Fleas in rabbits are as common as in cats and dogs. These parasites infect all animals that have hair. To small fluffy animals, they not only cause discomfort, but can also damage health. infect them with dangerous infectious diseases, cause anemia and inflammation of the skin. If your pet has fleas, you need to remove them as soon as possible, because insects quickly multiply and switch to healthy individuals. How can you get rid of these parasites will be discussed in this article.
If you look at a flea under a microscope, it becomes clear why it moves so easily in the thick fur of animals. The parasite, depending on the species, has a body whose length is 3-5 mm, and the width varies between 1-3 mm. The body is flattened on the sides in a vertical plane, which provides good aerodynamics when moving. This form has another plus. it is difficult to crush a flea.
The whole body of the parasite is equipped with flakes in the form of combs and hairs, so that it is easily held in the hairline. A flea has no wings, but there are three pairs of powerful limbs, consisting of 5 members. The legs are also covered with bristles. This structure of the limbs makes fleas extremely jumping, they are able to bounce more than 50 cm in height.
The head of the parasite is small, and the abdomen is large. Fleas have a pair of eyes, and sensors are located on the back of the body to help sense the proximity of the victim. The oral apparatus of the insect is interesting. It is a proboscis by which a parasite pierces the skin of an animal and sucks blood.
In the process of life, a flea goes through 4 stages of development. eggs, larvae, pupae, and adults. The peculiarity of the parasite is that it is not constantly on the body of its victim, but only when it needs to be fed. Having sucked blood, the flea leaves the animal and hides in a secluded place until the next meal.
What types of fleas infect rabbits?
There are many varieties of fleas, but only two species infect rabbits:
At a certain point in time, another type of flea may appear on the rabbit’s body, as these insects, when hungry, are able to attack any prey. In her absence, they even bite people. A female parasite lays about 50 eggs daily, and about 2000 in her life!
Signs of the presence of fleas
Determining that a rabbit is infected with fleas is easy. Consider the characteristic symptoms:
- The animal worries, itches, bites itself.
- On his body there are bite marks. small red dots (mainly in the head and neck).
- Dark grains are present in the hairline. excrement of parasites (if they are rubbed on a damp cloth, they dissolve, leaving red-brown traces).
If you take the litter on which the rabbit slept and scrub it over the bathtub, brown dust crumbles from it, which subsequently dissolves and resembles blood. These are insect excrement.
You can consider fleas with the naked eye if you pet your hand against the hair in the withers and head. With a strong infection, it will be possible to discern brown insects quickly moving in the wool.
What diseases can fleas cause?
These parasites not only deprive rabbits of peace, but also harm their health. Infected pets are constantly combing their body, and an infection can enter the site of damage on the skin. This is fraught with the development of dermatitis. But this is not the worst. Fleas, piercing the skin, inject their saliva into the wound, which prevents blood coagulation. At this point, they are able to carry dangerous infectious diseases from one animal to another:
Pasteurellosis in a rabbit
- E. coli.
- Some types of hepatitis.
Reference. Parasites cause anemia in animals and allergic reactions. If fleas parasitize a pet for a long time, its immune system gradually weakens. It is important to start treatment immediately.
How to get fleas from a rabbit?
To combat insects, special means are used:
- Shampoos. Neguvon, Bolfo.
- Drops at the withers. Frontline, Advantage.
Attention! The drugs are toxic, therefore precautionary measures must be observed, and the rabbit should not be allowed to lick the product. The person handling should wear gloves.
Shampoos with insecticides will help to remove fleas in a rabbit. It is important to follow the instructions on the package, avoiding overdose. Application Rules:
- Moisten your pet’s coat.
- Apply the amount of shampoo to your palm.
- Spread throughout the animal’s hair with gentle massaging movements, avoiding the ears and eyes.
- Rinse off the drug after 10-15 minutes with plenty of warm water (more precise time is indicated in the instructions).
- Dry your pet’s hair with a towel.
- After drying, you can comb the hairs with a frequent comb to remove insects.
Important! It is necessary to treat the pet’s cage with special insecticidal solutions, as well as the entire room. floor, carpets, crevices near the baseboards. During processing, animals must be kept in another room.
After washing with special shampoo, drops are applied to the withers. In this case, you must also follow the instructions. The dosage of the drug is best checked with the veterinarian. If this is not possible, then use the one that is applicable for kittens.
The dosage for the kitten is suitable for the rabbit
The product is distributed in the ridge between the shoulder blades. there the rabbit will not be able to lick it. After 7-10 days, the withers are re-treated. This is important because shampoo is not able to destroy flea eggs.
Attention! Animals adjacent to the infected rabbit are also treated with anti-flea agents.
As for the flea collar, there is an opinion that it is dangerous for rabbits. The material from which it is made is impregnated with a solution containing insecticides. If the pet can pull it off the neck and gnaw, then the likelihood of poisoning is high. Veterinarians do not recommend the constant wearing of an anti-flea collar, but they consider it advisable to use this tool while walking on the street.
To prevent the invasion of fleas, it is necessary to observe cleanliness in the room. All pets living in the house or on the farm should be inspected periodically for infection. It is possible to let the rabbit out into the street only in a flea collar, and upon returning to the cage or aviary, it is removed.
If parasite infections are detected, all individuals in contact with this animal are treated and the premises are disinfected.
No animal is safe from infection by bloodsucking parasites. Do not panic if your pet has fleas, but you can’t ignore this situation. Insects are capable of causing serious harm to the animal’s health, so the fight against them begins immediately.