Lapis ISSN 2398-2969

Pseudopregnancy

Synonym(s): False pregnancy

Contributor(s): Sharon Redrobe, Livia Benato, Susan Brown

Introduction

  • Common condition in group-housed female rabbits.
  • Not clinically significant.
  • Condition resolves in 15-18 days without treatment.
  • Cause: normal elevation in plasma prolactin concentration post-ovulation.
  • Signs: nesting behavior.
  • Diagnosis: clinical signs.
  • Treatment: no treatment required.
  • Prognosis: good.

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Presentation

  • Sexually mature female rabbit.
  • Mammary gland enlargement.
  • Nest-making behavior.
  • Increased aggression   Aggression: female  .

Incidence

  • More common in entire females housed together or housed with sterile male.

Geographic

  • None reported.

Age predisposition

  • Adult animals.
  • Sexually mature rabbits.

Sex predisposition

  • Entire female.

Special risks, eg anesthetic

  • If condition occurs repeatedly may   →   uterine infection such as pyometra   Pyometra  , a more severe and life threatening condition, hydrometra and mastitis   Mastitis  .

Morbidity

  • Low.
  • If condition occurs repeatedly, stress disorders and possible development of pyometra may occur.

Mortality

  • Rare.

Cause

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Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prognosis

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers
  • Recent references fromPubMed.
  • Keeble E (2001)Companion animal practice: Endocrine diseases in small mammals. In Pract23(10), 570-585.
  • Boiti C, Canali C, Zerani M & Gobbetti A (1998)Changes in refractoriness of rabbit corpora lutea to a prostaglandin F2 alpha analogue, alfaprostol, during pseudopregnancy. Prostaglandins Other Lipid Mediat56(4), 255-264PubMed.
  • Hillyer E V (1994)Pet rabbits. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract24(1), 25-65PubMed.
  • Morrell J M (1993)Preliminary investigation of an ELISA kit as a qualitative assay for rabbit progesterone. Vet Rec132(17), 434-436PubMed.
  • Marcinkiewicz J L, Moy E S & Bahr J M (1992)Change in responsiveness of rabbit corpus luteum to prostaglandin F-2 alpha during pregnancy and pseudopregnancy. J Reprod Fertil94(2), 305-310PubMed.
  • Kaufmann A F, Quist K D & Broderson J R (1971)Pseudopregnancy in the New Zealand white rabbit - necropsy findings. Lab Anim Sci21(6), 865-869PubMed.


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