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The subject of intentional breeding or meat rabbits is prohibited. The answers provided on this board are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet.  It is your responsibility to assess the information being given and seek professional advice/second opinion from your veterinarian and/or qualified behaviorist.

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Forum HOUSE RABBIT Q & A Cardiomyopathy diagnosis

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    • Salem Fluffle
      Participant
      45 posts Send Private Message

      Hi guys.

      Rough day here at the Salem house. We took Rascal in for an update on his ocular discharge and while there, I inquired about Freckles who had been losing a tad bit of weight over the last two months. Our vet checked out Freckles who was there with Rascal, and she noticed a heart murmur. We ended up paying for a full exam, x-rays, and a red blood count lab. They diagnosed her with Cardiomyopathy and said her prognosis is only a couple of months. The x-rays show a very enlarged heart that is pushing up her trachea, causing her to work a little harder to breathe. She doesn’t seem to be in pain and I honestly had not even noticed increased respiratory function before today. It was very noticeable at the vet and she got so stressed by being handled that they had to give her some oxygen. I can tell her breathing is abnormal at home but it seems a lot better here where she’s comfortable. The doctor gave her two medications that she’ll take twice daily until the time comes that she’s no longer with us (Lasix and Pimobendan). Our vet said this is very rare in rabbits but quite common in other species, and the one other rabbit she has seen with this condition lived six months past the original prognosis after starting the Pimobendan regimen.

      I’m wondering if anybody else has experience with this? What was it like? What helps or didn’t help? I want to make sure Freckles is comfortable until the end.

      (Rascal is doing great by the way.)


    • Wick & Fable
      Moderator
      5448 posts Send Private Message

      I’m so sorry to hear about this. You have definitely set-up the best foundation, which is getting that imaging work done and having a clear understanding of the cause-and-effect behind what you observed. I  have no personal experience nor do I have an idea of recommended treatments. Generally, it seems like treating symptoms as they arise and palliative care is recommended in these cases because there is no medical intervention to resolve the problem itself unfortunately.

      If breathing is difficult, perhaps things that would lessen the need for rigorous physical activity, so having things closer together and ensuring flooring is ideal so moving can be done as freely as possible (i.e., no slipping or sliding). Eliminating any excessive environmental irritants might be helpful too, so ditching the dusty portions of hay or shaking out hay/litter before putting them in the box. Lots of hugs and kisses are probably helpful too 🙂

       

      The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.


      • Salem Fluffle
        Participant
        45 posts Send Private Message

        I wouldn’t have thought about dust from the hay being an irritant, so thank you for pointing that out. I’m glad she recently migrated to a floor pen so she doesn’t have to climb/jump onto a box or ramp to get to her old set up any more. We’ve also been placing more bowls of water around for her because one of the medicines she’s on is a diuretic, so we know she’ll be thirsty more often. That seems to be a blessing to her.

        Lots and lots of hugs and kisses are in store for her. I fell in love with her the moment I met her, so I’m really struggling right now. I want to spend every last moment loving her.


    • DanaNM
      Moderator
      7441 posts Send Private Message

      I don’t have any experience with this, just want to say I’m sorry you are going through this. 🙁

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  


      • Salem Fluffle
        Participant
        45 posts Send Private Message

        Thank you, Dana. This news was shocking, and my husband and I are going through it this weekend.

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Forum HOUSE RABBIT Q & A Cardiomyopathy diagnosis