Warning to rabbit owners

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23/08/2017
Currently there is an outbreak of a nasty and fatal virus (RVHD-2) occurring throughout the country.   If you suddenly find that your usually healthy rabbit has died unexpectedly it may have been affected by this virus. The virus is carried by insects (mosquitos, fleas), rats, mice, birds and on your clothes and shoes. 
What should I do if my 'healthy' rabbit has suddenly died? 
  • Transfer the rabbit straight from hutch to a bag and seal. 
  • Cover with a second bag and seal. 
  • Keep in a cool place. 
  • Contact your vet immediately. 

You may or may not want to have a post mortem carried out to confirm the diagnosis but you should ensure even if you do not want one done your rabbit must be cremated rather than buried in the garden. This will reduce the risk to any future pet rabbit you may have. 

We do carry out a post mortem if requested and have the service available to send out samples to an external lab to obtain a definitive diagnosis. This virus can stay in the environment for a long time so it is advised you stay away from other peoples bunnies for up to 4 months. 

In the meantime your hutch should be thoroughly disinfected with a veterinary sold product and left vacant for this period of time. 

Can I vaccinate my rabbit against this disease?
We are routinely stocking the vaccine against RVHD-2 and are advising all clients to bring their rabbits in for this vaccination. 

Please contact the practice if you have any concerns or want further information vaccinating your rabbit.

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