Under unfavorable conditions for keeping rabbits, animals can become infected with psoroptosis. This disease in rabbit breeders is better known as an ear tick. Called by ticks of the genus Psoroptes cuniculi, which parasitize on the skin of animals. Such types of farm animals as cattle (cattle), horses, sheep, rabbits are prone to the disease.
In the latter, the inner part of the auricles is most affected. Tick life of up to 60 days during this period, they develop, lay offspring by gluing eggs to the skin of the ear with uterine secretion. In the external environment, the parasite has a lifespan of up to 24 days. At temperatures less than 0⁰, it sharply reduces activity and subsequently dies.
What does psoroptosis look like?
At the initial stage of infection, red tubercles appear. A few days later they burst. A light yellow liquid is released from them, which forms a crust when dried. In the future, lumps of the same color form.
The sulfur content in the auricle is increasing. With the progression of the disease, a high content of layered crusts is observed. In some cases, the tick can spread to the outer part of the ear, neck, and forepaws. This rarely happens, since more often the animal dies from damage to the inner ear and part of the brain.
Symptoms of the disease and infection
The main signs of ear disease in rabbits are:
- Restless behavior, in some cases lethargy
- Ears become “heavy”, begin to hang down
- The animal often itches.
- In some cases, an increase in temperature is noted
- From sick animals
- From mother to cubs
- When an animal is transplanted into a cage where a sick animal was previously kept
- Through the service staff
- Through the hay
How to detect
Detecting psoroptosis is quite simple. For this, it is necessary to inspect the animal. If the rabbit’s ears are covered with bark (in case of neglect of the disease) or there is inflammation in the base of the ear canal in the form of redness and tubercles, then this is an ear tick.
There are also diseases such as knothedrosis, dermatomycosis and lice, but all of them damage the hairline of the animal. With psoroptosis, damage to the hairline is rare, in practice, the rabbit dies earlier than this. To clarify the diagnosis, you can contact the veterinarian or veterinary station, and the animal is not necessary to bring, just take a scraping.
You need a cotton swab and any small jar with a tight-fitting lid. Scraping is taken with a cotton swab from the inner surface of the ear. After that, it is delivered to the nearest laboratory in a well-closed container.
If a sick animal is detected on the farm, the following measures must be taken:
- Check all animals on the farm
- Isolate sick rabbits
- To disinfect cells, the room where sick animals were kept
- Disinfect inventory and equipment
- Call a veterinarian
First things first. When checking animals for psoroptosis, it is not recommended to move them somewhere around the house. After revealing a sick rabbit, a note should be made in which cage it is located. Before proceeding to further examination, in order not to be a source of infection, it is necessary to thoroughly wash your hands with laundry soap and inspect clothing for residues of earwax and pieces of exfoliated epithelium.
If the farm has a separate quarantine room for sick animals, it is necessary to isolate it from the main herd. If the cage contains several individuals, then all the rabbits contained in it are sent for quarantine. Contact animals are observed for 5-10 days.
If during this time the appearance of the ear tick is not observed, then they are transferred to the main herd. It should be borne in mind that the incubation period of possible infection is up to 5 days. In order to prevent such animals, it is necessary to be treated once with any acaricidal preparation, for example, Ivermek.
Cells where animals were kept must be thoroughly disinfected. If they were made only from a net, then no special preparations would be required. It is enough to have a gas burner and a piece of laundry soap in the household. At first, the cell burns well, especially corners and hard to reach places. After that, it is washed with a solution.
It is prepared as follows: on a ten-liter bucket of water, it is necessary to dissolve one 200 gram piece of 65% laundry soap. After this, the cell is thoroughly washed. If there are elements of wood in the cell structures for disinfection, such preparations as DEZ-1, Desoline-F, Agita 10% are used.
Premises for keeping animals must be treated with iodine monochloride. It is sold in veterinary pharmacies in cans of 3 and 5 liters. It is applied as follows. 200-500 grams of iodine is poured into any open container, in order to start the reaction you need to add a small amount of aluminum.
It can be a piece of old wire, any aluminum shavings. During the reaction, a large amount of smoke is released, it is harmless to animals. Around the perimeter of the room you can put several containers. Disinfection occurs within 30-40 minutes after which rabbitry needs to be ventilated.
Equipment and equipment used to service animals must also be carefully processed. The most effective in this case is thermal (fire, hot water) disinfection.
If the disease has not yet taken on an epidemiological character, then you can independently deal with ear scabies using acaricidal drugs. Otherwise, you should seek the help of specialists. Currently, many registered farms are supervised by veterinarians.
In the case of animal psoroptosis, quarantine is declared on the rabbit farm and all measures are taken to eliminate the outbreak. Access of unauthorized persons is limited, the sale of livestock from the farm at this time is strictly prohibited. In the event of a violation, fines may be imposed on the rabbit farm, up to and including forced closure. Quarantine, at the discretion of the doctor, can last up to a month.
A first-aid kit is an important attribute of every rabbit farm. In addition to vaccines for myxomatosis and HBV, antibiotics, hydrogen peroxide, iodine, it must necessarily contain funds for the prevention and treatment of psoroptosis. Of the most popular, a group of drugs is allocated in the form of aerosols, sprays, gels made on the basis of ivermectin.
The drug Ivermek is available in the form of a spray, injection solution, gel and ampoules. It is obtained by fermentation of fungi of the Streptomyces avermitilis group. 1 ml of the substance contains about 10 mg of ivermectin, 40 mg of vitamin E group, a preservative and an aqueous organic base. Available in bottles from 1 to 100 ml. It has a broad antiparasitic effect.
When applied to the skin of the animal, rapid absorption occurs, which has a protective effect for two weeks. Destroys both adults and tick larvae. The drug belongs to dangerous compounds and should be used with extreme caution.
For rabbits, an injection of intramuscularly calculated 0.2 ml per 10 kilograms of live weight. In order to determine the exact dosage, it is recommended to dilute the drug with distilled water. Before using Ivermek, it is necessary to try it on several animals, if within 2-3 days no side effects have been identified, apply to the entire herd. The price of the bottle ranges from 30 to 300 rubles, depending on the packaging.
Ivermek gel is available in 30 ml plastic tubes. 1 ml of gel contains ivermectin. 1 mg, panthenol. 15 mg, lidocaine. 50 mg and a gel-forming base. The color scheme varies from colorless to yellow. The drug belongs to low toxic substances. Apply a thin layer at the rate of not more than 0.3 ml per 1 kg of live weight of the rabbit.
The entire infected surface and 1-3 centimeters around are processed. Previously, the lesion site should be cleaned with a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution. If the animal’s auricle is severely affected, it is necessary to clean the ear canal with a cotton swab and carefully inject up to 2 ml of gel. For convenience, the animal’s ear can be gently bent in half.
In case of infection of only one auricle, the second must in any case be treated with gel. Treatment is recommended once a week. Repeat if necessary. After application of the gel, the animal may lick the drug. The absorption time of the medicine is 15-20 minutes, during which time you can hold the rabbit. The cost of one unit of Ivermek gel is from 400 rubles.
Reference! The bulk of the Ivermek group of drugs contains ivermectin, which effectively destroys both the ticks themselves and their offspring.
Neostomozan 1% is available in ampoules of 1 and 5 ml and in bottles of 10 and 100 ml. The drug contains in 1 ml transmix. 50 mg, tetramethrin. 5 mg and various excipients. It is diluted in a dosage of 1: 1000, that is, 1 ml of water. It is applied as follows.
The prepared solution carefully treats the entire infected surface, up to 50 ml is injected into the ear canal. Processing is carried out once every 10 days. The drug is not toxic, has no contraindications. It should be stored in the refrigerator, shelf life up to 3 years. The price of one 2 ml ampoule from 15 rubles.
From aerosols, sprays such as Acrodex and Psoroptop can be distinguished. The first contains a substance such as cyodrin. It is applied by spraying into the auricle from a distance of 20-30 cm for 2 seconds, every 6-10 days until complete recovery. Available in 385 and 500 ml cylinders.
The psoroptop contains birch tar, which gives it a dark color. Before use, the balloon is shaken and from a distance of 15-20 centimeters applied to the affected area for several seconds. If necessary, the course of treatment is repeated after 10-12 days. The price of both sprays is approximately the same from 200 to 400 rubles.
Ear Treatment for Psoroptosis
Folk remedies for treating an ear tick in rabbits
Experienced rabbit breeders, when psoroptosis is found in their households, most often use proven alternative methods of treating this disease. This is usually less costly and in many cases the effect of such treatment is not inferior to medication. Kerosene, camphor or sunflower oil, iodine, honey.All these funds have long been tested in practice and are more or less effective.
Pure kerosene in the treatment of ear mites in rabbits is not recommended. It must be mixed with vegetable oil in a ratio of 1: 1. Previously, 3% of the affected areas are wetted with hydrogen peroxide. Exfoliated epithelium and excess sulfur are removed. The infection site is treated with a thick layer of the prepared solution and 2-2.5 ml is poured directly into the ear canal. The procedure is repeated after 3-5 days.
Important! Coarse cleaning of the auricles is not recommended. In no case should you pick out growths and inflict mechanical damage inside the auricles. The sites affected by the ear mite are treated very carefully!
When treating with iodine, the surface of the ears of a sick animal should be treated every two days. To prepare the solution, glycerin is added in a proportion of 1/4. Affected areas are abundantly wetted. Exfoliated pieces of scabs are removed. The procedure is repeated until the animal has fully recovered.
If the disease is detected at an early stage, the rabbit’s ears can be treated with honey. To prepare the solution you will need boiled or distilled water. For every 100 ml of water, 3 teaspoons of honey is added. With the prepared solution, the affected areas are abundantly wetted.
Another effective folk method of combating ear ticks is camphor oil. over, experienced rabbit breeders are advised to treat just them, without resorting to other methods. It has calming properties, envelops the treated surface with a thin film, which prevents the further development of the disease.
Oil can be used both in pure form and mixed with turpentine or kerosene in 1: 1 proportions. For application, you need a syringe without a needle. Contaminated surfaces are gently wetted. Separated pieces of scab, earwax are removed. The procedure should be performed daily.
- As the disease progresses, itching in the ears themselves can practically stop. The next stage begins, on the neck, behind the ears, small ulcers appear, which later fall lower on the front legs.
- If a fluid exudate appears from the ear, this indicates that the destruction of the eardrum has begun. In the future, this will lead to otitis media, and, as it progresses, meningitis. Destruction of the membrane can lead to a tilt of the head, the animal’s ear dangles arbitrarily.
- The rupture of the lymph nodes can result in frequent shaking of the sick rabbit with the head and ears.
All these reasons, if you do not prescribe the right treatment in time, will subsequently lead to the death of the animal.
A prerequisite in the prevention of psoroptosis is the monthly treatment of cells that contain rabbits with disinfectants. The rooms where animals are kept must be kept clean. If the animals on the farm are sluggish and grow poorly, you should pay attention to the ration of feeding rabbits.
It is desirable to have several cages in a separate room for keeping quarantined rabbits brought from other farms. Recommended dates from two weeks to a month. Do not forget about the clothes. It should be washed weekly. If the animal was brought from another farm for mating, it is necessary to conduct a visual inspection for the presence of a tick.
Equipment and drinkers and feeders should be disinfected monthly. If hay is used in the feeding, it is recommended to do the side of the cage in order to prevent dust and microorganisms from entering the ears of the senna. If infection with an ear tick is detected, the sick animal should be immediately isolated, the cell disinfected.
Subject to all preventive measures, as well as feeding standards, infection with psoroptosis is minimized. In prosperous farms, ear tick infestation is rare. An experienced rabbit breeder will identify the disease in the first stages of its development and take action in time.
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