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E. cuniculi

Jesse's pigs

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Hi,

Not a piggy post, but i guess still relevant.

So my bunny has had loss of balance today (I am going to see a vet so I'm not seeking a diagnosis) and is just rather wobbly. He isn't paralyzed. He is still using his hind legs to itch and can kick etc (and hump- thanks for the demonstration Bigwig🤣). I'm very worried about him.

Now, I've been doing the dreading googling (just in the meantime) and I've come across this: E. cuniculi. Now I've been kissing and cuddling my baby boy, and just a bit worried because if this is what he has it says it can be transmittable to humans. Just wondering what the chances are of this as i know piggies can also get it.

Hoping desperately that it isn't E. cuniculi because not only that, but it seems he might not ever regain full balance 😥.
 

Eriathwen

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I looked into this when I had my first E.ciniculi piggy and it is extremely rare for it to be passed to humans and only those with very compromised immune systems are at risk such as those with hiv or undergoing chemotherapy I believe. If I remember correctly, only about 30 people ever worldwide have contracted it.

It was a while back I looked into it however so I may not be remembering everything 100% but I wouldn't be too worried. I have a second E.cuniculi piggy now and just practice basic hygiene like washing my hands after handling her or when coming into contact with her urine if I'm not already wearing gloves as that's how it is spread.

Your piggies however are at a far greater risk of catching it however so do be sure to keep them out of contact with your bunny and anything they've touched or urinated on.
 

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Hi!

Please see a vet promptly; the sooner your bunny is medicated, the better the recovery chances. The same goes for your piggies.

Use good hygiene (including handwashing/apron etc.) and always deal with the bunnies last (if you have piggies or other pets, sort them out first). Transmission to humans is rare.

I am linking in some experienced members with : @Lady Kelly @Piggies&buns @PigglePuggle @pig in the city
 

Jesse's pigs

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Hi!

Please see a vet promptly; the sooner your bunny is medicated, the better the recovery chances. The same goes for your piggies.

Use good hygiene (including handwashing/apron etc.) and always deal with the bunnies last (if you have piggies or other pets, sort them out first). Transmission to humans is rare.

I am linking in some experienced members with : @Lady Kelly @Piggies&buns @PigglePuggle @pig in the city

Our Vet is running some tests at the moment, just waiting on the results. My little Bigwig lives outside in a hutch while my two piggies are inside so definitely shouldn't contract it (I've been washing hands was more worried cos I was kissing him).

Only other question is. From what I've been reading, the effects that encephalitozoonosis has already had on Bigwig are irreversible (if it is that)so is it fair to keep him alive? He is still eating/drinking, knows who I am and perks up when I go see him. Still trying to hump my arm🤣, and he is still grooming etc- he's moving around a bit more the smorning, but can bunnies live like that, or am I cruel? He isn't just my bunny he is the 'families' so it isn't just my choice, but I just want his quality of life to be as best as it can be.
 

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Our Vet is running some tests at the moment, just waiting on the results. My little Bigwig lives outside in a hutch while my two piggies are inside so definitely shouldn't contract it (I've been washing hands was more worried cos I was kissing him).

Only other question is. From what I've been reading, the effects that encephalitozoonosis has already had on Bigwig are irreversible (if it is that)so is it fair to keep him alive? He is still eating/drinking, knows who I am and perks up when I go see him. Still trying to hump my arm🤣, and he is still grooming etc- he's moving around a bit more the smorning, but can bunnies live like that, or am I cruel? He isn't just my bunny he is the 'families' so it isn't just my choice, but I just want his quality of life to be as best as it can be.
Bunnies can live a very good life post e cuniculi. Has the vet started him on panacur yet?
 

pig in the city

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I have had several bunnies with this parasite. It's often contracted at birth and something causes it to flare up and cause symptoms so a vet check is essential. Stress can trigger it too.
It is only a problem to humans with reduced immunity
It is spread by spores in the urine and can last in the environment for several weeks.
Bunnies are stressed by living alone, they are social animals, just like piggies. When Bigwig is treated and no longer infectious please consider getting him neutered and finding him a lovely friend via your local rabbit rescue, who will advise on bonding.
Also a gentle reminder to make sure his vaccinations are up to date, myxomatosis, VHD 1 and 2 are far more deadly than EC
Best wishes for Bigwig
 

Jesse's pigs

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I have had several bunnies with this parasite. It's often contracted at birth and something causes it to flare up and cause symptoms so a vet check is essential. Stress can trigger it too.
It is only a problem to humans with reduced immunity
It is spread by spores in the urine and can last in the environment for several weeks.
Bunnies are stressed by living alone, they are social animals, just like piggies. When Bigwig is treated and no longer infectious please consider getting him neutered and finding him a lovely friend via your local rabbit rescue, who will advise on bonding.
Also a gentle reminder to make sure his vaccinations are up to date, myxomatosis, VHD 1 and 2 are far more deadly than EC
Best wishes for Bigwig
Thank you all for your help and replies. At the moment the vet is running tests and hasn't administered anything. They've said I should hear back within the next hour. In the meantime they gave me some food to syringe feed alongside what he's already munching on. He's an elderly gentleman (9/10) so they felt it'd be best to bring him back home than keep him in the vets until the results have come through.

I'm glad to hear that they can live happy lives still. He is my little man and I just don't want him to be in pain. I mean he's still trying to do the things he normally does and I'm grateful that he can still eat/drink. Just hoping the vet can either confirm/disprove that it is EC.

Is there a way bunnies can live together without neutering? Or one neutered boy and one not? With Bigwig's age I'm a little hesitant to have him go under. And if it is EC, can the new bunny not contract it?
 

pig in the city

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Thank you all for your help and replies. At the moment the vet is running tests and hasn't administered anything. They've said I should hear back within the next hour. In the meantime they gave me some food to syringe feed alongside what he's already munching on. He's an elderly gentleman (9/10) so they felt it'd be best to bring him back home than keep him in the vets until the results have come through.

I'm glad to hear that they can live happy lives still. He is my little man and I just don't want him to be in pain. I mean he's still trying to do the things he normally does and I'm grateful that he can still eat/drink. Just hoping the vet can either confirm/disprove that it is EC.

Is there a way bunnies can live together without neutering? Or one neutered boy and one not? With Bigwig's age I'm a little hesitant to have him go under. And if it is EC, can the new bunny not contract it?
Without neutering Bigwig would be constantly humping a friend so not likely to work out. Your vet will advise on whether he would be able to be neutered.
Alternatively bring him inside to live as a house bunny? At his age he would welcome the warmth and company.
If it is EC once he is treated he would not be infectious . Any place he has been would need to be thoroughly cleaned, disinfected and aired. Then it would be safe
 

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A test will only confirm if a bunny has ever been EXPOSED to ec, not necessarily if the infection is "live", to my knowledge. My vet treated for ec for 2 of my rabbits without the test as it would do no harm anyway and treatment needs to start as soon as possible. Early treatment ensures that the protozoa do as little damage as possible. Apparently ec is not painful but vets prescribe Metacam anyway for any inflammation. Both my rabbits recovered well. Occasionally two courses back to back are necessary as was the case of one of my bunnies.
 

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A test will only confirm if a bunny has ever been EXPOSED to ec, not necessarily if the infection is "live", to my knowledge. My vet treated for ec for 2 of my rabbits without the test as it would do no harm anyway and treatment needs to start as soon as possible. Early treatment ensures that the protozoa do as little damage as possible. Apparently ec is not painful but vets prescribe Metacam anyway for any inflammation. Both my rabbits recovered well. Occasionally two courses back to back are necessary as was the case of one of my bunnies.
Been given Panacur and he's been given enough for 28 days. The vet has said the only other thing they can do is a steroid injection, but I've been told to start the course and see how he goes.

Yes the vet has said once he recovers to bring him in for a neutering consultation and go from there.


Thank you all
 

piggles 7000

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Been given Panacur and he's been given enough for 28 days. The vet has said the only other thing they can do is a steroid injection, but I've been told to start the course and see how he goes.

Yes the vet has said once he recovers to bring him in for a neutering consultation and go from there.


Thank you all
That's good. I'm glad treatment has started. If the vet hasn't prescribed it I would ask for some Metacam as it can sometimes help with the wobbling! My bunnies made a full recovery and all symptoms disappeared completely. I'm hoping the same will happen for your bunny. As for whether he could infect a future friend-if treatment is completed it shouldn't be an issue once he has been well for a couple of months and his hutch has been disinfected. I was told to disinfect on day 21 and on completion of the course. You should hopefully start to see improvement after a week to 10 days.
Lots of luck with this. let us know how you get on.:)
 

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That's good. I'm glad treatment has started. If the vet hasn't prescribed it I would ask for some Metacam as it can sometimes help with the wobbling! My bunnies made a full recovery and all symptoms disappeared completely. I'm hoping the same will happen for your bunny. As for whether he could infect a future friend-if treatment is completed it shouldn't be an issue once he has been well for a couple of months and his hutch has been disinfected. I was told to disinfect on day 21 and on completion of the course. You should hopefully start to see improvement after a week to 10 days.
Lots of luck with this. let us know how you get on.:)
Thank you so much! I will definitely keep you all updated 😊. I've just given him his first dose of the Panacur (he wasn't impressed at all!), But at least he's got some medicine now. Ah ok I'll query about the metacam tomorrow and see what they advise (thankfully I work at the vet clinic). I'm glad to hear that he could regain his balance once more as I thought that this is just it and he cannot improve further.
 

piggles 7000

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Some bunnies remain a little wobbly but both mine were fine thankfully. Some are left with a permanent head tilt. I believe sometimes it affects the brain and sometimes the renal system and the bunny can become incontinent. You are treating him quickly so hopefully he will do well. It is some time ago when my bunnies were affected so I'm going by memory so hopefully I'm remembering accurately! Panacur will certainly help. I should mention that sometimes rabbits seem a little less well when they begin treatment and you may find he has a few off days. This was my experience. Speak to your vet if you are concerned of course but I think I read that this is often the case.
 

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I have been through EC treatment with 2 bunnies.
One made an almost full recovery - it was only if you watched him really closely that you could see he didn't always move one of his back legs as well as the other. Sadly one became so ill she had to be pts. However the one who recovered was treated immediately we saw symptoms, and the other one came to me after suffering for an undefined period of time, so her treatment just came too late.
I think with prompt treatment he has every chance of making a full recovery.

I would also second getting him a friend once he has recovered. Bunnies almsot need companionship more than guinea pigs, and when our male was dealing with EC his companion would often prop him up and almost seemed to be helping him physically as well as staying close by at all times. A closely paired rabbit bond is a beautiful thing to see.
 

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All the best for a good recovery and a happy and fulfilled bunny life afterwards!
Please make sure that he is fully vaccinated against all other bunny illnesses, too.
 

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Personally I do not test my rabbits, I don't feel it makes any difference to their treatment plan and I'd rather start treatment straight away. My vet always treats with Panacur, Metacam and antibiotics (because an inner ear infection can also cause head tilt and loss of balance).
(Please note this is my personal stance and not that of the rescue I foster for.)

If the vet hasn't advised this please note you will need to do a through clean on days 21 and 28 as this is when most of the parasite is excreted - ideally using diluted bleach.

One of my bunnies recovered from full heat tilt and nystagmus 3 times - he went on to a grand age of 13. His flare ups were always secondary to something else lowing his immune system, for example stress or another illness.

There are many bunnies with permanent tilt that live very happy well fufilled lives, they can learn to adapt.

Hope your bunny gets well soon.
 
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