Re: GIARDIA ELISA TEST : HELP
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I am not a vet and only took a few parasitology courses in college and am a slightly neurotic bunny lover, so please do not take any of my input as medical advice.
Are your flemmies still having symptoms? Any diarrhea or unformed stool? It's my understanding that it not uncommon for rabbits to harbor giardia in their gut flora but giardiasis (illness caused by giardia) is much less common. If they are asymptomatic, you could end up doing more harm than good with a strong antiparasitic, as bunny tummies are so sensitive. I personally avoid taking metronidazole orally as a human because of its effects on gut flora.
It's also my understanding that metronidazole is the first line treatment for bunnies with giardiasis and that fenbendazole is primarily used to treat helminths (worms). I wish I knew more about how they compare for giardia treatment in rabbits or anything about dosage but I don't. I would press your vet about why they are prescribing fenbendazole rather than metronidazole.
You're right about the ELISA test being positive and testing for eggs and parasites being negative indicating that they could simply have the antigens and not a current infection but I know little about the rate of false negatives for this kind of testing.
Are your bunnies adults? They seem a little light for flemmies. Our flemmie boy is maybe 9 lbs now as an adult but he's also adopted so we don't know if he might be a mix. I only ask because diarrhea could decrease absorption of nutrients and I know we were worried about our little guy when he was very light for his approximate age. Since they're big guys, malnutrition during development could lead to weak bones and potential injury.
We clean the litterbox 2x/ week so 4x/day sounds like a lot of work and I'm impressed with your dedication to your new bun friends! I hope your baby giants - we call our flemmie, Philip, our "baby giant" and Eleanor, his holland lop partner, our "giant baby" 😆 - are feeling better! Wishing you the best during this stressful time and may the new year ring in good health and fortune for you and your buns!