You may have heard about a deadly virus affecting wild and domesticated rabbits in many areas of the US. Although there have been no reported cases in Northern California at this time, the disease has spread rapidly and many organizations are now recommending vaccinating potentially at risk individuals. To help protect your beloved bunny, we are now carrying the vaccine.
Rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus type 2 (RHDV2) is transmitted by direct rabbit to rabbit contact but also by indirect methods such as through fleas, on your shoes, or on other inanimate objects in the environment. Unfortunately, the most common symptom is sudden death, although bleeding from the nose is sometime seen. For this reason, vaccination is the best way to protect your rabbit if the disease makes it to this area.
There are no FDA approved vaccines for RHDV2 in the US, so the vaccine being used is imported from Europe with conditional approval by the US Department of Agriculture. The vaccine requires a single dose once per year. Reported potential adverse effects include fever and local irritation.
Additional precautions you can take to protect your rabbit include washing your hands before and after handling rabbits, not allowing your rabbit to be outside on the ground where other wildlife may have been, and maximizing insect and rodent control around your home.
If you would like to schedule an appointment for exam and RHDV2 vaccine, please give us a call.