Dog vaccine

New vaccination recommended for pet rabbits

URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) – Two years ago, around the time Covid-19 first arrived in the United States, another deadly disease arrived in the country. No, you shouldn’t worry about getting infected. However, your four-legged friend could be in danger.

The referenced disease is a variant of rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus, which has circulated in wild rabbit populations and is transmissible to your pet, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.

Although the disease was primarily recorded in the Southwest, just a month ago cases were documented in Tennessee.

“We are very concerned that this year, as the baby rabbit population begins to increase in the spring, we may have an outbreak in the wild rabbit population and this may spill over to our pet rabbits,” the official said. Dr Krista Keller, board certified. said a zoological medicine specialist at the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital.

The disease affects only wild and domestic rabbits. It cannot infect people or other animals.

Martha Perez-Mugg brought her “brave” family rabbit, Bambi, to get her first dose of the vaccine at Vet Med on Friday.

The vaccine was administered by Keller’s second and third year veterinary students. Before receiving the injection, the rabbits undergo a brief physical examination, as well as a dose of painkiller to avoid further discomfort.

Bambi’s follow-up appointment for the second dose is in three weeks.

“I really trust the Vet Med here, so when they sent out the flyer letting us know there was something in the environment that could actually lead to her death, I knew we had to get her vaccinated,” said Perez-Mugg. “She’s an important member of our family, and I trust them to know whether or not she really needs it.”

In addition to vaccinating your rabbit, pet owners are also advised to practice “good biosecurity.” Keller suggests that rabbits stay indoors, that you avoid association with other rabbits whose vaccination status is unknown, and that you don’t feed them vegetation from your garden. There is also a belief that it is possible to track disease around the house through your shoes.

Keller said Vet Med plans to vaccinate “well over 100” rabbits by June, and 10 appointments are assigned each Friday. If you would like to have your rabbit vaccinated, it is advisable to call 217-244-2555 and make an appointment.

“We’re happy to fill all the spots we can,” Keller said. “If more rabbits need to be vaccinated, we will make an appointment to do so.”