I’m not sure it’s possible to actually be any more tired without being asleep (about a week uninterrupted would be nice). I know it takes its toll on Delilah more than me, but we’re now into week 4 and I’m absolutely exhausted! Please forgive me if I repeat things I’ve said previously; everything is merging into one 🙂
I am starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel though. Her breathing has eased off significantly; there’s still extra respiratory effort but she’s now mostly breathing through her nose and it’s mostly without noise. An occasional sneeze to clear a bit of gloop, but pretty minimal. Her eyes are much cleaner too, whereas they had been clogging over every 3-4 hours. Whenever I wake up and can’t hear her, my first thought now is ‘oh good she’s comfortable’ rather than ‘oh my goodness is she alive’.
She has been back to the vets to see the nurses most days or every other day recently for some help with cleaning and to have some extra fluids. Yesterday was particularly pleasing as the nurse managed to gently soak and tease off the hard scabby nodule over her right eyelid. That’s what had been scratching her cornea having caused it to ulcer and was no doubt very sore. I wouldn’t have been able to do that on my own at home, so I’m delighted that it’s now off and her eye will hopefully feel much better and will start to heal more easily. She’s certainly more cheerful now she can see better and it’s less irritated. The ones around her left eye are still firmly attached, I think it will be a while yet before they come off, and it will look horrendous when they do. But it’s also a good thing as it means that we’re starting to heal up nicely.
She had lost a lot of weight. Ever since arriving here she’d been about 2kg, she rose to nearly 2.2 after the kids had finished weaning and when she first fell ill, and last week she was down to 1.77kg. Yesterday she was 1.83. Ok it’s not much, but it shows that she’s now at least starting to maintain her weight rather than it continuing to crash off, which would have been a big worry. At least it suggests that her body is coping.
Her appetite is much better now too, as she can eat more easily. Much as I’m a massive fan of foraging and a natural diet, at the moment she wants to eat bunny junk food, so that’s what she’s getting 🙂 I don’t know if it’s related to her not drinking much while she’s had trouble breathing, but she wants to eat very wet plants, and all the forage is a bit dry at the moment. So she’s getting lots of nice juicy fruits like pear and strawberry and a little banana, along with kale and greens, and various other juicy foraged leaves like sow thistle and dandelion when I can find them. I’m still offering her the other stuff and she’s having a nibble, but not stuffing her face with it like she usually would. I’ve tried offering delicious fattening foods like oats and special recipe rainbow rabbits oaticakes (there’s a Facebook group for those if you’d like to buy some) but in spite of how delicious those things normally are, at the moment she’s just not interested. Last night, a few pellets disappeared from her bowl though, so maybe we are starting to return to ‘normal’.
I still don’t think we’re out of the woods, I have heard previously how many bunnies get this far and then suddenly die around week 4/6, and we have no idea whether she’s sustained other organ damage from the high dose metacam for so long, for instance. But I would go as far as to categorise my mood as ‘cautiously optimistic’.