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Blood Tests

Blood tests are recommended prior to a general anaesthesia for every surgical patient. We also promote an annual geriatric blood screen.

Both these basic blood tests look at kidney and liver enzymes, red blood cell percentage, and hydration status.

A blood test for Encephalitozoon cuniculi antibodies is recommended for every pet rabbit, especially when preparing to welcome a new addition into the household. This allows us to know whether your rabbit has been exposed to this parasite.

E. cuniculi (or EC) is reported to be at prevalent in at least 40-50% of the pet rabbit population worldwide, though some population studies are showing it may be carried by up to 80% of all pet bunnies.  MRC clinic’s previous population study showed that around 50-60% of Melbourne bunnies test positive for EC.  EC is reported to be a common cause of neurological, kidney, and ocular diseases. Infection occurs through ingestion of E. cuniculi spores in urine-contaminated food.  It can be passed from rabbit to rabbit, and there are reports of humans and other animals testing positive to exposure to EC, though there are no reports of clinical disease.  Good hygiene is recommended for owners who are immunocompromised, very young or elderly.

 

We are able to send off express serology tests for EC in animals with clinical disease, and also run batch serology samples which are sent off at the end of the month, for people who would like to test their rabbit’s EC status.  Please contact the clinic for more information.