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Forum HOUSE RABBIT Q & A Sukka’s medical mystery: megacolon

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    • redbunbun
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      So, we’ve been in and out of the vet’s and even consulted the amazing Dana Krempels about Sukka’s stomach problems, and, while we’re still looking into it to rule out any other possible causes, it’s looking more and more like megacolon may be the cause of our symptoms as diagnosis after diagnosis gets ruled out one after the other.

      I’m so worried, and very much blaming myself. I knew about megacolon and the link to the charlie coloration before Sukka came to us, but I somehow thought it wouldn’t happen to us, followed my heart and adopted her despite my concerns about her health… and here we are! I’m going to call my vet again tomorrow to schedule yet another appointment to talk about the possibility of setting her up with the medication Dr. Krempels recommended once she’s grown, and to try to analyze if her megacolon would somehow place her more at risk for the sterilization surgery she’s supposed to be undergoing in a few months.

      Apparently, we are very fortunate in our misfortune. There’s evidence to suggest that both Sukka’s large size and the darkness of her coloring may mean she’ll have less complications due to megacolon. Dr. Krempels recommended a diet with plenty of water/wet greens as well as giving her some lactulose once she’s older to keep her gut hydrated, but it just feels like there’s so little I can do to help. I feel horrible waiting for poor little Sukka to start getting ill and not being able to do anything to stop it.

      So… anyone here living with a megacolon bunny? How are things going for you? Have you any advice to give to someone still in the very beginning of the battle against megacolon? I’m in serious need of information, advice and moral support!


    • MoxieMeadows
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      Hi redbunbun, Sadly I have no advice to share as I have no experience with a megacolon bunny. (Had actually never heard about it until now)

      I thought It might in some way help if I share my experiences with my bunny, Moxie. As we both feel we are in a similar situation. Moxie was having extremely bad sneeze attacks, so I brought her into the vets. She was prescribed 3 weeks of baytril for three weeks. Her sneezing went away while she was on meds and for a couple weeks after that but the sneezing came back. The vets prescribed an additional 2 weeks of the meds but nothing got better. We asked (and paid) for a trachea wash/cytology and culture, but the vets only ended up doing a trachea wash and cytology. The answers came back that she had an inflammation most likely caused by allergies and that she also had Pastuerella. They also said they had found squamous cells which might mean she had Carcinoma, an untreatable cancer. We decided not to have the x-ray done (lots of $$$ and there was no point other than knowing for sure she had a death sentance) and tried one last time with this shot to help her (I forget what it was called, but they said it would most likely lower her immune system and cause the cancer to take her life within a month or so if she had cancer. But Moxie is still alive and after calling the lab and getting all of the notes faxed to us they said they cells hadn’t looked strange in the first place.) and an additional 3 weeks of baytril. Well none of that did anything and Moxie still sneezes (although I take precautions with keeping her area cleaned ect. to help ease her sinuses)
      But I sometimes have this nagging feeling in the back of my mind, as there is not much else I can do and I feel like I have somehow failed. Or the fact that I know Moxie probably won’t live 10+ years due to her health issues.
      And as for that fact all I can say is what has helped me is cherishing Moxie day by day and spoiling her rotten, so that when she reaches the end of the road I can say “She was loved, taken good care of and spoiled more than any bunny I know. And I know she was better off living her life with me than with anybody else.”

      I really wish Sukka the best, And I would follow the advice about her diet. If you ever just want to talk or get things off of your chest please feel free to PM me. (((Hugs)))


    • redbunbun
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      MoxieMeadows, thank you so much for the wonderful moral support and kind words – I’m so sorry to hear about Moxie, I hadn’t realized she had health issues! Knowing Sukka would probably have ended up a breeding doe for meat rabbits if she hadn’t come to me, your point about knowing she’s receiving so much love and the best possible care really resonates with me. She’s such a wonderful little girl, and even though I regret her condition, I can’t bring myself to regret adopting her, and probably would have done it even if I had known beforehand that she had megacolon.


    • MoxieMeadows
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      redbunbun— I know how you feel, I had a family member tell me “Well if you only had adopted her sister (it came down to Moxie or her REW sister, but Moxie tugged on my heart and peed on my sister’s foot. ) you probably wouldn’t be dealing with this”. But I don’t regret my decision in adopting Moxie. She is a beautiful sassy girl who gets to live out her days as a spoiled house bun.
      I don’t know how breeders are in Finland, but here if rabbit’s have health issues (like Pasteurella or megacolon) they are butchered to keep them out of their gene pool and just to not have to deal with it, or spread the illness (if it is contagious). If Moxie was kept by the breeder I got her from or sold to another breeder she most likely would have been killed. So even though I know I won’t have the longest time with Moxie I know that she at least has a chance of life with me. So you most likely saved Sukka too, because even if they never noticed she had megacolon she probably would have got a blockage or something. At least you know to feed her lots of greens and stuff to help.

      Sukka is a gorgeous girl and I’m glad she ended up with you!
      Also if you don’t mind me asking, does Sukka or Tossu mean anything in your language? Like “flower” or something? Moxie here is like an energy, and a soda that’s very popular in my state.


    • jerseygirl
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      What symptoms is Sukka displaying, redbunbun? Edit:  Nevermind!  Just red your “Poopscapades” thread. 

      I wrote to Dana Krempels a few years ago regarding my bunny Jersey (now passed away). She suggested mega colon to me also. One of our forum leaders at the time also started treating her rabbit for suspected mega colon based on on advice from Dr Krempel.  Jersey’s issues were hard for me to figure out. She had several episodes of stasis in her 1st 2 years. She also refused to eat hay so her poos were dark and “crinkly”. Sort of like peppercorns but larger. When she did attempt to eat hay, this was often when she had problems. Sometimes I would see complete strands pass through undigested. It seemed to bind her up instead of doing what hay is meant to do. Chewing hay seemed to be an issue and she later developed tooth spurs. Eventually, I got her eating hay pellets and her poos looked better in colour and size, though never truly round. She also started to do the really big ones later in life. 

      This was probably the biggest I saw. The one on the right is from my dwarf lop (2.8kg) His were usually always bigger then hers. Except when she made these obviously!  

       photo image_zpsxeo9lvxl.jpg


    • jerseygirl
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      Ugh. I resized that twice but its still showing up so big, sorry.

      Just from reading your other thread on about her poop, I wonder if you should talk to the vet about treating her with ponazuril? Its actually a horse wormer but doses can be worked out for rabbits. Dr Krempels has talked about this med a lot. It can treat both coccidia and E. cuniculi, they are both protozoan parasites.

      I mentioned about E.Cuniculi in relation to the gut in another thread yesterday. Some people think it could be linked to gut issues in some rabbits. One of the stories I read was from an owner of a megacolon bunny.

      He passed away while anaethetised and the owner had a necrospy done. There was a lot of findings of disease (brain, lungs, liver, kidneys, heart) and all related to EC. Yet he never really presented with EC symptoms. She began to wonder if his stasis episodes and sensitive gut were somehow related.

      All that aside, if giving a wormer is not too risky, I wonder if its worthwhile to go ahead and do. In some places, it seems common practice for owners to treat all new rabbits prophylactically against EC & coccidia. Some rescues will do this also.


    • redbunbun
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      jerseygirl, poor Jersey! If you don’t mind me asking, were her megacolon-like symptoms contributing factors in her passing? Sukka definitely doesn’t have issues eating hay – in fact, she’s much better at eating hay than my other rabbit Tossu is. Her poops are quite large and oval in shape, but nothing like the undigested hay you’re describing – quite regular poops, all in all, just strangely shaped, with a few mushy poops every now and again. She also gets her stomach mixed up quite easily, so introducing new foods etc is a very slow and careful process.


    • jerseygirl
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      Thats ok. I do often wonder if it contributed to her death. I think she had a stoke but I was treating her for stasis at the time. She hadnt had any episodes for a while. I had turned it around in the past but this time, she went before I could get her seen by the vet.

      She was 6 years old. Dana Krempels had actually forewarned me that she would probably not live as long as her mate. This proved to be true.  She definitely had some sort of chronic gut issue it was compounded later by her dental issues I guess.


    • jerseygirl
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      More is being learned about this syndrome and Sukka is young. She could have a good long life with it managed so don’t lose heart! It’s strange, I hear about mega colon more now and I think that’s due education/awareness of owners and vets. I wonder sometimes if it’s over-diagnosed now, or was just under diagnosed in the past


    • redbunbun
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      Ah, you guys have responded too quickly for me to keep up! Just a moment.

      Jerseygirl, we treated both Sukka and Tossu with coccidia meds when she originally started presenting these symptoms – not ponazuril, it was something called Ditrum duplo (which is trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole, apparently). I’ll definitely add your ideas about E. cuniculi to my list of talking points for the next time we go back to the vet! We, thankfully, have a wonderful rabbit-savvy vet who is more than willing to explore any possibilities, so I’ll definitely ask her about that as well as megacolon. EC would be a pretty grim diagnosis as well, though at least it’s treatable… but then I’m worried for Tossu as well, since they’ve been in some contact already.

      We’re enrolled in a study some veterinarians at my university are conducting on rabbit intestinal parasites. I’ll be sending both Sukka’s and Tossu’s poop over there next week, and in a few weeks’ time we’ll also be getting a detailed analysis of any parasites these guys may have. E. cuniculi would probably show up on that, in addition to coccidia? I’m wondering if it may even be worth waiting for those results before taking Sukka back to the vet again, since she’s not in any immediate danger right now – my student budget would prefer doing as much as possible in one vet visit, since it does always cost some money…

      MoxieMeadows, Sukka means “sock”, and Tossu means “slipper”. I have my footwear bunnies! Most meat rabbits are butchered if they get ill here as well, yes – both Sukka and Tossu are from meat rabbit breeders, because we don’t have a lot of recreational breeders of large rabbits here in Finland. Pet/show rabbit breeders here tend to treat their rabbits before butchering, but for Sukka, the outcome would have been grim indeed. She may never actually have lived to be old enough to start with the serious megacolon symptoms, since it seems to be quite usual to put meat rabbit breeding does through one or two summers of litters and then making them into meat. She probably wouldn’t have lived long either way. My poor little girl! She really is the prettiest and nicest little rabbit ever, I’ve been dreaming of a French lop for years now and she’s absolutely my dream come true. <3 (My boyfriend has fallen in love with her as well – he's never really "understood" Tossu fully, even though he likes him too, but Sukka has just completely melted his heart!)


    • jerseygirl
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      MoxieMeadows, Sukka means “sock”, and Tossu means “slipper”

      Love it!

      E. cuniculi would probably show up on that, in addition to coccidia?

      No. When there is an active infection of EC, the spores are shed in the urine. Theyre unlikely to find them from a fecal float unless contaminated by urine.
      EC is another one of those hard to get a definitive diagnosis on. There’s a little bit about that halfway down page here. http://www.bio.miami.edu/hare/tilt.html


    • redbunbun
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      jerseygirl, ah. Hmm. In that case, the Ponazuril may definitely be worth a shot, if the vet deems it safe enough to give on a “whim” taking her tummy troubles into account. Having to consider E. cuniculi as a culprit is really making me sad – I’ve been here congratulating myself that at least it’s not EC, which has always been the one I’ve been most afraid of!

      Why are rabbits so hard to diagnose?


    • jerseygirl
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      I hope I haven’t stressed you out putting EC up as a potential culprit. It’s just a theory that’s piqued my interest recently.

      Oh, I just thought of something…. have you done a search for any social media groups of “mega colon rabbits”?

      On Sukka being a “charlie”, she’s actually what Id call a “butterfly” or “english” marked rabbit. Charlies are only something like 5-10 % coloured. So I’d say she has the en gene often implicated in mega colon but at least she doesn’t have the double!


    • redbunbun
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      jerseygirl, it’s better to be stressed and prepared than blissful and ignorant! Definitely something worth checking out. E. cuniculi has just always been the most scary of the common rabbit ailments to me, probably because the symptoms are so dramatic and often very severe. I’ve been searching for a megacolon rabbit social media group, and I’ve only managed to find a defuct Facebook group that used to exist a few years ago.

      Sukka is actually very strange on her coloration, because there isn’t an English-marked rabbit for three generations on either side of her pedigree. One of her parents is a solid-colored rabbit, the other has a blanket pattern. Both her parents have only solids and blanket patterns in their pedigrees. All her littermates were either solid or blanketed. And yet, Sukka very clearly displays the hallmarks of being what we here call a “scheck” pattern (albeit an overly colored one), which I think is the “butterfly”/”English” pattern you were talking about.

      I’ve actually bandied around with the idea of her being a blanket patterned rabbit with a very underdeveloped blanket who just happens to carry dark patches where a butterfly rabbit would present them, because the genetics for a butterfly pattern and a blanket pattern are, according to the research I did on the subject, different enough that she shouldn’t be a butterfly pattern with the parents she has! The other possibility is that another male got in with her mother by accident, and her pedigree is wrong… or, more likely, that somewhere in the sea of rabbit color genetics that I waded I made a translation error or something and I’m mistaken on the genetics of the whole thing.


    • MoxieMeadows
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      Sock and Slipper, how cute.


    • redbunbun
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      Thank you, Moxie! I certainly think so!


    • redbunbun
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      So… Sukka hasn’t grown for over a month. We tried to weigh her on our human scale for the first time today, since I’ve been thinking she’s very small for the past few weeks. It shows her at about 2,5kg, which may not be entirely accurate, but she’s definitely not at 4+ kg … which is where she should be weighing in at.

      I’ve decided not to wait for the results of the intestinal parasite study, even though I should be getting them next week as I sent their poop to the lab today. Sukka’s stomach is also quite round, which is causing me A LOT of concern. Reading about things, she fits the description for quite advanced hepatic coccidia, which would make this entirely my fault, as I’ve sat on my butt and “waited and see”:d for ages now. I feel horrible; I feel like she’s going to die, and I’m also extremely worried for Tossu.

      Tossu still presents absolutely no symptoms whatsoever, but if Sukka has hepatic coccidia, Tossu has been exposed to it for a few months now, and it’s so contagious I don’t see how it could be possible that he doesn’t have it. I may end up losing both of them, and I don’t think I could deal with that.

      It’s late, I’m home alone, and I’m crying my eyes out and just thinking of the worst possible scenarios. Both bunnies are active and happy, and both are eating and drinking and pooping. I really shouldn’t be winding myself up like this, but I am so terrified for both of them. Sukka has always been ill, so I think losing her would be manageable – I’ve been mentally preparing for it for months, really, and I would know that she just wasn’t born to survive and I gave her the best shot I could. Tossu, on the other hand… he’s the light of my life, I really don’t know what I would do without him. It’s horrible to think that I may have signed his death sentence by trying to get him a friend. I feel so guilty and helpless.

      I’m taking Sukka to the vet on Wednesday. I don’t know how I’ll survive until then without breaking down. I’m sorry to vent, guys, but I called my mother and she tried to console me by saying “at least it’s just a bunny”… really not what I needed to hear!


    • Bam
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      Please redbud bun, don’t jump to any conclusions, don’t let your head run away with you. I know how one’s brain can paint up the most terrible pictures in your head, but try not to get
      carried away. You can’t do anything until you’ve seen the vet. So what you have to do is realize that yes this is scary and terrible, but it’s not in your hands. Nothing in this is your fault because you have dine what you though was best for your buns, and that’s really all a person can do.
      Of course your bunnies are not “just bunnies”, but it’s sweet if your mother to try and comfort you, even if she doesn’t quite understand. Here we do understand about love for rabbits, so please, “rant” away all you want.
      ((((((Sukka)))))) ((((((Tossu))))))


    • redbunbun
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      Ah, thank you, bam. I’m really trying to hold it together, and forcing myself to repeat a mantra: “they’re both eating, they’re both active, they both seem healthy”. Really, how sick can they be if they’re eating and drinking and pooping normally?!

      Sukka’s slow growth/lack of growth is just a really scary symptom to realize. The only disease I’ve found that could cause it is hepatic coccidiosis, though she doesn’t have any of the earlier symptoms of the illness, just the rounded belly (which I’m not sure if I’m imagining – it looks fine when she stands up, but it’s very large when she’s lying flat on her stomach) and the stunted growth. She isn’t lethargic, she isn’t anorexic, she isn’t pooing goo or blood.

      She was on a hay-water diet for a month or two, and she’s only just been back to eating greens and pellets for a few weeks now – could that cause stunted growth? I asked the vet before we continued the hay-water diet past a few days if it would cause her any growth issues, and she didn’t think it would. She’s quite rabbit-savvy, so I trusted her on it… but I would prefer to think that it was the lack of variety in food that caused it rather than something deadly and easily transmittable to Tossu.


    • redbunbun
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      Using this thread as my rabbit anxiety diary… sorry guys!

      I’ve been in contact with Sukka’s breeder, and all her rabbits are doing well. Sukka’s siblings are 4+ kg, her parents are fine, everything is dandy. Tossu is healthy and happy, with absolutely no symptoms whatsoever to be seen even with my paranoia goggles. If Sukka did have hepatic coccidiosis, wouldn’t one of these other rabbits also be displaying symptoms? The only possible places she could’ve got it is at her breeders (any rabbit there) or from Tossu, and if none of these rabbits are ill it seems very unlikely they could’ve had it. I suppose some of the rabbits could have it and not display any noticeable symptoms, but if it is from her breeder’s there are A LOT of rabbits there. It’s extremely unlikely that none of them except Sukka would show any symptoms whatsoever.

      I suppose Tossu could be an asymptomatic carrier which caused the hepatic coccidiosis in Sukka, which would mean Tossu is kind of safe, at the very least. However, I don’t really know if hepatic coccidiosis can be carried asymptomatically…? He’s always been completely, 100% symptom free. Coming to that, if Sukka did have hepatic coccidiosis, Sukka and Tossu have been bumping noses through a cage for a few months now, in addition to spending 15 minutes or so roaming together in the bedroom once. They also share their running space. If Sukka did have hepatic coccidiosis, wouldn’t Tossu already be exhibiting some kind of symptoms? I find it hard to believe that he wouldn’t have caught it if she did have it, because it is so easily transmittable and after “settling in” to the megacolon diagnosis I kind of dropped any quarantine procedures I may have had.

      Come to think of it, could megacolon still be the correct diagnosis? Is it possible for megacolon to stunt growth? I suppose it could technically be possible, as megacolon can make digestion less effective for rabbits, meaning that she hasn’t been getting enough nutrients despite eating loads, which would cause malnutrition and stunted growth.

      26h until the vet appointment. As I feared, I’m going out of my mind with worry. Someone should probably knock me out for the next day or so, and put me out of my misery.


    • Bam
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      Coccidosis can be carried asymptomatically. Since Tossu is a healthy strongb bunny (from what I’ve seen on your Insta), his immune-defense may be able to deal with being exposed to coccidia.

      Tossu may have some sort of genetic flaw stopping her from triving. Her siblings may not have inherited that same flaw. She may hae a immune-defense-problem, hereditary or not, that makes her more susceptible to pathogenes. Her intestinal problems may cause a problem with absorption of nutrients, that could also stunt her growth and imo that doesn’t seem unlikely.

      Imo there can be any number of possible explanations.


    • redbunbun
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      We’ll see what the doctor says tomorrow – thanks for being my voice of reason, bam! If she is somehow immunocompromised or genetically flawed, it may mean a shorter life span, but depending on what it is she may live happily for at least a while. I wonder if her strange coloration could also technically be a symptom.

      I’m just so thrown by the fact that Sukka really doesn’t act ill at all. As we speak, she’s exploring, running around and nibbling everything she can, licking the sofa, nudging my feet, trying to get into the bedroom to say hi to my boyfriend… And she eats so much and absolutely adores food! If she really were irreparably ill, wouldn’t she show it at least a bit? I know they can hide illnesses really well, but this would be the extreme version of that.

      I’ve been wracking my brain for other possible symptoms just so I have as much information as possible to give to the vet tomorrow, and I’m writing them down so I don’t forget anything.

      Her pee is always clear, which would suggest she’s drinking a lot of water. She always knocks over her bowl and splashes around in it, so I’ve been assuming that her bowl being empty often is mostly down to that – the towels around the bowl are almost always wet as well, suggesting that I’m right. Maybe if she really is drinking a lot it could be a symptom too. If she had problems with her liver, though, I would assume her pee would be dark (= less filtered due to her liver issues) as opposed to really clear.

       

      This is a list of what I’ve got so far, though I’m certain not all of these are symptoms, just possibilities I’m going to bring up with the vet tomorrow:

      • stunted growth
      • abnormally shaped fecals, clumpy cecals
      • large abdomen in comparison to rest of frame (in comparison to Tossu, who is not a lop – I’m told lops can carry their weight a bit “lower” on their bodies, and I feel like her stomach was quite large the first time we visited the vet, and the vet didn’t seem to think it odd back then)
      • hind legs still “floppy” and uncoordinated
      • sometimes her abdomen feels hard for a bit, always goes away quickly (just her contracting her muscles?)
      • clear urine
      • eats a lot, possibly drinks a lot
      • sleeps a lot, very calm (possibly just temperament, as she does binky and explore and get up whenever you walk by her cage etc)
      • bony “top line”, shoulder blades-spine-hind quarters, however these feel less bony then they did a few weeks ago

      She has been back on pellets and veggies for two or three weeks now, and her poops are still solid, albeit not normal in shape. I rarely see her cecals, but the ones I have seen (few and far between) have been poorly formed. However, if she is gaining some fat on her bones with this new diet, she may not be an entirely hopeless case.

       

      Update: She just hopped on the sofa by herself for the first time ever, and is currently doing zoomies around the living room. I’m in less of a panic now that I have a plan, I’ve written out everything that could possibly be wrong with her, and we’ve got under 24h to go before we’re at the vet. Besides, a baby bunny exploring and doing zoomies can’t be beyond repair, can she? There’s still something very wrong with her, but if it’s not too wrong to be fixed I’ll be so happy. Even if she stays a small Frenchie for the rest of her life, at least she would have some kind of a life!

       

      Give us lots of vibes, BB, so that little Sukka can grow up big and strong despite her unfortunate beginning!


    • Bam
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      ((((((Sukka))))))
      Try and get a urine-sample to bring with you to the vet tomorrow. It will help with the diagnosis.
      bunnies can hide illness well but I don’t think they can fake an interest in their environment or do zoomies just to not let on that they’re sick.


    • redbunbun
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      bam, I will definitely try, but it seems like an impossible task to get a urine sample from a rabbit! I’ve cleaned out her litter box so I can get a fresh fecal sample to bring in as well, and we’ll be getting the results of the parasite evaluation back next week, at the very latest.

      At any rate, the zoomies and the exploring probably means she’s not in a lot of pain, at least not constantly. For now, that’s enough for me. We’ll see what tomorrow brings.


    • redbunbun
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      Back from the vet! It was an expensive visit – we got the full diagnosis effort, everything from bloodwork to x-rays. Our vet is wonderful, and also decided to do an analysis of the fecals I bought her for free, because she was curious but thought it was quite unlikely that there’s any parasites at work here.

      First, the good news: the vet is extremely doubtful that she has anything that Tossu could catch. She said hepatic coccidiosis is nearly impossible, both due to the fact that no other rabbits she has been in contact with are ill and because she’s been ill so long and is still in (relatively…) good health. There is nothing that is immediately threatening to Sukka’s health. Sukka is eating, binkying, curious about her environment, her vital signs are excellent… She is

      The bad news: it’s as certain as one can ever be with rabbits that whatever it is that is wrong with her, it is a physical deformation of some kind, and thus she can’t be cured. She has a birth defect. The possibilities the vet is considering are megacolon (she finds this the more likely culprit, agreeing with Dana Krempels) and possibly dysfunctional kidneys. The blood she took will be able to rule out kidney problems, and if she doesn’t have that or an infection of some kind (which they’ll run the bloodwork for, but the vet doesn’t think it’s a likely possibility), we will essentially have a confirmed megacolon diagnosis.

      The x-rays showed that Sukka had quite a lot of gas in her digestive tract, particularly in her colon. Because of this, the vet was relatively sure that megacolon is the correct diagnosis, but she wanted to rule out kidney problems just in case as well. That’s better than kidney issues, I suppose, since it’s more easily managed with diet, whereas there’s pretty much nothing that can be done about her kidneys – they would just continue to deteriorate and fail at some point.

      So… I am quickly becoming an expert in megacolon rabbits! Either way, I’m very sad that Sukka’s life will possibly be significantly shortened by whatever it is she has, but if it is megacolon she may have a chance at an almost full life – four, five, six years or so. But the entire visit left me feeling quite elated: Tossu isn’t in danger, and once we know which issue it is that’s plaguing Sukka we’ll be able to come up with a plan for her future. For the immedaitely forseeable future, she will continue to be happy and mostly healthy.


    • Bam
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      What a relief that Tossu is unlikely to be affeced by whatever it is with Sukka.

      I’m sorry about Sukka, of course, but as you say, something is undoubtedly wrong and if it’s megacolon, it can be managed for quite some time, contrary to many other things.

      So all in all it sounds encouraging. Let’s now hope there is no kidney problem. Thanks for the update!


    • redbunbun
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      “Encouraging” is definitely the way I feel right now! Out of all the possible things that could be causing her issues, megacolon is probably the most manageable one. We got some motility meds for two weeks to help her intestines do their work, so let’s hope that with those she’ll be able to put on some weight and maybe even grow a bit.

      Thanks for your support, bam! It’s nice to know that someone is reading my ramblings and can empathize, as a fellow bunny lover. My boyfriend really tries, and he loves Sukka to death so he’s worried too, but he doesn’t quite grasp rabbit physiology well enough to fully understand what’s going on the same way I do. The rest of my friends and family are the same, they don’t really know about rabbits, though of course they’re sympathetic – Sukka is very popular, she’s such a sweetheart she makes everyone fall in love with her instantly.

      Speaking of which, the vet was quite taken with Sukka as well. She said Sukka is one of the easiest rabbit patients to handle she’s come across – which I don’t find at all unlikely, because Sukka is just the sweetest little thing ever. She barely moved when they drew blood, and apparently stayed perfectly still while they took the x-rays, and when the vet was doing the physical examination she just stood there very cooperatively. She has the calmest temperament of any bunny I’ve ever met – she’s completely unfazed by going to the vet, for example. We put her in her carrier and she just munches hay all the way there, as soon as we open the carrier she’s jumping around and exploring the vet’s office, then she continues to nibble her hay throughout the appointment whenever she can and sitting still nicely when the vets need to do something, even if it is something as horrible as drawing blood.

      She’s such a good little bunny. It makes it all the more sad that she’s such a sickly little thing – the poor baby has done absolutely nothing to deserve this illness!


    • MoxieMeadows
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      At least now you are getting an idea on what it is for sure. And if it is definitely megacolon, you can plan for that diet-wise.

      Sending some continued (((VIBES))) for you and Sukka.


    • redbunbun
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      Moxie, thanks a million for your wonderful vibes – Sukka appreciates them so much! Knowing what’s going on is helpful beyond belief, it has done a lot to ease my anxiety, which in turn gives me a clearer head to make plans for what is best for Sukka.

      Currently, I’m worried about her weight. Not necessarily her small frame as much as wanting to get some meat on her bones, seeing as she is still very slight. I think her back bone sticks out a bit less now than last week, though her weight hasn’t changed much in the last month and a half. Maybe the Burgess Excel pellets I’ve been giving her are helping? I chose them because of how high fiber they are.

      Sukka’s diet is currently:
      Morning: 3tbsp Burgess Excel, cupful (~1 cup) of veggies (wet, as fibrous as possible, no fruits whatsoever)
      Evening: 5tbsp Burgess Excel
      All day: free hay, good-quality timothy-based orchard hay

      What could help her get some energy and put on some weight? I have some pure oats I could give her, which contain a lot of energy, which I’ve been pondering trying out – her tummy is so delicate I don’t want to cause her any undue hassle, though. What do you guys think?

       

      EDIT: I also edited the title of this post to be more in keeping with the current contents of this thread, just in case the information I’ve gleaned through this experience could be useful to someone else battling these same issues later on!


    • MoxieMeadows
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      The only thing I can think of to help her gain weight is to increase the amount of pellets you give her, but I don’t know if that would upset her stomach or cause problems.


    • BB & Tiny
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      I truly feel for you and before beginning to read these threads, had no clue as to the extent of a delicate nature bunnies possess. I now look at mine with a more critical eye.

      I hope you receive the answers you seek very soon as to assuage the need for guessing. It must be very frustrating and scary.


    • redbunbun
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      Moxie, we’re definitely “on the track” to increasing her pellet intake. Our vet here was of the opinion that the amount she’s getting sounds quite good right now, but she was worried about her lack of weight gain as well. I’ll definitely take it as a good sign that her back bone doesn’t seem to stick out quite as much now that she’s been on the pellets for a few weeks – before that, she was on a hay-water diet for over a month, which got her poops nicely in check from the pile of messy slop they were before that, but apparently wasn’t enough to keep her growing. Now, her stomach has been fine with pellets and fresh food, though I’ve been introducing her to them EXTREMELY carefully.

      I was only giving her 5tbsp of pellets every evening until the beginning of last week, since I’d slowly increased the amount to that much. After really taking notice of her lack of size, however, I started adding pellets to her morning feed as well – Tossu only gets them once a day, but I figured it might be better for Sukka’s tummy to get the pellets in numerous feedings as opposed to just a giant bowl in the evening like Tossu does. I may try to increase the amount of pellets she gets in the morning to 5tbsp as well, and then see where we stand before increasing them more than that. That’d give her 10tbsp of pellets a day, which is probably about the amount she should be eating if she were an adult-sized Frenchie as opposed to a tiny little thing (keeping in mind that “tiny little thing” in this instance is still 2,6kg ). She needs a lot of fiber to keep her gut going, though, so I’m worried that giving her too much pellet will cause her to eat less hay. 80% hay was the ratio both our Finnish vet and Dana Krempels were suggesting, but it’s so hard to accurately measure her hay intake to try to decide what the absolute maximum amount of pellets for her would be. I’m currently offering her three different kinds of hay at all times, to make sure she remains interested in it and consumes the absolute maximum her little belly can hold.

      We’ve also ordered a very accurate small scale that should be arriving any day soon, which will hopefully also help us going forward. I’d ideally like to see her top at least the 3kg line, which I’m pretty sure she could do without even growing her frame much and still be quite proportional. Of course, the absolute ideal would be that she kicks her growth back into gear with the help of the pellets and gut motility meds, but I don’t dare to even dream of that just yet. The amount of gas in her gut is worrying to me as well, so we’ll probably get some simethicone once I’ve cleared it with her vet – though the gut motility meds she’s currently on may help take care of that as well.

      I’m once again thrilled at how lucky we are with our vet! She’s an absolute godsend, and even did some of the diagnostic tests today for free because she was just interested in Sukka’s condition and wanted to gain as much information about it as possible, but didn’t want to charge us too much for tests that may not be relevant. We got off a lot cheaper than we normally would have. She was also happy to listen to me tell her what I’d talked about with Dana Krempels, and seemed eager to learn more about megacolon to be able to help Sukka better. She was apparently somewhat familiar with megacolon previously, but hasn’t come across many cases in practice – which I would wager most vets haven’t.


    • redbunbun
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      BunLove, thanks for your lovely thoughts, they really warm my heart! The past few weeks have really been full of anxiety for me, you’re so right about that – not knowing is probably the worst. We’re close to having a solid diagnosis now (tomorrow or Friday will bring the certainty I’ve been craving), which has really calmed me down a lot – and seeing Sukka do zoomies around our living room right now makes the worry and vet bills totally worth it! She’s a wonderful little personality, and she really deserves all the help I can possibly give her. I intend to do everything in my power to make sure she has a life worth living, no matter how it ends up panning out!

      Thankfully, poor little Sukka has remained cool as a cucumber throughout this entire ordeal – she’s left all the worrying to me!


    • JackRabbit
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      I’ve been watching your thread closely. There’s been some question for over a year now as to whether or not my boy bun Moshi could have megacolon. His symptoms are so intermittent and we’ve been experimenting with his diet forever. Every time we think we’ve got it figured out as a totally diet thing and think we’ve identified a non-megacolon cause, his symptoms return. Moshi seems to be the exception when it comes to many of the diet recommendations though which further confuses things! Too much greens and fewer pellets seem to make things worse with him. The one thing that always seems to help with his weight is oat hay tops — the seedheads are higher in calories and provide additional nutrition. Too many will make all of my bunnies a bit “round” so we try not to overdo it, but we’ve found that oat hay tops (whether as clumps from the full stalk or as just the seedheads from the BB store — nibble noms) help when Moshi gets a little thin and also help when any of my bunnies poops slow down. I don’t know if that would help with your bunny, but I read that the extra calories and nutrition in the oat hay tops have been recommended for senior buns who have difficulty keeping weight on so that prompted me to try them.
      Will be watching for your bun’s test results and game plan.


    • redbunbun
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      JackRabbit, interesting – I’ll definitely give oat hay tops a try! Apparently I’d be able to order something like this from Zooplus, where I purchase all the willow toys my rabbits use. Does that look about right? I’m assuming you just mean the dried tops of oat hay, which that seems to mostly consist of. I hope Sukka’s and my adventure into the realm of megacolon helps you and Moshi out too!

       

      So, the vet called a while back. We spoke for around half an hour; she’s been doing a lot of research since Sukka’s latest appointment, and we’ve pretty much got as a confirmed a megacolon diagnosis as can be. Sukka’s bloodwork, as far as her liver and kidneys are concerned, was all within normal values, so there’s nothing there to explain her symptoms. In addition, she’s anemic (depending on the source, she’s ranging between “a little” anemic and “moderately” anemic), which is often the case with megacolon rabbits, since they have difficulties getting all the nutrients they need from their food. She was also found to have low urea counts, which, again, is common in megacolon rabbits due to their relative malnourishment because of their digestive issues. Our vet also called and consulted the veterinarian currently conducting the rabbit parasite experiment I enrolled Sukka and Tossu in, and she got the results of Sukka and Tossu’s parasite evaluation as well as some consultation on megacolon from the other vet, who is also one of Finland’s top rabbit specialists. (Apparently, the experiment vet immediately knew which rabbit was in question when our vet mentioned the megacolon diagnosis, since she’d taken note of Sukka’s weirdly shaped poos… Sukka is quickly becoming a celebrity in the Finnish exotic vet community!) Sukka and Tossu both had some eimeria remnants in their fecal samples, but both were within normal range (100 oocysts/gram for Sukka and 25/gram for Tossu). So, coccidiosis is well and truly ruled out. The amount of coccidia oocysts per gram generally needs to be in the thousands to cause any symptoms. In addition, now that any parasite concerns and liver/kidney dysfunction possibilities have been laid at rest, we can safely say that Sukka’s tubby belly is caused by the gas we saw in her intestines in the x-rays, which, again, is another check on the megacolon checklist.

      Because of those results, we now have a new theory in regards to Sukka’s stunted growth! Our vet and the consulting vet now believe that the initial onset of her symptoms was caused by the stress of her move from her breeder to us, which caused the coccidiosis she was either already carrying or caught from Tossu (asymptomatic carrier) to flare up. The coccidia hit her harder because of her already poor digestive tract due to megacolon, leading to her growth being knocked off track. Once we gave her the coccidia meds and put her on a hay-water diet, the bulk of the oocysts in her system were killed off. Because her immune system is compromised due to her lack of nutrition due to the megacolon, it’s taken her quite some time to get “back on track” afterwards. Now, however, because the amount of oocysts is so low and her coccidia symptoms have disappeared, the vet thinks the amount of oocysts is small enough for even her crippled immune system to handle. Tossu, on the other hand, has remained fine this entire time as he is a healthy almost-adult rabbit with an uncompromised immune system.

       

      Phewph. Going forward, we at least know the cause of her symptoms. I’ve said it a hundred times, I’ll say it again: we’re extremely lucky with our vet. She’s both extremely skilled and knowledgable, and in addition she’s very interested in megacolon from an academic perspective, and she seems to be quite glad for the chance to study Sukka. Which is great for us – we have a vet that goes the extra mile at Every. Single. Turn.

       

      So, onwards to our new battle plan! The vet would be generally be inclined to cut out pellets and veggies from Sukka’s diet entirely, at least to start off with, but because of how small Sukka is (2,55kg – her littermates are currently 4-5kg), we’re really hesitant to cut her caloric intake down at all. Instead, we’re going to cut down on her veggies, and try to swap the ones she is getting for veggies with as high fiber content as possible, with extra bonus points for anything containing lots of moisture to keep her gut hydrated. We’re aiming to keep hay intake at around 90% of her daily diet. It’s above the recommended amount, but fiber seems to be extra important for megacolon rabbits, which is possibly the only megacolon fact just about all credible sources agree on. In addition, we’ll be slowly raising her pellet rations. She’s currently getting 3tbsp in the morning and 5tbsp in the evening. We’ll probably raise the rations up to 5tbsp in the morning and 5tbsp in the evening first, leave it there for a while to see what happens, and then maybe even raise the rations to 7 + 7 tbsp, but stopping as soon as her poop starts going wonkier.

      We’re also going to start keeping a food diary. Whenever she eats something that isn’t hay, we’ll mark down the time, and check with her intermittently for an hour or two to see how her stomach feels when palpitated. She’s been having intermittent bouts of “drum-belly”, or short episodes of relatively minor and seemingly not all that painful bloat that resolve themselves quickly, so we’re going to figure out what exactly it is that makes her tummy go gassy. So far, it seems to happen quite randomly, but we’ll keep tracking it and see if we can’t come up with anything that could be a cause. The vet also thinks that the bloat could just happen when she’s been quite inactive (sleeping for the day, etc) and her lack of movement allows gas to build up, which is then released once she gets on the move again.

      We’re currently on a prescription of Zantac (gut motility medication), 0,8ml twice daily for two weeks. On 08.10, so in about two weeks, I’ll be emailing our vet to let her know how things are going and if the Zantac is helping. If nothing has changed, we’ll work together to come up with a new diet plan, and if the Zantac is helping she’ll give us a new prescription for it for long-continuing use. She’s also putting in a prescription for some emergency stasis meds (I think at least Metacam, extra Zantac, etc), so that if we do have a stasis episode due to the megacolon we’ll be ready.

      So, all in all… we have a long road ahead, but at least we can see that road now! I’ll keep you guys posted as things develop. Sukka thanks you all for the lovely vibes and for being with us on this – though she has been quite a bit less stressed than I have! I thank you as well, being able to write this all out has really helped me get my thoughts sorted out and knowing someone out there is reading and cares about what I’m writing is more comforting than I’d ever imagined.

      “Now, the vet said I get more pellets, WHERE ARE MY PELLETS?” -Sukka


    • JackRabbit
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      The oat hay tops I’m talking about are actually just the part with the seedheads — they are the high cal part. Oat hay stalks are fine for bunnies too, but some bunnies will only eat the seedheads.

      I’m very curious to see what veggies you end of feeding. Moshi does best with green leaf lettuce with a few bites of other greens added. He can’t handle anything red, even red leaf lettuce. One thing has has helped tremendously with gas has been to hand feed his salad. If he eats too fast he gets gassy and leaves poop smears on his fleece. Luckily he’s a hay monster and eats a ton of timothy and orchard grass hay.

      Speaking of hay, since you are going for a 90% hay diet and have weight issues, you might speak with your vet about using different cuttings of hay. 3rd cutting is softer but richer since it is all leaf — using a mix of hays and different cuttings *might* help with nutritional aspects while still keeping with the mostly hay diet.


    • BB & Tiny
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      Oh what a sweet looking bunny !


    • redbunbun
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      JackRabbit, ah. Where do you usually get your seedheads? That mixture from Zooplus contains seedheads too, so I suppose if I can’t find them elsewhere I can buy that. The stalks are quite fibrous, so they wouldn’t be bad for her either. I’ve considered giving her some alfalfa hay, since it’s much richer – but we get our hay for free from the stables I keep my horse at, so it’s all from the field behind the stables. I may try looking into purchasing different cuts of hay elsewhere, though. It’s a good idea!

      BunLove, isn’t she just? <3 She's the sweetest little thing temperament-wise as well, I've never known a nicer little bunny!


    • Bam
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      I just want to say how good it is to hear that her problem isn’t kidney-related but with very great certainty due to megacolon.
      What a lucky little girl she is to have found such a caring
      bunny-mommy


    • redbunbun
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      bam, tell me about it – I’m so relieved! Of the two possibilities, megacolon is definitely the less terrifying prospect, though obviously I would’ve hoped that it was something that could be fixed entirely.


    • JackRabbit
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      I get oat hay seedheads from the BB store and also buy oat hay from Sierra Valley Pet Hay even though my bunnies will only eat the tops. Oat hay is great fiber and great for wearing down teeth. The trick is whether or not the bunny likes the the rest of it because it is mostly stalk.


    • redbunbun
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      JackRabbit, ah, right! We can’t order from the BB store here in Finland (I wish I could, I’d love to get my hands on some of the amazing stuff they’re selling here!), so I guess I’ll have to go with the Zooplus bag. I’m not too worried about Sukka not liking the stalks, she will eat literally anything and everything offered to her. I’ve yet to see her turn down any food item whatsoever.


    • redbunbun
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      Warning: gross poop update incoming, complete with pictures!

       

      Wheeeeeee! 

      On the far left, we have a picture of Sukka’s poop I just took a few moments ago. In the middle is a picture from two weeks ago. The picture on the far right is from a little over a month ago.

      We’re definitely on the right track! Mainly (I think) due to the motility meds she’s getting, her poops are so much more uniform in shape than they have been in the past. They’ve also got a much better consistency, and they’re not nearly as dry as they used to be. The poops in the middle and on the right either completely crumbled when pressed, absolutely disintigrated into this fine hay powder, or smushed into a sticky patty (mixed fecal and cecal matter?). Now, we have poops with a much nicer, lighter color and normal consistency, and it’s been a while now since I’ve seen a smushy poop patty. There’s still much variation in size, but less so than in the other pictures. Her largest poops are also no longer quite as large, and everything is “mostly uniformish” in shape!

      We’re currently at 5tbsp of Burgess Excel and 0,8ml of Zantac in both the morning and the evening (a total of 10tbsp of Excel and 1,6ml of Zantac per day), with free access to timothy hay with some crushed dried dandelion mixed in to entice eating. In addition, Sukka gets a tiny bit of greens each evening, but I’ve technically “cut them out”. For instance, yesterday she got half a cherry tomato, the day before she got two leaves of arugula and a piece of bell pepper, etc. Very small amounts, mostly as a treat and partly to see if there’s any particular veggie she reacts poorly to. So far, no veggies have elicited any gut-related response – just general merriment in the receiving rabbit, who has remained as greedy as ever.

      On a bit of a whim, I’ve also started spreading her morning and evening pellet rations out over a small area on the floor instead of giving them to her in a bowl, which forces her to eat more slowly. I’ve noticed that she gets less gassy afterwards, so I think eating more slowly and in smaller portions is the way to go. If it were possible, I’d split her pellets into three (or more!) meals a day, but due to my unpredictable schedule as a student-slash-waitress, it wouldn’t be possible for me to give her the afternoon pellets at the same time each day. The morning and evening feeds I’m managing to give within a two-hour time window every day, or my boyfriend is able to do it if I’m not around. I’m thinking scheduled feeding is more important than splitting her meals, since just about all the megacolon literature mentions the importance of feeding schedules for rabbits such as Sukka, but if her progress plateaus at some point I may look into splitting the pellet meals further.

      YAY! It’s shocking how terribly excited animal poop can make me these days.


    • Bam
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      I too get excited, that’s some great progress!

      Few things makes a bunny-owner so happy as beautiful bunny poop =)


    • redbunbun
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      Wooo, more progress!

      We’re barely seeing any oval poops anymore. Almost everything comes out round, and much smaller than before. Her poops are also all quite moist, no longer completely desert-dry. This is amazing, in just a week her poop has gone from horrid giant dry ovaloid monsters to much more manageable moist circles. Sukka is making phenomenal progress. We also weighed her with our brand-new kitchen scale the moment it arrived in the mail today, and she’s up to 2,645kg – 100g more than at her vet appointment almost two weeks ago. It’s not much, but it’s definitely a start! And with her poops looking as good as they are, I’m sure she’ll continue to gain some mass. My boyfriend and I also think her frame looks a little bigger now than it was, but that could be wishful thinking…

      We’ve recently joined a good megacolon Facebook group on Facebook, and gotten some great tips from owners of older megacolon bunnies. At their recommendation, all of Sukka’s veggies going forward are going to come from a list of good fresh veggies for megacolon bunnies. Right now, Sukka is only eating fresh mint. Her stomach has gotten a lot less gassy, and she’s not had a bout of proper drum belly since starting on the mint! Later, we’re looking to introduce her to some fennel, parsley, thyme and dill, which are all also from the list of megacolon veggies. I want to give her tummy a few more days to settle before starting her on anything new, though – but right after that, fennel is up to bat!

      The megacolon bunny group leader also recommended giving Sukka some (unsalted) almonds and pumpkin seeds, which contain lots of nutrients and healthy fats, to help speed up her growth. We may pick some up the next time we’re out to the bigger supermarket. We’ve also ordered some alfalfa hay to go with the oat hay tops I’m expecting to receive in the mail any day now, and some Oxbow Dietary Support tablets from an online veterinary supply store. I’m also considering Oxbow Vitamin C tablets, which people in the megacolon bunny group also highly recommended.

      As agreed a few weeks ago, I set our vet an email detailing Sukka’s progress and discussing the possibility of continuing her on the Zantac treatment going forward. Our 14-day course runs out on Thursday. We’ll keep our fingers crossed that she replies in time to continue the course without disruption, if she thinks it’s a good idea to continue it!

      Behaviorwise, Sukka is really gaining energy. She’s binkying, running around, doing zoomies, getting her little nose into absolutely everything – she’s even become a bit of a rascal, and has bouts of “bunny attitude” now! I almost miss how compliant and nice she was back when she was feeling more ill – though not really, because it’s a joy to see her so happy. <3 We have also seen some BUNNY FLOPS from her, for the first time ever! The first bunny flop she did that we witnessed pretty much had me and my boyfriend in hysteric fits of joy. She also still enjoys her food, but no longer eats like she's never seen anything edible before. I'm hoping that's because she's actually retaining some nutrients now, so she isn't starving all the time, and not because she's losing her appetite. She still gets ridiculously excited over her pellets and sprigs of mint, though, and tries to climb into the hay sack whenever I go to freshen up her hay supply, so she's still got enough of an appetite to qualify as healthy in my books. She's just no longer desperate for food all the time.

      Seeing how Sukka is now, it’s so clear to me that she was in some pain from her tummy before, and we just didn’t know her well enough to notice. She never did any tooth-grinding or hunched sitting or any other obvious signs of pain, but she was so dull and listless in comparison to how she behaves now. She wasn’t relaxed or energetic, even though she wasn’t necessarily lethargic or anorexic. It makes me a little sick to my stomach that I didn’t think to give her pain medication, and she had to go through such a long bout of feeling horrible under my watch. I feel like a horrible person. At least now, I know that if she ever behaves that way again, I’m marching straight to the vet and demanding some Metacam. This is the last time this bunny is ever going to feel that awful for that long a time, if there’s anything in my power to stop it. Sukka’s been through quite enough unpleasantness to last her a lifetime!


    • jerseygirl
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      Oh this is fantastic! I’m really pleased you are seeing these changes so soon and your not having to do any heavy duty meds. Has anyone on the Facebook group mentioned Lactulose? This is one of the aids Dana Krempel used for her mega colon bunny. Though, it sounds as if you’ve got a good treatment plan working at the moment.

      I was going to recommend you switch off Burgess to another pellet, as I have heard of it causing mushy poop for some rabbits, But again, it sounds as if its all under control. Fingers crossed it continues to remain so!


    • redbunbun
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      jerseygirl, when I contacted Dana Krempels myself, she mentioned using lactulose to help out with hard poops, but she didn’t think it was a good idea until Sukka is fully grown as it can mess with her nutrient absorption. I’m actually a bit worried about Zantac doing the same, but seeing as it’s really helped her now and she’s even gained some weight on it (which she didn’t do for an entire month before she was on it), I suppose being on Zantac is better than being without it?

      I’ve never heard that about Burgess Excel before! I chose it because it had the best possible nutrient values of any pellet available on the Finnish market. The other good pellet we could get our hands on is Supreme Science Selective, but we’d need to order that online whereas Burgess is available in a pet store under 200m from my apartment and directly next to our human-food store. I suppose I could try the Science Selective at some point a well, but I think I’ll wait a while and let her gain some weight before starting something as major as switching her food… It’s a huge project to do anything so major dietwise with Sukka!

      Hearing about those mushy poops on Burgess, though, is leaving me wondering whether Sukka would be able to produce completely regular droppings on another pellet. She’s currently making almost “normal” bunny poops, except they’re somewhat mushy. I’d chalked that up to her megacolon, in which case we’re happy her poops are mushy and not dry, but I wonder if the mushiness could be eliminated with a change of pellet?


    • Bam
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      It’s really nice to read all this, it’s such great progress and you’ve done such a wonderful job. I’ve never tried Burgess myself, it’s not available here, it used to be but only in 10 kilo bags which would take my buns about 5 years to finish. I read about it, it has lots of fiber and I guess Sukka needs a little more fiber than non-megacolon buns. It seems a bit risky to try another pellet when this clearly has worked wonders, but it is of course not possible to say what’s the best choice unless you try.

      That she’s gained weight (100 g in 2 weeks sounds perfect to me, it takes time to develop skeletal muscle) and is so much more active and not acting like she’s starving is so great. It simply must mean she’s getting more nutrients from her food.

      And don’t blame yourself for anything. When you realized sth was wrong with her, you acted.


    • jerseygirl
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      Re Burgess Excel, it’s only anecdotal reports from bunny owners I had read… Science Selective was actually the alternative that proved to be successful for these owners. I do agree about keeping the status quo for the time being.
      Is it the junior pellet she is on?

      ETA: Since you’ve nearly finished the current zantac, you’ll have opportunity to ask vet about any concerns re nutrient absorption and long term use.  I think one of the concerns is that it can disturb the optimum gut pH. (First and foremost, it is an antacid).  So maybe it’s worth seeing if having 2 days on 2 days off or something like that would be worthwhile?


    • redbunbun
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      bam, the fiber content was the main reason I chose Excel – fiber is so vital for megacolon rabbits! Then again, Science Selective does have nice amounts of fiber as well. As I said, we may give it a try once it looks like Sukka’s tummy is settled from the recent changes. Changing too much too fast is always a scary prospect for any rabbit, not to mention Sukka!

      jerseygirl, she’s on the adult pellet (oregano version), since the junior pellet had less fiber content.

      My boyfriend and I have been sick for a few days, so Sukka hasn’t had any fresh mint because we’ve been so tired we haven’t gone to the store further away that sells fresh mint by the sleeve – her poops are immediately starting to get a bit bigger. I have to rally and bundle myself up against the cold (it’s already freezing in the nights/mornings/evenings here in Finland…) and go get mint. I don’t think she can go another day without it without reverting some of her progress.

      In other news, my list of things to try out continues to grow! One of the megacolon bunny owners I’ve befriended after Sukka’s diagnosis has recommended sometimes adding apple cider vinegar to her water every once in a while. It’s supposedly good for humans as well, and includes such benefits as GI motility help and there’s even some evidence that it could help combat the Eimeria coccidia that there were remnants of in both Sukka’s and Tossu’s fecals. There have also been studies done that suggest that the bacteria responsible for these health benefits survive the pH levels of a rabbit’s intestine, unlike the enzymes in pineapple, so the helpful properties may be more than just a placebo. If anyone is interested to read more about it:

      https://madhatterrabbits.wordpress.com/2013/12/11/using-apple-cider-vinegar-with-rabbits/
      http://riseandshinerabbitry.com/2012/01/26/apple-cider-vinegar-for-rabbits/
      http://www.researchgate.net/publication/258697671_SURVIVAL_OF_LACTOBACILLUS_PLANTARUM_BJ0021_AND_PEDIOCOCCUS_ACIDILACTICI_IN_THE_DIGESTIVE_TRACT_OF_RABBIT
      http://www.edennuganics.co.uk/apple-cider-vinegar-rabbits-ax-36/

      At least we’re not running out of options for things to try!

       

      EDIT // Oh, how could I forget?! Our vet answered the email and wrote us a prescription for two more weeks of Zantac. She thinks that, if the Zantac keeps working and Sukka continues to do better, we could try stopping the Zantac treatment after two more weeks have gone by to see what happens to eliminate the need for constant medication. She also seemed to think that Sukka eating less rabidly was a good sign, not bad: she’s no longer starving to death, which is always a good thing. 

      In general, things are looking up.


    • redbunbun
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      Sukka had a really bad day yesterday – huge, clumpy, elongated poops and a gassy tummy. She didn’t seem terribly pained, but was more subdued than usual, so she probably wasn’t feeling too good. We forced her to run around and gave her some tummy rubs, and she seemed to feel a little better by the evening. Sigh. I have no idea what brought this on – she’s been doing so well up until now, and nothing has changed! Her medication, schedule and feeding have remained the exact same, and yet she still had a bad day. Today’s been much better, though, so maybe it was just “one of those things”.

      In other words, I think Tossu has lost some weight. His hip bones are definitely easier to feel now than they were a few months ago. Of course, this has immediately led me to panicking that Sukka’s diagnosis is wrong after all, that she has something that Tossu has caught and Tossu is now dying as well. Obviously, my brilliant panic mode idea is kind of dampened by the fact that Tossu exhibits no other symptoms, and Sukka has been tested and is negative for parasites Tossu could catch. He had a heavy molt a few weeks ago, which I’m told can sometimes cause a bit of weight loss, and I did cut down his pellets by quite a bit after he was neutered – I think I may have cut them down by too much, since the pellet he is on is already quite low-fat. I’m upping his pellet amounts, and I hope that will normalize the situation. He’s definitely not skin and bones, so I’m not all that worried yet – he looks the same as ever, really, just slightly less on the plump side when you really feel his hindquarters.

      Or perhaps he’s just got a lot less fur padding his hindquarters now, which makes his hip bones easier to feel? I don’t know. I’m slowly but surely becoming a crazy bunny lady. Having to be on hyper-alert for Sukka all the time is really taking a toll on my mental state.


    • redbunbun
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      Quick update: Sukka now weighs 2,936g. She’s up 300g in just a week. I’m in shock; this is UNBELIEVABLE. Her spine feels much less bony now, even though she is still very slim, and my boyfriend just commented on how heavy she feels yesterday. It’s definitely starting to be noticeable even without a scale!

      I’d be worried about her gaining weight too fast, but healthy French lops can easily grow a kilo per month in their growing stages. I’ll keep my eye on it, though. Weekly weigh-ins every Tuesday.


    • Bam
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      Congrats to the weight gain!!!!


    • jerseygirl
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    • redbunbun
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      Thank you – we’re so excited! Sukka’s tummy is feeling much better now, she’s been very gassy for the past few days but it seems to have resolved itself. I’ve been giving her lots of belly massages and encouraging lots of exercise. She seems much more relaxed again now, but we’re keeping a close eye on the situation. I’m worried that her bout of gassy tummy seemingly no cause – she just suddenly felt worse again, absolutely no change in diet or routine whatsoever. My boyfriend is speculating that she must have picked up a scrap of food off the floor that she shouldn’t have or something, but I don’t know. I thought we were being very diligent! It’s a mystery.

      Sukka’s eating habits continue to change, and I’m (once again) debating over whether or not they’re good signs or not. The 10tbsp of pellet seems to be her maximum per day. Now that she’s been getting a lot of pellet daily for a while, she’s no longer as interested in it. She always eats a few mouthfuls when I refill her bowl in the morning and evening, then leaves it and grazes on the bowl intermittently for the rest of the day/night. Usually, when the time comes to refill it, the bowl is either empty or only has a teaspoon or so of leftovers in it. She even seems to prefer hay to pellets sometimes, and she’ll often turn away from a full bowl of pellets to start eating hay instead. Fresh foods still excite her to no end, so I’ve started giving her her daily mint in conjunction with the pellet bowl refill, which encourages her to eat more pellets immediately after the refill.

      I’m wondering if it may be worth trying to switch her over to some other pellet that tastes better to her, or if I should just be content that she is indeed eating most if not all the pellets she’s offered. The Excel has been great for her weight gain, and at the moment her feeding situation is kind of reminiscent to being on free pellets, which is held suitable for growing rabbits anyway. There’s also the Mint-flavored variety of the same pellet available (the current one we have is Oregano), so maybe once this bag runs out I’ll try to buy her that… though then her diet would be 100% mint! Her fresh veggies are all mint at the moment, her Zantac is mint-flavored and if her pellet were to be mint too…! I certainly have a nice-smelling bunny; she’s minty fresh!

      I finally bought a nice, big fennel and some unsalted/shelled almonds and pumpkin seeds, but as she hasn’t been feeling quite well I’ve held off on trying them out for the past few days. I’m pleased enough with her current condition to try giving her some fennel later this evening, if her tummy keeps up, and maybe start with the almonds and pumpkin seeds tomorrow if the fennel goes down well.

      We’ll see what happens! I’ll keep you guys posted, as always; I’ve been treating this thread as sort of a Sukka diary, and, though I may be flattering myself, I feel like keeping a decent record of Sukka’s progress may be helpful if someone in the future has a bunny with megacolon trouble and ends up googling for advice! I certainly know I spent an inordinate amount of time going through megacolon bunny owners’ threads when I first started suspecting her diagnosis.


    • Bam
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      I’m very happy that you’re keeping this megacolon-diary up here, it will more than likely be very useful for other bunny-owners with megacolon bunnies. And it’s such a great read for the rest of us who never have had a megacolon bunny. I love hearing about her progress =)


    • redbunbun
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      bam, and I love that someone comments here every once in a while – it makes me feel better to know someone’s reading! I feel less alone with Sukka’s issues.

      Speaking of writing about Sukka’s issues, the Finnish Rabbit Association’s magazine’s editor got in contact with me after I discussed Sukka’s megacolon in a rabbit Facebook group. She asked me to write an article on Sukka and megacolon, which I did, and I sent it off today with some pictures of megacolon poop and Sukka’s coloration. Here’s hoping they like it, and that someone battling similar issues with their rabbit maybe reads it and it leads to a better life for some megacolon bunny somewhere.

      As far as Sukka goes, I’m considering lowering her pellets. She’s currently still on the 5+5 tablespoons per day, but she’s no longer eating all of it. She leaves a tablespoon or two left over from each meal. As her appetite is undiminished as far as other foods go, I’m not too worried about that in and of itself, though I will be trying the mint-flavored version of Excel for our next bag. Otherwise, however, Sukka’s poop has gone very soft these past few days, and she even passed some proper diarrhea today after I gave her a bit of fennel. The diarrhea bout I can chalk up to the new food (fennel) disagreeing with her tummy, but the gloopy mush poop may be due to having too much pellet. It’s been a few weeks now that she’s been on the 5+5 of Excel, and it’s been about a week now that her poops have been really gloopy. I may try to lower her Excel to 3+3, which seems to be about the amount she’s been eating by herself for the past few days anyway.

      I am a bit hesitant to lower her pellets since she’s been gaining weight so well, but her poop has gotten far too gloopy for me to be able to ignore it anymore. I think I’ll drop it to 3+3, so she’d get 6tbsp per day total. That seems to be the amount she’s eating anyway, and we’ll try to find another more tummy-friendly way for her to get extra caloric intake (maybe the almonds/pumpkin seeds?).


    • redbunbun
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      Dietary update!

      Pellets down to 3+4, for a total of 7tbsp/day. She now eats all of them. In addition, I started giving Sukka an almond and some pumpkin seeds with her breakfast a few days ago, and that went quite well. I tried fennel again, however, and we got the diarrhea splodge again even though her poops have been looking much better now that I’ve dropped her pellets down. As a result, I’ve cut both nuts and fennel from her diet for the moment. We’ll give her a few days to adjust before adding the almonds and pumpkin seeds back in. I may not re-try the fennel for quite some time – if nothing else, I’d like to try it once more to confirm that it is indeed the fennel causing the diarrhea splodges. It would be handy, in case of really hard poops in the future, to know that there’s something that works as a powerful natural laxative for her.

      I’ve also very slowly been introducing oat hay into her diet, since we finally got the order from zooplus (it was delayed for a week, argh!). She loves it, and it hasn’t done anything to her tummy. She’s getting a small handful a day right now, and I’ll be slowly giving her more and more as she gets used to it. I’m not too worried about “introducing too many new things at the same time” when it comes to new types of hay. There’s little chance of a tummy upset with hay, but it’s best to introduce it in increments just to be on the safe side.


    • Bam
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      I’m sorry to hear she got splodgy poop again from the fennel (if it was the fennel).
      Maybe you could make some yummy hay-cookies for her with apple and veg (if she tolerates apple). I’ve been experimenting with hay-cookies a while now and since I realized my Yohio has become rather plump (we don’t use the word fat in my household since it may offend sensitive rabbits), I’ve started making hay-cakes with hay + vegs and apple instead of just apple and berries. Here is mr Plumpness himself, Yohio munching on a hay/broccoli/apple-cookie. And a pic of the same hay-cookies on the fruit- and-mushroom dryer.


    • redbunbun
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      bam, we don’t give Sukka any fruits whatsoever, but those hay cookies are an excellent idea! Yohio sure seems to be enjoying them!

      Our weigh-in this morning (couldn’t do it yesterday because of exams, so busy right now!) was a bit of a disappointment. Sukka is holding steady at 2,9kg. At least she hasn’t lost any weight, so I suppose that’s something. She’s getting 3+3 tbsp of Burgess Excel every day now, but I feel like she only eats about half of that. She’s reaaally not liking her pellets anymore. On the other hand, she’s absolutely crazy about oat hay, and still enjoys her fresh mint. So it doesn’t seem to be a decrease in appetite in its entirety, just a decrease in pellet appetite. Perhaps she’s just gotten bored of them, or they don’t taste particularly good? I’m half-considering buying a bag of Supreme Science Selective and switching her over to that to see if it would be more interesting for her.

      I’m re-trying almonds and pumpkin seeds starting this morning. Her lack of weight gain has spurred me into action.

      Other than that, she’s being her spunky and happy self. She’s gotten quite proficient at jumping on the sofa now, which she never used to do, and just about any time someone’s sitting on it she’ll jump straight into their laps. It’s scared quite a few guests we’ve had over, as they suddenly find themselves with a lap full of rabbit. I also bought her her own little fleece plush bed, and she enjoys it immensely. Tossu has never been one for sleeping on soft surfaces – he’ll quite literally push a towel or bed aside just so he can sleep on the floor instead. It’s nice that Sukka, at least, appreciates the nice things I try to do for her.

       

      Her head is still so large for her body, it’s a bit scary. Not as bad as before, and certainly not as bad as it looks in that particular picture (her head is turned toward the camera), but she’s still so underweight. I really hope we can get back on track with the weight gain soon!

       

      Her Zantac course ends tomorrow, and I’m a bit scared about that. I agree with the vet that it’s a good idea to try her off them, just so we can know if she can thrive without the meds now that she’s doing better, but it seems like a poor time to try it now that her weight gain has stopped this past week. We’ll give it a go, though – as long as her weight doesn’t start to go down, at least we’re not losing progress!


    • redbunbun
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      Another food item has fallen out of favor: fresh mint.

      Perhaps she’s getting bored of her one-sided diet? She’s currently munching through oat hay like there’s no tomorrow, so her appetite still isn’t lower as a whole… just in regards to particular foods. First pellets, then mint. At least she still enjoys hay and eats her almonds and pumpkin seeds with vigor. Sigh. I think we have to go for a change of pellet now.


    • redbunbun
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      I haven’t been giving her any fresh foods for a few days now, and her poops look much better, and she’s even finished her bowl of pellets for the last few days. Today is the first day of our Zantac-less trial, and I’m quite nervous. She’s been doing well the past few days, it would be horrible if her progress reverted! At the same time, I don’t want her to already be on medication for the rest of her life, especially if she doesn’t need it… so I suppose we must do this trial!


    • redbunbun
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      Today’s weigh-in: 2,88kg, so about 50g less than last week. She’s been eating her pellets poorly, which I think may be the reason behind this, but I also weighed her at a different time of day than usually, which may have had an affect on her weight. I’m not too worried yet, as weight fluctuations happen during the day, but I am a bit worried that she’s no longer gaining weight.

      Sukka has started eating all her pellets again, and her tummy seems to be feeling better now that she’s getting no fresh food whatsoever. We’re leaving out fresh foods for the time being and concentrating on different varieties of hay and pellets.If her poops start getting really dry, however, we’ll have to look into some herbs to get her tummy hydrated.

      As of today, the fourth day without Zantac, we are yet to see any difference in her poops or behavior without the medicine. She seems energetic and comfortable, she’s eating her pellets and there are no giant dry poops to be seen. I’m only wondering if the Zantac may have helped with retaining some nutrients from her food, and if leaving the Zantac is the reason Sukka has no weight gain (or even some weight loss). It’s too soon to tell, as she only started eating her pellets again a few days ago.

       

      EDIT // Come to think of it, the lack of Zantac might even conceivably be what’s causing her to suddenly eat her pellets again… if she’s not retaining nutrients, she would be constantly hungry again, which would lead to her eating her pellets even if she doesn’t like them. She’s currently at 4+4 tbsp of Excel, I’ll probably give her 4+5 tbsp today and maybe move it back to 5+5 if she keeps eating. Though, looking back on the thread, it seems Sukka started eating more pellets before we even cut her Zantac out. Let’s hope that’s not the case, though putting her back on the Zantac wouldn’t really require anything from us, since we still have the big bottle that’s over a year’s supply of Zantac. Though I would like to consult with our vet before starting it up again, which I’d probably do by email. We’ll give the trial one or two weeks, though, to make sure it’s really the lack of Zantac causing her issues and not something else.


    • redbunbun
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      A week without Zantac, as of today. Poops are much firmer, yet still moist. There’s also quite a pleasing round shape to most of them, though they still crumble more easily than regular rabbit poop and are a bit “strange” in other ways, as well as varying in shape and size a bit. I’m hoping they don’t dry out and turn giant, otherwise we’ll have to put her on the Zantac. So far, however, it looks good.

      We’re off all fresh foods now that she stopped eating the mint. Her appetite for pellets is back with gusto, and she’s currently getting two unsalted and shelled almonds with her morning pellets. Her current pellet portion is 8tbsp a day, divided into two equal feedings.

      She’s driving me crazy with worry with her tooth purrs, though. At least I hope they’re tooth purrs. Sometimes, when she’s just settled down for a nice bunny loaf nap, or she’s curled up against me, she will make the LOUDEST tooth grinding sound. Like, audible from several meters away. However, a rabbit that’s tooth grinding like that in pain should be visibily in pain, right? She only does it when she’s bunny-loafed (not arched back, completely relaxed-looking), being pet or sitting next to a person. Immediately after she tooth “purred” today, I stopped petting her and moved away to see if she’d start moving or if she was really in pain. She immediately started looking around, sniffed the sofa, licked the sofa, hopped down off the sofa, came and bumped my feet and then moved to her willow tunnel and started chewing. Then she started eating hay.

      These do not seem like the actions of a rabbit in enough pain to grind their teeth that loudly. Sukka, however, does it often. As paranoid as I am with her condition, I can’t help but worry that she’s actually in constant pain – agh! How can I tell for sure if she’s in pain or just really stupidly loud with her tooth purrs?!

      That brings me to the question of her episodes of bloat. She still has a stomach that gurgles loudly sometimes, and sometimes she still gets a drum-like belly, though it’s less often now than it was at its worst. However, no matter how bloated or gurgley her tummy is, she always acts “alright”. She’s never refused a treat or a meal, for instance. No matter how stuffed up her belly is, she will always eat – even hay, or something else that’s not even a special treat. She has these situations where she should be absolutely pain-ridden, yet she never really is! Of course, if her belly is a bit stuffy she isn’t as active and she doesn’t bunny flop or lie down as comfortably, etc, but she does run around, eat, poop, enjoy head rubs, get excited about food, etc – no matter what the condition of her stomach is. She’s never hunched up in pain, which I was led to believe a rabbit would do if they really were bloated, and Sukka’s tummy clearly is bloated. Not all the time, but once every few days it’s bad enough that I give her tummy rubs for fifteen minutes to half an hour to clear it up, after which it feels much better.

      I can’t help but wonder if she really isn’t in pain all the time. If she barely reacts to a stomach that’s bloated enough to make a “regular” rabbit catatonic (I think, I’ve only ever seen bloaty tummies with Sukka!), could she just be excellent at masking pain? Even so, it feels odds to me that a rabbit would be capable of actually faking interest in food, running around, chewing her toys, etc, when she was in such a painful state. Generally, she seems happy and healthy, but I can’t ask her if she’d rather it were over. I was speaking about this with my coworker the other night, and she suggested that maybe the same intestinal muscle damage that’s causing the megacolon symptoms also extends to her nerves, and she may not feel pain in her abdomen even though she should. I don’t think anyone in the world knows enough about megacolon to tell me if that’s even possible, though it’s not a completely outlandish idea.

      How do I know when it’s time to give up and let her go? Am I keeping her in pain by trying to treat her? I’m responsible for deciding what the breaking point is. I have no idea how, if I can’t even tell if my own rabbit (who I have pretty much stared relentlessly at through thick and thin these past few months and know her “tells” very well by now…) is in pain or not!


    • redbunbun
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      Weekly weigh-in: 2,9kg, so we’re back where we were before! I can’t wait for her to top the 3kg mark!

      I’ve noticed a pattern in Sukka’s food habits. She eats pellets with a generous appetite for a week or so, her tummy starts to go wonky, she eats less pellets for a few days, her tummy feels better. Then she starts eating more pellets again, and the cycle continues! I’ve ordered some Science Selective pellets to try out, and we’ll start switching her off the Excel as soon as possible. Let’s hope it helps with her mushy poops!


    • BB & Tiny
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      That\s great news on the weight !


    • redbunbun
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      A few days ago, we felt a hardish lump in Sukka’s stomach, on the left near her ribcage. It feels kind of like formed rabbit feces in her intestine – it seems her gut is a bit impacted, though it’s clearly not entirely stopped up because she’s still eating and drinking and pooping, and she doesn’t look like she’s in any pain (though it’s always hard to tell with rabbits…). She’s also been bloated more often than usual these past few days, we’re assuming it’s because of the impaction. Since she wasn’t really feeling too ill, we decided against taking her to the vet just yet, since the stress of the vet visit could be worse for her than staying at home to see how things develop for the next few days. Instead, I put my knowledge of bunny guts to good use, and started hydrating her by giving her a bowl of water with honey or pineapple juice mixed in to encourage her to drink more. She absolutely loved it, and started drinking quite a bit more as a result.

      Today, I’m all astonishment! Sukka’s tummy feels completely normal! As in, normal-rabbit normal, not just Sukka-normal, which is very rare indeed. Sukka almost always feels a bit “odd”, but today she’s felt like a normal rabbit the entire day. I can’t actually remember the last time she’s felt this good – it’s been quite a while… She doesn’t usually feel “bloated” as such, though she does have episodes of tummy gas quite often. Her vet described her stomach (when it’s feeling good) as feeling like “dough that’s too loose” compared to a healthy rabbit, whose stomachs usually feel like “good dough” when palpated. But today, Sukka is definitely “good dough”!

      She’s been getting a bowl of honey/pineapple water every day for a few days now (so she’s been drinking A LOT, because she absolutely loves the honey water), we started her on Oxbow Digestive Support cookies yesterday morning, and she’s been switching over to Science Selective for almost a week now (she’s up to about half Science Selective and half Excel with no negative tummy reaction from the switch). She also had her first batch of alfalfa hay yesterday, since I finally got the order in from the feed store! I also started giving her Zantac twice daily again (same dosage as before) once I noticed the “lumpy side”.

      I wonder if we’re finally starting to get her feed right? The Science Selective really seems to have helped; her poops look much better already and she eats her pellets with much more gusto. I think the honey/pineapple water was a good call too, and I may continue doing it going forward. Lots of megacolon bunnies get sub-q fluids every day, as hydration is really key for them. Maybe Sukka could benefit from some extra hydration every day as well. I’m a bit worried about giving her too much sugar by giving the pineapple or honey in the water, but it does encourage her to drink like crazy and I only add very small amounts to the bowl along with a lot of water – so it might be worth making a daily thing, at least for now!

      I’m also quite proud of myself – I managed to keep myself calm in the face of a new symptom, and I even gave her the correct treatment for it and she got better as a result. As per my last “rant post”, I’ve been having a lot of doubts about my ability to gauge whether or not Sukka is really doing as well as she could, and I’ve gotten somewhat exhausted by the intensive care and worry that daily life with Sukka consists of. However, this has really been a boost for me as well – I noticed a symptom, I made the right call, and Sukka is feeling better as a result. I’ve learned a lot, and I can finally apply that knowledge without panicking myself senseless because there’s something new going on with her megacolon.


    • Bam
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      I know I’ve said before that I love this Sukka”diary”, but I must say it again because I really do. The part about the types of doughy feel of a rabbit tummy is very descriptive and useful. It was so great of you to not panic and take the exact right action! Yay for you! And yay for Sukka, of course


    • Vienna Blue in France
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      RBB i have just discovered this bun diary. Great. People should note things down when there is a medical ailment and sometimes you get to see a pattern or what works and what doesn’t. Well done you! Can it be so simple after all this time that she ‘just’ needs more more hydration…?!?! I would say the goodness of the extra water way way exceeds the fact she’s getting sugar from the water.
      Keep on in there. The bad and exhausting days are worth it for a breakthrough. You deserve a “Sukka Medal!”


    • redbunbun
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      VBiF, thank you for the support. Nothing things down here has definitely helped me with noticing patterns, and has lead to quite a few breakthroughs!
      bam, as always: <3!

      I’ve been so busy for the last week that I haven’t really had time to make an update to this diary… but nothing very dramatic has happened anyway. Her weight, as of yesterday, is holding steady at the high end of 2,9kg (2,98 yesterday). This makes me sad, because I am just so anxious to break that 3kg mark, but the positive side is that Sukka isn’t losing any weight. She’s either gaining it or staying at a steady weight. So at least we’re not losing progress.

      Sukka is now switched 100% over to the Science Selective pellets, but she hasn’t thus far been too interested in them. She also refuses to eat the Oxbow Digestive tablets anymore, after devouring the first three or so she got as if it were candy. I’m considering starting to grind them into mush, adding some water and force-feeding her the mixture – they’re supposed to be very good for bunnies, and I just wish she would eat them on her own! Then again, she does seem to self-regulate with some foods. The amount of pellet she eats will fluctuate with how her poop is doing, for instance – so perhaps she didn’t feel good after eating the digestive tablet?

      Sukka’s pickiness continues. She’s gone from a rabbit who would eat anything and everything (back when she was quite literally starving to death in front of us) to a much picker little thing, and she gets bored of food she gets often! Of course, for a rabbit that needs a steady, unchanging diet, this isn’t a good thing. She’ll often be very interested in a new food the first few times she gets it, gobble it up like crazy, and then just stop eating it or only nibble at it. These past few days, she’s also not been very interested in eating anything. Her poop production hasn’t stopped, her stomach hasn’t felt bloated, and she hasn’t stopped being active or shown any pain symptoms, so we haven’t gone to the vet just yet. But she just… doesn’t eat much. She nibbles at hay throughout the course of the day and she nibbles at her pellets, but she never really stops to properly EAT unless we give her a special treat (cucumber – for gut hydration, almonds and pumpkin seeds – for healthy fats with every bowl of pellets). Those she will absolutely gobble up, and doesn’t seem to get bored of. Especially the almonds and pumpkin seeds have stayed in her diet remarkably long without her losing interest, so I suppose they must taste amazing to her.

      On to the happier news: we noticed that she was spilling her pellets all over the floor out of her little pellet bowl, then refusing to eat them once they were out of the bowl. As a tester, I bought her a new, larger bowl and gave her last night’s pellets out of that big bowl. Shockingly, this morning, she’d eaten EVERYTHING except the single lonely Oxbow Digestive cookie at the bottom of the bowl. The food wasn’t spread out over the cage, it wasn’t thrown into her litter box, it wasn’t under her bed, it wasn’t in her water bowl… it was all eaten! I’m astonished, and I can’t help but wonder if the larger bowl really could make this much of a difference. Of course, it’s easier for her to eat out of a bowl that she can fit her whole head into, but it still seems like a silly thing to lose your appetite over. Regardless, we’re keeping the larger bowl!

      Due to the ramifications of her getting bored of foods, I’ve also started wondering whether we should switch Sukka back to just one meal a day. While it would be better for her gut to get her food in numerous feedings, I think the fact that pellets are “always available” to her may have made her lose interest in them. If pellets were more special, say, only once a day, she’d maybe eat them with more vigor and it could help with the weight gain.

      Yesterday, I took her off the Zantac that I started her on when we felt the belly lumps, and I’m hoping the belly lump won’t reintroduce itself into the picture now and we could keep Sukka weaned off Zantac for quite some time. So far, so good! In fact, Sukka’s stomach has been feeling amazing these past few weeks – she no longer gets gassy at all, and her poops have been much less sticky and more “normal”, though still on the loose and wet side. I can’t help but wonder if the Burgess Excel was somehow behind some of her symptoms – it could be that that food just didn’t suit her. She hasn’t had a single bout of gas since I took her off the Excel completely.

      A few days ago, I also first lessened the amount and then stopped giving Sukka the honey water altogether, because the lump had been gone for so long, just to see if she could live without it. I would rather her not have excess sugar, as it can promote unhealthy bacterial growth in the gut that Sukka probably couldn’t deal with in her frail state. She does drink quite well even without the honey water, just not manically like she did when honey was introduced into the picture.

      If the belly lump comes back, we’re probably going to go get an x-ray done at the vet’s just to check if it really is what I think it is, and then reintroduce the Zantac and honey water into the picture. Those are what helped her get over it last time, so I think that’ll be our battle plan for now. And, if the lump does come back, I may not take her off the Zantac and honey water at all once it dissipates. I’d rather she have extra sugar and extra meds than an impaction in her cecum!


    • redbunbun
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      “Short” update: B-E-A-UTIFUL poops! Absolutely gorgeous! Science Selective really seems to have “done it” – we’re a little over a week in (I think) to being fully on SS, and her poops haven’t looked this good since she was on the hay-water diet – and they’re even better now, because they’re not giant and desert dry. They’re moist, pleasingly round and nicely sized! In addition, we haven’t had an episode of gas in over a week now, and Sukka’s been consistently energetic every day, no sleepy/lethargic days or days with no zoomies. She has turned into a little alfalfa-fuelled terrorist, though, and tries to sit on my shoulder and chew my hair whenever she gets a chance… But I’ll take it!

      Since yesterday evening, she hasn’t fully cleaned out her bowl of Science Selective, but she is still eating the vast majority of her daily rations. Seeing as her rations are quite high, I’m not too worried yet… thought with Sukka, this lessening of appetite has historically led to her losing all interest in the food in question before long. I hope she doesn’t stop eating her pellets again, she’s been doing so well these past few days! She’s also been eating lots of hay, especially alfalfa, which she loves. It all definitely shows in her perkiness and general energy levels.

      The stomach lump isn’t back, but I do feel “something” in there sometimes, even though it’s not been as hard as it was when it was really hard enough to cause a panic. I watched a few educational videos on rabbit stomach palpation, a few of them in relation to breeding does and checking for kits and a few in relation to a veterinary examination. I’m pretty confident in my assertion that it is her stomach or intestinal tract I’m feeling. It’s right under where her ribs end, on the left side. The left kidney is another possible culprit, but I’ve felt a rabbit kidney and I don’t think this could be it. It varies in texture, and I’m pretty sure I’m just feeling her stomach and the texture and hardness variation just depends on how long it has been since she’s eaten and how full her stomach is! This notion is also supported by the fact that the hardness went away with hydration, as a slow-moving intestine with clumped gut contents would. Regardless, if it really gets big and hard again, we’ll be going in for that x-ray and getting my vet to palpate it with a professional’s touch, just to make sure. So far, that hasn’t happened, even though we’ve been off the Zantac and honey water.

      All in all, Sukka has been very happy and, for all intents and purposes, healthy for the longest consecutive time yet since we’ve had her. It’s taken ages, but we’re so getting there!


    • redbunbun
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      The results of today’s Tuesday Weekly Weigh-In are here, and…

      3,235kg!!!!!! WE BROKE THREE KILOS! AAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!

      I am so excited! 3kg has been our goal for months now, and every time we’ve gotten close we’ve had a setback or she’s just stopped gaining weight… but now! We’re well over it! She’s gained almost 300g in a week, which is amazing. Her spine no longer completely sticks out of her back and her ribs aren’t jutting out her sides – she’s also been growing, her frame has definitely gotten bigger as well.

      She’ll be six months in a little over a week, so she is still very small for a French lop and she is still on the skinny side – but this gives me hope that we can break the 4kg mark before long. If she doesn’t grow in size anymore, 4kg would probably be quite a good weight for her, based on how big she is compared to our Tossu who weighs about 4kg.

      So, next goal: 4kg!


    • redbunbun
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      Wheph. Long time no update, I’ve been completely swamped with work and school. On the edge of a burnout, I finally finished university for the year and it’s a month of Christmas holidays for me – couldn’t have come at a better time, and I really need the vacation!

      Good news: weight is holding firm at over 3kg. She was about 3,6kg last Tuesday, and tomorrow is our weigh-in day for this week so we’ll see how things turn out.

      Bad-ish news: About a week ago, Sukka gave me a massive scare. I was watching a movie with Tossu in my lap when Sukka suddenly launched into a massive fit of hysterics in her cage. She was running around, crashing into everything in her path, completely panicked out of her mind. I quickly put Tossu away and ran to Sukka’s cage to open it, and she ran out past me and shot under the shoe rack near the front door. She stayed there for like ten minutes, huddled and shivering with her eyes wides and just completely beside herself with panic. I finally managed to coax her out from under there with a few almonds, and took her onto the sofa with me to chill out after checking her “vitals” (no huge drum belly, no blood, no snot, etc), and everything was normal. It took her about half an hour or so, but Sukka eventually calmed down enough to lie down and groom and stuff, and when I finally put her back in her cage she immediately went to sleep in her little hut.

      Obviously, if it had been Tossu who was suddenly scared out of his mind for no reason, I would just write it off as him having heard something outside that I couldn’t hear and being startled by it. But with Sukka, every little thing that goes wrong always takes on a more sinister meaning – does this have something to do with her MC? Is she in pain? And worst of all: am I going to find her dead in her cage tomorrow morning? After worrying over her for ages, consulting some of my rabbit-savvy friends (one of them an MC-bunny owner herself) about what they would do, and making sure she seemed to be okay, I finally went to bed and woke up every three hours to check on her. I pondered about taking her to the vet, but I couldn’t find anything physically wrong with her to really diagnose her based off of, so we didn’t go, I just kept a very close eye on her.

      She wasn’t herself for five days after the event. At no point has Sukka ever stopped eating, and she didn’t during this episode either, but she wasn’t really as excited or active as she normally is. Her poops got a bit looser than normal, her tummy was gassy and she didn’t really want to come out of her cage at all. With simethicone, forced exercise and some Recovery (we no longer do tummy rubs because of the experiences of more experienced MC.bunny owners that speak against them) every day I finally got her “out of it”, and the day before yesterday she was finally happy to see me in the morning, and came up all excited to greet me and beg for treats as soon as I woke up. She’s also been running around the apartment again since then, and generally just seems perkier and more “herself”.

      So I think the worst is behind us for the time being… whewph! She gave me a massive scare, though. I was certain she was going to die in my arms after that frantic panicked running around. I was so certain her gut had burst from gas or something, which is one of my biggest fears for her. She seems to have recovered fine, though, so it’s possible it wasn’t a pain reaction as I originally thought – maybe just some regular rabbit silliness, being scared by a noise from the movie I was watching or something I just couldn’t hear from outside? And then maybe her tummy reacted to the stress… At any rate, I’m just glad she seems to have recovered and is herself again.

      Owning a rabbit is so terribly stressful sometimes! At least her gassiness has subsided and her poops returned to “Sukka-normal” just in time for Christmas, when I won’t be home quite as much – I’m staying with my parents and only visiting my bunnies for a few hours every morning and evening to let them out for a run and give them their food and just generally check up on them, but I don’t think I could be way so much if Sukka was as bad as she was a few days ago!

       

      I’ve also made some small adjustments to her diet. Sukka’s poops have stayed quite manageable in size, but they’re still quite smeary and soft all the time. Now that her weight is starting to finally get into the “okay” range (even though she is still on the slim side, she’s no longer completely skin and bones), I’ve cut down her pellet rations and increased the percentage of alfalfa hay she gets to try to encourage more hay consumption. She’s now getting about a deciliter of Science Selective every evening (so half of what she used to get), five almonds (and some almonds as treats sometimes, but no more than seven a day ever), and free hay (alfalfa and timothy blend, about 50-50). We’ll see if her poops get a bit better with less pellets, but if her weight gain stops or starts declining I’ll definitely up her pellets again. I’ve figured the wet splodgy poops (that are typical for a “wet gut”-dominant MC bunny like Sukka) are better than the scarring, giant dry poops she used to get when she didn’t get any pellets at all. It would be nice to find a balance between the two, though!

       

      Picture bonus: adorable little Sukka in her adorable little strawberry house!

       


    • Bam
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      She’s adorable, Redbunbun! And 3,6 kg! Yay!

      It sounds like a genuinely scary episode, (my heart probably would’ve stopped), and I do agree that sometimes owning a rabbit can be very stressful. So glad she came back to herself. It sounds plausible that she was scared by sth and then her gut reacted to the stress.


    • aBeautifulHope
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      She is a stunning bun! I love this diary that you have for her…it’s an absolute wealth of knowledge, and I bet it will help many people struggling with megacolon and their bunnies <3


    • tobyluv
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      You haven’t had an update in a while, redbunbun. I hope that your bunnies are doing well.

      You mentioned a Facebook page for people with rabbits with mega colon. Could you tell me the name of that group? I volunteer at a Rabbit Sanctuary and a rabbit that came in a few days ago (an English Spot) seems like he might have mega colon. I wrote down the greens that might be helpful that you mentioned earlier in the thread, but wanted to see if there is any other info on that Facebook page that might be helpful.

      Thank you.


    • redbunbun
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      Oh no, I haven’t been around for ages! Been so swamped with school and work, I’ve had to really restrict my ever-so-important sitting-on-the-computer time!

      tobyluv, if you still need the info, send me a PM and I’ll get you in touch with the wonderfully knowledgeable person who runs the group! I hope your rescue bunny is doing well!

      Some Sukka updates:

      The Good:
      1. She weighs four kilos. That’s right, our little tiny undergrown mini-Frenchie Sukka weighs four kilos as of yesterday. She’s still desperately thin, and the vet thinks we’re only seeing her weight go up because she’s still growing. She estimated her ideal weight at about 6,5kg – meaning she’s still over two kilos underweight, despite the massive amounts of food we’re giving her. She’s a big girl, absolutely determined to because a proper-sized French lop despite her unfortunate condition! Her current diet: 2dl of Supreme Science Selective pellets every day, unlimited timothy hay, and slowly working up towards unlimited alfalfa hay as well. She’s currently getting three handfuls every day. Nothing else. We recently had to cut out every else we’d been working towards getting her used to because of an episode… more on that soon, as well.

      2. WE HAVE MANAGED TO GET CISAPRIDE! Cisapride is the best possible motility med for rabbits with MC, and it has previously been unavailable in Finland. Due to the extreme persistence of one of our vets (yes, Sukka has two vets now – more about that later…) and her amazing rabbit vet contacts and another Finnish MC bunny owner, we’ve managed to get a special cisapride license through our respective vets for Sukka and the other MC rabbit we’re acquainted with. This is a huge, huge deal for us. It may mean a massive change in Sukka’s quality of life. This is a very new development, as in the special license was finalized last week, so we’re still waiting on the actual meds. They’re incoming, though.

      3. Sukka is eating lots and lots of hay. This is a good thing, and I’m currently so excited about it I have to mention it.

      The Bad:
      I feel like there always has to be something bad to report with MC bunnies.

      Sukka recently had her first big megacolon episode. One that, cuddling her in the middle of the night during it, I was absolutely positive would claim her life. In short, she had a giant poop that she had difficulty passing, which led to a build-up of gas in her intestine, which caused her a lot of pain. At 7PM, she refused her pellets for the first time in her entire life. I immediately went into overdrive, giving her metacam/simethicone/forcing her to run around/feeding her Recovery/syringing water into her mouth/etc, doing every single thing I had at my fingertips. At 10PM, she started going limp. She stopped moving of her own accord, fought Recovery and water syringes (despite normally being a really good sport at taking them). At midnight, she stopped caring about anything. She was just limp and flegmatic. I could feel the massive, massive amounts of gas in her tummy, but as much as I tried, I could not get her to run at all. She gave up with moving. At 2AM, she started whimpering and her body was getting cold. I dosed her with even more metacam and simethicone, and huddled up with her against my body on the sofa, just trying to keep her warm and as comfortable as possible. We lay there for about two hours, and I just prayed to every single deity I could think of to at least let her go in peace, if this was going to be her last night. I gave her her final dose of metacam at this point, putting her just below the absolute maximum dose for her size, determined that I would rather let her die painlessly than keep her in pain for fear of side effects.

      At about 4AM, shortly after the last metacam dose, a miracle happened. She passed the giant poop, and just like that, her entire stomach deflated. I could hear the gas whooshing out of her, I could feel her belly get smaller, and within five minutes she was hopping around, eating hay and acting like absolutely nothing had happened. For days after this, I was on hyperalert, keeping her under constant supervision and cutting absolutely everything extra out of her diet. Just hay, water and pellets. It’s been close to two weeks since The Episode now, and though I’m still very worried about her in general, I think I’m slowly regaining my sanity.

      She’s been fine ever since. We went to another vet, who has previously only worked with our Tossu, since the day after the Night of Horrors we tried to get in touch with our current vet but got caught up in the bureaucracy of the system for the big clinic she works at, and I wanted a vet that I could be CERTAIN I could reach in person the next time something like this comes along. The other vet was a godsend, as I knew she would be – she’s one of the foremost exotic animal vets in Finland, and has treated megacolon before. She did the work to get us the cisapride, she confirmed the other vet’s MC diagnosis (though after the Night of Horrors there’s very little doubt what Sukka has), did some fecal samples and talked with us about Sukka’s future a bit. We also got EIGHT BOTTLES of metacam, to use as needed if Sukka has another episode. We also got a pile of other stasis and blockage tips, including mini enema ampules and a tutorial on their use. We’re also going to run another coccidia treatment shortly, as Sukka still has a very, very, very minor coccidia infection. There are only about a hundredth of the amount of coccids in there that would cause any reaction in a healthy rabbit, but our vet still wants to eradicate them just in case. We’re only going to introduce one new med at a time, though, and the vet thought the cisapride was more urgent, so we’re going with that first. The coccids won’t be going anywhere in the meantime, but she also thinks it’s unlikely that even with Sukka’s crippled immune system the coccids could be causing her issues. There are SO FEW of them.

      Now, we’re just waiting on the cisapride. All in all, Sukka was doing amazingly in the months leading up to her episode. After the episode, she’s very quickly gone back to doing really, really well. Once the cisapride gets here, we’re hoping it will allow her to put some meat on her bones (finally! At the very latest it’ll happen when she stops growing, which should really be any month now, since she’s already 9mo…) and stave off future Nights of Horror.

      Also, a small, minor detail in the grand scheme of things: after her Night of Horrors, Sukka had a skin infection flare up in her neck. The vet thinks it’s because the stress of the MC episode temporarily weakened her immune system so much that the normal bacterium on her neck were able to gain some extra traction. She’s lost most of the hair there and around her ears, and looks a bit like a reverse lion. We’re currently giving her some ointment on it, and it’s working to reduce the inflammation. She’s been on it for two days, and her skin is already almost back to normal, no longer bright red, and she’s clearly not as itchy and uncomfortable. The vet says that sometimes with infections like these, the hair never grows back… but we’ll see. The important thing is that she’s not hurting.

      Hairless rabbit or not, we still love our girl. She’s a fabulous little darling, and ever since The Episode I feel like she’s been even more affectionate and attentive to both me and my boyfriend (who also stayed up with us for the night) than ever before.

      So, that’s what we’ve been up to! Tossu, our poor boy who never gets mentioned, is also doing fabulously – but when is he not? He’s the very picture of robust and healthy. I’m glad at least one of my rabbits is!


    • redbunbun
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      Oh yeah… PICTURE BONUS TIME!


    • Bam
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      So great to hear from you again, redbunbun!! I have been thinking about you and the little ‘uns.

      The Episode sounds terrible, what a relief when she finally pooped and passed gas. I’ve heard that whooshing sound once when my Yohio had gas and finally farted.

      Your vets sound just awesome and big congrats on the cisapride-license. I hope Sukka gets her hair back, but if she doesn’t, she’s still a princess. If she looks like a reverse lion you can nick-name her alaN (Nala, the lion king’s wife, backwards – ha,ha – silly joke =)

      As always, I love your updates.


    • redbunbun
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      bam, as always – thank you for reading these! It’s always a comfort. alaN, I love it! Haha.

      Our little reverse lion’s neck is doing much better. The inflammation of the skin has died down a lot, and it’s perfectly normal and pink now, instead of having remnants of reddish tinge! We’ve yet to see any hair start sprouting up though… but it’s still early days! There’s still some hope she’ll regain her mane. We have a week of the skin cream left.


    • Azerane
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      Just been reading through your thread. Really interesting and informative. What a roller coaster it must be and it’s just the best thing to read about such a dedicated owner Sukka is so very lucky to have you.


    • redbunbun
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      Thank you for the kind words, Azerane!


    • redbunbun
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      As an update to anyone who was reading this thread and doesn’t see this anywhere else on the forum: Sukka has passed away on 06/09/2016 due to complications from her megacolon. For the last six months of her life, she was unmedicated, and her condition was managed only with a strict diet (carefully selected pellets, hay and water, nothing else). She was happy and not in pain, and I’m glad I was able to give that to her. The last months of her life, she was more content than I’ve ever seen her. She looked comfortable, and I didn’t have to give her any medications whatsoever during that time. It was wonderful, and I think she was happy.

      On the evening of the 5th, Sukka seemed a bit iffy, but when I gave her her pellets she dug in with gusto (as usual) so I just gave her a dose of metacam (just in case) and went to bed. It wasn’t uncommon for her to seem a bit off and still have an appetite, so this was in and of itself not that worrisome a situation as she was still eating. Six hours later, when I woke up, I found her in a bad bout of stasis, with her tummy full of gas and food and very, very painful. After five or six hours of meds, force feeding and forced movement, I couldn’t get the stasis to budge so we went to the vet for some extra motility meds and sub-q fluids. Sukka’s condition just constantly deteriorated, her tummy kept swelling and nothing was coming out, and my vet and I threw every single trick we had up our sleeves at her, from Zantac to cisapride to Primperan. Unfortunately, by the evening she was maxed out on every single drug we could give her and still in a lot of pain, and the stasis just wouldn’t clear up.

      At around 9PM, I drove her to the vet ER and asked them to put her to sleep. I just couldn’t watch her be in pain any longer, and there was nothing else we could possibly do for her. I’m confident it was the right decision for Sukka, even though it was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life. I miss her like crazy, but she was always a sickly little bunny, and at least now she will never have to be in pain again. With her, it was always a matter of time when she would get her next bout of stasis, and this time, I just couldn’t get her through it no matter how hard I tried.

      Sukka was a dear sweet little girl who taught me more than any pet I’ve ever had – and probably any pet I ever will have going forward in life. She was such a little trooper, but even the strongest of fighters has to rest sometime.

      To anyone reading this with a megacolon bunny in their hands: cherish them every day. Sometimes, every trick in the book isn’t enough, and even a bunny that has been doing well for a long time can suddenly turn downhill. Megacolon is a horrid, horrid illness that I hope to never have to deal with again. At the same time, these are really special bunnies. They’re fighters, and all my love goes out to anyone (and anybunny) dealing with this same situation. It’s so hard, but these little guys are totally worth the heartache and stress. Sukka definitely was.

       

      That being said, don’t lose hope from the way things ended for me and Sukka. She had, as far as I can tell, an uncommonly bad case of megacolon, and even though we caught it early and managed it as well as was humanly possible (I hope), it was a losing battle from the beginning. Most megacolon rabbits don’t go through quite the wringer Sukka did, nor do their owners have to deal with it quite as intensely as I had to. 


    • tobyluv
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      I’m very sorry about the loss of your sweet Sukka. You certainly took wonderful care of her, and helped her to cope with her condition for as long as possible.


    • Q8bunny
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      Oh, Redbunbun, I am so sorry. I did wander how your sweet Sukka was doing whenever someone posted about possible megacolon. It sounds like you did the best you could in a harrowing situation.
      (((Binky free, little one.)))


    • Vienna Blue in France
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      Oh Redbunbun, I had missed this too…
      I am so so sorry. Rest free, peacefully and pain free little Sukka.
      It IS the hardest decision – my heart goes out to you.

      ETA: I’ve just speed read the thread and wow.. what you and Sukka went through together!

      It’s hard having an animal that’s poorly and you not knowing how or when anything will happen. It’s stressful and mentally straining.

      You did so much for her! She’s binkying with the others over the Rainbow Bridge now and I bet you’re having better nights sleeping (uni work aside…)

      Give gorgeous Tossu an extra hug from me 


    • Bam
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      Redbunbun, I’m so sorry that you lost Sukka. She was a beautiful little girl and thanks to you, she got a beautiful life. All who have followed this thread have been admiring you for your great efforts and staying power. And we thank you for sharing your story so that other megacolon bunnies can be helped.

      I know you miss her, and that this hurts a lot. Our bunnies put paw prints on our hearts that we carry with us forever. They really do teach us things that help us become better people, I firmly believe that. Thank you for caring so well for her.

      How is Tossu doing? I hope he’s ok.

      Binky Free, Sukka.


    • redbunbun
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      Thank you all for your kind words. It means a lot to know other people can understand what I’m going through right now, and to feel like I’m not alone in this grief. A huge thank you especially to bam; you’ve been here with us every step of the way, helping me keep sane throughout Sukka’s ups and downs and giving me someone to vent to when things were tough. I appreciate it so much, and Sukka did too. Thank you!

      Tossu is, thankfully, doing just fine. I intentionally never bonded them because I knew Sukka would in all likelihood go far before Tossu; I didn’t expect it to happen this soon, but I’m now glad I had the foresight to steer clear of fully bonding. To be quite honest, I think Tossu’s actually pretty happy to have all my attention again – he was often very much eclipsed by Sukka and her troubles. Even though I tried to have plenty of time for both of them, Sukka almost always needed me more. I worry he gets lonely when I’m away at work or something, but so far I haven’t noticed any change in his behavior. We’re keeping an eye out, though. The thought of getting him a friend is still too painful right now, but we’ll have to consider it if it looks like he needs it.

      I miss her so much tonight. She was just so happy. It’s hard waking up every morning and not having her greet me, knowing that she’s quite literally been waiting for me to get up for hours so she can finally get her food. I don’t think anyone in my life has ever been quite as happy to see me every morning as Sukka was. It gave every day such a happy beginning.


    • LittlePuffyTail
      Moderator
      18092 posts Send Private Message

      I’m truly sorry for your loss. She was a lucky bunny to have you in her life.

      ((((Binky Free Sukka)))))

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Forum HOUSE RABBIT Q & A Sukka’s medical mystery: megacolon