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RABBIT (ORYCTOLAGUS CUNICULUS)
TRAP-NEUTER-RELEASE –
NOT JUST FOR CATS ANYMORE
Diane McClure, DVM PhD, DACLAM, Frank Bosso...
Rabbit Overpopulation Problem
 Cottontails?
Rabbit Overpopulation Problem
 Not Cottontails
Abandoned
Domestic Rabbits
Rabbit Overpopulation Problem
LBCC is the
Bunny
College!
Silver Martins * English Spot * Tan Dutch
White Rex * New Zealand...
Abandoned Domestic Rabbits
 Feral – free-living
 Do not breed with cotton tails
 Not wild, but abandoned pet rabbits
Survival: Where? How?
 Locations protected from or with low #s predators
◦ City Parks
◦ School & College Campuses
◦ Zoos
...
HOW MANY?
 Kelowna, Canada - Est.1,500
 University ofVictoria - Est. 2,000 plus
 Orlando, FL - Est. 1,000
 Garden Grov...
Rabbit Overpopulation Problem
Destruction
& Death
Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
Multi-Sector Coalition
 Coach
 Feral Cat TNR
 Organized fund
raising, grants,
donation...
Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
Veterinary Ambulatory Community
Service – VACS
Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
Bunny Bunch Rabbit
Rescue in Montclair, CA
Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
Bunny Bunch
Why TNR for Rabbits?
 A humane approach
 Rescues are full
 Shelters are not
able to care for the
large numbers
 Domest...
Neuter (and Spay) Events
 Adapted catTNR protocols
 Training vets, students, doctors and
volunteers
 Drugs
 Recordkeep...
Expenses:
 $43/surgery
 Food, misc. care items, extra vet visits,
$300/week
 Housing Space – donated by LBCC
 Care of ...
Trap100 Rabbits
Hold
 Set-up caging
 Multiple days
trapping
 Two spay/neuter
events
Hold
The Starting Line
Restraint, Physicals and Pre-op
Physicals and Pre-op
Vet student involvement
first and second year
veterinary students learned
rabbit restraint, physical
...
Records - Scribes
Records
Health Assessment –Triaged
March
 3 severe syphilis
 2 pneumonia
 3 unilateral eye lesions
 1 large draining abscess
...
Health Assessment – Cautions
 Snuffles limited to upper respiratory disease
and not pneumonia
 Traumatic wounds - common...
Personality Assessment
 Feisty
 Fearful
 Tame
Runners
Anesthesia
Anesthesia per Dr. Ko
Surgeons - DVMs
SurgeonTraining
 Understanding of rabbit anatomy
 Understanding of the additional fat in
the spay
 Careful application ...
Surgery
Post-op
Post-op
Records
Post-Operative Period
 All rabbits received three days of
postoperative monitoring and
meloxicam or other postoperative p...
Round 2
Post-op
Anesthesia & Post-Anesthetic
RecoveryTime
Anesthesia
March RecoveryTime
(min)
May RecoveryTime
(min)
Ketamine-midazolam-
b...
Post-Op Monitoring
Records
Post-Procedural Orders
(report abnormalities and drugs administered) and Notes:
1. Assess attitude. Is the rabbit Bright a...
Post-Procedural Orders
5. Assess for pain. Administer MLX PO for a minimum of 3 days post-
op. Carefully monitor for inapp...
Spay Certificates
Post-Event Debriefing - Surgery
 Clipper burn avoided in round 2
 Castrations
◦ Castration seemed to be more
painful tha...
Post-Event Debriefing - Surgery
Losses
 March
◦ One intraoperative loss related to pulmonary
edema and anesthesia
◦ Three postoperative day 4, 7 and 8 - ...
Post-Event Debriefing Post-Op
 See postoperative orders – standing orders
 Volunteers were trained to assess for eating,...
How long until the rabbits
could be released?
 Minimum of 3 days
 Ideally 4 days –
including the one
day off pain meds
t...
Continued Commitment
Continued Commitment
A “Caring” Multi-Sector Plan
 Prevent dumping
 Increased campus security
 Out of sight feeding and watering stations
 ...
Actions
 Change the laws
 Stop sales
 Adopt
 Give rabbits the same consideration as
other pets
 Easter Rabbits should...
Two Events & On-Going S/N
Rabbits March May Total
Trapped 100 80
Kindled 10 0
Health Issues 10 5
Recaptured 0 3
Spays 46 4...
RABBIT (ORYCTOLAGUS UNICULUS)
TRAP-NEUTER-RELEASE –
NOT JUST FOR CATS ANYMORE
http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/rabbits-loos...
@dmccluredvm
Animal Resource Consulting
Vet Services
www.arcvetservices.com
@dmccluredvm
Easter
Spay
Day
2015?
Rabbit Trap Neuter Release - Not Just for Cats Anymore
Rabbit Trap Neuter Release - Not Just for Cats Anymore
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Rabbit Trap Neuter Release - Not Just for Cats Anymore

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Diane McClure DVM presents the experiences on a multi-sector task force that successfully addressed the rabbit overpopulation problem on the Long Beach City College on Southern California. Sept. 19, 2013 Association of Exotic Mammal Veterinarians Indianapolis, IN

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  • RABBIT (ORYCTOLAGUS CUNICULUS) TRAP-NEUTER-RELEASE – NOT JUST FOR CATS ANYMORE Diane McClure, DVM PhD, DACLAM*1, Frank Bossong, DVM1, Eva M. Jaeger, BS, RVT1, Luann Manley, RVT1 Veterinary Ambulatory Community Service, College of Veterinary Medicine, Western University of Health Sciences, 309 E. Second Street, Pomona, CA, 91766,USA  ABSTRACT The Southern California community believed Long Beach City College (LBCC) was a sanctuary for abandoned pet rabbits. In 2010, a population of approximately 300 rabbits, a result of pet rabbits being dumped on campus over a 25 year period, was growing. The rabbits were causing significant property damage and other havoc at LBCC. Donna Prindle, a teacher in the LBCC Athletic Department, spearheaded creation of the Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force, a coalition of the LBCC community, Best Friends Animal Society and Western University’s (WU) College of Veterinary Medicine, Veterinary Ambulatory Community Service (VACS). The Task Force organized resources to fund and implement a successful Rabbit Trap-Neuter-Release (TNR) program at LBCC. The Task Force and previous success with a campus cat TNR program at LBCC convinced the LBCC administration to allow the Rabbit TNR program to go forward.  WU veterinarians and veterinary technicians adapted experiences with cat TNR for two major rabbit spay-neuter events with the WU mobile hospital on-site at LBCC. Veterinarians performed all surgeries, veterinary students assisted with pre-operative health assessments and post-operative recovery. A minimum of 3 days post-operative period emphasizing pain control and monitoring gastrointestinal function was essential for successful recovery prior to release or adoption. Over two events, 180 rabbits were trapped and 155 rabbits were spayed or neutered. Rabbits were either released or adopted to forever homes  . 25 rabbits were triaged out of the Spay-Neuter events due to health concerns. These rabbits were housed and treated until they were well enough to go to surgery or to a forever home. This presentation will provide detailed insights into a Rabbit TNR as an effective component of free-living domestic rabbit population management control of a in a school setting. What happened to the other 25 rabbits? 25 rabbits were triaged out of the Spay-Neuter events due to health concerns. These rabbits were housed and treated until they were well enough to go to surgery or to a forever home.
  • Cottontail rabbit image credit http://www3.ag.purdue.edu/entm/wildlifehotline/images/mammals/rabbit01.jpg
  • Cottontail rabbit image credit http://www3.ag.purdue.edu/entm/wildlifehotline/images/mammals/rabbit01.jpg
  • Cottontail rabbit image credit http://www3.ag.purdue.edu/entm/wildlifehotline/images/mammals/rabbit01.jpgLBCC.edu: 24,000 students and 112 acres Most common breed mixes on the campusI didn't count these up but I have the photos. Seemed like there were a lot of silver martins but there were also English spot, tan Dutch, white rex, New Zealand white, New Zealand Black, agouti, tan or black rabbits
  • Cottontail rabbit image credit http://www3.ag.purdue.edu/entm/wildlifehotline/images/mammals/rabbit01.jpgLBCC.edu: 24,000 students and 112 acres
  • www.bunnybunch.org
  • Municipal and campus security enforcement
  • Multi-sector coalition task force:InstitutìnCommunityLocal & State governmentNGO Non-prophet for finding, housing, care rescue, adoptionUniversity
  • General health condition of the rabbits in Mayslightly better and many fewer were pregnant; overall the rabbits were much younger and smaller; some were clearly Easter drop off bunnies
  • Personality assessment data: not done on the May group - these rabbits were from a particular subpopulation on the Long Beach city College campus. Their personalities were not as friendly as the first group. They were also much more difficult to capture
  • Anesthetic regime developed by Dr Jeffrey Ko, boarded veterinary anesthesiologist at Purdue. Reconstitute a 5ml vial of Telazol with 2.5 ml ofTorbutol and 2.5 ml Dexdormitor. Deliver 0.04 ml/kg.
  • The anesthetic regime included a new injectable anesthetic drug cocktail developed by Dr. Ko from Oklahoma State vet school. Some Sevoflurane gas anesthesia was necessary.Anesthetic recovery was much longer and possibly up to 90 minutes before the rabbits could be returned to their home cage. The data on this hasn't been tallied yet. Overall the anesthesia with this cocktail was good and the rabbits had relaxed muscle tone. The recovery was prolonged compared to the previous anesthetic regime. The cost was hugely reduced by this cocktail area 
  • 75% females were pregnant. Litter size was 9.
  • RABBIT (ORYCTOLAGUS CUNICULUS) TRAP-NEUTER-RELEASE – NOT JUST FOR CATS ANYMORE Diane McClure, DVM PhD, DACLAM*1, Frank Bossong, DVM1, Eva M. Jaeger, BS, RVT1, Luann Manley, RVT1 Veterinary Ambulatory Community Service, College of Veterinary Medicine, Western University of Health Sciences, 309 E. Second Street, Pomona, CA, 91766,USA  ABSTRACT The Southern California community believed Long Beach City College (LBCC) was a sanctuary for abandoned pet rabbits. In 2010, a population of approximately 300 rabbits, a result of pet rabbits being dumped on campus over a 25 year period, was growing. The rabbits were causing significant property damage and other havoc at LBCC. Donna Prindle, a teacher in the LBCC Athletic Department, spearheaded creation of the Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force, a coalition of the LBCC community, Best Friends Animal Society and Western University’s (WU) College of Veterinary Medicine, Veterinary Ambulatory Community Service (VACS). The Task Force organized resources to fund and implement a successful Rabbit Trap-Neuter-Release (TNR) program at LBCC. The Task Force and previous success with a campus cat TNR program at LBCC convinced the LBCC administration to allow the Rabbit TNR program to go forward.  WU veterinarians and veterinary technicians adapted experiences with cat TNR for two major rabbit spay-neuter events with the WU mobile hospital on-site at LBCC. Veterinarians performed all surgeries, veterinary students assisted with pre-operative health assessments and post-operative recovery. A minimum of 3 days post-operative period emphasizing pain control and monitoring gastrointestinal function was essential for successful recovery prior to release or adoption. Over two events, 180 rabbits were trapped and 155 rabbits were spayed or neutered. Rabbits were either released or adopted to forever homes  . 25 rabbits were triaged out of the Spay-Neuter events due to health concerns. These rabbits were housed and treated until they were well enough to go to surgery or to a forever home. This presentation will provide detailed insights into a Rabbit TNR as an effective component of free-living domestic rabbit population management control of a in a school setting. What happened to the other 25 rabbits? 25 rabbits were triaged out of the Spay-Neuter events due to health concerns. These rabbits were housed and treated until they were well enough to go to surgery or to a forever home.
  • Transcript of "Rabbit Trap Neuter Release - Not Just for Cats Anymore"

    1. 1. RABBIT (ORYCTOLAGUS CUNICULUS) TRAP-NEUTER-RELEASE – NOT JUST FOR CATS ANYMORE Diane McClure, DVM PhD, DACLAM, Frank Bossong, DVM, Eva M. Jaeger, BS, RVT, LuAnn Peterson, RVT Veterinary Ambulatory Community Service - College of Veterinary Medicine Western University of Health Sciences 309 E. Second Street, Pomona, CA, 91766, USA
    2. 2. Rabbit Overpopulation Problem  Cottontails?
    3. 3. Rabbit Overpopulation Problem  Not Cottontails Abandoned Domestic Rabbits
    4. 4. Rabbit Overpopulation Problem LBCC is the Bunny College! Silver Martins * English Spot * Tan Dutch White Rex * New Zealand white New Zealand Black Agouti, WhiteTan & Black Rabbits
    5. 5. Abandoned Domestic Rabbits  Feral – free-living  Do not breed with cotton tails  Not wild, but abandoned pet rabbits
    6. 6. Survival: Where? How?  Locations protected from or with low #s predators ◦ City Parks ◦ School & College Campuses ◦ Zoos ◦ Airports  Breeding fecundity  Climate, food  MOST ABANDONED RABBITS LIVE A SHORT LIFE
    7. 7. HOW MANY?  Kelowna, Canada - Est.1,500  University ofVictoria - Est. 2,000 plus  Orlando, FL - Est. 1,000  Garden Grove – CA 500 removed  Long Beach City College Est. 300-400
    8. 8. Rabbit Overpopulation Problem Destruction & Death
    9. 9. Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force Multi-Sector Coalition  Coach  Feral Cat TNR  Organized fund raising, grants, donations……$$$$$  Volunteers  Multi-sector Coalition
    10. 10. Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
    11. 11. Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
    12. 12. Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force Veterinary Ambulatory Community Service – VACS
    13. 13. Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force Bunny Bunch Rabbit Rescue in Montclair, CA
    14. 14. Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force
    15. 15. Rabbit Overpopulation Task Force Bunny Bunch
    16. 16. Why TNR for Rabbits?  A humane approach  Rescues are full  Shelters are not able to care for the large numbers  Domestic rabbits are the third most abandoned and euthanized animal after cats & dogs
    17. 17. Neuter (and Spay) Events  Adapted catTNR protocols  Training vets, students, doctors and volunteers  Drugs  Recordkeeping  Tattoo
    18. 18. Expenses:  $43/surgery  Food, misc. care items, extra vet visits, $300/week  Housing Space – donated by LBCC  Care of Ill Rabbits: Bunny Bunch & donations  Western University 3rd year Internal Veterinary Medicine Rotation
    19. 19. Trap100 Rabbits
    20. 20. Hold  Set-up caging  Multiple days trapping  Two spay/neuter events
    21. 21. Hold
    22. 22. The Starting Line
    23. 23. Restraint, Physicals and Pre-op
    24. 24. Physicals and Pre-op Vet student involvement first and second year veterinary students learned rabbit restraint, physical examinations, injection sites, anesthesia and postoperative recovery monitoring
    25. 25. Records - Scribes
    26. 26. Records
    27. 27. Health Assessment –Triaged March  3 severe syphilis  2 pneumonia  3 unilateral eye lesions  1 large draining abscess  1 poor body condition score (BCS<1/5)
    28. 28. Health Assessment – Cautions  Snuffles limited to upper respiratory disease and not pneumonia  Traumatic wounds - commonly around the face and neck  Healing sore hocks  Diarrhea  Vent disease or syphilis with milder signs  Poor body condition - typical body condition score was 2  The May Event rabbits were younger & better BSC
    29. 29. Personality Assessment  Feisty  Fearful  Tame
    30. 30. Runners
    31. 31. Anesthesia
    32. 32. Anesthesia per Dr. Ko
    33. 33. Surgeons - DVMs
    34. 34. SurgeonTraining  Understanding of rabbit anatomy  Understanding of the additional fat in the spay  Careful application of minimal tissue glue for closure of the castration  In closed castrations the testicular pedicle should be ligated as close to the body wall as possible
    35. 35. Surgery
    36. 36. Post-op
    37. 37. Post-op
    38. 38. Records
    39. 39. Post-Operative Period  All rabbits received three days of postoperative monitoring and meloxicam or other postoperative pain management.  Rabbits monitored through post-op day four to determine that they are eating, drinking and defecating. About 10% of animals required an additional day of pain management.  Rabbits can be released when they eat, drink and defecate without having received pain relieving medications
    40. 40. Round 2
    41. 41. Post-op
    42. 42. Anesthesia & Post-Anesthetic RecoveryTime Anesthesia March RecoveryTime (min) May RecoveryTime (min) Ketamine-midazolam- buprenorphine followed by Sevoflurane gas anesthesia 30 TTDex – 0.04 ml/kg, IM followed by Sevoflurane gas anesthesia 90
    43. 43. Post-Op Monitoring
    44. 44. Records
    45. 45. Post-Procedural Orders (report abnormalities and drugs administered) and Notes: 1. Assess attitude. Is the rabbit Bright and Alert? Quiet? Responsive? Code: BAR or QAR 2. Assess hydration status, drinking and urination. Note score on the record ↑ or ↓ or (↓) for slightly. If abnormal, report onVet Check list. If dehydrated, 25 ml sterile saline/ km BW SC once or twice daily until rabbit is drinking, urinating, and maintaining hydration within normal limits (WNL). 3. Assess appetite. If not eating, initiate “special food” like banana and alfalfa. Restart meloxicam (MLX) or add additional dose per day as long as the doses are at least 8 hrs. apart. Recheck in next 2 hours. If not eating, syringe feed OxBow critical care. Recheck in next 2 hours. If still not eating, move to Bunny Bunch for critical care. Monitoring body weight daily until eating if a scale is available. If BW loss is >10% starting body weight, then move to Bunny Bunch for critical care. 4. Assess defecation. If NOT defecating or stool is abnormal, report onVet Check list.
    46. 46. Post-Procedural Orders 5. Assess for pain. Administer MLX PO for a minimum of 3 days post- op. Carefully monitor for inappetance or decreased stool production on the 1st day without analgesia. Restart MLX if rabbit is not continuing normal behavior or bodily functions. If painful and not receiving MLX restart meloxicam for 1-2 days. If painful and receiving MLX, report onVet Check list. 6. Assess wound closure. If wounds are open or there is fresh bleeding, report onVet Check list. 7. Assess the wound for infection. Check for redness, discharge, or heat. If noted, report onVet Check list. 8. Assess the wound for self-trauma (scratching) that results in excoriation, skin irritation or dermatitis. If noted, report onVet Check list. 9. Assess the wound for swelling. Swelling is expected. Assess the degree of swelling on the chart. 10. Assess for appropriate progress of any health issue noted on the PE. If the rabbit is worsening or there are any concerns regarding new health issues, report onVet Check list.
    47. 47. Spay Certificates
    48. 48. Post-Event Debriefing - Surgery  Clipper burn avoided in round 2  Castrations ◦ Castration seemed to be more painful than spay. ◦ Round 2 Modifications:  1. Application of tissue glue - minimal amount of tissue glue for skin closure  2.Testicular pedicle - tie the testicular pedicle close to the body wall
    49. 49. Post-Event Debriefing - Surgery
    50. 50. Losses  March ◦ One intraoperative loss related to pulmonary edema and anesthesia ◦ Three postoperative day 4, 7 and 8 - possibly related to G.I. stasis or pre-existing internal disease, like an enlarged heart  May ◦ One postoperative day 4 - possibly related to G.I. stasis
    51. 51. Post-Event Debriefing Post-Op  See postoperative orders – standing orders  Volunteers were trained to assess for eating, drinking and defecating before cleaning the cages. Rabbits who were off-feed or not hopping were reported to the vet team. See the postoperative orders for more details  Timely delivery of pain medication and small improvements surgical details were associated with better outcome  Around 3 % received SQ fluid administration on postoperative day one  Intensive care was not required
    52. 52. How long until the rabbits could be released?  Minimum of 3 days  Ideally 4 days – including the one day off pain meds to confirm eating and drinking
    53. 53. Continued Commitment
    54. 54. Continued Commitment
    55. 55. A “Caring” Multi-Sector Plan  Prevent dumping  Increased campus security  Out of sight feeding and watering stations  Continued S/N  Adoption, release  Education
    56. 56. Actions  Change the laws  Stop sales  Adopt  Give rabbits the same consideration as other pets  Easter Rabbits should be made of chocolate  Don’t abandon us!  TNR is a humane option, but not the solution
    57. 57. Two Events & On-Going S/N Rabbits March May Total Trapped 100 80 Kindled 10 0 Health Issues 10 5 Recaptured 0 3 Spays 46 41 Neuters 34 34 Surgeries LBCC 80 75 175 Surgeries Clinics 110 Released 70 Adoptions 186 Rescue/Foster 30
    58. 58. RABBIT (ORYCTOLAGUS UNICULUS) TRAP-NEUTER-RELEASE – NOT JUST FOR CATS ANYMORE http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/rabbits-loose-long- beach-city-college-13446043
    59. 59. @dmccluredvm Animal Resource Consulting Vet Services www.arcvetservices.com
    60. 60. @dmccluredvm Easter Spay Day 2015?
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