Vaccinations
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Vaccinations

Vaccinations

AlphaPet recommends the vaccination of rabbits against 3 diseases:

Myxomatosis

Rabbit Viral haemorrhagic Disease 1 (RVHD1)

Rabbit Viral Haemorrhagic Disease 2 (RVHD2)

This can be provided by 2 vaccinations given annually. The combined myxomatosis and RVHD1 vaccination can be given from 5 weeks old. The RVHD2 vaccination, must be given at least 2 weeks after the myxomatosis/RVHD1 vaccination and can be given from 10 weeks old. Both require annual boosters.

All three diseases are highly contagious and rapidly fatal in unvaccinated rabbits. Please see below for more information. If you have further questions, or would like to book a vaccination, please contact your local branch.

Myxomatosis

A rapidly fatal, viral disease.

Symptoms:

Swelling, redness or ulcerations. Commonly of the eyes, nose and genitals.

Discharges from the nose and eyes

Reduced appetite and lethargy.

Rapidly fatal

Transmission:

Myxomatosis is a virus which is spread by biting insects including fleas, mites and mosquitoes.

Treatment

Unfortunately there is no specific treatment. In unvaccinated rabbits it is rapidly fatal.

Vaccinated rabbits can still develop a mild form, but recover with good supportive care, under veterinary guidance.

Prevention:

Vaccination – highly effective vaccinations are available. These are recommended annually.

Even with vaccination, rabbits may get a mild form of myxomatosis. However this has good recovery rates with the correct supportive care.

Rabbit Viral Haemorrhagic Disease 1

Viral disease, rapidly fatal.

Symptoms:

Internal bleeding. Bleeding from the nose/mouth/bottom may be seen

Sudden death due to internal bleeding

Usually fatal within 1-2 days.

Transmission:

Highly contagious virus.

Direct rabbit to rabbit contact or in the urine or faeces

Passed on surfaces and bedding, or contaminated clothes or hands.

Wild rabbits, wildlife including birds/insects can carry it on feet/legs to other gardens.

Treatment:

Unfortunately there is no specific treatment. In unvaccinated rabbits it is rapidly fatal.

Prevention:

Vaccination – highly effective vaccinations are available and recommended annually.

Rabbit Viral Haemorrhagic Disease 2

New strain of RVHD. Rapidly fatal. Geographically widespread throughout the UK and has been seen in the AlphaPet area.

All rabbits are considered at risk.

Symptoms:

Sudden death is the most common presentation.

May see fever, lethargic, reduced appetite and spasms.

Transmission:

Highly contagious virus

Has an incubation period of 3-9 days, where no clinical signs are seen, but it is still contagious and may be spread to other rabbits.

Direct rabbit to rabbit contact or in the urine or faeces

Passed on surfaces and bedding, or contaminated clothes or hands.

Wild rabbits, wildlife including birds/insects can carry it on feet/legs to other gardens.

Treatment:

Unfortunately there is no specific treatment. In unvaccinated rabbits it is rapidly fatal.

Prevention:

Vaccination – highly effective vaccinations are available and recommended annually.