Restraint or pre anesthetic agents for use in rabbits

 

 

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Name of drug

Dosage

Method

Remarks

 

 

 

 

Acepromazine

0.1 0.5 mg/kg

up to 1-2 mg/kg

SC, IM, IV

Mild to moderate sedation

No analgesic properties

Can cause hypotension and hypothermia

Atropine

0.1 0-5 mg/kg

SC, IM

Useless in a high proportion of rabbits, due to the presence of serum atropinase.

It helps reduce salivation, bronchial secretions, and avoids vagal induced bradycardia.

40 - 50 mg/kg

up to 3 mg/kg, SC in atropinase positive rabbits

Butorphanol/

acepromazine

1 mg/kg /

0.5 mg/kg

IM

Moderate sedation

Peripheral vasodilatation

Butorphanol provides analgesia.

Caution is needed in case of dehydration, or in rabbits suffering from cardiovascular diseases.

Chlorpromazine

20 - 25 mg/kg

IM

Mild to moderate sedation

No analgesic properties

Can cause hypotension and hypothermia

Diazepam

1 mg/kg

exceptionally up to 2.5 5 mg/kg

IM, IV, IP

IV

Moderate to deep sedation

IV administration may lead to thrombophlebitis.

Fentanyl/Droperidol

0.2 mg/kg

IM

Moderate to deep sedation

Good analgesic properties

Painful injection

Can induce bradycardia

Fentanyl/Fluanisone

0.3 0.5 ml/kg

SC, IM

Moderate to heavy sedation

This agent has some analgesic properties.

Ketamine

10 - 50 mg/kg

IM

Mild to heavy sedation

Moderate to good analgesia, enough for small surgery.

High dosage may induce respiratory depression or muscular stiffness

Ketamine/

Acepromazine

40 mg/kg/

0.5 1 mg/kg

IM

Glycopyrrolate

5 11 mg/kg, up to 40 mg/kg

IV

Advised with rabbits suffering from respiratory diseases. It helps reduce salivation, bronchial secretions, and avoids vagal induced bradycardia.

100 mg/kg

SC, IM

Medetomidine

0.1 0.5 mg/kg

SC, IM

Mild to profound sedation

Good analgesic properties

Should be avoided in rabbits with health problems, due to respiratory and cardiovascular depression properties of this compound.

Venipuncture is difficult due to vasoconstriction of the veins.

Meperidine

10 mg/kg

IM, IV, IP

Sedation

Analgesic properties

Higher dosages can lead to respiratory depression

Midazolam

2 mg/kg

IM, IV

Moderate to deep sedation

Compound dissolves in water

Morphine

2 - 5 mg/kg

SC, IM

Sedation

Analgesic properties

Higher dosages can lead to respiratory depression

Oxymorphone

0.05 0.2 mg/kg

SC

Xylazine

1 - 3 mg/kg

IV

Mild to profound sedation

Light analgesia

Should be avoided in rabbits with health problems, due to respiratory and cardiovascular depression properties of this compound.

Venipuncture is difficult due to vasoconstriction of the veins.

5 mg/kg

IM

 

 

to understand the meaning of the abbreviations, click here.

 

 

Further information

 

Flecknell P. BSAVA Manual of Rabbit Medicine and Surgery, Gloucester, UK: British Small Animal Veterinary Association, 2000.

Harcourt-BrownOxford F. Textbook of Rabbit Medicine, UK: Butterworth-Heinemann, 2001

Hillyer E.V. and Quesenberry K.E. Ferrets, Rabbits, and Rodents: Clinical Medicine and Surgery, New York: WB Saunders Co., 1997

Laber-Laird K. Handbook of Rabbit and Rodent Medicine, Pergamon Veterinary Handbook Series) Butterworth Heinemann, 1996.

 

 

 

 

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