General health check up
6 monthly health checks are important to pick up early signs of illness in your pet rabbits and guinea pigs. These small mammals are experts at hiding signs of pain or sickness and catching disease early will make all the difference. Your veterinarian will do a full clinical examination from nose to tail. As one ‘rabbit/guinea pig’ year is equivalent to eight ‘human’ years, a 3-4 monthly veterinary check up is recommended in our geriatric patients (rabbits that are older than 6 years, guinea pigs that are older than 4 years). Included in the health check is a dental check with an oral-scope, and checking for ear mites and fur mites.
Dental care is so important in rabbits and guinea pigs. Rabbits and guinea pigs teeth are open-rooted which means that they are constantly growing at an astonishing rate of 3-4 mm per week. Inadequate wear of the teeth can lead to malocclusion, dental spurs, mouth ulcers, and oral pain. This manifests as eating difficulties, going off hay or harder textured veggies, anorexia and weight loss.
Preventing dental disease:
A diet high in fibre (e.g. hay) is essential to help prevent dental disease.
Frequent dental check-ups – at a minimum of every 3- 6 months depending on the state of your pet’s teeth. Ask your vet to perform a dental check-up with oral-scope on your pet now!
Diagnosing and treatment of dental disease available
Dental xrays is so important to investigate for the health of the entire teeth and mouth. Dental examination under anaesthetic allows the vet to do a full oral check without stressing the patient.
We have specialised dental equipment to perform dental treatments like incisor trims, molar trims, extractions, and treatment of dental abscesses.
Blood tests may be recommended to investigate for any underlying illness in a sick rabbit and guinea pig. An annual blood screen is recommended for senior patients on long term medication. This basic blood test looks at kidney and liver function, red blood cell percentage, and hydration status.
A blood test for Encephalitozoon Cuniculi antibodies is recommended for every pet rabbit, especially when preparing to welcome a new rabbit into the household. E. Cuniculi is a parasite that is common in our pet population (52% have been exposed to this parasite) and it causes a latent infection. It is a common cause of neurological, kidney, and ocular diseases.