Is Ivermectin Safe To Use On A Nursing Doe?

GypsyG

Loving the herd life
Joined
Nov 23, 2018
Messages
412
Reaction score
753
Points
183
Location
Missouri
I noticed one of my does was scratching her ear today, and when I checked I found ear mites.
:th
This particular doe has a litter that is about a week away from weaning and she was rebred three days ago. I checked all of the kits and saw no sign of mites. I checked the rest of my herd and didn't find any on them either.

I usually like to keep my rabbits all natural, but I don't want ear mites to spread to the rest of the herd! Can I give a nursing doe who is also probably pregnant ivermectin? Will it hurt the nursing kits or the litter she is potentially carrying? If it is safe, will the nursing kits get it from her milk, and how long will it take to get completely out of their system?
 

DutchBunny03

Loving the herd life
Joined
Sep 23, 2016
Messages
612
Reaction score
316
Points
183
Location
Northern NY
Mites are most definitely little beasts from hell. I recently lost a rabbit to mites. Take whatever steps possible to eliminate them. Putting olive oil in the rabbits ear drowns the mites, and I've heard that vetRx can help too.
How would you administer the ivermectin (there's oral, injection, etc)?
 

GypsyG

Loving the herd life
Joined
Nov 23, 2018
Messages
412
Reaction score
753
Points
183
Location
Missouri
Mites are most definitely little beasts from hell. I recently lost a rabbit to mites. Take whatever steps possible to eliminate them. Putting olive oil in the rabbits ear drowns the mites, and I've heard that vetRx can help too.
How would you administer the ivermectin (there's oral, injection, etc)?
I read somewhere around here that you can give them a pea sized amount of the horse stuff? :hu
 

DutchBunny03

Loving the herd life
Joined
Sep 23, 2016
Messages
612
Reaction score
316
Points
183
Location
Northern NY
I don't know. You should check the manufacturer's instructions. Probably, since the use is the same, but make sure just to be safe.
 

DutchBunny03

Loving the herd life
Joined
Sep 23, 2016
Messages
612
Reaction score
316
Points
183
Location
Northern NY
The oil treatment works great. But the oil will get all over the rabbit's fur, covering you ( I have lost so many t shirts to mite treatment lol) and getting a little on the kits. Nothing to be worried about, just don't be surprised if you find oil all over.
 

GypsyG

Loving the herd life
Joined
Nov 23, 2018
Messages
412
Reaction score
753
Points
183
Location
Missouri
I personally would go the oil treatment for a nursing doe.
The oil treatment works great. But the oil will get all over the rabbit's fur, covering you ( I have lost so many t shirts to mite treatment lol) and getting a little on the kits. Nothing to be worried about, just don't be surprised if you find oil all over.
I treated her with sunflower oil yesterday evening... All I had in the house was olive oil and sunflower oil, I was not sure about the safety of expeller pressed olive, so I used the cold pressed sunflower oil in case the kits lick it. You are right @DutchBunny03 , it was a mess! I saw some improvement today, but they are still red and raw where she has scratched them.
 

Bunnylady

Herd Master
Joined
Nov 27, 2009
Messages
2,122
Reaction score
2,102
Points
323
Location
Wilmington, NC
It has been demonstrated in many species that healthy animals often have considerable resistance to parasites, some of which is a gift from the right parents (by ruthlessly culling, goat breeders have been able to create herds that are virtually parasite free due to natural immunity). Just because one animal has a visible mite infestation doesn't mean the rest of the herd will shortly have crusty ears; they may have a few mites, but are keeping the little bloodsuckers under control. A nursing doe's body is dealing with a fair amount of stress, so that her immune function would be reduced to the point that she comes up with something like this isn't terribly surprising. Young animals at weaning would also be more likely to have a problem for the same reason, so keep a close eye on this litter.

It's easy to overdose with Ivermectin, especially with young animals, so going with a less-aggressive treatment like oil would be my choice for a doe with a litter. (There is some concern about the fertility of growing rabbits being affected permanently, but I haven't found anything more authoritative than "word on the street" on that).

Vegetable oil or even mineral oil works by suffocating the mites, and has the added advantage of softening the scabs so the oil gets to them better. You really only need to put a couple of drops in each ear, but it does require repeated doses to get the job done. If the rabbit's immune system is compromised due to stress or illness, and there are mites anywhere in its environment, the same rabbit may keep presenting with mite infestations after treatment even though other rabbits around it seem to remain mite-free.
 

Tale of Tails Rabbitry

Loving the herd life
Joined
Dec 18, 2017
Messages
280
Reaction score
226
Points
133
Location
Southeastern USA
So true @Bunnylady. I had one and only one buck in eight years that got ear mites twice and he seem to just have bad immune system genetics, as he aged. My cat would go under his cage and I even later placed another rabbit in his cage without sterilizing it...I simply forgot. No problems with ear mites at all since, but I have better stock, much hardier now.
 
Top