Every so often her breathing sounds just horrible and I can see that she is congested and struggling to breathe through her stuffy nose. Today was such a day. My vet was kind enough to loan me a nebuliser machine (used by people with asthma) to treat this congestion. I use a very weak mixture of a liquid antibiotic and saline solution in the nebulising machine. Then, I corner Missy and hold the mouthpiece in front of her face so that she has to breathe in the medicated mist. We've done this often enough that she is no longer freaked out by the mist floating past her nose, nor is she bothered by the sound of the machine. She'll sit quietly for the 5 minutes or so that the treatment lasts and will sometimes nibble hay from her litterbox or wash her face in the adorable way that bunnies do. None of it seems to faze her at all, thankfully. Lately, she is so comfortable that she *chins* the mouthpiece, claiming it as *hers*. Once we've finished, I always give her a favorite treat to reward her for behaving. I also give a treat to Freckles who lives on the other side of the lattice wall you can see in this photo. A favorite and convenient treat is a few craisins which she gobbles up quickly.
The nebulsing has a dramatic effect on her breathing and I'm thankful to my vet for suggesting it as an alternative treatment. I know a few people who nebulise their rabbits every day to treat chronic respiratory problems and they've all said that their bunnies handle it well. For Missy, I think it's the craisins when we're finished that make it worth the bother. And she does breathe easier afterwards. She always feels well enough for a treat!