14, 2002
    I just had a problem with a buck and a doe. Came out one morning to find blood all over and found the bucks one testicle torn open, could'nt see where he may have caught it on anything, next morning I noticed the doe limping around and found her one rear hock ripped up. I put the buck down and tried to doctor the doe, she just kindled 6 kits 2 1/2 weeks previous. She ended up dying also.
    Now I'm raising up 6 kits, I come out one morning to find one kit has its one hind leg totally missing and now realize that something is trying to get an easy meal. The kits leg was snipped off clean, probably an owl. I keep mine in cages with a wooden hutch attached and those in a 16x16x5 fenced area. I've temporarily fixed it so nothing can get at my rabbits till I can get a roof on the place.
    Five squirmy kits doin very good.

  3. Tracy

    Tracy Well-Known Member

    May 2, 2002
    Sounds like sore hocks. What dimension wire are you using for the bottom of the cages. To big of wire can cause this. You can put a wooden resting board in the cage to help but the board must be cleaned daily. They should still be okay for eating but I would not keep any for breeding stock. Sore hocks can be a genetic thing so you would not want to carry on this trait.
  4. MaineFarmMom

    MaineFarmMom Columnist, Feature Writer

    Dec 29, 2002
    You should check the cage floor for rust, sharp and rough spots and anything else that will irritate feet. Run your hand over the wire carefully. Check the feet on any other rabbits you have too. You want them to have well furred feet. If the fur isn't thick watch them closely.

    If the rabbits are related and there isn't a source of irritation in the cage it's probably a genetic problem. I'd cull them and look for better breeding stock.

    Preparation H will ease some of the pain, take down the swelling and help heal. Sore hocks are hard to heal well and are likely to reoccur. Watch their food and water intake. Sore feet will sometimes keep them from moving to their food and water sources.
  5. Thumper/inOkla.

    Thumper/inOkla. Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2002
    centeral Okla. S of I-40, E of I-35
    I have flemish giants and sore hock is common with them, some of the things I have noticed that don't help are a board that is not kept very clean, urine burn contributes, setting in poop, wire floors that flex alot rub the feet more than firm floors, matted feet, small cages, and low nutrition, they do better with suppliments to the commercial feed.

    Some things that have helped are tea tree oil, it disinfects very well and penitrates into the tissue, some vitamin A & E oils promotes rapid healing, dry grass or straw bedding, or paper sacking have worked better than a board to 'rest' the feet from the wire, they use these up by tearing or nibbleing, but much of the straw falls I use both.

    My tree oldest rabbits [2bucks,1doe] have had sore hocks all have healed quickly with this treament, and have hair re-growth on the bald spots, the worse case on a buck even had proud flesh started on larger than a quarter [the coin] sized wounds. I also have gently combed the hock area that gets the sores after the hair has grown back to help fluff it and remove debris from the hair. I noticed the hair mats before a sore develops.

    If I keep the bedding good and give some suppliments they don't get sores.