Sore Hocks in Rabbits

5 min read


Early treatment for ulcerative pododermatitis involves outpatient care for relieving redness, swelling, and discomfort. Later stage care may involve inpatient treatment, including surgical procedures to remove dead skin and tissue on the feet and hocks. The use of long-term antibiotics and pain control medications is sometimes warranted for severe causes of ulcerative pododermatitis.


Eating is important during treatment to prevent the weakening of the gastrointestinal system and overgrowth of unfavorable bacteria in the gut. A wide selection of fresh greens, including collard greens, spinach, dandelion greens, parsley, etc. is necessary.


Living and Management


It is critical that your rabbit receives proper care for this condition, including the appropriate medical and post treatment care, and a clean living space that is free from wire flooring, and is kept clean and dry. Wire flooring can be harsh on a rabbit's feet, causing calluses or small abrasions that can quickly become infected. Your rabbit should only have a smooth, soft, dry floor on which to rest, with thick bedding for sleep. It is especially important in humid environments to make sure that your rabbit's floor space is kept free of moisture, since a damp floor provides an ideal environment for skin problems and bacteria growth, and humid conditions do not allow for rapid drying (e.g., spilled water, or urine on floor).


A poor prognosis is likely for patients with severe disease, so early care is recommended and encouraged. Since recurrence is common, it is critical to seek veterinary assistance at the earliest signs of discomfort, before the infection has a chance to become complicated. It is also important to consider the financial and time constraints of treating a disease that will involve, in many cases, a commitment of time, emotional, and financial resources.