Question: What is E Cuniculi?
Answer: E Cuniculi is better known in veterinary circles as a protozoal infection, a parasite that lives inside the cells of a host's body.
Question: How is E Cuniculi transferred?
Answer: Infected spores are either ingested or inhaled and spread to organs via the bloodstream, where they can lay dormant for years in an unstressed bunny. The disease can easily be transferred and spread indirectly via humans, birds, unclean hutches, and runs or directly from rabbit to rabbit. E Cuniculi is usually transferred indirectly via an ingestible medium be it, rabbit food, hay or grass, which has been in contact with spore-infected urine from the floor of dirty hutches and/or, inside/outside runs, which have not been thoroughly disinfected between animals. The disease rapidly spreads through the host's digestive system, infecting the rabbit's vital organs including the liver and kidneys; it's brain and central nervous system.
Question: How can I reduce the risk of my rabbit contracting E Cuniculi?
Answer: SIMPLY BY TAKING BASIC PRECAUTIONS: Firstly, the old adage rings true 'prevention is always better than cure', that is why we strongly believe at Barnsley Bunny Boarding to worm your rabbit at least twice a year with Panacur oral paste, which acts as a preventative measure against the onset and effects of E Cuniculi. We believe that worming your rabbit regularly is just as important as the yearly vaccination for Myxomatosis and Viral Haemorrhagic Disease. We offer all our guests a nine-day course of Panacur treatment at cost, and administer the drug free of charge because we believe in its long term benefits. Alternatively you can purchase Panacur from your local pet shop, online or if you prefer make an appointment at your local vet and ask for details. Prices usually range from between £4.50 to £10.00 depending on the supplier (prices correct at 2012). Secondly, when placing your rabbit in someone else's care always make sure strict disease control measures are adhered to on a daily basis, and especially between guests. Ensure runs are not placed on lawned areas; – grass cannot be disinfected against the spread of deadly rabbit diseases. Imagine for a moment that your pampered bunny had been placed in a run where it had consumed contaminated grass or food, left behind from a rabbit infected with E Cuniculi. Always ensure rabbit runs are located on surfaces, which can be and are treated with a high level surface disinfectant, for example tiled or concrete floors, and allowed to dry between guests.
Question: Is it easy to worm a rabbit with Panacur?
Answer: Many bunny owners often find the procedure a little daunting when giving their bunny a course of Panacur, as they find the process a little tricky when trying to locate the plastic applicator into their rabbit's mouth to release the paste. Barnsley Bunny Boarding have wormed dozens of rabbits, we are used to handling rabbits of all sizes from Polish to Continental Giants. If you prefer to bring along your own box of Panacur when boarding your rabbit that's OK, or you may prefer us to offer you the medication at cost; either way, we will administer the drug Free of Charge.
Question: How can I be sure my rabbit has not been born with the disease or exposed to it?
Answer: If your rabbit fails to display one or more of the classic symptoms associated with E Cunniculi then you will never know. It is perfectly possible for a rabbit to start displaying signs of the disease, years later after it was initially infected. A lifestyle trigger, which causes the rabbit stress, can in some cases, suddenly activates the disease, which will display common signs. A simple blood test is available to test for antibodies, why not put your mind at ease and ask your local vet for details.
Question: Is E Cuniculi Curable?
Answer: In a small percentage of cases, we at Barnsley Bunny Boarding believe E Cuniculi in rabbits, can be managed with drugs if caught very early to destroy any existing parasites; in fact in the past, we have witnessed a full recovery first hand in a young English doe who was born with E Cuniculi, and presented with classic symptom of head tilt, however her symptoms were acted upon early. If a rabbit cannot be cured, then it is possible for E Cuniculi symptoms to be reduced somewhat, to what degree depends to a great extent on tissue damage, the severity of the symptoms, the age and overall health of the rabbit in question. Vets usually prescribe long-term anti-parasitic drugs in the form of a 28-day course of Panacur, which has to be continued twice each year. It is important to note, that thes subject is shrouded in controversy and many veterinary experts believe treating rabbits four times a year is more successful. In more severe cases where rabbits have head tilt, the symptoms can be irreversible, however astonishingly, it is possible for a rabbit to quickly adapt to the physical symptoms associated with constrained immobility including head tilt, especially when coupled with the extra attention of a loving owner, and a regular bi-annual worming course which is continued for the remainder of the bunnies life. We care for Mokey, a French Lop buck whose symptoms of severe head tilt are managed by regular worming. Other than the obvious physical symptom, Mokey is a healthy, active, happy house bunny who behaves like any other rabbit.