Gut stasis in the rabbit needs to be treated as an emergency, yet it’s also a very common presentation. RCVS Recognised Specialist in Zoo and Wildlife medicine and Head of the Exotics Service at Rutland House Veterinary Referrals, Dr Molly Varga BVetMed DZooMed MRCVS, will be delivering a talk on the topic at London Vet Show on 15th November.
Molly will focus on the two part approach needed to support these patients – the gut stasis needs to be treated and as the rabbit recovers, the aetiology of the condition needs to be explored, since stasis is a clinical sign and not a diagnosis. Non-production of droppings or inappetance for 12 hours or longer suggests that there is a risk of stasis and should prompt an assessment of the patient.
The risk of stasis is one of the reasons that withholding food pre-operatively is not a recommended strategy for rabbits. A common issue is that rabbit owners fail to understand the need to offer continuous access to appropriate and plentiful long fibre and do not realise the potential for adverse effects on gut motility.
Claire Hamblion, Marketing Manager at Supreme Petfoods, says the company is delighted to be supporting Molly’s talk, “Previous surveys* we have carried out have shown that rabbit owners think it’s really important for vets and nurses to have further qualifications and learning about rabbits and over 60 per cent view their vet or vet nurse is the first point of call for any questions about their rabbit’s feeding and care. We’re proud to play a small part in improving access to high quality rabbit CPD that helps practices improve the clinical care of exotics.”
Supreme Petfoods also offers a range of free resources for practices at https://supremepetfoods.com/vet-zone/.
*Survey of rabbit owners, 2013, quoted at http://www.supremepetfoods.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/TR-Manual-2013-amends.pdf