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My 7 year old. I will bring him to the vet for a check up, but I don’t know how serious his condition is. I pulled off a chuck of the scab/lump and he started to bleed a little, which concerns me a lot. The scab/lump has been growing for 5 months. It started out as a very tiny scab and then grew bigger until it lodged out of his back ear and I didn’t know if it was serious until now. The texture the scab/lump is dry and semi-hard like styrofoam. My rabbit doesn’t display a change in his behavior or personality with the condition as he can still play, drink, and eat. His physical appearance is normal except for that part on his backside of his ear. Is my rabbit’s life in danger like he has cancerous tumor? Please help! Thank you!

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Rabbits are prone to abscesses, but they also get tumors.  As far as what tumors are most likely, here are the numbers based on a few studies:

One study of 334 skin cases from UC Davis had 18 skin tumors which were the following: lipoma (n=5), basal cell carcinoma (n=3), fibrosarcoma (n=3), squamous cell carcinoma (n=2), undiagnosed (n=2) and one each of histiocytic sarcoma, melanoma, and nerve sheath tumor [1]. In another 2007 survey, 190 tumors and tumorlike lesions from 179 pet rabbits submitted between 1990–2006 for histopathologic examination at the University of Pennsylvania Veterinary School were reviewed. The most common diagnoses were trichoblastoma, collagenous hamartoma, and Shope fibroma [2].

  1. Snook TS, White SD, Hawkins MG, et al. Skin diseases in pet rabbits: a retrospective study of 334 cases seen at the University of California at Davis, USA (1984–2004). Vet Dermatol. 2013;24:613–618.

2. von Bomhard W, Goldschmidt MH, Shofer FS, et al. Cutaneous neoplasms in pet rabbits: a retrospective study. Vet Pathol. 2007;44:579–588.

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