There are estimated to be around 1.7 million rabbits kept as pets in the UK.
With a life expectancy of between 8 and 12 years, there are many different breeds of rabbits varying in size, body shape and personality.
They will require annual vaccinations against myxomatosis and Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (VHD). Please refer to the 'Information Sheet' for more information on Rabbit Diseases.
Diet is important to ensure your rabbit remains healthy, please see here for general information.
Their top front teeth can grow at a rate of 3mm per week and may require regular trimming by the vet.
Flystrike - is where flies lay their eggs directly onto the rabbit. When the eggs hatch, the maggots will bury into the animals flesh. Fly strike can happen to any rabbit. You must check your rabbit at least twice daily underneath and around the bottom for faecal soiling, sore places and matted fur.
Unless you plan to breed from your pet it is advisable to have them neutered. Before breeding, do seek veterinary advice to ensure health and personality suitability. Un-neutered females are at high risk of developing womb cancer. Un-neutered rabbits are more likely to fight.
New Rabbit vaccine available - September 2016
VHD (viral haemorrhagic disease)
As you may be aware from reports in the press, a new variation of VHD (viral haemorrhagic disease) virus has now appeared in the UK called VHD 2. Like VHD 1 it usually causes a rapidly fatal disease. Its exact prevalence in the UK is uncertain but outbreaks have been reported from various parts of the country. Unfortunately the current vaccine (Nobivac myxoRHD) only protects against VHD1. We now have a small supply of a new vaccine (Felavac) which protects against VHD2 only but availability is very limited. The cost of each vaccination is £25 per rabbit and will need to be repeated every 6 months. Unfortunately the new vaccine is incompatible with the Nobivac myxoRHD and these vaccinations cannot be done at the same time- an interval of at least 2 weeks is required. Because of limited availability, if you wish to have your rabbit vaccinated please ring the surgery and talk to Kerry who will reserve a dose for you and make you an appointment. We still recommend yearly vaccination against myxomatosis and VHD1, both diseases still being widespread throughout the UK.