How to cure coccidiosis in rabbits

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Coccidiosis in rabbits is an ailment caused by the simplest parasite, coccidia. Coccidiosis in rabbits is of several types, depending on the affected organ. There are only 10 varieties, of which only one affects the liver, and all the rest - the gastrointestinal tract.

Coccidiosis in rabbits

Coccidiosis in rabbits

Outbreaks of coccidiosis most often occur in the spring, when feed changes occur. Most often, young animals are sick, including daily rabbits. Let's consider this disease in more detail, pay attention to the symptoms and treatment, and also talk about prevention.

What causes coccidiosis

As mentioned earlier, the causative agent of the described disease are parasites belonging to the genus Aymeria. In the environment, coccidia form into the so-called oocyst, which, when it enters the digestive tract, passes into the next stage of development - sporosis, and then into solicox.

When the disease takes the form of solicox, the mucous membrane of the stomach and intestines is destroyed. Moreover, the parasites are transported by introducing them into the cytoplasm, which allows them to disintegrate into several nuclei, which subsequently multiply, and the process of reinfection takes place.

Coccidia survive well in almost any climatic conditions, and also react poorly to chemical exposure. Even high temperatures do not kill parasites right away. For example, when exposed to hot steam at 100 ° C, the treatment will have to be carried out for at least 15 seconds, otherwise there is a possibility that not all oocysts will die.

The most common source of infection is sick rabbits, while they release oocysts into the environment, which are excreted in the feces.

Many livestock breeders are interested in the question of whether coccidiosis of rabbits is dangerous for humans. The answer is no, a person should not be afraid of infection.

Factors accompanying infection

The process of infection with coccidiosis is mechanical. In order to get sick, there must be contact with the oocysts. If adults can have contact with the feces of relatives, which is often the case with improper care, then young animals are most often infected due to ingestion of the pathogen during breastfeeding.

In addition to the above, there are a number of factors that increase the chances of rabbits getting coccidiosis:

  • too high stocking density;
  • young animals are kept together with adult rodents;
  • inadequate cell hygiene;
  • the presence of drafts, violations in the temperature regime;
  • poor quality nutrition, lack of vitamins and minerals;
  • too much protein in food;
  • the presence of cow's milk, wheat and bran in the diet;
  • a sharp change in the nature of animal nutrition.

How does the disease manifest itself

The first signs of coccidiosis appear 3-4 days after the actual infection. As mentioned earlier, the disease can affect either the gastrointestinal tract or the liver, depending on the type of pathogen. An adult is easier to tolerate the disease, and babies are able to start dying from the first day.

Symptoms of gastric coccidiosis

  • loss of appetite;
  • manifestation of weakness;
  • loose and frequent stools, which may soon be replaced by persistent constipation;
  • hard, swollen abdomen, bloating and flatulence are observed in the intestines;
  • rapid weight loss;
  • loss of gloss by wool, it becomes unkempt and disheveled;
  • damage to the nervous system, convulsions and confusion. In this case, the medicine is selected individually.

Coccidiosis in rabbits in the photo and in the video looks like bloating, the symptoms are almost the same.

If the treatment of coccidiosis in rabbits is not timely, there is a risk of their death, especially if the rabbit is sick. Without treatment, death occurs within 2 weeks.

The individuals that survived are in 99% of cases carriers of the virus, that is, they pose a danger to relatives, therefore it is recommended to slaughter such rabbits for meat, since it is not dangerous to humans. Intestinal coccidiosis in rabbits can be fully cured only at the initial stage.

Symptoms of the hepatic form of coccidiosis

Symptoms and signs of the hepatic form are different from the gastrointestinal. First of all, the difference is that the symptoms are not so pronounced, which makes diagnosis difficult. This fact affects the duration of the course of the disease, it can last from 4 to 8 weeks.

Let's move on to the symptoms that indicate that the rabbit has hepatic coccidiosis:

  • Appetite decreases, while colic still eats, albeit a smaller amount of food.
  • Body weight also decreases, but not so rapidly, which is not a pronounced symptom of the disease.
  • The mucous membrane of the eye becomes yellow due to the fact that the level of bilirubin increases.
  • Yellowness appears on the rest of the mucous membrane. The liver is not functioning properly.

Gradually, the rabbit's health will deteriorate, extreme exhaustion sets in, which becomes the cause of death. With adequate maintenance therapy, the survival rate of rabbits is high, although the animal remains a carrier of parasites, that is, oocysts. The liver is restoring its functions, but there is no more full-fledged work and symptoms may return.

Laboratory research

In order to confirm or deny the presence of coccidiosis in a rabbit, it is necessary to conduct laboratory tests. The biomaterial that is required in this case is rabbit feces. The veterinarian will be able to see under a microscope whether there are oocysts in the stool or not.

Most often, the diagnosis can be established already posthumously during postmortem examination. After the autopsy, the veterinarian may see the following picture:

  • The mucous membrane of a sick rabbit, if it has an intestinal form of coccidiosis, is densely covered with white vesicles with dense contents.
  • Some nodes are surrounded by the affected hemorrhagic tissue, it is these photos and videos that can most often be found on veterinary forums.
  • The mucous membrane of the stomach and mucous membrane is noticeably thickened, there is a thick white coating.
  • Often, small ulcers can be found, which indicates that inflammation has developed on the basis of coccidiosis.
  • If the rabbit had a hepatic form, then the first thing that catches your eye is the enlarged choleretic ducts.
  • On the surface of the liver, white nodules are observed, in which oocysts are located.

Now we will learn how to treat coccidiosis in farm rabbits, what drugs are currently used to treat coccidiosis in rabbits.

Treatment of coccidiosis with folk remedies

As strange as it may sound, coccidiosis is treated with iodine.The fact is that iodine is famous for its antiseptic properties, in addition, it is an excellent antioxidant.

After you start feeding the rabbit with water containing iodine, the oocysts will stop reproducing further, and the existing ones will certainly disintegrate. Such treatment will give results only in alliance with strong medications.

Those who were looking for the treatment of coccidiosis with folk remedies should pay attention to iodine.

How to treat coccidiosis with antibiotics

Despite the fact that iodine shows quite good results in the fight against coccidiosis, veterinarians prefer "heavy artillery", that is, antibiotics. To combat coccidia, drugs of the sulfanilamide group or drugs based on toltrazuril and diclazuril are used.

Sulfonamide treatment

If the veterinarian has chosen this group of antibiotics, then the treatment regimen will look like this:

  • First option. Within 5 days, you need to give the rabbit sulfadimethoxine, reducing the dosage every day. After this cycle, you need to pause for 4 days, then repeat the course of treatment again.
  • Second option. It is necessary to give phthalazole in combination with norsulfazole and chloramphenicol, the course will also last 5 days, after which a pause and repetition of treatment is needed.

Coccidiostatic treatment

Rabbit breeders are now using coccidiostatics, a group of antibiotics to treat coccidiosis. Coccidiostatics include antibiotics such as Solicox and Baytril. They must be used strictly in accordance with the instructions attached to the medicine, which will indicate the required dosage for the injection and how it must be diluted correctly. It is believed that these drugs begin to act faster, almost immediately after application, and act more aggressively on the pathogen. In addition to the fact that these drugs will be an excellent therapy in the acute course of the disease, lifelong prevention can be built on the use of Solikox and Baytril. For prevention, you need to carry out a course of treatment once a calendar month, repeating it 12 times a year. You can also use metronidazole and brovitacocide.

In addition to treating a rabbit with antibiotics, it is necessary to try to introduce vitamins of groups A and B into the diet of a sick rabbit: this is an excellent prevention of coccidiosis in rabbits. These components are found in kefir, yogurt, and acidophilic milk. Earlier it was said that there should not be an excess of protein in the diet of a sick rabbit.

Details on the prevention of coccidiosis

Everyone knows the expression that it is easier to prevent a disease than to treat it. The same goes for coccidiosis. Since the risk group includes young rabbit, it is worth taking care that infection does not occur. To do this, you need the following:

  • Do not exceed the norm of the density of the young stock, the maximum number of rabbits in one cage is 20-25 individuals.
  • Do not forget to periodically disinfect the room with rabbits, carefully handle the cages and aviaries. It is worth remembering that coccidia are extremely resistant to external stimuli. For this reason, it is best to give preference to hot steam or blowtorch treatment.
  • Sick animals need to be quarantined as soon as possible to prevent further spread of coccidiosis.
  • Organize feeding in such a way that no faeces get into the feed or compound feed.
  • Make sure that the water in the drinkers is always clean and fresh.
  • Rabbits' diet should be balanced and nutritious.
  • It is also allowed to carry out drug prophylaxis using iodine or the use of antibiotics (Solikox and Baytril), which were previously described in detail.Moreover, the course with these drugs should be repeated every month, this is the only way to save the rabbit from possible infection and calmly breed the rabbit.

As for the vaccine or vaccination against coccidiosis, it currently does not exist, although scientists do not stop working on this problem.

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