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9. Check to make sure there is no bleeding from any injection site. If bleeding is noted, apply pressure for 1-3 minutes until stopped. Return rabbit to cage. 10.Follow post-injection monitoring procedures above.

Subcutaneous injections for rabbits

  • 1.

    Restrain the rabbit in an appropriate manner.

  • 2.

    Subcutaneous injections for rabbits should be 0.2 ml or less per injection site; maximum of 10 sites for a total per injection session not to exceed 2 ml.

  • 3.

    Do not place injections in sites that are used for grasping or physical restraint. Sites should be far enough apart to prevent coalescence of the local inflammatory reaction. Prep areas with 70% alcohol being injecting.

  • 4.

    Starting on one side near the dorsal shoulders, skin is pinched between the thumb and a finger, pulled away from the body to form a tent and a needle (20 gauge or smaller) is inserted into the space that has been created.

  • 5.

    Verify that the needle is in the subcutaneous space and is not inserted into muscle or the body wall.

  • 6.

    Verify that the needle is not in a blood vessel by pulling back on the plunger. If no blood appears in the needle hub, then the needle is not in a blood vessel.

  • 7.

    Depress the plunger to inject the desired amount. Following a few seconds pause, the needle is withdrawn. Do not continue to apply pressure to nor draw back on the plunger to avoid contamination of the needle track with the antigen/adjuvant mixture.

  • 8.

    Repeat this procedure at other sites of the body, rotating through all four quadrants (right front, right rear, left front, left rear) until total volume has been delivered.

  • 9.

    Check to make sure there is no bleeding from any injection site. If bleeding is noted, apply pressure for 1-3 minutes until stopped. Return rabbit to cage.

  • 10.

    Follow post-injection monitoring procedures above.

Intramuscular injections for rabbits

  • 1.

    Intramuscular injections are not recommended for CFA/IFA in rabbits but may be used with appropriate justification and approval by the ACUC.

  • 2.

    Restrain the rabbit in an appropriate manner.

  • 3.

    Intramuscular injection sites are limited. For rabbits, an injection of 0.3 ml into one hindlimb may be used. Alternatively, the lumbar muscles may be used with 0.3 ml injected per side.

  • 4.

    Clean the injection site with 70% alcohol prior to injection.

  • 5.

    Use a 23 gauge needle. Insert the needle into the body of the muscle. Verify that the needle is not in a blood vessel by pulling back on the plunger. If no blood appears in the needle hub, then the needle is not in a blood vessel.

  • 6.

    Depress the plunger to inject the desired amount. Following a few seconds pause, the needle is withdrawn. Gently massage the injected area.

  • 7.

    Repeat this procedure on the other side if doing lumbar muscle injections.

  • 8.

    Check to make sure there is no bleeding from any injection site. If bleeding is noted, apply pressure for 1-3 minutes until stopped. Return rabbit to cage.

  • 9.

    Follow post-injection monitoring procedures above.

Note: The IM route may be combined with the SC route in certain regimens, however do not exceed a total volume of 2 ml antigen/adjuvant divided as noted above.

Intravenous injections for rabbits May never be used with Complete Freund’s adjuvant.

Revised April 2007

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