Flystrike occurs when certain types of fly lay their eggs on a rabbit, which then hatch into maggots. This is a horrible disease, as these maggots then eat the rabbit’s flesh. This is often fatal, due to infection or from toxic shock. The best prevention is by keeping your rabbit clean and in good health, and applying preventative treatments in peak season.
Flies, especially bottle flies, like to lay their eggs in warm, damp places. These flies are attracted by the smells of faeces, urine and blood, and therefore like to lay their eggs on any animals that are injured, or dirty and damp. In the world of pets, sadly rabbits are most at risk of being in this condition, especially as flies are also attracted to the smell of their scent glands.
When the eggs hatch into maggots, which can be within hours, they start to eat the flesh of the rabbit, with disastrous and often rapid results. Affected rabbits can lose large parts of their flesh to the maggots, and the severe shock associated with this is often fatal.
Due to the rapid development of flystrike, cases can become very serious in a very short space of time.