How to Treat Sore Hocks (Pododermatitis) in Rabbits

There is this very common problem in pet rabbits called Sore hocks which is also known as pododermatitis. This occurs when the bottom of a rabbit’s foot develops sores that eventually become inflamed and infected.

Some factors that can contribute to sore hocks include: excess weight and wire mesh cage flooring. Sore hocks can be extremely painful for rabbits, making immediate treatment very important. Therefore, it is recommended that If your rabbit has sore hocks, treat its feet as soon as possible by using medication and addressing the underlying cause of the sore hocks.

Take your rabbit to your vet right away. A rabbit with sore hocks can be in so much pain that it cannot find any way to rest comfortably in its cage. In addition, the bottom of its feet could be red, inflamed, and oozing discharge (indicating infection). If your rabbit just cannot get comfortable in its cage, and its feet are looking abnormal, take it to an expert as soon as possible for treatment

Allow the expert to clean your rabbit’s feet. After diagnosing your rabbit with sore hocks, your vet will gently clean the affected areas of its feet using a wound cleanser. If your rabbit is in a lot of pain, it may resist the cleaning procedure. However, the feet must be clean before any other medication can be applied to them.

Sore Hocks
Sore Hocks

Begin home care with a rabbit foot soak. After the initial foot cleaning by your vet, you will need to continue cleaning and treating your rabbit’s feet at home. Your expert will recommend various products (Betadine, Nolvasan, Epsom salt) in which you will soak your rabbit’s feet two to three times a day. Betadine and Nolvasan are antibacterial solutions that are available at your local pharmacy.

Continue home care with bandages. Bandaging materials (sterile gauze pads, elastic bandaging material) are available at your local pharmacy. To bandage, place one gauze pad on the bottom of the affected foot, then wrap the foot and lower leg with the elastic bandage, leaving the toes unwrapped. Do not wrap so tightly to reduce blood flow to the foot.

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