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**WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Diagnosing and treating rabbit ailments. *Caution! These threads may contain graphic content.*
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**WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#1  Unread postby KimitsuKouseki » Sat Jan 06, 2018 2:07 pm


So, many of you probably noticed over time how I tend to deal with many wounded or infected rabbits. That would be my friend's rabbits, not my own. She does continental giants and holland lops and I dont know what it is about her rabbits but they always have wounds, broken bones and absesses. So far I was mostly clear from that, minus a few constipation/diahrea deaths T.T

First let me explain the situation a bit.
2 day ago I did some musical chair game with my rabbits. The -29 celcius (btw with wind factor its -38celcius today) has forced me to condemn a few cages and crowd the bigger ones so they can keep each other warm.
Layla, Beckett and Panda are a trio I cant normally put with the groups though. They are alpha agressive types, the 3 of em together works well though. But Panda is pregnant due in a week, so I put her in a seperate cage. Without her, the power balance was off and I found Layla all bloodied from several surface bite marks on her ears and a ton of Beckett's fur all over. So I had to split em, Layla is the most agressive so I chose to put Beckett in the group, the bites on the ears were most likelly self defence after all the harasssing she'd gone through.

Well that didnt work! Yesterday, I saw she kept to a corner and attacked anyone coming close to her. So I took her out anf figured I'd have to move more of the growouts to the group to free a solo cage for her, but then I saw it...... Something was hanging from her side. A mat? No, It was a piece of skin 2 inch long by 1 inch large!!! :x The skin had been ripped off but was still holding from one end but barelly and the muscle was exposed, no damage to it thankfully though, but with such a wound she cant stay outside so I had to take her in my room in my spare indoor cage. How did this happen? Most likelly she started being agressive to my other girls and they decided they wouldnt let her and dealth a huge blow. It seems to have worked out for em cause no one else was injured.

Now before I continue, know that vets are ridiculously expensive over here and I know how to deal with this wound and have peniciline on hand in case it starts getting infected. I did however have to cut that piece of skin off. I couldve attempted to sew it back on, it was still live skin, but I felt that wouldve increased chances of infection so I chose to let her granulate the skin back insted. Granulation is the process in wich the skin regenerates a large area rapidly. It's what causes scar tissue.

Today, I shaved the fur around it. Took a picture for progress sake, then rinced the wound and finally covered it in honey. Rincing allows to rehydrate the wound and promote healing along with washing out dirt and such cause I hadnt washed it yet. On the picture you can see some fur I couldnt remove cause it was stuck to the muscle, once I rinced the wound I was able to take em off and cut them.
Honey has medicinal properties especially usefull of wounds like these. Normally you'd want to put a bandage on it, but she's not cooperating and its a tricky spot that could soak up urine so I prefer leaving it as is. She'll lick the honey off but that's ok, it'll still have helped. Repeat every couple days. If signs of infection appear I will give her a peniciline shot, I'd rather not have to use penicilin if I dont have to.
The healing property of honey is due to the fact that it offers antibacterial activity, maintains a moist wound condition, and its high viscosity helps to provide a protective barrier to prevent infection. Its immunomodulatory property is relevant to wound repair too.


And now here's what it looks like as of today. You can see how thin rabbit skin is from all the blood vessels you can see through the skin. Crazy huh?

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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#2  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:23 pm


I don't want to be harsh or judgmental, but you have too many rabbits for your set-up, Kimitsu. Playing musical chairs is tricky at best. Unless you have a well-planned and closely-watched colony, rabbits each need their own cage. Quebec winters are almost always severe, worse than ours here in Southern Ontario, so in future it would be best to downsize in fall if you don't have enough suitable cages to go around.

I hope Beckett will be all right--that's a rather large spot of missing skin. It would be helpful to other members if you can post updates with pictures, so we can see how your treatment program is progressing.
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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#3  Unread postby KimitsuKouseki » Sat Jan 06, 2018 10:13 pm


You're not wrong. I do have too many rabbits right now, I still have those baby rabbits I didnt send to the shelter + 3 moms with their own 1 month olds. Rabbits are just not selling right now and the leftover from my crisis are crowding things. I also have a lot of temporary males. Aniki will go once I have a daughter, same with Trésor and Chipit. Yellow and Isaac will go freezer camp soon but they are old enough males that I cant put them with females but still too small for freezer so they take up room too. This is all why I'm on hiatus from breeding, until I can either sell or freezer camp the crowd. The winter forcing me to comdemn a cage doesnt help, once it gets a bit more reasonable and I can clean em, uncondemn and redistribute the rabbits better. Panda being pregnant is another accident and she was so sad from losing her last litter I cant just cull at birth poor thing. So I'll let her have her litter, hopefully its a small one (I've moved the guilty male away for a while).

Edit:
Also, forgot to add I know my girls well so usually its not a problem. Codette, BigMama, Sia and Barbie do very well sharing the big cage together. Said big cage would already have a huge annexed pen if I hadn't broken my wrist last summer. Mei does well with em too but she's a very good nanny for the 6weeks old +. She looooooooooves grooming everyone. So I often put her with those if they keep getting dirty from swimming in their water.
Panda, Layla and Beckett, work when all 3 are there, but not otherwise.
Lolita and Eva are permanent solo cages, Lolita is going freezer camp once her babies are weaned though, out of her current babies I have 2 to choose from. They're Boulette's babies, my buck that sprayed me in the mouth :sick:, still havent eaten him btw, the idea still makes me sick. There's a male and female, hesitating wich to keep so I'll keep both for a while. Both are double mane tricolor but the boy is a bit prettier then his sister so I dunno yet. So far I'm favoring the boy, since I can send the female to some littles girls I know who have a small breeding group and have a lot of my rabbits.
Speaking of the little girl, her name's Melodie. I'm going to send her pictures of my current sellable rabbits, she'll try to see about finding me customers of facebook, we all know I hate facebook so I'm not going to do it, but she offered so I'll let her try.

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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#4  Unread postby Marinea » Sun Jan 07, 2018 10:03 am


That wound looks like it might have been caused by a back foot swipe. How are their nails?
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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#5  Unread postby KimitsuKouseki » Sun Jan 07, 2018 5:22 pm


I cut their claws monthly. So it's not that. There were bite marks near it so my guess is it ripped from a bite that wouldnt let go.
No picture for today, but it's already better, the muscle is now covered with a dry skin layer and I can move it and make it ripple. This means there's healthy membrane under it so her muscle is now protected. No signs of infection yet wich is good. She's not bothered by it at all, runs around and even lays on her side, resting on the actual wound, so she's fine. Tomorrow I start a new job so next news will likelly be tuesday.

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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#6  Unread postby akane » Sun Jan 07, 2018 6:05 pm


Bandaging a rabbit is hard enough and that area is unlikely to work for anything so unless you have something that remains on the wound for more than 24hrs I would be applying something daily. Unfortunately while it has lots of benefits and works great for limited application or on humans that know not to touch their wounds herbivores will give themselves digestive upset with too much honey. It's sugar and fairly high in certain ones like fructans that are more likely to cause a bacteria spike or fermentation resulting in gas, bloating, diarrhea, and ultimately gi stasis eventually from those things. You need 24hr consistent coverage that will not get removed. Aside from ingestion of the honey you'll have the constant mechanical damage of bending and scraping at the wound. Scarlet oil is the go to in the horse world for probably more than a century but it's strong and can cause reactions sometimes so repeat use on thin skin should be done with caution. We had this thick oil we started using instead but I cannot find it partially from not remembering what it was called. I would think manna pro's cut and heal (balsam fir with plant and fish oils) would be the closest thing based on it's consistency and smell. The softwood acts as a minor disinfectant to avoid complications while the oils moisturize the wound and discourage messing with it for wounds that are not showing signs of infection or between applications of a stronger disinfectant. There are also some honey infused products or you can mix the honey with less appealing ingredients. The animals will be less inclined to try to ingest these types of products and mess with their own wounds so it will not take as much repeat application, will not risk digestive issues, won't get as irritated, and will not allow periods of air exposure. All air exposure will at least double the healing time of such a wound and due to the new cells along the edge dying off between every application cause complications of excessive scar formation that sometimes has to be cut back to the healthy edges instead of even coverage by the granulated tissue. Minor necrosis can also greatly increase the odds of infection and wounds not covered in anything are generally disinfected 2x daily but that is only further damaging to the healthy cells compared to disinfecting and then applying a 24hr constant moisturizing layer.

To damage the belly it sounds like they both failed to give in and over reacted. If 2 does decide to both openly stand their ground they'll try to leap in the air and knock the other one down. They grab or shove while kicking with the back legs so if they get twisted toward instead of away from the other rabbit throat and belly injuries can be serious. It can randomly turn into these knock down fights and be over in minutes. Usually I haven't had it actually end badly. Someone hits the ground sideways a few times, usually back to the other rabbit, and aside from one doe who would challenge everyone she shouldn't when pregnant the loser would back down with only the odd minor wound to the shoulders or ears instead of rips from catching large areas of soft skin. Aside from never leaving that one doe in the colony during the end of pregnancy my biggest problem was more often hindquarter bites. The worst injuries were by a buck who was going after the does aggressively.

Most of mine in colony spent majority of their time that way though and they had practice at it to limit accidentally causing more damage than necessary. Along with avoiding injury. Animals that are not solitary will practice throughout their lives at these interactions starting with frequent play. Even when bashing each other to the ground and whacking with hind feet they rarely broke skin and never had bone/joint injuries. When sticking even less territorial herd or pack animals together I've found the worst fights are the ones that have been housed alone because they don't control the force they use to make the other back down. They are too determined to establish their spot and go at it using full force without wanting to give in even when losing. If you stick together multiple animals in that mindset eventually even the bottom of the group will get in a deadly fight. The more all the individuals are separated the worse it is to put them together and take them apart than keeping an established colony and adding or removing a small percentage at a time. They get used to the coming and going and adjusting their daily interactions to be just enough it makes the other back down. They are also more secure in their established environment. Even if the new one challenges the dominant one they are a lot more subtle dealing with it and more interested in a long term working order than beating the crap out of this random individual in this strange situation.

I would never do only group winter housing because it's pretty much guaranteed to result in severe injury and likely death some year. Even if only a portion remain in colony year round it works better to have that established situation already. If you only occasionally do it when you get too many to cage it's always better to stick the young rabbits in a group even if slightly crowded than a few older ones or throw a bunch young enough not to be a threat to the pecking order in with 3-4 older ones to break up their interaction with each other and give the dominant ones more targets. They'll work a lot like adding more inanimate obstacles but better by constantly getting in the way and being a distraction without standing up to a fight. Then your only problem is if one aggressively pursues everyone to the point of causing widespread hindquarter damage despite the others retreating like the one buck I had. All those neutrals in there leads to only having to cage 1 rabbit that can't learn to not to go all out on everyone instead of constantly tweaking a series of issues between specific personalities.
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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#7  Unread postby KimitsuKouseki » Sun Jan 14, 2018 3:27 pm


akane wrote:To damage the belly it sounds like they both failed to give in and over reacted.


That's not a belly wound, that's her flank.

As for the honey, no I'm not doing it every day, only every other day and only a little bit of it. It's to give a boost for the cells in that area, not a permanent ointment. It already proved usefull as her muscle is already not exposed.
It will take a few weeks to properly close up this way yes, but as long as I watch for infection, she'll be fine. She's now living the life of luxury in my bedroom where its clean and the temperature is well. So in a way she's lucky.

My rabbits are always in a group, the musical chair I did was adding my 2 month olds to the major cage. They were all welcomed and groomed by the older does. Beckett was the only exeption, without Panda, she and Layla were out of balance in their power strugle. They're a trio I either breed 2 of or none of, that way I never have just 2 together like this.

-- Wed Jan 10, 2018 4:27 pm --

So it's been a few days. For referance I did the honey treatment only the first 2 days and since no sign of infection happened I just left it alone after that since a scab like dry layer formed.
Here you can see how much it's shrunk compared to her flank:
Image
And here I've lifted the scab using my fingers and my finger are under it. Again, a sign that there's very healthy membrane underneath and it formed a proper scab.
Image

She's been running around my room all day. I had to cover Nikita's cage cause it was driving her insane XD
As long as no sign of infection appear, I'm leaving it alone. This will heal by itself now and I doubt infection would happen at this point

-- Sun Jan 14, 2018 3:19 pm --

So 2 days ago Beckett showed signs of being very bothered by her scab. I checked and there were no signs of infection at all, but the scab was flaky and most likelly just itchy for her.

Disclaimer:
When I started rabbits, I bought some flemish giants and they had sore hocks. One thing the breeder recomended to me was this balm...
Image
After using it back then it was pretty much shelved. The ointment makes the scabs fall off very well, but if the rabbit licks too much of it, it causes some mucus like ooze in their digestive system wich causes a weird type of diahrea. The breeder was new to using it and realised that issue first hand and warned me about it. I prefer not to use it at all and use other forms of treatment so I dont recomend you buy this.
ok now back to Beckett.

Seing as the only thing bothering her was the scab itself, I decided it would be good to make it fall off rather then let her keep biting at it cause of the flakyness of it. So I applied a bit of the balm, just bare minimum to soak the scab proper without risk. Today I picked the whole scab off very easilly and gently and there was very healthy skin under it! and a good amount too, almost proper skin thick! The blood comes from the layer of healthy skin I'm talking about and the wound itself is much smaller then it used to be. I know to the untrained eye this might look bad, but this is a very healty wound!
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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#8  Unread postby Sagebrush » Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:02 pm


The wound does have good blood supply, and to the skin around the wound. It is good that you did shave around it some, though I would recommend shaving it a bit more. Less fur that gets into the wound the better it will heal without infection. Also with less fur around the wound, you can see the healing better.

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Re: **WARNING GRAPHIC** worst wound on my own rabbits yet

Post Number:#9  Unread postby KimitsuKouseki » Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:09 pm


Sagebrush wrote:The wound does have good blood supply, and to the skin around the wound. It is good that you did shave around it some, though I would recommend shaving it a bit more. Less fur that gets into the wound the better it will heal without infection. Also with less fur around the wound, you can see the healing better.

I shaved her to the skin on day one of treatment, this is fur that has regrown and it didnt feel like I needed to shave her again. I'll see if I need to shave again in a few days.

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