Vaccinations

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Vaccinations for rabbits for myxomatosis and viral haemorrhagic disease are available in several parts of the world and are advisable if available. Rabbits that catch either of the diseases are generally not expected to recover, and euthanasia is the common decision when diagnosed.

Myxomatosis vaccine

The myxomatosis vaccine can be given to rabbits over 5 weeks of age and should not be given to pregnant does.[1]:90 It must be given by subcutaneous injection into the scruff of the neck to healthy animals.[1]:88 Boosters should be given annually.

It is not advisable to administer both myxomatosis and VHD vaccine at the same time. At least 2 weeks should elapse between vaccinations.[1]:90

Viral haemorrhagic disease vaccine

The VHD vaccine is given to rabbits over 10 weeks of age and can also be given during pregnancy.[1]:90 It must be given entirely subcutaneously and dispersed by massaging the injection area thoroughly.[1]:90 Boosters should be given annually.

It is not advisable to administer both myxomatosis and VHD vaccine at the same time. At least 2 weeks should elapse between vaccinations.[1]:90

Where are vaccinations available?

Rabbits in Australia can be vaccinated against VHD but not against myxomatosis.[2]

Pet rabbits in the United Kingdom can be vaccinated against both myxomatosis and viral haemorrhagic disease.[3]

Rabbits in the United States cannot be vaccinated against either diseases.[4][5][6] While outbreaks of VHD do happen occasionally, and myxomatosis is harbored as a trivial infection in some native rabbit species, no approved vaccines are currently available in the US.

Rabbits in Canada cannot be vaccinated against either disease. There are no approved vaccines for rabbits currently available in the country.

Further reading

See also

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Varga, M. (2013). Textbook of rabbit medicine. (2nd ed.).
  2. Melbourne Rabbit Clinic. (n.d.). Vaccinations. Retrieved 30 March 2016 from http://www.melbournerabbitclinic.com/wordpress/?page_id=286
  3. Save a Fluff. (n.d.). Important injections / vaccinations for your rabbits. Retrieved 30 March 2016 from http://www.saveafluff.co.uk/rabbit-info/vaccinations
  4. ARBA. (n.d.). Frequently Asked Questions... Retrieved 30 March 2016 from https://www.arba.net/faq.htm#Q26
  5. The Merck Veterinary Manual. (2015). Viral Diseases of Rabbits. Retrieved 22 Aug 2016 from http://www.merckvetmanual.com/mvm/exotic_and_laboratory_animals/rabbits/viral_diseases_of_rabbits.html.
  6. Western University of Health Sciences, The College of Veterinary Medicine. (n.d.). Western Univeristy Vet Myxo Letter. Retrieved 22 Aug 2016 from http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/vet/docs/WesternUVetMyxoLetter.pdf