DISEASE SUMMARY PAGE

Abortion in Elephants, Rabbits and Bonobos

Summary Information
Diseases / List of Miscellaneous / Metabolic / Multifactorial Diseases / Disease summary
Alternative Names See also:
Disease Agents In Rabbits: 

Further information on Disease Agents has only been incorporated for agents recorded in species for which a full Wildpro "Health and Management" module has been completed (i.e. for which a comprehensive literature review has been undertaken). Only those agents with further information available are linked below:

Infectious Agent(s) In Rabbits
Non-infectious Agent(s) In Rabbits
Physical Agent(s) In Rabbits
General Description
In Rabbits
  • Abortion is uncommon. (B600.14.w14)
  • Abortion usually occurs following fetal death after first three weeks of pregnancy. Fetal death before this time results in resorption (See: Fetal Resorption in Lagomorphs). (B602.18.w18, J213.5.w1)

In Elephants:

  • Abortions occur in elephants. (B387.w4, B450.20.w20)

Elephas maximus - Asian Elephant

  • Spontaneous abortion was documented in a Elephas maximus - Asian Elephant, four months after it was captured. (B450.20.w20)
  • Premature stillbirths (abortions) may occur during capture operations or in cases of twins. (J148.61.w1)
  • Abortion has occurred in at least two young (one juvenile and one sub-adult) Asian elephants in captivity; in the juvenile, a possible second abortion occurred about eight months later. (B450.20.w20)

Loxodonta africana - African Elephant

  • "An elephant in Samburu [in Kenya] died as the result of aborting an incompletely-formed foetus." (B387.w4)
  • Necrotic fetuses have been found in cropped elephants in Africa. (B387.w4)
  • Abortion occurred in a captive sub-adult Loxodonta africana - African Elephant. (B450.20.w20)
Clinical signs:
  • In a sub-adult African elephant, vulvar oedema and a bloody, mucopurulent urogenital discharge was noted for four days prior to abortion. (B450.20.w20)
  • A juvenile Asian elephant aborted a fetus described as "early first trimester" and about eight months later an "apparent piece of placenta" was passed by the same animal; this was suspected as a second abortion. (B450.20.w20)
  • A sub-adult Asian elephant produced a fetus which had apparently been dead for some time before it was aborted. (B450.20.w20)

In Bonobos:

  • Abortion has been reported. (J23.20.w2, P20.2010.w1)
Further Information
In Rabbits
  • Following abortion, always check whether any fetuses remain. (B602.18.w18)
  • Aborted fetuses and placentas should be submitted for culture and for histopathological examination, to determine the cause of the abortion. (B602.18.w18, J213.5.w1)
  • Questions to be asked in the history include: "Is this the first litter? Is there a prior history of abortion? Have any drugs been administered recently? Has there been a recent change in environment? Are other rabbits aborting?" (B602.18.w18)
  • Abortion usually occurs following fetal death after first three weeks of pregnancy. Fetal death before this time results in resorption (See: Fetal Resorption in Lagomorphs). (B602.18.w18, J213.5.w1)
  • Note: Uterine infection may occur following abortion. (J213.5.w1) See: Uterine Infection in Lagomorphs
In Elephants:
Treatment:
  • Systemic antibiotics (tetracycline) were given to a sub-adult African elephant following abortion. (B450.20.w20)
Associated Techniques
Host taxa groups /species Further information on Host species has only been incorporated for species groups for which a full Wildpro "Health and Management" module has been completed (i.e. for which a comprehensive literature review has been undertaken).

(List does not contain all other species groups affected by this disease)

Disease Author Debra Bourne MA VetMB PhD MRCVS (V.w5)
Referees Aidan Raftery MVB CertZooMed CBiol MIBiol MRCVS (V.w122)

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