one rabbit dead, one dying

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by pjd, Mar 7, 2005.

  1. pjd

    pjd Well-Known Member

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    I have been reading on past posts on colony raised rabbits and decided to try it. I put 4 does and 3 bucks in the barn together. For 5 days they got along fine and then 2 of the bucks got into a fight and the loser's ear was injured so I removed two of the bucks and brought them into the house.

    All the rabbits were purchased separately except the two removed bucks. That evening the injured buck began to flop around. He would sit with his head down and then roll over and kick. He did this for several hours and then died. I thought it was from an injury he received in the fight. That was on Monday, February 28th.

    Tonight the other rabbit that was with him is doing the same thing. There appears to be some paralysis in the hind legs. No diarrhea or nasal discharge.

    I tried to look at the links for rabbit diseases but can't find anything that sounds like this. The other ones are still looking fine. They all eat the same rabbit pellets. Does anyone know what this could be?

    Edited: I received a report from the water company saying there was coliform bacteria in the water and the water failed the test levels but it was not an emergency or or dangerous. We have a filter but if one of my kids accidently got the water from the tap rather than the filter, would this bacteria cause these deaths? I have 5 more rabbits who drink pond water and are not sick. several years ago I lost my rabbits, a blind cat, and a guinea pig all in the same weekend that all four of us had a "stomach virus" diahrrea and vomiting. The water company keeps telling me there is no connection. Could this be the cause of the mysterious deaths?
     
  2. Xandras_Zoo

    Xandras_Zoo Well-Known Member

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    Evidentaly some neuralogical problem, perhaps head tilt or wry neck?
     

  3. pjd

    pjd Well-Known Member

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    I searched the past post on wry neck and found one that Pat had linked to. It sounds like it is not a sudden disease. Mine were gone in less than a day.

    I water the ones at the barn from the pond and the ones in the house that died were given rural water, could they have not drank the different water causing dehydration? Could there be something in the water causing this?

    Three years ago we tried to raise rabbits and we lost 7 out of 8 in one weekend. That same weekend we lost our guinea pig and our blind cat. The chickens refused to drink the water we put out for them and went to the pond. The rabbits that died had water in their bottles and had not drank much in August. We were not able to see exactly how they died because we were all sick too!

    The only thing we all had in common was water. I called the water company and they told me it was common for animals not to drink in August. They finally tested the water and said it was fine. I switched to watering all my animals from the pond and put filters on my water just in case. A lot of stomach illnesses disappeared in our family.

    The rabbits that died were given filtered rural water. Could there be something the filter is missing that made them sick? Are rabbits that sensitive to chemicals? Our water has failed the fecal chloriform tests many times but I have a heavy duty filter to clean it. I have chicks that are drinking the filtered water and they are fine.

    Could there be a disease on my property that is killing the rabbits and the water is coincidence?
     
  4. pjd

    pjd Well-Known Member

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    edited the first post, please help!
     
  5. Rosarybeads

    Rosarybeads Well-Known Member

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    I"m sorry, I really can't help you, but I wish I could! Do some searches on the internet on the bacteria, maybe post on the main homesteading board too, someone may know more! Wish I could be more help...
     
  6. HoosierDeb

    HoosierDeb Well-Known Member

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    It might benefit you to have your water tested at an independent lab and ask them to test for everything. I understand that the water company only tests for certain things and if there's something else in it, they wouldn't catch it. It just seems like it's too much of a coincidence that all the animals who are dying are the ones drinking the house water. It might be chemical rather than bacterial too.
     
  7. Lilandra

    Lilandra talk little, listen much

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    Buy bottled water for the bunnies and get them on a basic feed without any added treats until this passes.

    Limit anything that could cause a problem - fresh hay,corn, greens, fruits etc... keep them on a good quality basic fresh feed.

    add things back into their diet one thing at a time to make sure there isn't a problem.

    best wishes
     
  8. MikeD

    MikeD Well-Known Member

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    Hmmm...Maybe a necropsy of the dead rabbit? Or bloodwork from the sick?
     
  9. pjd

    pjd Well-Known Member

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    The other rabbit died and we disposed of them already. I am sure it is the water but in order for me to get the water tested I would have to spend $200 to $300 for specialized tests and drive 200 miles. They already do the basics and it fails over and over and they say it is not harmful. Maybe not kill a person but I believe it is what is killing my animals. I made a big stink about it but they admit the water was bad and they "fixed it" so I am stuck hauling water from the pond until I can get a pump and have my well tested and see if it is usable. The other 5 rabbits still in the colony drinking pond water, eating the same feed as the others are fine. I don't know if it is bacterial or chemical but something is not right. I found out our drinking water is taken out of the neosho river below the industrial park's discharge pipes and right above the sewer plant's discharge pipes. But they told me the water is cleaned and treated and there is nothing wrong with it.

    Thanks for your help everyone!

    Phyllis