Snuffles (Pasteurellosis) Average Cost

From 396 quotes ranging from $200 - 800

Average Cost

$450

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What is Snuffles (Pasteurellosis)?

If your rabbit is suffering from the snuffles, you may notice him develop watery eyes, a runny nose and sneezing often. This is typically caused by an infection of his tear ducts or nasal sinuses. 

Due to the symptoms being generalized, it may be somewhat difficult to identify what your rabbit’s concern is. His symptoms may mimic other conditions rabbits can suffer from such as respiratory diseases, dental concerns or a poorly ventilated hutch. 

If this infection is left untreated it can result in abscesses, blindness, and can travel to your rabbit’s ears, eyes, reproductive organs and other organs. It is important to be vigilant about getting him to the veterinarian quickly if you suspect snuffles.

The snuffles are caused by the bacterium pasteurellosis, which your rabbit may have in his own body or encounters. It presents as a runny nose, watery eyes and sneezing. This is relatively common and not typically life threatening.

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Symptoms of Snuffles (Pasteurellosis) in Rabbits

Most of the symptoms identified will be general to multiple conditions, however below are some things to look for.

  • Runny eyes – tear ducts can become clogged resulting in even more discharge
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Head tilting – due to neurological damage, your rabbit may develop a head tilt
  • Skin sores
  • Matted fur – your rabbit may rub his runny nose and that discharge mats the fur on his paws

Causes of Snuffles (Pasteurellosis) in Rabbits

The cause of the snuffles in this case is contact with the bacterium pasteurellosis. This is a bacterium that naturally occurs in rabbits, however it can turn into a problem. Due to this bacterium being so highly contagious, it is easy for rabbits to spread the infection to one another. While some rabbits are immune to this bacterium, there is still a large amount that are not.

Diagnosis of Snuffles (Pasteurellosis) in Rabbits

If you suspect your rabbit may have a case of the snuffles, a visit to his veterinarian will most likely be in order. It will be important to share with your veterinarian what signs and symptoms you have noticed and for how long. The veterinarian may want to know if your rabbit has been around other animals who appeared to be sick or have similar symptoms.

A physical exam will most likely be performed to identify any obvious reasons for his snuffles. Your veterinarian will want to rule out diet and housing as possible culprits for his symptoms as well. Further tests may be requested including bloodwork and samples of any discharge. These tests will confirm if pasteurella is the cause of your rabbit’s problems or not. 

At times the veterinarian may attempt to make a diagnosis based solely on history and physical, however that will not guarantee your veterinarian identified the correct bacteria. X-rays and other imaging tools may be utilized as well to determine if there are any other possible symptoms of the bacteria.

Treatment of Snuffles (Pasteurellosis) in Rabbits

Treatment will begin with antibiotics to treat the bacterial infection. These medications can be administered for up to a few months to fully treat the infection. Certain antibiotics can be dangerous for rabbits, so it will be necessary to find a veterinarian that is well versed in the antibiotics that are safe for rabbits. 

To treat clogged tear ducts, your veterinarian may flush his tear ducts in the office and teach you how to do it at home. If your rabbit is experiencing neurological symptoms, those will be treated to keep him comfortable also. If there are any abscesses found because of the infection, those may have to be surgically removed as well.

Recovery of Snuffles (Pasteurellosis) in Rabbits

Follow up will be ongoing for the remainder of your rabbit’s life as this disease can go dormant. Your veterinarian will direct you as to how often you should bring him in for a checkup. It will be important to stay on top of any medication management as they can be long term. Feeding changes may be necessary if your rabbit is not eating and you must feed him with a syringe until he is stronger.

Keeping his environment clean and free of any contamination will be important to avoid further infection. Isolating any other infected animals will be necessary as well. Your rabbit’s prognosis is good if the treatment is begun immediately. Antibiotics may work quickly and rapidly clear up his infection, however, it may also be a longer-term process.

Snuffles (Pasteurellosis) Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Oliver
mixed
2 Years
Critical condition
0 found helpful
Critical condition

Has Symptoms

Orange specs in the snot
Wheezing
Sneeze

My rabbit was just fine when I got home but a weird type of wheezing sound soon started to come from him, he sneezed and a lot of snot came out of his nose with some orange specs in it. He couldn't breathe and lost his balance and could not stand. Sadly he didn't make it and passed away soon after.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
514 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. I'm sorry for your loss, that is very sad. Rabbits can have severe sinus infections and tooth abscesses, and it seems he may have had one of these. I am sorry that that happened to Oliver.

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Iffie
English Spot
4 Years
Mild condition
1 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

wet nose

I have noticed my rabbit has a slightly wet nose today. When I run hand under it, it's slightly damp and once or twice small drops of clear liquid is on my hand. I am not sure if this is a uri or snuffles. Thinking it could be from hay dust or something as I'm at the final bit of the bag. No sneezing or wheeze breathing. What are your thoughts? What should I do?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2008 Recommendations
Typically with Pasteurellosis (snuffles) we would expect to see sneezing and increased respiratory effort along with the wet nose; the wet nose may be caused by infections, allergies (dusty hay etc…), irritation from ammonia from faeces, other irritation, dental disorders among other causes. I would certainly visit your Veterinarian regardless for an examination to be on the safe side. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

I should mention she had a full check up 3 weeks ago - bloods, xrays, dental. While she was diagnosed with arthritis everything else was mostly normal (only found to be slightly anaemic, healing wound in back of mouth from unknown cause). She's eating, drinking, exercising normally.

Thanks Dr Callum. This is really helpful! I clean Iffie's litter box daily and yesterday did a full clean out of her room. She still has a slightly wet nose and although I haven't noticed any sneezing/wheezing she sometimes breathes heavy. Thanks for your advice - it doesn't sound like Sniffles (Pasteurealla) but do these symptoms sound like a possible LRI pneumonia or something? She has a check up scheduled for 3 weeks time but wondering if I should take her in earlier? What else should I look out for?

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Lola
Dwarf
9 Weeks
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Sneezing

My bunny has yellow around her nose, and has sneezed a few times. She doesn’t have sneezing fits, but she sneezes a couple times a day. I don’t know if the yellow coloring around her nose is because of the air fresheners/perfumes which I have stopped using, or if it’s the early stages of snuffles. Besides that she’s acting very normal. She’s eating, drinking, and pooping. She’s a really happy bunny and doesn’t seem sick, but still I’m very worried, should I take her to the vet?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
514 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Given that signs that you are describing, it would be a good idea to have her seen by your veterinarian. Bacterial infections are always easier to treat if they are caught earlier rather than later, and your veterinarian will be able to examine her, determine if it seems that she is having allergies, or an infection, and give her the appropriate medication. I hope that she feels better soon!

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Ringo
New Zealand Red
2 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Nasal Discharge

I'm not for sure if my rabbit has snuffles. He's outside year round and I live in a place where it gets pretty cold. So to keep my rabbits warm I use straw in their cages. I have noticed that he's lost a little bit of weight lately, nothing too concerning because it wasn't a major decline in weight. But today I went out for their daily feeding and I saw that he had snot on his nose and mouth. It was pretty much frozen seeing as how it's -10°F here today. So I'm not sure if it's a cold, or a reaction/allergies from the straw, or snuffles. That's why I'm writing, for your expertise. Thank you for taking the time to read this, it is very much appreciated because Ringo is my baby and I'd be lost with out him. He's the best show rabbit I've ever had. He's extremely calm and laid back for his breed. But anyways, thank you! Have a nice day.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
514 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. I'm not sure if you have a veterinarian for Snuffles or not, but he should probably be seen. You have provided the straw for warmth, and rabbits can tolerate protected cold temperatures, but I worry that if his immune system is challenged, he may not tolerate the cold as well. He may need antibiotics or other therapy, and your veterinarian will be able to do that. I hope that. i hope that he is okay!

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