Infection of the Brain Average Cost

From 331 quotes ranging from $200 - 800

Average Cost


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What is Infection of the Brain?

Infections of the brain are often accompanied by encephalitis, or an inflammation of the brain. A wide variety of symptoms can be seen between these two conditions, and it is important to take your rabbit in for an exam if they are present. While some cases can be diagnosed and treated immediately, there are other more severe conditions that will require extensive testing and care. It is important to note any and all changes in your rabbit, as these can often help narrow down the underlying cause.

The brain of rabbits can become infected due to many reasons, and are most commonly from a bacterial, parasitic, viral or fungal infection. Any infection in the brain can cause serious motor function problems, progressing to seizures, comas, and even death.

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Symptoms of Infection of the Brain in Rabbits

Symptoms of an infection can include:

  • Encephalitis, or inflammation of the brain
  • Meningitis, or inflammation of the meninges
  • Meningoencephalitis, when encephalitis and meningitis occur simultaneously 
  • Brain abscess
  • Pain

Secondary symptoms concurrent with encephalitis, meningitis, or meningoencephalitis can include:

  • Changes in behavior
  • Loss of balance
  • Head tilt or wry neck, called torticollis
  • Neurological symptoms
  • Brain abscess
  • Progressive dementia
  • Paralysis
  • Loss of muscle movements
  • Muscle spasms
  • Seizures
  • Tremors
  • Increased state of agitation
  • Coma 
  • Weakness
  • Circling
  • Inflammation of the iris in eyes, or phacoclastic uveitis
  • Eye twitching
  • Sight problems
  • Cataracts
  • Eye pain
  • Blindness
  • Ear infections
  • Sinus infections
  • Depression
  • Pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sudden death


  • Bacterial infections
  • Viral infections
  • Parasitic infections 
  • Fungal infections

Causes of Infection of the Brain in Rabbits

The causes of a brain infection can vary, and include:

  • Bacterial infections
  • Viral infections
  • Parasitic infections and migrations, such as roundworm and encephalitozoon cuniculi
  • Fungal infections
  • Sinus infections
  • Ear infections
  • Trauma to the ear
  • Chemical agents
  • Vertebrae infections
  • Trauma to the head or spine
  • Wounds
  • Cancer

Diagnosis of Infection of the Brain in Rabbits

It is often difficult to diagnose the reason for an infection of the brain, as the causes are numerous. A thorough physical examination is generally undergone to determine the cause and extent of the inflammation, and all known symptoms are taken into account. Testing can include blood cell counts, blood and serum tests, bacterial cultures, x-rays, CT scans, MRIs, spinal fluid analysis, or biopsy of any affected tissues. 

Each condition may require specialized testing to narrow down the cause, such as localized X-rays, and relevant tissue samples. To diagnose an eye or ear infection, further physical examinations are undertaken, along with a possible endoscopy.

Parasitic infections can be hard to diagnose. Encephalitozoon cuniculi can only be diagnosed by studying brain tissue samples, which is very dangerous for the rabbit. A diagnosis can be made by ruling out other causes and looking for other signs of the infection. A diagnosis of a roundworm infection, generally the raccoon roundworm baylisascaris procyonis, can be difficult because symptoms can be similar to other central nervous system conditions. If your rabbit has had exposure to raccoon infested areas, then this cause will more likely be pursued. No serum test can detect this, and a spinal tap may not be definitive. 

In the case of a possible tumor, growth or abscess, surgery may be needed to collect tissue for further study. Once a diagnosis has been given, an appropriate treatment regimen will be discussed at length with your veterinarian.

Treatment of Infection of the Brain in Rabbits

Treatment of an infection of the brain will be appropriate to the underlying cause. Antibiotics are often prescribed for many conditions, and often focus on those that can travel across the blood-brain barrier. These can vary, depending on the diagnosis. Antiparasitic medications can be prescribed for parasitic infections. Treatment for roundworm would include these medications, with short term corticosteroids to control the inflammation.

In cases of encephalitozoon cuniculi, treatment can be difficult because there is not enough evidence to support clear correlations between treatment and an improvement of symptoms due to the complications of collecting data. Often the data is collected post mortem. Antiparasitics, such as albendazole, fenbendazole and oxibendazole may be prescribed.

Corticosteroids may be prescribed in many cases to decrease brain swelling and inflammation, as well as pain medications, such as NSAIDs or metacam. Anti-epileptic medications may be prescribed for seizures.

Treatment for ear infections can include antibiotics, anywhere from 3 weeks to 6 months, and corticosteroids are sometimes recommended for a shorter amount of time. Occasionally, surgery may be needed to remove debris. Other treatments include cleaning ears, and pain medication with an anti-inflammatory component. Any other treatments will be in accordance to the diagnosis, and can range from general antibiotic treatments, to surgery to look for malignant growths. Your veterinarian will design a treatment plan with you.

Recovery of Infection of the Brain in Rabbits

After care will depend on the diagnosis and treatments involved. Often, when any type of infection is involved, maintaining a clean living space and environment free of infectious agents is key to preventing re-infection in your rabbit. If your rabbit has any companions, watch their behaviors and have them tested. Separate any infected rabbits from non-infected ones to prevent transmission. To prevent a parasitic infection such as roundworm, keep your rabbit away from raccoon infested areas.

Any surgery will have accompanying follow-up care. Some conditions, such as cancer or some infections, may require future veterinary visits for checkups and continuing care. In any case of illness, diet will be looked at and adjusted if needed. In cases where impaired motor function can cause an injury, make sure your rabbit’s environment is safe.

Infection of the Brain Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

6 Months
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

intermittent myoclonic seizures
CNS syndrome
blister on lips

Medication Used


I have a holland lop rabbit and his name is bobo. I found his lips have two blisters on Nov 3 and I just got the Herpes 1 infection 5 days ago. Then l searched online, I think he may get the Human herpesvirus-1 infection which transmission from me, then I sent him to Bluepeal emergence room and ask for anti-virus treatment. However, the Vet denies my requirement and she said that lesion just because he bites his lips. Please find attached documents. On Nov 8, Bobo got some CNS syndrome, hypersalivation, intermittent myoclonic seizures, opisthotonus. I went to Bluepeal again to recheck it. The Vet still didn't want to treat as Encephalitis and don't give anti-virus medication. She just gave a shot of antiseizure medicine and some fluid and send me back to home.

I went to Soundview veterinary hospital on Nov 9 and the Vet gave me Panacur as treatment. and Nothing else. He doesn't agree with me for Herpes infection either and asks me to treat his teeth.

I have no other choice but gave him some Valtrex by myself, he stopped those symptoms next day, but still doesn't drink and eat, i use sringe feeding for 5 days, he still cant eat or drink like normal, can't use litter box, he was surper smart and never drop or pee outside the litter box. Is any one can tell me how to treat the encephalitis and let him recover as normal? should I give SQ fluid? I don't know The valtres and Panacur which one is worked but he is better after that. I should gave it earlier and don't need to waste hundrads buck for Vet. The vet is not good as google and missed treatment to my bunny. Could I sue her?

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Holland Lop
5 Months
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

one ear in the air all the time
lying down on side
Falling Over
Head Tilt
one ear in air

We have a . Just over a month ago he started keeping one ear up in the air all the time. He had trouble hopping and would fall over. His eyes would get a red ring around them.
He was lethargic. The vet gave us medicine and said it was either a bacterial infection, or a tumour. We wouldn't know until a month or so. The bunny seemed to be getting better, but lately the symptoms have returned. Sometimes he just lies on his side in his cage. Now he is starting to bite from time to time.

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Lop ear
Six Months
Critical condition
0 found helpful
Critical condition

Has Symptoms

Was floppy Tilting her head back tw

My rabbit was diagnosed with a brain infection 9 days ago and was given 4 different medicines although she is now eating again and looks healthy she still can't walk. She has strength in her back legs and her front legs but tips over and can't right herself and just spins around. Can that still be cured or not?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1611 Recommendations
Without knowing more about the type of infection, and her signs that she presented with, it is difficult for me to predict how she will recover. It would be best to call your veterinarian and ask if her progression is normal, or if she should be improving more quickly. It does sound like she is improving, I'm just not sure how quickly or to what degree you should expect her to heal, and your veterinarian will be able to guide you on that, as they saw her and know more about her situation.

a couple months ago i had all three of my rabbits die do to a sudden seizure that lasted for about an hour and then death .Do you have any advice ?What is it exactly .They all had dierieah or abnormal fesses before death. I might be thinking of getting another rabbit but i wont unless i know there's no more possible disease in my house .

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