Infestation of Pinworms in the Intestine in Rabbits

2 min read

Oxyurids in Rabbits

Pinworms are small intestinal worms. Though commonly found in rabbits, Passalurus ambiguus, the rabbit-specific pinworm, generally does not result in significant health issues. They are mostly an incidental finding during examination after death, or when a feces sample is examined and pinworm eggs are found in the sample.

 

Symptoms and Types

 

Pinworms may cause moderate to severe itching, skin inflammation, and redness, especially in the genital and anal areas. And although rare, poor hair coat, weight loss, and rectal prolapse is possible with heavy worm infestation. Rabbits with this infection will also have poor reproductive performance.

 

Causes

 

Transmission is through the ingestion of infected feces -- when eggs are passed in the feces and ingested by the same or other rabbits in the environment. It may also spread through contamination of the environment and water. The rabbit pinworm is host specific and is not communicable to other species.

 

Diagnosis

 

Your veterinarian will want to differentiate the symptoms of pinworm infestation from other causes of itching and skin infection in the anal areas. A blood and urinalysis will be taken, along with a sample of feces, for laboratory examination. In some cases, the worms may be directly visible in the feces when the feces are analyzed.

 

Treatment

 

If there are no symptoms present, no treatment will be necessary; however, if worms are seen around the anus, treatment will be necessary. Your veterinarian will clean the adult worms away from the area and apply specific ointments eliminate the worms, along with oral prescriptions for eliminating the pinworms from the body.

 

Living and Management

 

Recurrence is common, even in rabbits that are housed alone. This is because rabbits are known to ingest their own feces and can continue to reinfect themselves.

Prevention

In addition to thoroughly cleaning a rabbit's living area, all rabits suspected of pinworm infection should be treated immediately to prevent cross-infection.

Related Posts

Identifying and Treating Tapeworms in Dogs

PetMD Editorial
Jan 12, 2017

Tapeworms in Cats: Symptoms, Treatment, and Prevention

Stephanie Lantry, DVM
May 19, 2020

Can Humans Get Tapeworms From Cats?

Kendall Curley
Sep 24, 2019

11 Facts About Fleas

Vladimir Negron
Oct 24, 2017