For those with rabbits, the mere mention of gastrointestinal stasis often causes stress and concern. A rabbit with gastrointestinal problems, such as gas, generally stops eating, drinking and eliminating and becomes lethargic as time passes. If the gas is left untreated, death can occur in as few as 24 hours. Simethicone, a gentle pediatric medication that breaks up painful gas bubbles, can help get your rabbit eating and acting normally again.
How Simethicone Works
Veterinarians generally recommend the use of simethicone, the ingredient in infant gas medication, because it has no adverse side effects on rabbits nor do the intestines absorb it. Simethicone safely and effectively breaks down gas bubbles, making the gas easier for your rabbit to pass, and helps alleviate the gas pain.
You can help break up your rabbit's gas bubbles by gently rubbing on his stomach. Stop immediately if he is in pain.
Your rabbit-savvy veterinarian will provide you with dosage instructions for how much and when you should give your rabbit simethicone. Always follow your veterinarian's instructions. Once you have consulted with your veterinarian, he may suggest giving the same dosage of simethicone in the future should your rabbit display signs of gas.
Things You'll Need
You can purchase simethicone at most pharmacies and grocery stores. You generally can give liquid medication in one of two ways. Mix it in with a favorite food or treat or use a syringe. If your rabbit needs simethicone, he's likely not eating so you will need to use the syringe method.
If you do not have a small syringe or a dropper, you can get one from your veterinarian or at the pharmacy. Most liquid simethicone comes with a dropper for administering medication.
- Fill the syringe with the dosage recommended by your veterinarian.
- Put your rabbit securely between your legs, with his head facing away from you, so he cannot run away. Be prepared for him to squirm.
- Place the syringe in the space between your rabbit's front incisor and the back molar.
- Slowly release the syringe to squirt the simethicone into your rabbit's mouth. Do not shoot all of the medication into your rabbit's mouth at one time or he may spit it out.
- After giving medication, wash the syringe in hot water and set an alarm so you don't miss the next dosage.
Experiencing and recovering from gastrointestinal problems can be extremely painful. Your veterinarian also may prescribe a pain medication. Give the medication as prescribed as rabbits do not handle pain well and sometimes give up, ultimately dying.