By in Animals

Bunny Virus - UK - Viral Haemorrhagic Disease

For those in the UK with rabbits

I am copying this from Facebook, from a CONFIRMED veterinary poster:

Derby Area - Midlands, England

There have been some confirmed cases in the Derby area of Viral Haemorrhagic Disease. This disease can be fatal to bunnies. It’s also something that can be vaccinated against. The symptoms rabbits may show if they have the disease are bleeding from the nose or bottom, lethargy, reduced appetite and fever.

If you have any worries or concerns please call your vet.

Many surgeries will hold the vaccine in stock.

Viruses can spread Quickly

Even if you are not in England but in Scotland, say, the disease can spread and maybe better safe than sorry.

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Kasman wrote on October 9, 2018, 3:12 PM

What is its effect on the wild rabbit population?

melody23 wrote on October 9, 2018, 3:58 PM

just to make it clear - there are two strains and two vaccines. the current strain that is killing rabbits is RVHD 2 which is a separate vaccine from they Myxo/RVHD vaccine, it seems even some vets don't know this (not all vets are rabbit savvy would you believe) there have been many confirmed cases in England and at least a half dozen in Scotland too of RVHD 2 which unfortunately spreads very easily, there is a theory that it could even make its way into the hay supply! Bunnies almost never survive this newer strain and they rarely show symptoms till its far too late they are often simply found dead by their owners. Rabbits need both vaccines two weeks apart every year, however if there has been a known case in your area you should have the RVHD 2 vaccine six monthly.

melody23 wrote on October 9, 2018, 4:00 PM

it is spreading through them too, although its not as obvious as no one really thinks about what killed a dead wild rabbit and they are normally eaten by other animals. Myxo is also on the rise again unfortunately.

Kasman wrote on October 9, 2018, 4:48 PM

Populations go through cycles of boom and bust. Perhaps this is nature's way of thinning out wild rabbits before they reach plaque proportions. Pity it also affects pets though.

VinceSummers wrote on October 9, 2018, 4:54 PM

Nothing is safe, these days...

melody23 wrote on October 10, 2018, 4:59 AM

Myxo is manmade, its horrific and the rabbits suffer unimaginably before the end. It was created to control the wild rabbit population to prevent them from eating crops and digging where people didn't want them to dig etc. Humans are so cruel. I'm not one of these crazy animal activist types, I understand that wild rabbits present a risk to crops etc and because they can dig and jump its incredibly difficult to stop them from going somewhere you don't want them to, but Myxo is one of the most cruel things I have ever seen. The saving grace of the RVHD strain is it is relatively quick for the poor bun and they tend not to suffer in the way they do with Myxo.

The issue is that rabbits are one of the most neglected pets in the world. People stick them in tiny hutches in a garden where they are vulnerable to all sorts of illnesses or they keep them in even smaller cages indoors where they think they are safe from these diseases so they don't vaccinate them (its hard but not impossible for an indoor rabbit in a city to catch myxo, but not RVHD). Kids get bored of the rabbit and the poor thing suffers even more and usually ends up surrendered to an overflowing rescue centre if it is lucky, or set free to deal with predators it has no way to defend itself against.

Don't get me wrong, my two are spoiled and I am not saying people need to do everything I do for mine but they need space, safety, vaccines, vet care and grooming at a minimum. Oh and a friend, there is nothing sadder than a single bunny they live in groups in the wild for a reason.

lookatdesktop wrote on October 10, 2018, 3:13 PM

This is very bad news. That is such a cute little bunny pic. Glad there is some kind of vaccine to prevent it in the first place. Not all diseases are as easily preventable.

Last Edited: October 10, 2018, 3:14 PM