Hi, sorry to here about your bun. That is great you guys cared for him so much and were responsible people.
I was researching bladder sludge. My bun is almost 2 years old. Sometimes her pee looks normal other times it is very, very chalky. She drinks water and eats timothy hay. She also eats greens everyday with a bit of fruit.
Maybe you can give me an idea what to look for or if your bun experianced the same thing. Normal lookiong pee and then white and chalky. I have read that is normal in some cases and some people say it is not. I would appreciate any advice. Thank you!
Hi Peg –
I know what you mean about the white, chalky looking pee and to my knowledge it is not related to sludge. Iggy – the bun with sludge – didn’t have the chalky pee at all (or maybe very little) and when we had the surgery done the vet showed us the sludge and it was a dark brown/grey colour. Not white at all. Our other bun, Gabe, has the chalky pee once in a while and has never had problems with sludge. We had her x-rayed when Iggy died and then again six months later and she shows no signs of sludge. I don’t know what causes the chalky pee but in our experience it was not linked to sludge.
The signs Iggy exhibited were simply this: he would hang out in the litter box for hours, shifting shifting shifting, but when we’d check, the box was dry. He just became unable to pee. He never stopped eating, but he did stop drinking.
We got the surgery done on him because we felt that we needed to give it a try, but he only lasted maybe three months longer before the sludge came back with a vengeance. If another rabbit of mine ever develops sludge – sad to say – but I will not get the surgery done. Sludge is too painful for the bun, and will probably always come back.
The only thing to do is try to prevent it in the first place – timothy based pellets (I recommend Oxbow Bunny Basics/T) and timothy hay. A lot of people overlook the pellets – most commercial brands are made with alfalfa – so if you use pellets at all make sure to check.
Good luck with your bun!
When I say that I wouldn’t get the surgery done, I mean that I would regretfully euthanize the poor thing. I believe in doing whatever you can for a pet – I take the commitment of pet ownership seriously – but I think that by having the surgery done on Iggy I did little but prolong his suffering.
My partner disagrees with me – she thinks the chalky pee was related to the sludge and reminded me that Gabe’s chalky pee disappeared once we got her onto Timothy pellets. So, grain of salt and what have you. The timothy pellets are still my number one suggestion, though. Do not hesitate, make sure your pellets are timothy-based and NOT alfalfa-based.
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