Today, quite a lot of people living in a private house are involved in animal husbandry. I would like to note that this activity is not easy, as livestock requires serious care. Keeping rabbits is a rather complicated and painstaking task. The main problem is that rabbits are prone to a large number of diseases, of which myxomatosis is the most common. It can be transmitted both through plants used by rabbits for food, and through insects and other animals. In addition, the usual draft is the cause of the development of myxomatosis in animals. Does this disease pose a threat to people and is it possible to eat meat of a rabbit suffering from myxomatosis? Let’s try to dispel the prevailing myths and answer this question.
Currently there are a variety of rabbit diseases. Myxomatosis (is it possible to eat meat in this case, will be discussed later) is one of the most dangerous ailments. If you do not isolate a sick animal in time, it will infect the entire livestock. Myxomatosis is a viral disease that can be transmitted not only from animal to animal through contact, but also through food and through insects.
The disease proceeds quickly and in an acute form, as a result of which the animal’s appetite disappears, blisters appear on its head, the rabbit constantly lies and does not move much. The first signs of the disease appear a few weeks after infection. It all depends on the strain of the virus. There are two varieties of this disease. nodular and edematous. Each of them proceeds and manifests itself in its own way.
Symptoms of myxomatosis
Regardless of the form of the disease and the strain of the virus, myxomatosis in rabbits is accompanied by the following general symptoms:
- inflammation and purulent discharge from the eyes, as well as conjunctivitis;
- the rabbit moves very little, and most of the time he prefers to just lie;
- a significant increase in body temperature;
- hair loss;
- swelling of the eyelids and lips, drooping ears;
- the formation of fibromyomas in the ears, nose and extremities;
- rapid and heavy breathing, accompanied by wheezing.
As mentioned earlier, nodular and edematous forms of the disease manifest in different ways, so let’s take a closer look at each of them.
Is it possible to eat a rabbit sick with myxomatosis of the edematous form? The answer is clear: no! This form of the disease is the most severe and proceeds transiently. If the rabbit gets sick with edematous myxomatosis, then he will die, because this form is not treatable. The clinical manifestations of this ailment are cones throughout the body, filled with fluid, wheezing, swelling and purulent discharge from the nose. The animal completely ceases to eat, as a result of which it dies after about a week and a half due to complete exhaustion. It is strictly forbidden to eat the meat of an infected animal, and its corpse must be burned. To prevent infection of the entire livestock, rabbits are quarantined and vaccinated with special antiviral vaccines.
This form is less transient and treatable. According to statistics, about half of diseased rabbits survive. Is it possible to eat rabbit meat that has had nodular form myxomatosis? It is possible because people are not affected by this viral disease.
The presence of this form of the disease in rabbits can be determined by the characteristic nodules that are formed throughout the body of the animal. They are especially pronounced on the ears and in the eye area. The next manifestation that appears after the nodules is characteristic discharge from the nose, which may contain impurities of pus, and conjunctivitis.
In later stages, myxomatosis in rabbits is accompanied by a partial or complete loss of appetite, runny nose and characteristic wheezing. If untreated, the animal dies after about a month and a half. It is important to understand here that the sooner measures are taken to combat the disease, the more likely it is to overcome it. After recovery, nodules disappear on the rabbit’s body, but scars may remain after them.
The incubation period averages 11 days, after which the first manifestations of the disease appear. At the same time, the sick animal stops eating and drinking, and also does not react in any way to everything that happens around it. The percentage of survival depends on how well the protective functions of the body are developed in the rabbit. With proper care and therapy, the animal recovers completely, and the manifestations of the disease disappear.
Is it possible to eat meat of a rabbit infected with myxomatosis? This question interests all people involved in livestock farming. To date, disputes on this topic still do not subside among many farmers. The thing is that this virus is not perceived by humans, therefore it does not pose any danger. It only affects rabbits. Therefore, eating rabbit meat that has had myxomatosis is allowed if it is properly cooked. Before starting the heat treatment, the meat should be thoroughly washed.
But there is a flip side to the coin. There is a popular belief that meat of sick animals, even those that have been cured, is forbidden to eat. Rather, it can be eaten from a theoretical point of view, but in practice it turns out to be not quite aesthetic and hygienic. The thing is that even if myxomatosis in rabbits can be cured (is it possible to eat meat in sick animals, later in the article), then they lose their attractiveness and scare away their appearance.
According to the third popular opinion, it is not recommended to eat meat of any animals that have had any disease. Most experienced rabbit breeders are advised to burn the bodies of dead rabbits, as well as treat the barn with special disinfectants.
So, is it possible to eat the meat of a rabbit sick with myxomatosis? It is inappropriate to give any advice on this subject, since each person must make such decisions himself. Here, more and more depends on the squeamishness of a person.
If myxomatosis was detected in rabbits (is it possible to eat meat in this case, we already figured it out), then treatment should be started as soon as possible. If no action is taken in time, then the animal can not only die, but also infect the entire livestock. In addition, if the treatment was not carried out in full or started too late, the likelihood of re-development of the disease increases. In this case, the death of the animal can occur only a few days after the relapse. Sometimes even qualified veterinarians with extensive experience refuse to treat rabbits for myxomatosis if the farmer comes to them too late and the probability of curing the animal is very low. Therefore, the chances of independently overcoming the disease at home are extremely small.
How is the treatment going?
If you suspect that myxomatosis develops in rabbits (is it possible to eat meat with this ailment? A controversial issue), then you should immediately contact your veterinarian for help. The doctor will perform an examination of the animal, determine the stage of the course of the disease and draw up a treatment program. The infected rabbit should be placed in a separate room isolated from the rest of the rabbits, in which sanitation and warm comfortable conditions should be maintained. This will slightly slow down the course of the disease.
If the rabbit has no appetite and practically does not eat, then they make special injections that supply the body of the sick animal with all the substances necessary for life.
The most effective treatment will be in the early stages, when the disease has not yet begun to greatly progress.
In this case, treatment is carried out using the following drugs:
- potent antibiotics;
If wounds began to appear on the body of the animal, then they must be treated with alcohol-based iodine. Similar procedures should be performed until the wounds completely disappear.
What drugs are used to treat myxomatosis
To combat myxomatosis, veterinarians use a variety of subcutaneous injections. In most cases, "Gamavit" is used, and if the rabbit has not eaten or drank for a long time, then it is used in conjunction with the "Ringer", designed to combat dehydration. The introduction of drugs is carried out until the complete recovery of the sick animal. In some cases, Fosprenil is prescribed instead of Gamavit.
The following drugs are also very effective in this infectious disease:
- “Baytril”. is poured into water in accordance with the recommendations specified in the instructions. The drug is given several times a day for two weeks.
- Various nasal drops. are prescribed if the animal has purulent discharge from the nose. They help improve breathing and reduce wheezing.
In no case should you give a sick rabbit any medications without first examining the animal with a veterinarian.
If it was possible to completely defeat myxomatosis in rabbits (whether it is possible to eat meat from an infected animal, it makes sense to ask the veterinarian), then they should be quarantined for 3 months to fully verify recovery. During this time, the weakened animal organism will have time to grow stronger and gain strength, which significantly reduces the likelihood of the disease returning.
Disease Prevention Activities
To reduce the likelihood of myxomatosis in rabbits, preventive vaccination of animals is necessary. To do this, it is better to contact a qualified veterinarian, since vaccination is performed taking into account the physiological characteristics of the rabbit and its immunity. It is also important to understand that no vaccination gives a 100% guarantee that rabbits will not get this dangerous disease. In addition, myxomatosis can be detected only after an incubation period, which can be from 3 to 20 days.
You can vaccinate rabbits aged at least 40 days and weighing at least 500 grams. Revaccination is performed three months after the first, and then. every 7 months.
Traditional methods of treatment
Some experienced farmers practice folk medicine when treating myxomatosis. Wounds on the body of the animal should be treated with refried or fresh sunflower oil.
Very effective in this disease are injections of a solution from a camel spine. For its preparation, a liter jar is filled up to the top with this plant, poured with hot boiled water, covered with a lid and left for 3 hours. Then it is passed through cheesecloth to separate the plant from the solution, and injected into the sick animal in the form of injections in the lower leg twice daily 2 ml for two weeks. As for the answer to the question of whether it is possible to eat meat of a rabbit sick with myxomatosis, then each person decides this at his own peril and risk.
To prevent infection of the entire rabbit population, it is recommended to disinfect the cells and the entire rabbit house.
To do this, use the following tools that can be purchased in many veterinary pharmacies:
- "Ecocide C";
- 5 percent alcohol-based iodine solution.
In addition to the above tools, burnt lime, whiteness or lye will be very effective. Every corner should be treated, since myxomatosis is a very contagious viral disease, which is quite difficult to protect rabbits from.
There is no consensus on whether you can eat a rabbit with a myxomatosis or not. Every farmer treats this differently. Some people prefer not to take risks once again and simply burn the bodies of dead animals, while others do not disdain to eat meat after preliminary processing. It should be noted that the myxomatosis virus dies at a temperature of about 60 degrees, so after frying or stewing the meat will be sterile and it can be safely eaten without fear for your health. In any case, the choice is up to you!