Protecting your rabbit against Myxomatosis and Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease.
About the Diseases
The Myxomatosis virus is spread from wild rabbits by fleas, flies and mosquitoes. Cats who have been hunting may come into your garden and carry wild rabbit fleas to your rabbit in its hutch. Affected rabbits develop puffy swellings around the head, face and genitals, fail to eat and develop pneumonia. It is invariably fatal.
Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (VHD1 and VHD2) is spread by contact and by birds. It originated in China in 1982 and has since spread to Europe and the UK. Affected rabbits are often found dead as it is a very acute disease causing haemorrhage internally.
When to vaccinate
There is a vaccine that protects your rabbits against both of these fatal diseases. The vaccine can be given to rabbits as young as 6 weeks old. Protection lasts a full year and an annual vaccination is required.