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What are Hair Loss?

There are many reasons your rabbit may be experiencing hair loss, also known as alopecia. The hair loss may appear as small, bald spots on their body, or there may be larger areas of your rabbit’s coat that are missing hair. You may also notice general hair loss throughout your rabbit’s body. In many cases your rabbit will feel a lot of itching, leading to his discomfort. As hair loss is likely pointing to an underlying condition, a trip to the veterinarian is in order.

Hair loss in rabbits, also called alopecia, can be caused by a variety of possible problems. Underlying conditions may include physical or behavioral health issues.

Hair Loss Average Cost

From 393 quotes ranging from $100 - $300

Average Cost

$200

Symptoms of Hair Loss in Rabbits

Should your rabbit be experiencing hair loss, you may notice the following:

  • Small areas of their body where there is no hair
  • Larger areas where hair is missing
  • General hair loss over your rabbit’s body

You may notice clumps of hair in your rabbit’s environment or in his feces. It is important to brush your rabbit on a regular basis so that you can quickly catch any possible issues.

Types 

Hair loss in your rabbit may be due to an underlying physical health condition, including a parasite infestation, dental problems or a hormone imbalance. The hair loss can also be caused by boredom, or if your rabbit shares an environment, fighting between rabbits.

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Causes of Hair Loss in Rabbits

There are numerous causes for hair loss in your rabbit. These include:

  • Parasite infestation (fleas, lice, mange mites, fur mites, mites that cause ear canker, a fungus like ringworm); if your rabbit has a severe flea infestation he may itch so much that he scratches off his fur
  • Dental problems (fur loss will be seen under the chin, on the chest and/or on the dewlap)
  • Urinary tract disorders (fur loss will be on your rabbit’s hindquarters)
  • Bacterial infection
  • False pregnancy
  • Excessive grooming by your rabbit or his companion rabbit
  • Fighting between rabbits

You will want to bring your rabbit to the veterinarian for an examination to determine the cause of his hair loss.

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Diagnosis of Hair Loss in Rabbits

The veterinarian will conduct a full examination of your rabbit in order to determine what is causing his hair loss. When examining your rabbit, the veterinarian will look for signs of what could be causing your rabbit to lose his fur. He will pay attention to the type of hair loss, along with the following:

  • Crusty appearance on the skin where the fur was lost
  • Presence of flaky skin or dandruff
  • Any open sores or inflammation

Your veterinarian will likely ask you questions about your rabbit’s behavior and whether there have been any changes. Depending on what is discovered during the physical examination, the veterinarian may order blood work or a urine analysis. The veterinarian may also conduct a skin scraping which will enable a closer look under a microscope. As the veterinarian works to determine the health condition of your rabbit, radiography may also be conducted.

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Treatment of Hair Loss in Rabbits

Your rabbit’s treatment will depend on the condition that is causing the hair loss. Some possible conditions and treatments include:

Parasite Infestation

Mites, fleas and other parasites can be easily treated with the right medication.  Your veterinarian will be able to help guide you as to what medications your rabbit might need.  

Dental Problems

Molar spurs may have to be filed so that they are smooth and a tooth infection may have to be treated.

Urinary Tract Disorders

Urinary tract infections can be treated with antibiotics, bladder sludge can be treated with subcutaneous fluids, and a bladder stone may require surgical removal. 

Bacterial Infection

With a bacterial infection, the infected areas should be shaved and a culture and sensitivity test should be conducted so that the veterinarian can determine which antibiotic will be most effective against your rabbit’s infection. 

False Pregnancy

Your veterinarian may recommend having your rabbit spayed.

Over grooming

Provide your rabbit and any companions addition space to run and play as well as toys to keep them busy.

Fighting

Your veterinarian may recommend spaying or neutering your rabbits.

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Recovery of Hair Loss in Rabbits

The recovery of your rabbit will be contingent on the underlying condition that is responsible for his hair loss. Depending on what your veterinarian has discovered, your veterinarian may request that you return for a follow up visit. 

There are things you can do for your rabbit to help prevent the possibility of disease that can lead to hair loss. These include:

  • Providing a stimulating, safe, secure and non-stressful environment for your rabbit that offers the space for exercise
  • Avoiding overcrowding in your rabbit’s environment
  • Providing, clean, fresh water in a bowl that is large enough for a full day’s worth of water
  • Ensuring your rabbit has a healthy diet 
  • Regularly groom your rabbit and take him for a check-up by the veterinarian once a year, as well as anytime you notice anything unusual with him (changes in appetite, drinking, urination or activity, hair loss, or changes in hair coat

Hair loss could be symptomatic of a serious medical condition. To avoid high vet care expenses, secure pet health insurance today. The sooner you insure your pet, the more protection you’ll have from unexpected vet costs.

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Hair Loss Average Cost

From 393 quotes ranging from $100 - $300

Average Cost

$200

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Hair Loss Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

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Lionhead×newzealand

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One Month

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Unknown severity

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20 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Hair Loss

Recommend some treatments and advic3

Sept. 27, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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20 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I apologize for the delay in my response, this venue is not set up for urgent emails. Since I cannot see your pet, it would be best to have them seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine them, see what might be causing this, and get treatment if needed.

Oct. 13, 2020

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California Rabbit

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Four Years

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Unknown severity

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14 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Hair Getting Thin On Ears

My otherwise healthy California rabbit is getting thinning of fur on his ears. All his other fur looks great How come?

Aug. 7, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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14 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. Your rabbit may have a parasite, or an endocrine disease, or there are some seasonal hair losses that happen in animals that can be normal. If he seems to be doing well otherwise, you may be fine to monitor this and see if it improves over time. If it does not, then it would be best to have him seen by a veterinarian as they can examine him and see what might be going on. I hope that all goes well for him.

Aug. 8, 2020

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Hair Loss Average Cost

From 393 quotes ranging from $100 - $300

Average Cost

$200

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