If your is scratching and itching, he may have lice, a common ectoparasite. Lice may infect both humans and animals, and they spread quickly (though not between species). If you know what to do, pet lice may be treated and removed safely.
Don't delay getting treatment for your rabbit. Even if it turns out your rabbit has mites or fleas (other biting parasites), you'll want to treat them immediately.
01 of 04
Consult Your Vet for Medication
If you believe your pet rabbit has lice because it seems to be scratching a lot more than normal, consult your exotic pet veterinarian right once. Your exotics veterinarian can identify and cure lice in your pet. Off-label usage of ivermectin or selamectin is common among veterinarians (meaning the drug is not intended for this purpose but veterinarians routinely use it).
To cure rabbit lice, do not purchase over-the-counter medicine from a drug shop or pet store. Human lice treatments are far too harsh for a little pet like a rabbit, and they can even kill it. Always be cautious and consult your veterinarian.
02 of 04
Clean the Cage Thoroughly
After your rabbit has gotten adequate treatment from your veterinarian, properly clean and wash the cage, plates, and any toys in the cage with water and mild dish detergent before returning your pet to his enclosure. Before replacing the bedding, make careful to thoroughly rinse the soap off. Remove any potentially infected bedding and food, then freeze any leftover objects to destroy any insects that could be lurking. If it's below freezing outdoors, you may put the cage and things outside to freeze (without the bunny, of course!) and then restore the food, water, and bedding the next day. Make sure everything is frozen for at least 24 hours.
03 of 04
You Can't Be Infected by Your Rabbit's Lice
Lice are parasites that only live on one type of host. Humans contract human lice, mice contract mouse lice, guinea pigs contract guinea pig lice, and rabbits contract rabbit lice. So don't be concerned about you or your child acquiring lice from their pediculosis-affected pet rabbit (lice infestation).
If a rabbit louse jumps on you, it won't bite you and it won't survive. You can't get lice from your pet rabbit, and you can't give lice to him either.
04 of 04
Mites Versus Lice
Simply explained, arachnids like spiders and ticks are mites, while insects like ants are lice. Sucking lice and biting or chewing lice are the two types of lice. Sucking lice are more dangerous than chewing lice because they can transmit blood-borne diseases and cause anemia (excessive blood loss). Mites, lice, and fleas are parasites that cause severe itching and should be treated as soon as possible.