About animals

What to do if the rabbit has hind or front legs


If the rabbit's hind legs failed, in other words, paralysis of the extremities occurred, it occurs quite often. There are several reasons for the development of such a pathology. If you eliminate them in time and take appropriate treatment measures, there is a chance to save the animal.

Treatment for paralysis in rabbits

Paralysis in rabbits is caused by various reasons, the most common of them are:

  • lack of proper nutrition,
  • avitaminosis,
  • infectious diseases
  • limb injury - bruise, fracture,
  • pinched nerve endings,
  • development of a vertebral hernia.

Paralysis in a small rabbit is often caused by a lack of calcium in the body. This happens if the breeder does not care about animals, does not give them balanced feed, vitamins and minerals. In chronic insufficiency of this microelement, the skeleton becomes fragile, rickets develops and the animal falls to its feet.

Almost every second rabbit has a weak immunity and is susceptible to various diseases, therefore, it needs good nutrition and care.

Pathological damage to the extremities often occurs in pregnant individuals, as well as with weakened immunity.


If the rabbit's limbs are paralyzed, it becomes inactive and inactive. With each movement, he drags his hind legs behind him. Afflicted individuals often refuse to feed.

The affected animal should immediately be transplanted into a separate cage. The development of pathology in several animals simultaneously is a sign of infection. Therefore, patients are immediately isolated to prevent the spread of the disease.

Hind limb paralysis in rabbits is accompanied by the following symptoms:

  • pressure sores appear on the paws, especially in places of contact with the cell floor (in this place the paws often go bald),
  • urinary retention
  • diarrhea,
  • increased thirst
  • copious saliva,
  • the animal ceases to navigate in space.

At an advanced stage, when the process of damage to the nervous system occurs, in most cases the treatment becomes useless and the animal dies. With timely veterinary care, the animal can be saved, only this process is lengthy and can take from one week to a month.

Paw Injury

If the rabbit's paws fail, the animal may have received a serious injury, which happens quite often. Injury to the lower extremities occurs due to fights among animals, falling and bruises, sudden movements in nervous situations.

One of the reasons for injuring paws in rabbits is insufficient or excessive motor activity

The reason is the inactivity of the animal. In a small cage, the animal does not have the ability to fully move and develop muscles, as a result of which atrophy of muscle and bone tissues develops. At the slightest shock or fall, the animal receives a serious injury - a bruise or a fracture.

Often this happens in rabbits, which are fed artificially. Their immune system is much weaker than that of animals that feed on breast milk.

There is another reason why the rabbit falls on its hind legs - it is an infection called listeriosis. The main carriers of sores are mosquitoes, flies, mice, rats, wild animals, birds, rabbits.

Infection occurs through contact with a sick animal. Its feces also pose a great danger to healthy animals. Listeriosis is not treatable. With the development of the acute form, the weakest pets die - rabbits and their mother. Animals die during the day. In the chronic form, the animal can live no more than 1.5 months.

With this disease, other signs are noted:

  • severe liver damage,
  • oversized spleen
  • cramps appear.

Such a sore is not subject to treatment, therefore, at the first signs of damage to sick rabbits, they are transplanted into a separate cage. After confirming the diagnosis, the animal should be slaughtered and disposed of, and the cell should be disinfected with appropriate preparations.

Brain inflammation

The brain is one of the most important organs of any organism - it is responsible for the work of almost all internal systems. At the slightest failure in brain activity, serious changes occur in the body, which can lead to death.

Some brain diseases are due to the hind legs failing in the rabbit:

  1. Encephalitis. Cerebral palsy, which is caused by inflammation of the brain tissue. With such a sore in the rabbit, not only the hind legs fail, but also the process of twisting the neck and head occurs. Encephalitis cannot be treated - a week after the defeat, the sick individual dies. There have been cases of resuscitation of rabbits infected with this disease, but their vital functions and reflexes have not been restored.
  2. Encephalomyelitis. Another infectious sore in which the hind legs are taken away from the animal. The disease develops very quickly from the moment of defeat to the time of death takes about four days.
  3. Meningitis. Inflamed not only the brain, but also the entire musculoskeletal system. It is very difficult to get rid of this disease.
  4. Violation of the central nervous system. The main causes are stress, a blow to the head, and fright caused by a loud noise, smell, bathing, or a rude attitude. Stress can provoke the movement of an animal in transport or relocation to another cell. In most cases, this pathological process goes away on its own, and after 5-7 days you will notice how your rabbit got up and fully moves.
  5. Subdermatitis. It develops in animals living in cages with a trellised or too hard floor. Moving along such a surface, rabbits get severe paw injuries - wounds, sores, cracks. In the affected areas, the skin goes bald and the animal falls not only on its hind legs, but also on its front legs. Such consequences can be avoided if the animals are provided with a good flooring made of sawdust or straw, and every two weeks they are changed.

Experienced breeders do not recommend self-medication of such diseases, since the chances of recovery are scanty. Therefore, it is advised to kill sick individuals immediately after infection in order to prevent the risk of infection in healthy animals.

Treatment and prevention

If you notice that the rabbit's hind legs have failed, immediately contact your veterinarian for help. With the timely provision of necessary assistance, in a week the doctor will be able to reanimate a sick individual.

In order to prevent, it is necessary to carry out disinfection in a timely manner, feed them balanced and protect them from stress

In order to prevent hind limb lesions, a number of simple preventative measures must be observed:

  • ensure safe conditions
  • regularly disinfect the cell and comply with sanitary standards,
  • vaccinate and regularly show animals to the veterinarian,
  • provide a balanced diet and clean drink.

During treatment, a rabbit that has fallen on its hind legs is quarantined. Hind limb paralysis can be treated with painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs. Additionally, the veterinarian prescribes a complex of vitamins and minerals for speedy recovery.

If the animal has a fracture, a tire is placed on the paw. After successful treatment of the fracture, rabbit mobility is restored. After treatment, a rabbit who has broken his paw needs enhanced nutrition and care in order to eliminate the risk of re-injury. If the animal drags its hind legs and moves with difficulty on the forepaws, this is a sign of spinal injury. In this case, no drugs can help restore the animal's mobility, so it is euthanized or killed.

To eliminate calcium deficiency in the body, which can also cause paw paralysis, it is necessary to introduce calcium-containing products into the diet of animals - crushed egg shells, bone and fish meal.

Severity of rabies paralysis

Paralysis in rabbits occurs both due to injuries and due to infection with certain diseases. Signs of such a pathological condition are always similar, because most often paws suffer from it. Only additional symptoms may differ, which indicates the presence of certain diseases in the animal.

Determining whether a rabbit is paralyzed or not is not difficult: eared birds usually fall to their feet. During movement, the sick rabbit drags its paws on the ground.

Regardless of the cause of the pathological condition in rabbits, paws fail to varying degrees of damage. When one foot is damaged, it is monoparesis, when two, paraparesis. And when the legs are completely removed, - tetraparesis. This form is the hardest. The animal is completely immobilized and cannot move. In addition, not only trauma or illness can cause paralysis. Sometimes this condition is a response of the nervous system to the threat. Stress from the influence of external factors leads to other equally serious diseases and even to the death of a pet.

Because of what the rabbits paws fail

Hind limb paralysis in rabbits occurs for a number of reasons. The most common are:

  • eating problems
  • avitaminosis,
  • infection by infectious diseases,
  • limb fracture and other injuries,
  • pinched nerves
  • hernia.

No less rarely does the rabbit show paralysis of the hind limbs due to a deficiency of calcium in the body. If the breeder makes errors in the preparation of the feed, without adding additives that are beneficial to the health of the pet, this quickly affects the health of the puss. Calcium, necessary for the structure and strengthening of bone tissue, begins to be washed out, as a result, the skeleton becomes fragile.

Why do the paws fail in rabbits

Particularly susceptible to the deficiency of this trace element are individuals that have weak unstable immunity: a pregnant rabbit, as well as any eared, prone to frequent diseases. Young animals also suffer. Every second pet rabbit has very weak immunity and requires constant feeding with vitamins and minerals.


If the rabbit's hind legs failed, it is difficult not to notice. Fuzzies are motionless, and while moving they drag them along the ground. Often this pathological condition affects the pet's appetite. Sick rabbits may refuse their favorite treats, as well as drinking.

During this period, it is necessary to provide the rabbit with comfort and coziness by putting him in a separate cage. If the hind legs failed in several individuals, this most often indicates an infectious disease. In order not to destroy the entire population, you should quickly isolate healthy rabbits and consult a veterinarian.

Very often, when the eared legs are taken away due to some other pathological conditions, the course of paralysis becomes unpredictable. If the condition of the rabbits worsens, other symptoms may also appear:

  • the formation of pressure sores of the skin of the limbs, which is in constant contact with the floor of the cell (sometimes the legs are bald),
  • problems with urination
  • diarrhea,
  • thirst,
  • profuse salivation,
  • disorientation in space.

When a pathological condition affects the nervous system, the development of the disease becomes unpredictable. Very often, veterinary intervention does not bring the desired effect and the animal dies.

Symptoms of rabbit disease

In some cases, with timely appeal to specialists, it is still possible to save the animal. But hind limb paralysis in a rabbit with central nervous system problems requires long-term treatment, which can take anywhere from a week to one month. In addition, the drugs used for these purposes cost a lot, so very often breeders prefer to reject sick animals rather than expose themselves to waste.

Rabbit Leg Injury

A common cause of rabbit hind legs failing is muscle and bone injuries. Most often, the eared one is injured in the following cases:

  • falls and bumps
  • fights
  • sloppy sharp movement in stressful situations.

Partly the occurrence of this cause is weak motor activity.

Keeping rabbits at home negatively affects their health. Like many animals contained in cages, they cannot afford to move much. This leads to a deterioration of bone tissue. The result is a fracture from any fall or light blow. Even a sharp movement of an eared as a result of fright can injure him.

A risk group also includes newborn rabbits that are fed artificially. Their immunity is weak and at greater risk than in babies who receive all the beneficial substances in breast milk. In addition, it is important not only to monitor the diet of small pets, but also to help them with defecation: they themselves do not know how to do this, so you should massage the tummy. At the same time, the procedure itself requires maximum caution: any incorrect movement of the hands can injure the baby.

Listeriosis as a cause of paralysis

A more dangerous cause of paralysis of the extremities in rabbits than listeriosis does not exist. The occurrence of this disease is associated with the spread of infection by temporary and major carriers:

  • rabbits
  • insects
  • rodents
  • wild animals.

Rabbits can catch listeriosis in any contact with an infected animal or insect. In addition, their feces are dangerous. Veterinary intervention is powerless. In acute form, the disease exterminates the weakest animals. Most often young growth suffers, after which the rabbit dies. Moreover, death occurs within a day. The chronic form is less lightning fast. An infected rabbit can live up to 1.5 months. Very rarely death can be avoided, but such an individual becomes useless for further maintenance.

Recognizing listeriosis is easy. Very often, in addition to the hind legs failing in rabbits, other symptoms are also observed: infected animals increase the spleen and the liver is affected. It is very difficult to independently identify such signs. But if the animal’s body cramps, this indicates 95% infection with listeriosis.

When the hind legs failed in the rabbit due to listeriosis, there is no chance of recovery. The spread of this disease in the herd is unpredictable. At the first suspicion of such a disease, a sick individual should be quarantined and consult a veterinarian. If the diagnosis is confirmed, it is necessary to reject the rabbit and carry out a thorough disinfection in the common cage. In addition, it is important to completely get rid of the dead carcass: bury it away from the farm or burn.

The reason is brain inflammation

The brain is the organ responsible for the functioning of many systems. Its correct work allows each living creature to think, react to some external and internal factors, succumb to reflexes, etc. Motor activity also belongs to the sphere of brain services. Any violation of this organ can not only take away some important function from the body, but also lead to death.

Signs of brain inflammation

Inflammation of the brain may also be one of the reasons that the rabbit's hind legs failed. The most common diseases are:

  • Encephalitis. Inflammation of the brain, the main symptom of which is paralysis.A sick individual can not only stand on its paws, but often even turns its head to the side. Such a disease is not treatable. It is rarely possible to save the life of an animal, but even after cure, vital reflexes remain impaired.
  • Encephalomyelitis. Brain damage occurs as a result of infection with infectious diseases. Paralysis is one of the main symptoms of this disease. From the moment of manifestation of signs of inflammation to the death of the animal takes from 1 to 4 days.
  • Meningitis. Inflammation of not only the brain, but also the spinal cord, as with other diseases it is very difficult to get rid of meningitis.

What to do when signs of inflammation of the brain appear is best known to specialists. Experienced farmers do not advise fighting for the life of a sick animal because of the minimal chance of its recovery. It’s best to kill him.

Before proceeding with extreme measures, the sick rabbit should be taken to the veterinarian. Very often, similar symptoms are manifested in disorders of the central nervous system, and the nervous system has a better chance of recovery. In addition, modern drugs used in specialized clinics allow you to restore the health of the animal in 5-7 days with timely contact of the breeder for help.

What to do to the farmer

When looking for the reason why the rabbit's hind legs failed, it is necessary to act quickly.

Any hour or even a minute can be decisive, so you should immediately contact specialists for help. Experienced farmers do not recommend treating the livestock on their own: this only leads to a worsening of the animal’s health and death. It is possible to identify the cause of the pathological condition only if the pet has broken a paw. This is noticeable both in his behavior and in appearance. In addition, a fracture rarely affects two or more paws, so it is easy to determine if the limbs are damaged or still paralyzed.

If the paws fail for another reason, only a veterinarian can make an accurate diagnosis. The first human actions should be aimed at isolating the rabbit from external stimuli. It should be moved to a separate cage, located in a warm and calm place, away from noise. If a rabbit bangs on a damaged foot, this is a good sign: the animal hits the inventory of the cage, knocks down the litter and behaves unnaturally because of its own anxiety. The presence of motor activity may indicate the presence of pain resulting from trauma or pinching of the nerve.

The main causes of injury

Incorrect content. If fluffy pets do not have enough space, there are too many individuals in one cage, there are cracks in the floor, gaps in the walls, sticking out sharp elements (wire, nails, etc.) are not removed, then the likelihood of injury is very high. Great crowding contributes to fights, which also can not do without consequences.

Careless handling. You can harm the animal if you hold it too tightly. Conversely, if you do not hold the animal firmly enough, it can break out and fall from a height.

Lack of additional control over children when they play with their pets.

An environment in which loud and sharp sounds are often heard. The rabbit from a fright is inclined to make a sharp movement, to twitch, which often leads in representatives of this species to displacement of the vertebrae or shock to objects in close proximity.

Incorrect feeding. If the diet lacks calcium, vitamin D and other vital vitamins and minerals, then injuries become more likely due to the deterioration of bone tissue, increasing their fragility.

Rabbit Injuries

They are possible either from hitting an object, or as a result of a fight, or from falling from a height. For example, decorative rabbits living in apartments are often given in the care of children, and those playing, put them on a table, on a sofa, etc. Having lost vigilance, the kids are distracted for a second, and the pet is on the floor.

Symptoms, treatment, and prognosis of bruises depend on their type. Soft tissue injuries are accompanied by minor hematomas. In this case, the animal feels moderate pain. The answer to the question “how to treat such bruises in rabbits?” Is simple: all that is needed is peace and medicines that help accelerate the resolution of the bruise. The forecast is favorable. If a bruise is found as a first aid, any cold object should be attached to the place that is damaged: a heating pad with ice or an ordinary frozen chicken from the refrigerator. Cold constricts blood vessels and prevents profuse hemorrhage.

Injuries to internal organs are a more serious disease and require immediate consultation with a specialist. The main symptom will be general malaise, lethargy, behavior change, impaired functioning of the affected organs.

Rabbit wounds

They represent a violation of the integrity of the skin and deeper soft tissues. Accompanied by more or less severe bleeding. Superficial wounds are not life threatening and require routine disinfection. The question arises: how to treat a wound in a rabbit? Processing is carried out with various antibacterial agents: chlorhexidine, a solution of potassium permanganate, furatsilina, hydrogen peroxide, etc. It is not recommended to use iodine or alcohol, so as not to cause a burn. Next, you should apply a clean dressing with an antibacterial ointment, for example, chloramphenicol. This remedy contains the antibiotic chloramphenicol, as well as painkillers.

If the treatment is not carried out on time, then it may be infected, which is a complication of the disease. Suppuration in the form of an abscess is a complex diagnosis requiring surgical intervention: the abscess is opened, the contents are cleaned and disinfected. After this, antibiotics are prescribed.

Wounds come in different depths and lesions. Superficial wounds on the paws are not dangerous. But deep damage in places of passage of important blood vessels, in particular in the neck, is very dangerous. If the arteries are damaged, this will lead to rapid death due to massive bleeding. In case of serious injuries, the animal should be taken to the veterinarian immediately. Here you will need to at least sew up the diverged tissue, and perhaps you will need a surgical operation to restore the internal organs. First aid should be provided immediately after detecting a problem. It consists in applying a pressure bandage above the site of injury to compress vessels and stop bleeding.

Beginner rabbit breeders are interested in how many decorative rabbits heal wounds. Recovery in rodents is much faster than in other animal species, so uncomplicated wounds will completely heal within a week.

Dislocations in rabbits

As a result of dislocation, the integrity of the joint capsule is disrupted. With a traumatic dislocation, complications quite often arise in parallel: muscle breaks, violation of the integrity of tendons, nerves, etc.

Treatment consists in mechanically setting the joint in place. However, the pet owner itself is not competent to make a diagnosis, since the symptoms of dislocation and other injuries are difficult to differentiate on their own: the animal does not step on the paw, compresses it. An x-ray will be taken at the veterinarian and the joint will be corrected with a reliable diagnosis. Hip dislocation is most unpleasant. The prognosis of this injury is often unfavorable, as the set joint falls out repeatedly.

Rabbit Fractures

They represent a violation of the integrity of the bones. Fractures of the paws are visible by characteristic clinical signs. In particular, you will notice a violation of reliance on the limb, significant swelling, an external change in the shape of the limb, pathological mobility at the site of the injury. If the fracture is open, then the wound and debris in it will be visible.

The final diagnosis is carried out using x-ray studies. The location of the problem, its nature (open - closed, with displacement - without displacement, whether there are fragments, etc.) will be accurately visible in the picture, which allows you to choose the right treatment method.

Conservative and surgical treatment of fractures is distinguished. At the reception, the veterinarian will evaluate the fracture in the rabbit and tell you what to do in your case.

Conservative treatment is of two types:

  • The main measure is limitation of mobility. The bones in this case grow together on their own. This method is used if very thin bones are injured, for example, in the fingers.
  • Applying a dressing bandage and fixation of the limb. This is true if there is only a crack or the wreckage has not parted, and surgical intervention is contraindicated or inappropriate.

The minus of the conservative approach is that with it there is no way to perfectly accurately restore the position of all bone fragments, which means that the fusion will occur to one degree or another with deformation of the limb. If sharp fragments are mobile, there is a risk of an open fracture. At the same time, even an insignificant error in the stiffness of applying the bandage can be fatal for the animal: with a weak tension, the small patient will quickly drop it, and with too much blood circulation will be impaired, which is fraught with the development of gangrene and loss of limb.

Surgical treatment is called osteosynthesis. There are a lot of techniques for performing operations of this type, in each case the veterinarian chooses the best option. For example, special thin knitting needles are inserted into the bones so that the position of all the fragments is restored, and the fusion occurs correctly. Also for these purposes, external structures can be used.

Surgical treatment is carried out under general anesthesia. For anesthesia, gas preparations are mainly used. In the process of surgical intervention, heating and oxygen supply are continuously provided, they are extended after the operation, while it is required. The effectiveness of the restoration is determined by repeated x-ray. A short course of antibiotics is also prescribed. To ensure the immobility of the limbs impose a langet.

Sutures remove the turn of one and a half weeks. Since in rabbits tissue regeneration is much faster than in humans and even in dogs and cats, bone marrow is already forming at this point. This process is monitored by repeated x-rays every two weeks. And according to the results of the examination, the removal of the spokes and the removal of the spacer are prescribed.

Rabbit Spinal Injury

In case of unsuccessful falls and inflicting rather powerful blows to each other with hind legs during fights, animals can injure the spine. There is a displacement of the vertebrae followed by squeezing of the spinal cord, while there is a high probability of rupture of the intervertebral ligaments. The main symptom with such damage will be paralysis of the hind legs, visually they will be stretched back and will drag when moving. To differentiate spinal problems from other diagnoses, you should carefully take the pet and put it on all four legs. If you see that both hind limbs are dragging around, then most likely you are dealing with damage to the spine. If one leg is injured, it is she. The disease mainly ends in death, which occurs after 2-5 weeks. Treatment is impractical.


Prevention is to prevent and minimize all phenomena that have been listed as causes of injury. We remove the most common causes - we increase the likelihood of the absence of any traumatic injuries.

Here are brief recommendations:

  • equip spacious and comfortable cells and avoid crowding,
  • repair cells on time
  • isolate the most pugnacious and unbalanced individuals,
  • hold the animal correctly: one hand is located under the stomach closer to the front paws, the second fixes the hind legs from below,
  • teach your children how to handle pets
  • keep silence near the cells,
  • make sure your diet is balanced.