Common drug dosages for rabbits

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Please remember that all information on this wiki is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Information presented here is for educational purposes only and not to substitute for a veterinary consultation. This site makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability, or availability with respect to the website or the information, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose.

Dosages on these pages have been compiled from various formulary textbooks and resources with rabbit dosages.

Do not change your rabbit's drug dosage without consulting your rabbit-savvy veterinarian.

Abbreviations

BW body weight
IM intramuscular injection
IN intranasal
IP within the abdominal cavity
IV intravenous injection
SC subcutaneous injection
PO per os = orally
h hour
q every
sid once a day
bid twice a day
tid three times a day
qid four times a day
qod every other day

Dosages of common drugs

Bolded drugs with a green background are authorized for use in rabbits. Drugs with a red background should never be used with rabbits.

Analgesic, anesthetic, or sedative medications

Drug Name Brands Type Dosage Remarks
Acepromazine ACP Sedative
  • 0.1-1.0 mg/kg IM/SC (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.5-1 mg/kg IM/SC (Varga, 2014)
  • 0.25-1 mg/kg; SC/IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.1-1.0 mg/kg IM/SC (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 2 mg/kg BW IM (Bauck, 1989)
  • 5 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 1-2 mg/kg BW IM (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 2 mg/ml solution.
  • Oral: 10 mg, 25 mg tablets.

Not analgesic. Should not be used in animals less than 3 months of age or with liver disease.[1]

Acepromazine + butorphanol Sedative
  • 0.5 mg/kg + 0.5 mg/kg IM, SC (Varga, 2014)
Can by mixed in same syringe.

Vasodilatory.

Acetaminophen,
Paracetamol
Paracetamol, Pardale V, Perfalgan, Tylenol, Excedrin, Calpol, Panadol Analgesic
  • 200-500 mg/kg PO (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 200-500 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
Can be used in tandem with NSAIDs.
Overdose may cause liver damage.
Acetaminophen-codeine Analgesic
  • 1 ml elixir/100 ml drinking water (Wixson, 1994)
Alphaxalone,
Alfaxalone
Alfaxan-CD Sedative
  • Unpremedicated: 1-3 mg/kg IV or 3-6 mg/kg IM (Meredith, 2015)
  • Premedicated with medetomidine at 0.25 mg/kg SC: 3 mg/kg IM (Meredith, 2015)
  • 6-9 mg/kg IV or 9 mg/kg IM (Ramsey, 2011)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 10 mg/ml solution.
Does not contain an antimicrobial preservative, so it is recommended to discard the remainder of an opened bottle after single use within 24 hours.[1]
Alphaxalone-alphadolone,
Althesin,
Saffan
Anesthetic, Sedative
  • Sedative: 9-12 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1987)
  • Anesthetic: 6-9 mg/kg BW IV (Green, 1982); high mortality possible (Flecknell, 1987)
Alfentanil Rapifen Analgesic
  • 0.03-0.07 mg/kg IV (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 0.5 mg/ml solution, available in 2 ml or 10 ml vials; 5 mg/ml solution
A very potent opioid analgesic - 10-20 times more potent than morphine. Seizures have been noted in rabbits with the use of alrentanil as part of a midazolam, medetomidine, and alfentanil combination.[1]
Amantadine Lysovir, Symmetrel Analgesic
  • 3-5 mg/kg PO q24h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 100 mg capsule; 10 mg/ml syrup

Proves analgesia through NMDA antagonist action. Used in animals that are unresponsive to opioids or require chronic pain relief in a home environment. May have a role in the treatment of neuropathic pain in rabbits.[1]

Aminopyrine Analgesic,
Anti-inflammatory
  • 50 mg/kg BW PO (Jenkins, 1987)
Antipyrine Analgesic
  • 500 mg/kg BW PO (Borchard, et al., 1990)
  • 100 mg/kg BW IM/IP/SC (Borchard, et al., 1990)
  • 100 mg/kg BW PO (Jenkins, 1987)
Aspirin,
Acetylsalicyclic acid
Ecotrin, Aspirin, and component of many others Analgesic
  • 100 mg/kg PO q12-24h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 100 mg/kg PO q12-24h (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 20 mg/kg BW PO sid (equivalent to 600-mg dose in humans) (Marangos, et al., 1994)
  • 100 mg/kg BW PO, try q4h (Fleckell, 1991)
  • 400 ml/kg BW SC, PO sid (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 75 mg, 300 mg tablets.

Used to control mild to moderate pain and prevent arterial thromboembolism.

Do not give to dehydrated, hypovolaemic or hypotensive paties or those with GI disease. Do not give to pregnant animals or animals less than 6 weeks old.[1]
Bupivacaine Marcain, Sensorcaine Analgesic
  • 1 mg/kg local infusion, do not exceed 2 mg/kg (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 2.5, 5.0, 7.5 mg/ml solutions. 5.0 mg/ml solution with 1:200,000 adrenaline.
Do not give IV or use for IV regional anesthesia as it may precipitate severe cardiac arrhythmias.[1]
Buprenorphine Belbuca, Buprenex, Buprenodale, Simbadol, Sublocade, Suboxone, Subutex, Temgesic, Vetergesic Analgesic
  • 0.03-0.06 mg/kg SC/IM/IV q6-12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.03 mg/kg SC bid (Varga, 2014)
  • 0.01-0.05 mg/kg q8-12h; SC/IM/IV (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.01-0.05 mg/kg SC/IM/IV q6-12h (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 0.02-0.1 mg/kg BW IV/SC q12h (Carpenter, et al., 1995)
  • 0.01-0.05 mg/kg BW SC/IV q6-12h (Flecknell, 1991)
  • 0.02-0.05 mg/kg BW SC/IM/N q8-12h (Flecknell, 1985; Jenkins, 1987)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 0.3 mg/ml solution; available in 1 ml vials that do not contain a preservative, or in 10 ml multidose bottle that contains chlorocresol as preservative.

Provides analgesia without marked sedation. Burprenorphine is metabolized in the liver. Duration of effect is approximately 6 hours in rabbits.[1]

Used for relief of mild to moderate perioperative pain. It is less potent but longer acting than fentanyl/fluanisone.[2]:321

Doses less than 0.03 mg/kg have very limited analgesic effects but still have some sedative effects. Anecdotally, oral transmucosal delivery appears to be effective in rabbits.[1]

Butorphanol Alvegesic, Butorphic, Dolorex, Torbugesic, Torbutrol, Torphadine, TorphaJect, Torphasol, Vetorphic Analgesic
  • 0.1-0.5 mg/kg SC q4h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.1-0.5 mg/kg SQ/IM/IV q4-6h (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.1-0.5 mg/kg SC q4h (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 0.1-0.5 mg/kg BW IM/IV/SC q4h (Carpenter, et al., 1995)
  • 0.1-0.5 mg/kg BW IV q4h (Flecknell, 1989)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 10 mg/ml solution.
  • Oral: 5 mg, 10 mg tablets.

Used for management of mild perioperative pain. Can cause sedation in combination with other drugs. Butorphanol has a very rapid and relatively short duration of action - in different models, analgesia has been shown to last between 45 minutes and 4 hours.[1] The drug is metabolized in the liver.

Protect from light.
Butylscopolamine,
Hyoscine
Buscopan Analgesic,
Antispasmolytic
  • 0.1 ml/kg IV/IM q12h (Buscopan Compositum) (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 4 mg/ml butylscopolamine + 500 mg/ml metamizole in 100 ml multidose bottle (Buscopan Compositum); 20 mg/ml butylscopolamine only, in 2 ml ampoules.

Used to control gastrointestinal pain associated with urinary obstruction in rabbits.

Should not be used in animals with intestinal obstruction or gastrointestinal ileus.
Carprofen Aventicarp, Canidryl, Carpox, Carprieve, Carprodyl, Dolagis, Levafen, Norocarp, Novox, Quellin, Rimadyl, Rimifin, Rovera, Rycarfa, Tergive, Vetprofen, Zinecarp NSAID, Analgesic
  • 2-4 mg/kg SC q24h or 1.5 mg/kg PO q24h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 2-4 mg/kg SC sid, 1.5 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • 1-5 mg/kg PO q12h or 2-4 mg/kg SC, IV q24h (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 2-4 mg/kg SC q24h (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 1.5 mg/kg PO (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 1.5 mg/kg BW PO bid (Flecknell, 1996)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 50 mg/ml.
  • Oral: 20 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg tablets.

An NSAID used to control postoperative pain and inflammation following surgery and to reduce chronic inflammation.

Should not be given to dehydrated, hypovolaemic or hypotensive patients or those with GI disease or blood clotting abnormalities. Use with care for animals with renal disease. Do not give to pregnant animals or animals less than 6 weeks old.[1]
Celecoxib NSAID, Analgesic
  • 68 mg/kg PO bid; experimental dosage used for adhesion prevention and much higher than doses reported in other species like birds (Varga, 2014)
Chloralose Anesthetic
  • 80-100 mg/kg BW IV of 1% solution (Green, 1982)
Chlorpromazine Sedative
  • 1-10 mg/kg BW IM (Carpenter, et al., 1995)
  • 25 mg/kg BW IM (Produces myositis; CCAC, 1984)
Dexmedetomidine Dexdomitor Sedative
  • 0.025–0.05 mg/kg IV or 0.05–0.15 mg/kg SC/IM (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 0.1 mg/ml, 0.5 mg/ml solution.

Used to provide sedation and premedication when used alone or in combination with opioid analgesics. Can be a short duration (20-30 min) of surgical anaesthesia when combined with ketamine.

Diazepam Dialar, Diastat, Diazemuls, E Pam Tab, Meval, Rimapam, Stesolid, Tensium, Valclair, Valium, Vivol Sedative
  • Epileptic seizures, pre-anesthetic sedation, muscle relaxation: 1-5 mg/kg IV (Meredith, 2015)
  • 1-2 mg/kg IV, IM (Varga, 2014)
  • Seizures: 1-2 mg/kg; IM, IV. 0.5-1.0 mg/kg IV for seizures; may repeat PRN up to 5 mg/kg total dose; may be administered rectally if IV access cannot be achieved (Blackwells, 2011)
  • Epileptic seizures: 1 mg/kg IV (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 2 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 4 mg/kg BW IM, IP (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 5-10 mg/kg BW IM (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
  • 5-10 mg/kg BW IM, IP (Green, 1982)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 5 mg/ml emulsion (2 ml ampoules, Diazemuls)

Drug of choice for short-term emergency control of severe epileptic seizures and status epilepticus. It can also be used in combination with opiods and acepromazine for pre-anesthetic medication in critically ill patients.[1]

Not analgesic and provides very poor sedation and excitation when used alone in healthy animals. Can cause dependence with regular use of only a few weeks.[1]

Flumazenil will reverse the effects of diazepam.

Diclofenac Voltarol Ophtha, Voltarol Ophtha Multidose NSAID, Analgesic
  • Topically as required (from 1 drop every 30 mins for 2 hours prior to cataract surgery, to 1 drop q4h for general anti-inflammatory effects) (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Ophthalmic: 0.1% solution in 5 ml bottle and in single-use vial.

Produces local anti-inflammatory effects. Used in cataract surgery to prevent ulcerative keratitis, and also used to control pain and inflammation with corneal surgery and ulcerative keratitis when topical corticosteroid use is contraindicated.[1]

Fentanyl Durogesic, Fentanyl, Fentora, Sublimaze Analgesic
  • 25 µg patch for up to 72h (Foley et al., 2001)
Fentanyl-droperidol Innovar-Vet Sedative, Anesthetic
  • Anesthetic: 0.4 ml/kg BW SC (Gonzalez-Gil et al., 2003)
  • Anesthetic: 0.10-0.50 ml/kg BW IM (Green, 1982)
  • Anesthetic: 0.3 ml/kg BW IM (Hughes, 1981)
  • Sedative: 0.17 ml/kg BW IM (CCAC, 1984)
  • Sedative: 0.15-0.17 ml/kg BW IM (Lewis and Jennings, 1972)
Fentanyl-fluanisone Hypnorm, Janssen Premedication, Analgesic, Anesthetic
  • 0.2-0.3 mL/kg IM, SC (Varga, 2014)
  • 0.2-0.5 ml/kg IM (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 0.5 ml/kg BW IM (Jenkins, 1987)

Can be used in combination with midazolam or diazepam (0.5-2 mg/kg) (Varga, 2014)

Provides analgesia to treat abdominal pain that accompanies digestive disorders and gas distension of the viscera. Fentanyl/fluanisone is a good sedative to clean uneaten caecotrophs from the perineum.[2]:321

Fentanyl-fluanisone +
diazepam
Anesthetic
  • 0.3 ml/kg BW IM and 1-2 mg/kg BW IM, IP, IV (Flecknell, 1996)
Fentanyl-fluanisone +
midazolam
Anesthetic
  • 0.3 ml/kg BW IM, SC and 2 mg/kg BW IM, SC (Arnemo et al., 2002)
  • 0.3 ml/kg BW IM and 1-2 mg/kg BW IM, IP, IV (Flecknell, 1996)
Fentanyl +
medetomidine
Anesthetic
  • 8 µg/kg BW IV and 300 µg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
Flunixin Banamine, Citation, Equileve, Flunixamine, Meflosyl Solution NSAID, Analgesic
  • Analgesia: 1.1 mg/kg SC bid (Varga, 2014)
  • Analgesia: 0.3-2.0 mg/kg once daily to q12h for no more than 3 days; PO, deep IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 1.1 mg/kg BW SC, IM, try q12h (Liles and Flecknell, 1992)
Care in hypotensive patients.
Haloperidol Sedative
  • 0.2-0.4 mg/kg BW IM bid (Iglauer, et al., 1995)
Ibuprofen Analgesic
  • 10-20 mg/kg BW IV, try q4h (Flecknell, 1991)
Indomethacin Analgesic
  • 12.5 mg/kg BW PO (Keller, et al., 1988)
Isoflurane Anesthesic
  • Anesthetic of choice (Blackwells, 2011)
Ketamine Ketaset injection, Narketan-10, Vetalar-V Sedative, Anesthetic
  • Anesthesia: 10-20 mg/kg IM
  • 15-30 mg/kg IM, SC alone gives moderate to heavy sedation with some analgesia but may have long recovery at this high dose (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 25 mg/kg BW intranasally for light surgical anesthesia (Robertson and Eberhart, 1994)
  • Sedative: 30 mg/kg BW IM (Bauck, 1989)
  • Anesthetic: 50 mg/kg BW IM for immobilization (Flecknell, 1987)
  • Anesthetic: 44 mg/kg BW IM (Weisbroth and Fudens, 1972)
Ketamine alone in mammals is usually not adequate for deep anesthesia. (Hawk et al., 2005)
Ketamine +
acepromazine
Anesthetic
  • 24-40 mg/kg + 0.25-1.0 mg/kg; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 50 mg/kg BW IM and 1 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 75 mg/kg BW IM and 5 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1987)
Ketamine +
diazepam
Sedative
  • 15-20 mg/kg + 1-3 mg/kg; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 10 mg/kg BW IV and 2 mg/kg BW IV (González-Gil et al., 2003)
  • 20-30 mg/kg BW IM and 1-3 mg/kg BW IM when used with isoflurane (Carpenter et al. 1995)
  • 30-40 mg/kg BW IM and 2-5 mg/kg BW IM (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 25 mg/kg BW IM and 5 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1987)
Ketamine +
medetomidine
Anesthetic
  • 25 mg/kg BW IM and 500 µg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 5 mg/kg BW IV and 350 µg/kg BW IM; use with supplemental oxygen (Hellebrekers et al., 1996)
Not for major surgical procedures. (Hawk et al., 2005)
Ketamine +
midazolam
Sedative
  • 15-20 mg/kg + 0.5-1.0 mg/kg; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 30 mg/kg BW IM and 0.2 mg/kg BW IM (Vachon et al., 1999)
Ketamine +
xylazine
Anesthetic
  • 20-40 mg/kg BW IM, SC and 3-5 mg/kg BW IM, SC (Arnemo et al., 2002)
  • 35 mg/kg BW IM and 5 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 10 mg/kg BBW intranasally and 3 mg/kg BW intranasally (Roberston and Eberhart, 1994)
  • 10 mg/kg BW IV and 3 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 50 mg/kg BW IM and 10 mg/kg BW IM (Lipman et al., 1987)
Ketamine +
medetomidine +
buprenorphine
Anesthetic
  • 35 mg/kg BW IM, 0.5 mg/kg BW IM, and 0.03 mg/kg BW IM for induction (Difilippo et al., 2004)
Ketamine +
medetomidine +
diazepam
Anesthetic
  • 20 mg/kg BW IM, 300 µg/kg BW IM, and 0.75-1.5 mg/kg BW IM (Ko et al., 1997)
Ketamine +
medetomidine +
xylazine
Anesthetic
  • 30 mg/kg BW IM, 0.2 mg/kg BW IM, and 3 mg/kg BW IM (Vachon et al., 1999)
Ketamine +
xylazine +
acepromazine
Anesthetic
  • 35 mg/kg BW IM, 5 mg/kg BW IM, and 1 mg/kg BBW IM, SC; Note: This provides approximately 30% longer anesthesia and recovery than ketamine-xylazine alone. (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 35 mg/kg BW IM, 5 mg/kg BW IM, and 0.75 mg/kg BW IM (Marini et al., 1989)
Ketamine +
xylazine +
butorphanol
Anesthetic
  • 35 mg/kg BW IM, 5 mg/kg BW IM, and 0.1 mg/kg BW IM (Marini et al., 1992)
Ketoprofen Ketofen Analgesic
  • 1-3 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • 1 mg/kg q24h to q12h; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 1-3 mg/kg IM, SC q24h (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 3 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 1 mg/kg BW IM (Perrin et al., 1990)
Can be used to soften and lubricate caecal/intestinal contents. (Varga, 2014)
Medetomidine Domitor, Dorbene, Dormilan, Medetor, Sedastart, Sedator, Sededorm Sedative
  • Premedication: 80-100 μg IM, SC in combination with an opioid and ketamine. (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 100-500 μg/kg BW IM, SC (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 300-500 μg/kg BW SC (Aeschbacher, 1995)
  • 250 μg/kg BW IM (Ko, et al., 1992)
Medetomidine +
propofol
Anesthetic
  • 350 µg/kg BW IM and 3 mg/kg BW IV (Hellebrekers et al., 1996)
  • 250 µg/kg BW IM and 4 mg/kg BW IV (Ko et al., 1992)
Medetomidine +
midazolam +
propofol
Anesthetic
  • 0.25 mg/kg BW IM, 0.5 mg/kg BW IM, and 2 mg/kg BW IV (Ko et al., 1992)
Meloxicam Alloxate, Apo-Meloxicam, Eloxiject, EloxiOral, Inflacam, Inflacam, Loxicom, M-Eloxyn, Meloxidyl,Metacam, OroCAM, OstiLox, Rheumocam Analgesic
  • 0.3-0.6 mg/kg PO/SC sid-bid (Varga, 2014)
  • 0.2-0.3 mg/kg SC, IM q24h or 0.2-0.5 mg/kg PO q12-24h (Blackwells, 2011)
Can be used up to 1.5 mg/kg without accumulation (Varga, 2014)
Meperidine,
Pethidine
Demerol, Meperidine, Pethidine Analgesic
  • 5-10 mg/kg IM, SC (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 10-20 mg/kg BW SC, IM q2-3h (Flecknell, 1991)
  • 10 mg/kg BW SC, IM q2-3h (Jenkins, 1987)
Methohexital,
Methohexitone
Anesthetic
  • 10 mg/kg BW N (Flecknell, 1987)
Midazolam Hypnovel Sedative
  • 0.5-2 mg/kg; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.2-2 mg/kg IV, IM (Ramsey, 2011)
  • general anaesthesia: 0.2 mg/kg IV when used with Fentanyl/Fluanisone (q.v.) (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 0.5-2 mg/kg BW IM, IP, IV (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 2 mg/kg BW IN (Robertson and Eberhart, 1994)
  • 4 mg/kg BW IM, IP (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 2 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1987)
Morphine Duramorph, Morphine, Oramorph Analgesic
  • 2-5 mg/kg q2-4h; IM, SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 2-5 mg/kg IM, SC q2-4h (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 2-5 mg/kg BW SC, IM q24h (Flecknell, 1991)
  • 5 mg/kg BW SC, IM q2-4h (Flecknell, 1985; Jenkins, 1987)
Nalbuphine Nubain Analgesic
  • 1-2 mg/kg IV, IM q4-5h (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 1 mg/kg BW IP, SC (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 0.1 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 1-2 mg/kg BW IV q4-5h (Flecknell, 1989)
Nimesulide NSAID, Analgesic
  • 0.5 mg/rabbit IM/IP sid × 5 days (Varga, 2014)
COX2-selective

For use in prevention of adhesions

Oxymorphone Analgesic
  • 0.05-0.2 mg/kg q12h to q8h; SC, IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.1-0.2 mg/kg BW IM, IV (Cantwell, 2001)
Pentazocine Pentazocine, Talwin Analgesic
  • 5 mg/kg BW IV q24h (Flecknell, 1991)
  • 10-20 mg/kg BW SC, IM q4h (Flecknell, 1985; Jenkins, 1987)
Pethidine,
Meperidine
Demerol, Meperidine, Pethidine Analgesic
  • 5-10 mg/kg IM, SC (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 10 mg/kg BW SC, IM q2-3h (Flecknell, 1987)
Pentobarbital sodium Anesthetic
  • 28 mg/kg BW IV, IP (Croft, 1964)
Piroxicam Brexidol, Feldene, Piroxicam Analgesic
  • 0.3 mg/kg BW PO q48h (Flechell, 1996)
Prednisone Anti-inflammatory
  • 0.5-2 mg/kg PO, IM, SC (Varga, 2014)
  • 0.5-2 mg/kg; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Few indications in rabbits; use with extreme caution.
Propofol PropoFlo Anesthetic
  • 2-6 mg/kg; IV slowly (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 7.5-15 mg/kg BW IV (Adam et al., 1990)
  • 1.5 mg/kg BW IV bolus followed by 0.2-0.6 mg/(kg*min) continuous infusion (Blake et al., 1988)
Sevoflurane Flurovess, Petrem Sevoflurane, SevoThesia Anesthesic
  • Inhalant anesthetic used to effect (Blackwells, 2011)
Thiopental Anesthetic
  • 28 mg/kg BW IV, IP (Croft, 1964)
Tiletamine-zolazepam,
Telazol
Anesthetic
  • 10 mg/kg BW intranasally (no renal compromise) (Robertson and Eberhart, 1994)
  • 10-25 mg/kg BW IM (Fowler, 1978)
Not generally recommended (except intranasally); nephro-toxicity (Doerning et al., 1990, 1992)
Tiletamine-zolazepam +
medetomidine
Anesthetic
  • 2.5-5 mg/kg BW IM, SC and 500 µg/kg BW IM, SC (Arnemo et al., 2002)
Tiletamine-zolazepam +
xylazine
Anesthetic
  • 15 mg/kg BW IM, SC and 5 mg/kg BW IM, SC (Arnemo et al., 2002)
  • 20 mg/kg BW IM and 3 mg/kg BW IM (Vachon et al., 1999)
  • 15 mg/kg BW IM and 5 mg/kg BW IM (Popilskis et al., 1991)
Urethane Anesthetic
  • 1000 mg/kg BW IV, IP (Flecknell, 1987)
Xylazine Chanazine, Rompun, Sedaxylan, Virbaxyl, Xylacare, Xylapan Analgesic
  • 2-5 mg/kg IM, SC (Ramsey, 2011)
  • 1-5 mg/kg BW IM, SC (Arnemo, et al. 2002)
  • 1-3 mg/kg BW IM (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 3-5 mg/kg BW IM (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
  • 5 mg/kg BW IM (Hughes, 1981)

Antimicrobials - antibiotic, antifungal, and antiseptic medications

Drug Name Brands Type Dosage Remarks
Amikacin Amikacin, Amikin Antibiotic
  • 2-10 mg/kg IV/IM/SC q8-12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 2-5 mg/kg SC/IM bid-tid (Varga, 2014)
  • General antibiotic therapy: 2 mg/kg q8h; SC, IM, IV (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 10 mg/kg BW IM, SC q8-12h (Carpenter et al. 1995)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 50 mg/ml, 250 mg/ml solutions.

Active against many gram-negative bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus and Nocardia spp., including some that may be resistant to gentamicin. Streptococci and anaerobes are usually resistant.[1]

Can affect renal function if hydration not maintained.[1]
Oral doses can cause fatal enterotoxaemia in rabbits.[1]
Amoxicillin,
Amoxycillin
Amoxinsol, Amoxycare, Amoxypen, Bimoxyl, Clamoxyl, Duphamox, Vetremox Antibiotic
  • 7 mg/kg SC q24h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 150 mg/ml suspension.

Active against certain Gram-positive and Gram-negative aerobic organisms and many obligate anaerobes but not against those that produce penicillinases (beta-lactamases), e.g. Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus. The more difficult Gram-negative organisms (Pseudomonas, Klebsiella) are usually resistant.[1]

Should only be given by injection. Causes diarrhea after oral administration.[3]
Amphotericin B Abelcet, AmBisome, Amphocil, Fungizone Antifungal
  • 1 mg/kg IV q24h (desoxycholate form) or 5 mg/kg SC q24h (liposomal form) (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 50 mg/vial powder for reconstitution.

Used for management of systemic fungal infections and leishmaniosis.[1]

Given the risk of severe toxicity it is advisable to reserve use for severe/potentially fatal fungal infections only.[1] Should not be used in animals with renal or hepatic failure.[1] Medication should be kept in the dark, although loss of drug activity is negligible for at least 8 hours in room light. After initial reconstitution, the drug is stable for 1 week if refrigerated and stored in the dark.[1]
Ampicillin Amfipen, Ampipcaps, Ampicare, Duphacillin Antibiotic DO NOT USE
  • 22-44 mg/kg BW PO in divided doses (Bowman and Lang, 1986)
  • 10-25 mg/kg BBW IM sid for 5-7 days (Bowman and Lang, 1986)
  • 10-25 mg/kg BW IM tid (Raphael, 1981)
DO NOT USE

Causes 40 to 100% fatal enteritis IM, SC, and PO, dependent on dosage.[3] Effects can take as long as a month.[4]

Toxic both orally and parenterally. Bactericidal that is excreted in urine and bile.[2]

May also cause weight loss with intramuscular dose.[4]

Azithromycin Zithromax Antibiotic
  • For syphilis: 4-5 mg/kg IM q48h for 7 days (Meredith, 2015)
  • For staphylococcal osteomyelitis: 50 mg/kg PO q24h with 40 mg/kg PO q12 rifamprin (Meredith, 2015)
  • 15-50 mg/kg PO sid (Varga, 2014)
  • Treatment of anaerobic infections: 30 mg/kg PO once daily; can combine with metronidazole 20mg/kg q24h to q12h PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 250 mg capsule; 200 mg/5 ml suspension (reconstitute with water).

Used for abscesses and osteomyelitis. Alternative to penicillin in allergic individuals as it has a similar, although not identical, antibacterial spectrum.

It is active against Gram-positive cocci (some Staphylococcus species are resistant), Gram-positive bacilli, some Gram-negative bacilli (Haemophilus, Pasteurella), mycobacteria, obligate anaerobes, Chlamydophila, Mycoplasma and Toxoplasma. Some strains of Actinomyces, Nocardia and Rickettsia are also inhibited. Most strains of the Enterobacteriaceae (Pseudomonas, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella) are resistant.[1]

May cause dysbiosis. Should be avoided in animals with renal and hepatic failure.[1]

Cefalexin,
Cephalexin
Cefaseptin, Cephacare, Ceporex, Rilexine, Therios Antibiotic
  • 15-20 mg/kg SC q12-24h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 15 mg/kg SC bid, 20 mg/kg SC sid (Varga, 2014)
  • 15 mg/kg q12h; IM; DO NOT administer orally (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 15-20 mg/kg BW PO bid (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 15 mg/kg BW SC bid (Flecknell, 1996)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 180 mg/ml (18%) suspension.

Active against several Gram-positive and Gram-negative organisms (e.g. Staphylococcus, Pasteurella and Escherichia coli). Pseudomonas and Proteus are often resistant.[1][2]

May cause diarrhea when dosed at 200 mg/rabbit for 7 days.[4] Generally linked to antibotic associated enterocolitis in rabbits.
Risk of dysbiosis and fatal enterotoxaemia if given orally.[2] Injection of cephalosporin has proven safe but may be painful.[1][3]
Cefaloridine,
Cephaloridine
Antibiotic
  • 10-25 mg/kg BW IM, SC sid for 5 days (Bowman and Lang, 1986)
Cefalotin,
Cephalothin
Antibiotic
  • 13 mg/kg BW IM qid for 6 days (Bowman and Lang, 1986)
Cefazolin Antibiotic
  • Local treatment in abscess cavities: 2 g/20 g PMMA (Blackwells, 2011)
Cefotaxime Cefotaxime Antibiotic
  • 50 mg/kg IM/IV q8h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 500 mg, 1 g, 2 g powders for reconstitution.

A 3rd generation cephalosporin with good activity against many Gram-negative organisms, especially Enterobacteriaceae (not Pseudomonas) but lower activity against many Gram-positive organisms than 1st and 2nd generation cephalosporins.[1]

The reconstituted solution is stable for 10 days when refrigerated.[1] May produce pain on injection; GI disturbance and superinfection with resistant microorganisms is a potential risk. Use with care in patients with renal disease.[1]
Cefovecin Antibiotic DO NOT USE DO NOT USE

The drug's pharmacokinetics are highly variable and unpredictable in rabbits due to its unique binding effects.[5] Cefovecin is explicitly contraindicated in rabbits on label, but some practitioners have used cefovecin in rabbits with good results and no bad effects. Due to its relatively short duration of action, it is generally contraindicated in rabbits regardless.[1]

Ceftazidime Fortum, Kefadim Antibiotic
  • 100 mg/kg IM q12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 50 mg/kg IM/IV tid; literature cites half-life not dosing frequency; this dose effective anecdotally. (Varga, 2014)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 500 mg, 1 g, 2 g, 3 g powders for reconstitution.

A 3rd generation cephalosporin with higher activity against many Gram-negative organisms but lower activity against many Gram-positives when compared to 1st and 2nd generation cephalosporins.[1]

May produce pain on injection.
Ceftiofur Antibiotic
  • Local treatment in abscess cavities: 2 g lyophilized drug/20 g PMMA (Blackwells, 2011)
Chloramphenicol Chloromycetin Ophthalmic Ointment, Chloromycetin Redidrops, Kemicetine Antibiotic
  • 50 mg/kg PO/SC q12-24h (Meredith, 2015)
  • Opthalmic: 1 drop q4-8h; ointment q8-12h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 1 g powder for reconstitution.
  • Topical: Ophthalmic 1% ointment; 0.5% solution.
  • Oral: 250 mg capsules.

Used against Gram-positive (e.g. Streptococcus, Staphylococcus), Gram-negative (e.g. Brucella, Salmonella, Haemophilus) and obligate anaerobic bacteria (e.g. Clostridium, Bacteroides fragilis). Other sensitive organisms include Chlamydophila, Mycoplasma (unreliable in treatment of ocular mycoplasmosis) and Rickettsia. Resistant organisms include Nocardia and Mycobacterium. Acquired resistance may occur in Enterobacteriaceae.[1]

Humans exposed to chloramphenicol may have an increased risk of developing a fatal aplastic anaemia. Owners should use gloves and avoid skin contact when handling the drug.[1]
Chloramphenicol palmitate Antibiotic
  • General antibiotic therapy: 50 mg/kg q12h to q8h; IM, SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 30-50 mg/kg BW PO bid for 5-7 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 50 mg/kg BW PO bid (Bauck, 1989)
  • 50 mg/kg BW PO sid for 5-7 days (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
  • 750 mg/pint drinking water (Raphael, 1981)
Chloramphenicol succinate Antibiotic
  • General antibiotic therapy: 30-50 mg/kg q12h to q8h; IM, SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 15 mg/kg BW IM bid (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 30 mg/kg BW IM, IV tid for 5-7 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 50 mg/kg BW SC bid (Bauck, 1989)
  • 30 mg/kg BW IM sid for 5-7 days (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
  • 50 mg/kg BW SC, IM, IV tid (Russell et al., 1981)
Chlorhexidine Chlorohex, CLX wipes, Hibiscrub, Malaseb, Microbex, Otodine, Savlon, TrizChlor, Viatop Antiseptic
  • Apply to affected area q8h at 0.5-2.0% concentrations. 0.05% solution in water can be used as a safe wound flush (Meredith, 2015)
  • Otic: Dilute optical products to a 1.0% concentration and apply topically q8-12h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Cleansing solution: 1.5% chlorhexidine + cetrimide (Savlon)
  • Surgical scrub solution: 4% chlorhexidine + isopropyl alcohol (Hibiscrub)
  • Mouthwash: 0.12% chlorhexidine (Chlorohex)
  • Topical gel: 0.06% chlorhexidine, aqua, raffinose, propylene glycol, saponins, triethanolamine, acrylates, phenoxyethanol, benzoic acid esters, allantoin (Viatop)
  • Topical skin cleaner: Chlorhexidine, Tris-EDTA, zinc gluconate, glycerine, climbazole, benzyl alcohol, propylene glycol (CLX wipes)
  • Ear cleaner: 0.15% chlorhexidine + EDTA (TrizChlor); Chlorhexidine, Tris-EDTA, lactic acid (Otodine).

Used for:[1]

  • Topical treatment of Malassezia infections (Microbex).
  • Washing surgical instruments, routine antisepsis for surgical operations (Savlon, Hibiscrub) and dental hygiene (Chlorohex).
  • Topical treatment of mild pruritus (Viatop). Leave in contact with skin for 5-10 minutes prior to washing off.
  • Ear cleaners for cleansing and removal of cerumen.
Do not use in ears where integrity of the tympanum is unknown. Do not use on eyes. Ototoxic and may irritate mucous membranes.[1]
Ciprofloxacin Ciloxan, Ciproxin Antibiotic
  • 10-20 mg/kg PO q24h or 1 drop to affected eye q6h; loading dose can by used 1 drop to affected eye q15min for 4 doses (Meredith, 2015)
  • 5-20 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • General antibiotic therapy: 10-20 mg/kg PO q12h. 15-20 mg/kg PO once daily to q8h. (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 50 mg/kg BW IM tid for 4 days (Strunk et al., 1985)
  • 40 mg/kg BW IM tid for 28 days (Norden and Shinners, 1985)
  • 40 mg/kg BW IM bid for 17 days (Bayer et al., 1985)
  • 12-20 mg/kg BW PO (Göbel, 1996)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 100 mg, 250 mg and 500 mg tablets; 50 mg/ml suspension.
  • Ophthalmic: 0.3% solution in 5 ml bottle; 0.3% ointment in 3.5 g tube.

A fluoroquinolone used against a wide range of Gram-negative and some Gram-positive aerobes; some activity against Mycoplasma and Chlamydophila. Active against many ocular pathogens, including Staphylococcus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, although there is increasing resistance amongst staphylococci and streptococci.[1]

Ocular form shown to maintain therapeutic levels in tear film for 6h.[2]

Clarithromycin Klaricid Antibiotic
  • For Staphylococcus osteomyelitis: 80 mg/kg PO q12h with rifampin at 40 mg/kg PO q12h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 250 mg, 500 mg tablets; 125 mg/5 ml suspension; 250 mg/5 ml suspension; 250 mg granules sachet (to be dissolved in water).

Derived from erythromycin.

Active against Gram-positive cocci (some Staphylococcus spp. resistant), Gram-positive bacilli, some Gram-negative bacilli (e.g. Pasteurella) and some spirochaetes (e.g. Helicobacter). Some strains of Actinomyces, Nocardia, Chlamydophila, Mycoplasma and Rickettsia also inhibited. Most strains of Enterobacteriaceae (Pseudomonas, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella) are resistant.[1]

Used for respiratory tract infections, mild to moderate skin and soft tissue infections, and non-tubercular mycobacterial infections.[1] Administer on an empty stomach.

Clindamycin Antirobe, Clinacin, Clindacyl, Clindaseptin Antibiotic
Only for local use in abscesses incorporated into AIPMMA beads; should not be used orally.[2]

Causes 50 to 100% fatal enteritis PO and IV, dependent on dosage.[3] Effects can be within 72 hours or as long as 12-13 days after treatment.[4]

Clotrimazole Canesten, Clotrimazole, Lotriderm Antifungal
  • Otic: 3-5 drops in ear q12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • Topical: Apply to affected area and massage in gently q12h; if no improvement in 4 weeks re-evaluate therapy or diagnosis (Meredith, 2015)
  • Topical: Apply to clipped skin as needed (Blackwells, 2011)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Topical: 1% cream; 1% solution.
Cloxacillin Opticlox, Orbenin Antibiotic DO NOT USE DO NOT USE

Do not administer penicillins to rabbits.

Co-amoxiclav,
Amoxicillin/Clavulanate,
Amoxycillin/Clavulanic acid
Augmentin, Clavabactin, Clavaseptin, Clavucil, Clavudale, Combisyn, Kesium, Nisamox, Noroclav, Synulox Antibiotic DO NOT USE DO NOT USE
Dimetridazole Antibiotic
  • 0.025% solution prepared using 45 g active ingredient/50 gal drinking water (Williams, 1979)
Doxycycline Antibiotic
  • 2.5-4 mg/kg PO sid (Varga, 2014)
  • 2.5 mg/kg BW PO bid (Carpeter et al., 1995)
Enilconazole Antifungal
  • Apply topically as required. (Blackwells, 2011)
Enrofloxacin Baytril, Bayer Antibiotic
  • 5 mg/kg SC bid, 10 mg/kg SC sid, 5-10 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • General antibiotic treatment: 5-20 mg/kg PO, SC, IM, IV q12-24h (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 5-10 mg/kg BW IM, SC bid (repeated injections may lead to necrosis, abscesses) (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 5-10 mg/kg BW PO (Dorrestein, 1992)
  • 100 mg/l water (Dorrestein, 1992)
  • 5 mg/kg BW PO bid (Broome et al., 1991)
  • 10 mg/kg BW bid (Mladinich, 1989)
Enrofloxacin
(Baytril Otic)
Antibiotic
  • Topical otic antibiotic: Apply topically as directed, adjust dose to body size of patient (Blackwells, 2011)
Erythromycin Gallimycin, Ery-Tab, Ery-Ped, E.E.S., ERYC, Emycin, Erybid, Erythro, Erythrocin, PCE Antibiotic
May cause diarrhea when dosed at 3g/L in drinking water for 7 days.[3][4]
Furazolidone Antibiotic
  • 2.5 g/100 lb feed (Russell et al., 1981)
  • 400 mg/pt in drinking water (Russell et al., 1981)
Fusidic acid: eye drops Fucithalmic, Leo Antibiotic
  • Conjunctivitis: 1 drop/eye sid or bid (Varga, 2014)
Fusidic acid ointment Fuciderm, Leo Antibiotic
  • Superficial pyoderma: Topical sid or bid (Varga, 2014)
Caution as contains steroids
Gentamicin,
Gentamycin
Tiacil, Virbac Antibiotic
  • Conjunctivits: 1-2 drops/eye tid; give for 5-7 days (Varga, 2014)
  • Local treatment in abscess cavity: 1 g/20 g PMMA (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 4 mg/kg BW IM sid (Russell et al., 1981)
  • 5-8 mg/kg BW SC side (Bauck, 1989)
  • 2.5 mg/kg BW IM, SC tid for 5 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
Best avoided for use in rabbits other than as ophthalmic drops, antibiotic beads, and nebulization protocols.[6] Depending on dosage may cause ototoxicity, nephrotoxicity, and a neuromuscular block.[7]
Griseofulvin Antifungal
  • Ringworm: 25 mg/kg PO sid; continue for at least 2 weeks (Varga, 2014)
  • Systemic antifungal therapy: 25 mg/kg once daily or divided q12h for 28-40 days; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 12.5-25 mg/kg BW PO bid for 30 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 25 mg/100 g BW PO every 10 days (Russell et al., 1981)
  • 2.5 mg/100 g BW PO for 14 days (Russell et al., 1981)
Itraconazole Antifungal
  • Systemic antifungal therapy: 5 mg/kg daily for 3-4 weeks (Blackwells, 2011)
Ketoconazole Antifungal
  • Systemic antifungal therapy: 10-15 mg/kg once daily for 3-4 weeks (Blackwells, 2011)
Lincomycin Antibiotic DO NOT USE DO NOT USE

Causes 33 to 100% fatal enteritis PO and IM, dependent on dosage.[3] Effects can occur within 3 days.[4] Oral or parenteral administration results in a severe and usually fatal form of diarrhea.[8]

Marbofloxacin Antibiotic
  • 2-5 mg/kg PO/SC sid (Varga, 2014)
  • 5 mg/kg PO q24h (Blackwells, 2011)
Has been used at 10 mg/kg sid for pasteurellosis. (Varga, 2014)
Metronidazole Antibiotic
  • 20 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • For anaerobic infections: 20mg/kg PO IV q12h. Treat for 2 weeks for Clostridium spp. (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 20 mg/kg BW PO bid (Carpenter et al., 1995)
Treatment of choice for enterotoxaemia. (Varga, 2014)
Miconazole (cream or 2% shampoo) Antifungal
  • Topical antifungal: Apply topically as required (Blackwells, 2011)
Minocycline Antibiotic * 6 mg/kg BW IV q8h (Nicolau et al., 1993)
Causes reduction of growth rate when dosed at 30 mg/kg IM for 3 days.[3][4]
Neomycin Antibiotic
  • 30 mg/kg BW PO bid for 5 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 0.2-0.8 mg/kg drinking water (Flecknell, 1996)
Nitrofurazone Antibiotic
  • 11 mg/kg BW PO sid (Melby and Altman, 1976)
  • 100 mg/l drinking water (Schuchman, 1977)
Orbifloxacin Antibiotic
  • 5-20 mg/kg PO sid; doses anecdotal(Varga, 2014)
Oxytetracycline Antibiotic
  • 15 mg/kg SC, IM side every 3 days; 30 mg/kg (depot SC; 1 mg/kL DW; 50 mg/kg PO (Varga, 2014)
  • 15 mg/kg BW IM tid for 7 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 15 mg/kg BW SC, IM (Flecknell, 1987)
  • 30-1100 mg/kg BW in divided doses PO (Bowman and Lang, 1986)
  • 400-1000 mg/l drinking water (Bowman and Lang, 1986)
  • 50 mg/kg BW qid (Raphael, 1981)
Penicillin Procaine Antibiotic
  • 40,000 IU/kg (40 mg/kg) SC sid (Varga, 2014)
  • 40-60,000 IU/kg SQ q48h (Blackwells, 2011)
Causes acute and/or chronic enteritis (diarrhea) after oral administration.[4] Injection of cephalosporin has proven safe.[3]

Contain 1000 IU/mg 5-day course for Treponema paraliuscuniculi. (Varga, 2014)

Penicillin G, benzathine Antibiotic
  • Treponema paraliuscuniculi treatment: 20 mg/kg PP + 15 mg BP/kg SC weekly; give 3 weekly injections (Varga, 2014)
  • General antibiotic treatment: 42,000-84,000 IU/kg SC q24h (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 84,000 IU/kg BW SC once each week for 3 weeks (Cunliffe-Beamer and Fox, 1981)
  • 2 ml/10 lb BW IM, SC qod (Russell et al., 1981)
Do not administer orally.
Penicillin G, procaine Antibiotic
  • 20 mg/kg PP + 15 mg BP/kg SC weekly; give 3 weekly injections (Varga, 2014)
  • 42,000-60,000 IU/kg SC q48h treatments; SC, IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 50,000 IU/kg BW sid (Bauck, 1989)
  • 60,000 U/kg BW IM sid for 10 days (Jaslow et al, 1981; Welch et al., 1987)
  • 84,000 IU/kg BW SC once each week for 3 weeks (Cunliffe-Beamer and Fox, 1981)
  • 2 ml/10 lb BW IM, SC qod (Russell et al., 1981)
Treatment for Treponema cuniculi.
Polymyxin B Antibiotic
  • 3 mg/300- to 400-g animal PO bid for 5 days (Farrar and Kent, 1965)
Spectinomycin Antibiotic
May cause diarrhea when dosed at 1 g/L in drinking water for 7 days.[3][4]
Spiramycin Antibiotic
May cause nervous signs when dosed at 4.85 g/kg.[3][4]
Streptomycin sulfate Antibiotic
  • 10 mg/kg BW IM q4h (CCAC, 1984)
Sulfadimethoxine,
Sulphadimethoxine
Di-Methox, Albon Antibiotic
  • Treatment of gastrointestinal coccidiosis: 25-50 mg/kg once daily, or 50 mg/kg loading dose followed by 25 mg/kg for 9 days; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 12.5 mg/kg BW PO bid (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 75-100 mg/kg BW PO sid for 7 days (Rossoff, 1974)
Sulfamethazine,
Sulphadimidine
Antibiotic
  • Coccidiosis: 100-233 mg/L DW (Varga, 2014)
  • 900-1350 mg/l drinking water (CCAC, 1984)
  • 12.5%: add 5 ml/pt drinking water (100 mg/kg BW PO) (Russell et al., 1981)
Sulfaquinoxaline Antibiotic
  • 0.05% in drinking water (Patton, 1979)
  • 6 mg/lb BW PO for 5-7 days (Russell et al., 1981)
Tetracycline Antibiotic
  • 20 mg/kg BW PO bid (Bauck, 1989)
  • 500-900 mg tetracycline powder in dextrose/l drinking water; fresh twice daily and protect from light (Bauck, 1989)
  • 30-100 mg/kg BW in divided doses PO (Bowman and Lang, 1986)
May cause diarrhea and GI disease.[9]
Tilmicosin Antibiotic
  • 25 mg/kg BW SC once (McKay et al., 1996)
Fatal adverse reaction has been observed. The reaction seems rabbit dependent and it is advised to do a test dose of 5 mg/kg before doubling dosage.[3]
Trimethoprim-sulfadiazine,
Trimethoprim-sulphadiazine
Antibiotic
  • 30 mg/kg PO bid, 48 mg/kg SC (Varga, 2014)
  • General antibiotic therapy: 30 mg/kg q12h; SC, PO (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 30 mg/kg BW SC sid (Bauck, 1989)
  • 0.2 ml/kg BW SC bid of 240 mg/ml solution (Flecknell, 1987)
Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole Antibiotic
  • Coccidiosis: 40 mg/kg PO bid; continue for 7 days (Varga, 2014)
  • 15 mg/kg BW PO bid (Bauck, 1989)
'Co-trimoxazole' human formulation available as pediatric syrup.
Tylosin Antibiotic
  • 10 mg/kg SC, IM bid (Varga, 2014)
  • 10 mg/kg BW IM, SC, PO bid (Carpenter et al., 1995)
A test dose of 5 mg/kg should be give to check that no adverse reaction takes place.[7]
May cause diarrhea when dosed at 100 mg/rabbit for 7 days.[4]
Vancomycin Antibiotic
  • 50 mg/kg BW IV q8h (Nicolau et al., 1993)
Causes acute toxicity with 100% mortality at 75 mg/kg IV.[3][4]

Antiparasitics

The following are a list of antiparasitics and parasiticides that have been used on rabbits with varying results.

Drug Name Brands Type Dosage Remarks
Albendazole Valbazen Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • 20 mg/kg PO daily for 3-14 days (Varga, 2014)
  • 20-30 mg/kg once daily; PO for 30 days, then reduce to 15 mg/kg once daily PO for 30 days (Blackwells, 2011)
Used treat Encephalitozoon cuniculi.
Amprolium Amprid, Amprol, AmproMed, Cocci-Cure, CocciAid, Corid, Coxoid Coccidiostat, Antiprotozoal, Antiparasitic
  • 20 mg/kg PO q24h for 2-4 weeks (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.5 mL/500 mL of drinking water for 10 days of 9.6% solution (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 1 ml/7 kg BW of 9.6% solution sid for 5 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 5 ml/gal of 9.6% solution in drinking water for 5 days (Carpenter et al., 1995
  • 9.6% solution: 1 ml/15 lb BW PO for 5 days (Williams, 1979))
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 3.84% solution for dilution in water.

Used for coccidiosis in animals.

Limit duration of therapy to 2 weeks. Prolonged high doses can cause thiamine deficiency.[1]
Carbaryl Insecticide, Antiparasitic
  • Ectoparasites: Dust lightly with 5% powder once weekly. (Blackwells, 2011)
  • Dust with 5% powder or dilute 1:1 with talc (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
Fenbendazole Panacur, Safe-Guard Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • 20 mg/kg PO (Varga, 2014)
  • 20 mg/kg once daily for 5-28 days; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 20 mg/kg BW PO for 5 days (McKellar, 1989)
  • 50 ppm in food for 5 days (Duwel and Brech, 1981)
Treatment for E. cuniculi.
Fipronil Frontline Insecticide, Antiparasitic DO NOT USE DO NOT USE

Rabbits may exhibit signs of toxicity (lethargy, anorexia, seizures, and death) within 24 hours of application. Toxicity has been reported with both spot-on and spray-on formulations.[5]

Imidacloprid Advantage, IMOXI Insecticide, Antiparasitic
  • Fleas: 10 mg/kg topical (Varga, 2014)
  • Topical flea treatment: Treat as per cats (Blackwells, 2011)
Not effective against mites.
Ivermectin Acarexx, Bimectin, Bovimectin, DuraMectin, EQVALAN, Iver-On, Ivermax, Iversol, Ivomec, Noromectin, Panomec, Parid EQ, Parid LA, Privermectin, ProMectin, Solmectin, SparMectin-E, Vetrimec, Zimecterin Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • Mites: 400 μg/kg SC; repeat after 10-14 days (Varga, 2014)
  • Ectoparasites: 200-400 μg/kg once, repeat in 10-14 days for a total of 2-3 treatments as needed; SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 200-400 µg/kg BW SC, repeat in 10-14 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 200-400 µg/kg BW SC, PO (Messonnier, 1994)
  • 400 µg/kg BW SC (McKellar et al., 1992)
Lufenuron Program, Sentinel Antiparasitic
  • Fleas: Treat as per cat; 30 mg/kg PO every 30 days (Blackwells, 2011)
Malathion Insecticide, Antiparasitic
  • 0.5% sponged twice weekly (Russell et al., 1981)
Mebendazole Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • 10 mg/kg BW PO for 5 days (McKellar, 1989)
Moxidectin Advantage, Cydectin, IMOXI, Quest Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • 0.2 mg/kg PO; repeat in 10 days (Varga, 2014)
Nicarbazin Coccidiostat, Antiprotozoal, Antiparasitic
  • 125 ppm in food for 1 month (Sorribas et al., 1992)
Niclosamide Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • 150 mg/kg BW PO (Williams, 1976)
Oxybendazole Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • To treat E. cuniculi: 20 mg/kg once daily for 7-14 days; PO; then reduce to 15 mg/kg once daily for 30-60 days (Blackwells, 2011)
Phenothiazine Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • 1 g/50 g molasses-treated feed (Siegmund, 1979)
Piperazine adipate Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • 500 mg/kg once daily for 2 days; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.5 mg/kg BW PO for 2 days (Brooks, 1979)
Piperazine citrate Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • powder: 200 mg/kg BW PO (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
  • 100 mg/ml drinking water for 1 day (USDA, 1976)
Praziquantel Antihelmintic, Antiparasitic
  • For treatment of cestodes: 6 mg/kg SC; repeat after 10 days (Varga, 2014)
  • 5-10 mg/kg once, repeat in 10 days; PO, SC, IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 5-10 mg/kg BW IM, SC, PO once; repeat in 10 days (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 5 mg/kg BW SC or 10 mg/kg BW PO (McKellar, 1989)
Pyrethrin products Antiparasitic DO NOT USE
  • 0.5% applied as a dust (Russell et al., 1981)
DO NOT USE

While pyrethrin is a natural product derived from chrysanthemums, toxic effects have been reported following application of high concentrations of these products (sprays or spot-ons) on rabbits.[10]

Rotenone Insecticide, Antiparasitic
  • Mix with mineral oil and apply in ear for 3 days off and on for 3 weeks (Russell et al., 1981)
Selamectin Dolmectin, EVICTO, Paradyne, Revolt, Revolution, Selarid, Selavectine, Senergy Antiparasitic
  • Fleas: 20 mg/kg topical every 7 days[5]
  • Cheyletiella mites: Single dose of 12 mg/kg[5]
  • Mites: 6-18 mg/kg topical once only (Varga, 2014)
  • Treatment of ectoparasites and endoparasites: Treat as per cat; 6-10 mg/kg applied topically every 30 days (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 6-18 mg/kg BW topical (McTier et al., 2003)
Thiabendazole Antiparasitic
  • 50 mg/kg BW PO; repeat in 3 weeks (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 100 mg/kg BW PO for 5 days (McKellar, 1989
  • 25 mg/kg BW PO (Williams, 1976))
Toltrazuril Coccidiostat, Antiprotozoal, Antiparasitic Can be used for treatment of rabbit colonies.

Other drugs

Drug Name Brands Type Dosage Remarks
Acetylcysteine Ilube, Parvolex Mucolytic
  • Mucolytic: nebulize 50 mg as 2% (dilute with saline) solution over 30-60 min as required (e.g. q6-12 hours) (Meredith, 2015)
  • Otic lavage: 1-2 ml of a 20% solution (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 200 mg/ml solution
  • Topical: 5% ophthalmic solution in combination with 0.35% hypromellose ophthalmic drops in 10 ml bottle

Used as a mucolytic in respiratory disease. In rabbits, direct application into ear has been reported as beneficial in cases of secretory otitis media, reducing inflammation and preventing long-term fibrotic changes.[1]

Activated charcoal Antidote
  • 0.5-5 g/kg PO (anecdotal) (Meredith, 2015)
  • 1-3 g/kg every 4-6 hours as needed PO. Dilute 1 g charcoal/5-10 mL water. (Blackwells, 2011)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 50 g activated charcoal powder or premixed slurry (200 mg/ml).

Absorbs toxins, fluids, and gases in the GI tract. As a general rule, administer at a dose of at least 10 times the volume of intoxicant ingested.[1]

Activated charcoal flats, covering everything in the area — use carefully as it will stain permanently. May color stools black, which can be alarming to owners. Will reduce efficacy of orally administered drugs.[1]

Adrenaline,
Epinephrine
Adrenaline, Epinephrine Vasopressor,
Adrenergic bronchodilator
  • Cardiac resuscitation: 100 µg/kg IV, repeated and/or higher doses (up to 200 µg/kg) may be required at intervals of 2-5 min. (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 0.1-10 mg/ml, equivalent to 1:10,000 to 1:100.

Used for cardiac resuscitation, status asthmaticus and to offset the effects of histamine release in severe anaphylactoid reactions.[1]

Adrenaline is sensitive to light and air; do not use if pink, brown, or contains a precipitate.[1]

Aglepristone Alizin Antiprogestin
  • Pregnancy Termination: 10 mg/kg on days 6 and 7 post implantation (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 30 mg/ml solution.

Used to terminate pregnancies.

Use with care. Accidental injection may be a hazard to women who are pregnant or intending to become pregnant.[1]

Aluminum antacids,
Aluminum hydroxide
Alucap. With alginate: Acidex, Gastrocote, Gaviscon, Advance, Peptac. With magnesium salt: Asilone, Maalox, Mucogel. Antacid
  • 30-60 mg/kg PO q8-12h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: available as a dried gel. Other products are composite preparations.

Used for management of gastritis and gastric ulceration. Thoroughly mix drug with food to disperse it throughout the GI tract and increase palatability.[1]

Amino acid solutions Duphalyte, Aminoplasmal, Aminoven, Clinimix, Glamin, Hyperamine, Intrafusin, Kabiven, Kabiven Peripheral, Nutriflex Nutritional support
  • Anecdotally, used alone or diluted with LRS at 1:5 ratio and given at a total volume of approx. 100 ml/kg/day. (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: synthetic crystalline l-amino acid solutions for IV use only. Available in a variety of concentrations.

Amino acid solutions supply essential and non-essential amino acids for protein production. They are used parenterally in patients requiring nutritional support but unable to receive enteral support.[1]

Should not by used for animals with dehydration, hepatic encephalopathy, severe azotaemia, shock, congestive heart failure and electrolyte imbalances.[1]

Aminophylline Bronchodilator
  • For emergency bronchodilation: 2.0 mg/kg IV q12h, slowly IV (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 25 mg/ml solution
  • Oral: 100 mg tablet

Aminophylline is a stable mixture of theophylline and ethylenediamine.

Apomorphine Apometic, Apomorphine, APO-go Emetic DO NOT USE DO NOT USE

Rabbits are unable to vomit.

Atenolol Atenolol, Tenormin Beta blocker
  • 0.5-2 mg/kg PO q24h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 24 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg tablets; 5 mg/ml syrup.

Used for cardiac tachyarrhythmias, hyperthyroidism, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, obstructive cardiac disease (severe aortic or pulmonic stenosis) and systemic hypertension.[1]

Should not be used for animals with bradyarrhythmias, acute or decompensated congestive heart failure. Relatively contraindicated in animals with medically controlled congestive heart failure.[1]

Atipamezole Alzane, Antisedan, Atipam, Revertor, Sedastop Sedative reversal
  • 2.5 times the previous medetomidine dose. (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.2 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 1 mg/kg BW IV, SC (Flecknell, 1996)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 5 mg/ml solution

Reverses the sedative effects of medetomidine or dexmedetomidine and other alpha-2 agonists.

When medetomidine or dexmedetomidine has been administered at least an hour before, dose of atipamezole can be reduced by half (i.e. half the volume of medetomidine or dexmedetomidine) and repeated if recovery is slow.[1]
Atropine Atrocare Premedication
  • 0.04-0.1 mg/kg IM/SC (Meredith, 2015)
  • Organophospate toxicity: 0.05 mg/kg IM (Varga, 2014)
  • Bradycardia: 0.1-0.5 mg/kg; IM, SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • Organophosphate toxicity: 2-10 mg/kg q20min as necessary; IM, SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • Mydriasis: 1% atropine ophthalmic drops to dilate eyes in albino animals (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.20 mg/kg BW IM, IV, SC (Green, 1982)
  • For organophosphate overdose: 10 mg/kg BW SC every 20 min (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
  • 1-3 mg/kg BW IM, SC 30 min before surgery (Green, 1982)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 0.6 mg/ml.
  • Ophthalmic: 0.5%, 1% solution in single-use vials; 5 ml bottle; 1% ointment.

Used to prevent or correct bradycardia and bradyarrhythmias, to dilate pupiles, to manage organophosphate and carbamate toxicities, and in conjunction with anticholinesterase drugs during antagonism of neuromuscular block.[1]

40% rabbits produce atropine esterase that metabolizes atropine.[2] Endogenous atropinase levels may make repeat injections q10–15min necessary.[1]

The solution does not contain any antimicrobial preservative, so any remaining solution in vial should be discarded after use. The solution should be protected from light.[1]

Atropine should not be used in animals with glaucoma, lens luxation, and keratoconjunctivitis sicca.[1]

Atropine +
phenylephrine
  • Mydriasis: 1 drop of 1% atropine + 1 drop of 10% phenylephrine ophthalmic drops 3 to 4 times over 15 min to dilate eyes in animals with ocular pigmentation (Blackwells, 2011)
Barium sulfate Contrast media
  • Gastrointestinal contrast radiography: 10-15 mL/kg; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Benazepril Benefortin, Cardalis, Fortekor, Nelio, Prilben, Vetpril ACE inhibitor
  • Starting dose 0.05 mg/kg PO q24h. Dose may be increased to a maximum of 0.1 mg/kg. (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.05 mg/kg PO sid (Varga, 2014)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 2.5 mg, 5 mg, 20 mg tablets. Available in a compound preparation with spironolactone (Cardalis tablets) in the following formulations: 2.5 mg benazepril/20 mg spironolactone, 5 mg benazepril/40 mg spironolactone, 10 mg benazepril/80 mg spironolactone.

A angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. For treatment of cardiac heart failure and cardiac renal failure.

Do not use in cases of cardiac output failure. Can be associated with an increase in azotaemia in rabbits.[1]

Betamethasone Fusiderm, Norbet, Otomax, Betnesol, Maxidex Corticosteroid
  • 0.1 mg/kg SC q24h (Meredith, 2015)
  • Otic: 4 drops of polypharmaceutical to affected ear q12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • Ocular: 1 drop of ophthalmic solution to affected eye q6–8h (Meredith, 2015)
  • Skin: Apply cream to affected area q8–12h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 4 mg/ml solution for IV or IM use.
  • Oral: 0.25 mg tablet.
  • Topical: 0.1% cream with 0.5% fusidic acid. Betamethasone is also present in varying concentrations with or without antibacterials.
  • Ophthalmic/Otic: 0.1% solution; 0.88% mg/ml suspension with clotrimazole and gentamicin.

Used for short-term relief of inflammatory but non-infectious conditions. On a dose basis, 0.12 mg betamethasone is equivalent to 1 mg prednisolone.[1]

Use glucocorticosteroids with care in rabbits as they act as strong immunodepressants.[1][11] Wear gloves when applying cream. Topical corticosteroids should not be used on animals with ulcerative keratitis.[1]
Bethanecol Myotonine Muscarinic agonist
  • 2.5-5 mg/kg PO q12h. Titrate doses upwards to avoid adverse effects. (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 10 mg tablets.

Used to empty the bladder and increase urination by increasing urinary bladder detrusor muscle tone and contraction.

Best given on an empty stomach to avoid GI distress.[1]

Bismuth salts
(Bismuth carbonate)
Pepto-Bismol Gastic cytoprotectant
  • Pepto-Bismol: 0.3-0.6 ml/kg PO q4-6h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: Pepto-Bismol: bismuth subsalicylate suspension.

Used for acute oral poisoning, gastric ulceration, and flatulent diarrhea. Doses are empirical. Has a mild anti-inflammatory effect.[1]

Do not use where specific oral antidotes are being administered in cases of poisoning. Do not use if the animal is unconscious, fitting, or has a reduced cough reflex. In patients with an intestinal obstruction, do not use when enterotomy or enterectomy is to be performed.[1] Avoid long-term use as absorbed bismuth is neurotoxic.[1]
Bretylium
  • 10 mg/kg BW IV (Borchard et al., 1990)
Bromhexine Bisolvon Mucolytic
  • 0.3 mg/animal PO q24h or via nebulizer as 0.15 mg/ml for 20-30 minutes, 1-3 times daily (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.3 mg PO sid; anecdotally may be used more frequently (Varga, 2014)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 3 mg/ml solution.
  • Oral: 10 mg/g powder.

Used to manage respiratory diseases.

Buserelin Receptal Hormone
  • 0.8 µg/rabbit SC at time of insemination or mating (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.2 mL/rabbit (Varga, 2014)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 4 µg/ml solution.

Buserelin is a synthetic GnRH (gonadotrophin releasing hormone) analogue that stimulates LH and FSH production, thus causing oestrus to develop and progress.[1]

Used to supplement natural LH in cases of ovulation failure or delay and induce lactation postpartum in mammals.[1] In rabbits, it is used to induce ovulation postpartum for insemination and to improve conception rates.[1]

Pregnant women should not administer the product. Anaphylactic reactions may occasionally occur.[1]
Calcium EDTA
  • Chelation, lead toxicosis: 25 mg/kg q24h to q6h for 5 days; SC; dilute to 10 mg/mL with sale. Repeat if necessary. (Blackwells, 2011)
Calcium gluconate
  • 5-10 ml of 10% solution PO (Raphael, 1981)
  • 3-5 ml of 10% solution IV (Raphael, 1981)
Carbomer 980 Lubrithal Mucinomimetic
  • 1 drop per eye q4-6h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Ophthalmic: 0.2% (10 g tube, single-use vial), 0.25% (10 g tube) gel. This formulation is marketed specifically for small animals. Other formulations are widely available for general sale.

Used for tear replacement and tear film disorders.

Chitosan Ipakitine DO NOT USE DO NOT USE

Not advised in rabbits due to the risk of hypercalcuria.[1]

Cholestyramine Questran Ion exchange resin
  • 0.5 g/kg PO bid or sid, 2 g/20 mL water bid or sid; can be used prophylactically (Varga, 2014)
  • 2 g active ingredient, which is equivalent to 4 g Questran, in 20 ml drinking water for 21 days (Lipman et al., 1989)
Used for reversal of antibiotic-induced enterotoxemia
Chlorphenamine,
Chlorpheniramine
Piriton Antihistamine
  • 0.2-0.4 mg/kg PO q12h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 4 mg tablet, 0.4 mg/ml syrup.

Use to manage allergic disease and prevention as well as early treatment of anaphylaxis.[1]

Chlorphenamine maleate Antihistamine
  • 200-400 µg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
Paediatric syrup available.
Cholestyramine
  • Absorption of clostridial enterotoxins: 2 g in 20 mL water once daily by gavage (2.5-3.8 kg animal) (Blackwells, 2011)
Chorionic gonadotrophin,
Human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG)
Chorulon Hormone
  • 20-25 IU/rabbit IV once to induce ovulation (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 1500 IU powder for reconstitution.

Used to supplement or replace LH in cases of ovulation failure or delay, to induce lactation post-partum, or in females who fail to hold to mating.[1]

Reconstituted vials do not contain any preservative and should be discarded within 24 hours.[1]
Ciclosporin,
Cyclosporin,
Cyclosporine
Atopica, Optimmune, Neoral, Sandimmun Immunosuppressant
  • For idiopathic sebaceous adenitis: 5 mg/kg PO q24h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 10 mg/kg BW/d IV at 2 mg/kg/min (Petraitiene et al., 2001)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 10 mg, 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg capsules; 100 mg/ml solution.
Cimetidine Cimetidine, Dyspamet, Tagamet, Zitac Antacid,
Antihistamine
  • 5-10 mg/kg PO q6-8h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 5-10 mg/kg PO/SC/IM/IV q12h to q8h (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 5-10 mg/kg BW q6-12h (Carpenter et al., 1995)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 100 mg/ml solution in 2 ml ampoule.
  • Oral: 100 mg, 200 mg, 400 mg, 800 mg tablets; 40 mg/ml syrup.

Used as a gastric protectant. Has minimal prokinetic effects.

Cisapride Propulsid Prokinetic
  • 0.1-1.0 mg/kg (typically 0.5 mg/kg) PO q8-12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.5 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • Gastrointestinal promotility agent: 0.5 mg/kg q8-12h; PO, SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.5 mg/kg BW SC bid, tid (Paul-Murply and Ramer, 1998)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Various formulations (including tablets and suspensions) available as a veterinary special depending on requirements.

Very effective product in rabbits for GI stasis.[1][2] Unfortunately, the product has been withdrawn due to potentially fatal cardiac arrhythmias in humans but is solely available to the veterinary profession.[1]

Colestyramine,
Cholestyramine
Questran Bile acid sequestrant
  • 2 g/rabbit PO syringed gently with 20 ml water q24h (Meredith, 2015)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 4 g powder/sachet

Use to absorb toxins produced in the GI tract following the development of overgrowth of Clostridium.[1]

May cause constipation.

Cyproheptadine Stimulant
  • Appetite stimulant: 1 mg/rabbit once daily to q12h; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Dexamethasone Aurizon, Dexa-ject, Dexadreson, Dexafort, Dexamethasone, Maxidex, Maxitrol, Rapidexon, Voren Corticosteroid
  • 0.2-0.6 mg/kg SC/IM/IV q24h
  • 1-2 mg/kg IM, IV (Varga, 2014)
  • 0.5-2.0 mg/kg q12h; PO, SC, IM. Wean off dosage at end of treatment. (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.5-2 mg/kg BW IM, IV (Paul-Murphy and Ramer, 1998)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 2 mg/ml solution; 1 mg/ml, 3 mg/ml suspension; 2.5 mg/ml suspension with 7.5 mg/ml prednisolone.
  • Oral: 0.5 mg tablet. (1 mg of dexamethasone is equivalent to 1.1 mg of dexamethasone acetate, 1.3 mg of dexamethasone isonicotinate or dexamethasone sodium phosphate, or 1.4 mg of dexamethasone trioxa-undecanoate.)
Rarely indicated in rabbits. Use with caution due to likelihood of debilitating side effects even in small single doses or with the use of topical, ocular, and aural preparations. Use shorter-acting preparations wherever possible in rabbits.[1]
Dextrose
  • 2 ml/kg BW of 50% solution (Williams, 1976)
Digoxin Digoxin, Lanoxin, Lanoxin PG Antiarrhythmic
  • 3–30 μg/kg PO q24-48h (Meredith, 2015)
  • Management of congestive heart failure and cardiomyopathy: 0.005-0.01 mg/kg PO once daily to every other day (Blackwells, 2011)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 62.5 μg, 125 μg, 250 μg tablets; 50 μg/ml elixir
  • Injectable: 100 μg/ml, 250 μg/ml

Used for treating dilated cardiomyopathy in rabbits. Serum levels should be checked after 5-7 days, with a sample taken at least 8 hours post-pill.[1]

Diltiazem Hypercard, Dilcardia SR Antihypertensive, Calcium channel blocker
  • 0.5-1.0 mg/kg PO q12-24h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 3.75-7.5 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 10 mg (Hypercard), 60 mg (generic) tablets. Long-acting preparations authorized for humans, such as Dilcardia SR (60 mg, 90 mg, 120 mg capsules), are available but their pharmacokinetics have been little studied in animals to date.

For use in adhesion prevention and to control supraventricular tachyarrhythmias and for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.[2][1]

Dinoprost tromethamine (Prostaglandin F2) Enzaprost, Lutalyse Hormone
  • 0.2 mg/kg single IM injection following 3 days of oral liquid paraffin to assist in emptying impacted cecal contents.
Formulations available:[1]
  • Injectable: 5 mg/ml solution.

Used to terminate pregnancies, stimulate uterine contractions in the treatment of open pyometra, and also possesses prokinetic effects on the cecum of the rabbit.[1]

Diphenhydramine Dreemon, Nytol, Benadryl Antihistamine
  • Torticollis: 2 mg/kg PO, SC, IM q12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 2 mg/kg PO bid-tid (Blackwell, 2014)
  • 2 mg/kg q12h to q8h; PO, SC (Blackwells, 2011)
Formulations available:[1]
  • Oral: 25 mg tablet; 2 mg/ml solution. Other products are available of various concentrations and most contain other active ingredients.

Used to reduce nausea during torticollis as well as preventing sneezing and coughing from allergic reactions.[1]

May cause drowsiness - avoid use in combination with other sedatives.
Domperidone Domperidone, Motilium Prokinetic
  • 0.5 mg/kg PO q12h (Meredith, 2015)
  • 0.5 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
Similar action to metoclopramide with fewer side effects.[2]
Contraindicated in GI obstruction.
Doxapram Respiratory stimulant
  • 5 mg/kg IM, IV (Varga, 2014)
  • 2-5 mg/kg as needed; SC, IV (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 2-5 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1987)
Enalapril ACE inhibitor
  • For treatment of CHF or CRF: 0.25-0.5 mg/kg PO sid or eod (Varga, 2014)
  • Management of congestive heart failure and cardiomyopathy: 0.25-0.5 mg/kg once daily to every other day; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Epoetin alpha
  • Stimulates erythropoiesis: 50-150 IU/kg every 2-3 days; SC (Blackwells, 2011)
Epinephrine
  • Cardiac arrest: 0.2 mg/kg IV (Blackwells, 2011)
Estriol Hormone
  • 0.1 mg/rabbit PO sid; can titrate dose to effect; may notice estrogenic effects (Varga, 2014)
Fluid therapy
  • 10-20 mL/kg/h IV; 10-15 mL/kg SC; Warm before use(Varga, 2014)
Furosemide Diuretic
  • 0.3-2 mg/kg IV, SC, IM (Varga, 2014)
  • 1-4 mg/kg q12h to q8h; IM IV. 1-2 mg/kg q12h to q8h; PO long-term use (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 2-5 mg/kg BW IM, IV, PO, SC bid (Paul-Murphy and Ramer, 1998)
Indicated for treatment of CHF.
Gallamine
  • 1 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 0.2-0.3 mg/kg BW IV (Lumb and Jones, 1984)
Glucose 5%
  • Anorexia, perioperatively: 10 mL/kg IV, SC; warm before use (Varga, 2014)
Glycopyrrolate Premedication
  • Premedication: 0.01 mg/kg IV, SC (Varga, 2014)
  • Organophosphate poisoning: 0.1 mg/kg IM (Varga, 2014)
  • Anticholinergic preanesthetic: 0.01-0.1 mg/kg; SC (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.1 mg/kg BW IM, SC (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 0.01 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 0.011 mg/kg BW IV (Aeschbacher, 1995)
Does not cross blood-brain barrier and cause mydriasis.
Heparin
  • 5 mg/kg BW IV (Melby and Altman, 1976)
Hetastarch
  • Volume expansion: 20 mL/kg IV (Blackwells, 2011)
Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG)
  • 20-25 IU IV (Hafez, 1970)
Hydromorphone
  • 0.1 mg/kg SC IM q2-4h (Blackwells, 2011)
Hydroxyzine Antihistamine
  • 2 mg/kg q12h to q8h; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Iron dextran
  • Iron deficient anemia: 4-6 mg/kg once; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
Lidocaine Antiarrhythmia
  • 1-2 mg/kg IV or 2-4 mg/kg IT (Blackwells, 2011)
Lime sulfur 2.5% solution
  • Ectoparasites: Apply once weekly for 4-6 weeks (Blackwells, 2011)
Liquid paraffin
  • 1-2 mL/kg bid (Varga, 2014)

Softens impacted gastric or caecal contents. Administer with care (preferably mixed with food) as is easily aspirated.[2]

Loperamide
  • 0.1 mg/kg BW PO tid for 3 days, then sid for 2 days (Banerjee et al., 1987)
Meclizine Antiemetic
  • Torticollis: 2-12 mg/kg PO sid-tid (Varga, 2014)
  • Vestibular disorders: 2-12 mg/kg q8-12h; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 2-12 mg/kg BW PO sid (Paul-Murphy and Ramer, 1998)
Melatonin Hormone
  • 1-2 mg PO sid; dose extrapologated from other species, not yet validated (Varga, 2014)
Meprobamate
  • 50-150 mg/kg BW IM (Melby and Altman, 1976)
Metaclopramide Prokinetic
  • 0.5 mg/kg SC bid (Varga, 2014)
Stimulates gastric emptying and GI motility.[2]:321
Methylprednisone
  • 5 mg/kg BW/d IV (Petraitiene et al., 2001)
Metoclopramide Reglan Prokinetic
  • 0.5 mg/kg SC, PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • Gastrointestinal promotility agent: 0.2-1.0 mg/kg PO, SC, IM q12h or 1-2 mg/kg/day IV as a constant rate infusion (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.2-0.5 mg/kg BW PO, SC (Carpenter et al., 1995)
  • 0.2-0.4 mg/kg BW SC sid-tid (Messonnier, 1996)
May not be effective in young rabbits. (Varga, 2014)
Metocurine
  • 0.01-0.015 mg/kg BW IV (Lumb and Jones, 1984)
Nalorphine Opioid antagonist
  • 2 mg/kg BW IV (Harkness and Wagner, 1983)
  • Give 1 mg nalophine (up to a maximum of 2 mg/kg BW) for every 10 mg of morphine that was given (Green, 1982)
Naloxone Opioid antagonist
  • Opoid reversal by titration: 0.01-0.1 mg/kg; IM, IV (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 0.01-0.1 mg/kg BW IM, IV (Flecknell, 1987)
Nandrolone Steroid
  • 2 mg/kg SC, IM (Varga, 2014)
Anabolic
Oxytocin Hormone
  • Stimulation of uterine contraction in non-obstructive dystocia: 1-2 IU/kg SC, IM (Varga, 2014)
  • To stimulate uterine motility or milk letdown: 0.1-3 U/kg; SC, IM (Blackwells, 2011)
  • 1-2 U IM, SC total dose (Melby and Altman, 1976)
  • 0.2-3 units/kg BW IM, IP, IV, SC (Schuchman, 1977)
Pancuronium
  • 0.1 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 0.008 mg/kg BW IV (Lumb and Jones, 1984)
Penicillamine Chelating agent
  • 30 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
For copper and lead toxicity.
Pentoxyfilline
  • 15-30 mg/kg PO bid; doses reported from experimental data in literature (Varga, 2014)
Phnylpropanolamine
  • Increase urethral outflow resistance: 5-10 mg/rabbit PO bid (Varga, 2014)
For use in urinay incontinence.
Pimobendan
  • Positive inotrope and vasodilator: 0.25-0.3 mg/kg PO bid; drug doses anecdotal (Varga, 2014)
  • 0.1-0.3 mg/kg PO q12h-24h (Blackwells, 2011)
Polysulfate glycosaminoglycans
  • Nutraceutical treatment for joint inflammation: 2.2 mg/kg q3d for 21-28 days, then q14d; SC, IM (Blackwells, 2011)
Ponazuril
  • 20-50 mg/kg PO q24h x 30 days (Blackwells, 2011)
Prochloperazine Doses as high as 30 mg/kg tid are used to treat labyrinthine disorders in humans. (Varga, 2014)
Ranitidine,
Ranitidine hydrochloride (Hcl)
Antacid, Prokinetic
  • Gastric ulceration: 2 mg/kg IV sid, 2-5 mg/kg PO bid (Varga, 2014)
  • 2-5 mg/kg PO q12-24h or 2mg/kg SC, IV q24h (Blackwells, 2011)
  • H2-receptor blocking agent for gastric ulcer therapy: 2 mg/kg once daily IV or 2-5 mg/kg twice daily PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Ranitidine inhibits secretion of pepsin and stomach acid and also has significant prokinetic effects on the stomach and colon. The prokinetic effects of ranitidine are superior to those of metoclopramide and equal to those of cisapride.[5]
As of April 2020, the United States, European Union, and Australia have either voluntarily recalled or suspended distribution of all products containing ranitidine. If using ranitidine for your rabbit, please proceed with caution.
Simethicone
  • Alleviation of gastrointestinal gas: 65-130 mg/animal q1h as needed; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Sodium bicarbonate
  • Treatment of acidosis: 2 mEq/kg IV, IP (Blackwells, 2011)
Sodium calcium edetate
  • Lead poisoning: 27.5 mg/kg SC qid or 13 mg/kg SC, IV qid for 5 days then every 2-3 days if necessary; based on successful treatment of two cases. General dose rate for cattle, dogs, and cats. Preparation should be diluted 1:4 in 5% glucose or 0.9% saline prior to use. (Varga, 2014)
Stanozolol Steroid
  • Anabolic steroid: 1-2 mg/rabbit; PO, once (Blackwells, 2011)
Streptokinase
  • 4000 U/kg BW/h IV (Agnelli et al., 1985)
Succinylcholine
  • 0.5 mg/kg BW IV (Green, 1982)
Sucralfate
  • Treatment of gastric ulceration and gastritis: 25 mg/kg q12h to q8h; PO (Blackwells, 2011)
Suxamethonium
  • 0.5 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
Theophylline Bronchodilator
  • 10-20 mg/kg PO bid-tid; doses extrapolated from rodents. (Varga, 2014)
Has dose-dependent effects on the rabbit gastrointestinal tract. (Varga, 2014)
Tiletamine-zolazepam DO NOT USE DO NOT USE
Tropicamide 1% eye drops
  • Mydriasis: Topically to dilate eyes in albino animals (Blackwells, 2011)
Tubocurarine
  • 0.4 mg/kg BW IV (Flecknell, 1996)
  • 0.09-0.15 mg/kg BW IV (Lumb and Jones, 1984)
Verapamil
  • 200 µg/kg SC tid × 9 doses; start immediately post-op then eight hourly for nine doses (Varga, 2014)
  • 200 µg/kg at surgery and q8h for 9 does total; IV, IP (Blackwells, 2011)
Prevent post-surgical adhesions.
Vitamin B complex
  • Thiamine deficiency: Dose to thiamine content at 1-2 mg/kg as needed; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
Vitamin K1
  • Treatment of anticoagulant rodenticide toxicosis: 2.5 mg/kg once daily; PO for 10-30 days 2-10 mg/kg as needed; IM (Blackwells, 2011)
Use with caution, anaphylaxis reported.
Yohimbine
  • 0.2 mg/kg BW IV (Keller et al., 1988)

Sources:
Hawk, C, et al. (2005). Formulary for laboratory animals. (3rd ed.).
Meredith, A. (2015). BSAVA small animal formulary. (9th ed.).
Oglesbee, B. (2011). Blackwell's five-minute veterinary consult: Small mammal. (2nd ed.).
Ramsey, I. (2011). BSAVA small animal formulary. (7th ed.).
Varga, M. (2014). Textbook of rabbit medicine. (2nd ed.).

Choosing rabbit-safe drugs

Antibiotics

For rabbits, the best antibiotic to use is based both on the spectrum of activity as well as the safety of the antibiotic. It is important to choose antibiotics that have the least likelihood of causing gastrointestinal disease.

The following are antibiotics that are commonly prescribed as safe:[9]

  • trimethoprin sulfas
  • quinolones
  • chloramphenicol
  • aminoglycosides
  • metronidazole

The following are antibiotics that are intermediate in their ability to incite gastrointestinal disease:[9]

  • parenteral penicillin
  • oral or injectable cephalosporins
  • tetracycline
  • erythromycin

The following are antibiotics that are highly likely to cause gastrointestinal dysbiosis:[9]

  • amoxicillin
  • ampicillin
  • clindamycin
  • clindamycin

Additional resources

Further reading

See also

References

  1. 1.000 1.001 1.002 1.003 1.004 1.005 1.006 1.007 1.008 1.009 1.010 1.011 1.012 1.013 1.014 1.015 1.016 1.017 1.018 1.019 1.020 1.021 1.022 1.023 1.024 1.025 1.026 1.027 1.028 1.029 1.030 1.031 1.032 1.033 1.034 1.035 1.036 1.037 1.038 1.039 1.040 1.041 1.042 1.043 1.044 1.045 1.046 1.047 1.048 1.049 1.050 1.051 1.052 1.053 1.054 1.055 1.056 1.057 1.058 1.059 1.060 1.061 1.062 1.063 1.064 1.065 1.066 1.067 1.068 1.069 1.070 1.071 1.072 1.073 1.074 1.075 1.076 1.077 1.078 1.079 1.080 1.081 1.082 1.083 1.084 1.085 1.086 1.087 1.088 1.089 1.090 1.091 1.092 1.093 1.094 1.095 1.096 1.097 1.098 1.099 1.100 1.101 1.102 1.103 1.104 1.105 1.106 1.107 1.108 1.109 1.110 1.111 1.112 1.113 1.114 1.115 1.116 1.117 1.118 1.119 1.120 1.121 1.122 1.123 1.124 1.125 1.126 1.127 1.128 1.129 1.130 1.131 Meredith, A. (2015). BSAVA small animal formulary. (9th ed.).
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 Varga, M. (2013). Textbook of rabbit medicine. (2nd ed.).
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 MediRabbit. (n.d.) Antibiotics dangerous for use in rabbits. Retrieved 09 Oct 2021 http://www.medirabbit.com/Unsafe_medication/dangerous_antibiotics.htm
  4. 4.00 4.01 4.02 4.03 4.04 4.05 4.06 4.07 4.08 4.09 4.10 4.11 Hawk, C. Terrance et al. (2005). Formulary for Laboratory Animals. (3rd ed.).
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Dan H. Johnson, DVM, DABVP (ECM). (2013). Rabbit Therapeutics - What's Safe, Effective, or Deadly? Retrieved 09 Oct 2021 from https://www.vetfolio.com/learn/article/rabbit-therapeutics-whats-safe-effective-or-deadly
  6. Dawn Sailer-Fleeger. (n.d.) Appropriate Use of Antibiotics in Rabbits. Retrieved 09 Oct 2021 from https://rabbit.org/health/antibiotics.html
  7. 7.0 7.1 MediRabbit. (n.d.). Antibiotics safe for use in rabbits. Retrieved 09 Oct 2021 from http://www.medirabbit.com/Safe_medication/Antibiotics/Safe_antibiotics.htm
  8. Fesce, A et al. (1977). Ecophylaxis: preventive treatment with gentamicin of rabbit lincomycin-associated diarrhea. Retrieved 09 Oct 2021 from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/350739/
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 Karen L. Rosenthal, DVM, MS, Diplomate ABVP-Avian. (2001). Bacterial Infectious Disease Treatment in Ferrets and Rabbits. Retrieved 26 Sep 2021 from https://www.vin.com/apputil/content/defaultadv1.aspx?id=3844050&pid=11131
  10. Wildpro. (n.d.). Permethrin and Pyrethrin Toxicity in Rabbits. Retrieved 17 Feb 2017 from http://wildpro.twycrosszoo.org/S/00dis/toxic/PermethrinPyrethrinToxRabbits.htm
  11. Medirabbit.com. (n.d.). Corticosteroids: best avoided in rabbits !!!. Retrieved 13 April 2016 from http://www.medirabbit.com/Safe_medication/Corticost/Cortico.htm