Talk about a bad bunny day. on september 6 Connecticut Department of Agriculture He received a report that 13 of the 14 rabbits at a private residence in Hartford County, Connecticut, had died suddenly. Presumably, rabbits lived in a human’s private dwelling and did not have their own home. On that day, tissue samples from the rabbits were sent to the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory. Two days later, the fourteenth rabbit ended up dying. On September 11, laboratory tests confirmed that the culprit in this rabbit story was rabbit haemorrhagic disease type 2 (RHDV2) virus.
This is a very bad virus if you have long ears, large eyes and a fluffy tail. It is highly contagious and can lead to a whole host of problems including fever, lack of appetite, respiratory problems, nervous problems, internal bleeding, anemia and yes, sudden death. Anything with the word “hemorrhagic” is usually bad whether it’s a hemorrhagic disease, a hemorrhagic velor prosthesis, or a hemorrhagic burger. “Hemorrhagic” means that there is bleeding. And RHDV2 can lead to bleeding in various parts of the body that is eventually difficult to control. Thus, if you are a rabbit, you should be all fascinated about the danger of this virus, whether it is your wild rabbit or your domestic rabbit. This virus can end up killing you in a strange and fast way.
Although this virus is not very common, this is not the first appearance of RHDV2 in the United States. The virus has already appeared in domestic rabbits in other states, including New Jersey, New York, various states in the southwestern United States and On August 17, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Commerce and Consumer Protection announced The state found its first cases of RHDV2 in three domestic rabbits located in La Crosse County.
Now, if you were a human instead (and most likely you are since you’re reading Forbes), you cannot currently capture RHDV2. This does not mean that you should simply say, “silly rabbits,” and not take any precautions. If a random rabbit knocks on your door or wants to deliver a package to your rabbits, don’t let that random rabbit jump inside. Any unfamiliar rabbit can carry the virus. Rabbits may not be very good at telling you that they don’t feel that well. And like some humans, they hide the fact that they have been in close contact with a sick person.
Therefore, it is best to keep any new rabbit separate from other rabbits for at least 30 days. If any visitors want to handle your rabbits (which, by the way, is not a euphemism for something else), have them wear protective clothing such as coats, shoe covers, hair caps, and gloves. In this case, “they” refers to the visitors, not the rabbits. It is very difficult to get rabbits to wear shoe covers because first you have to get them to wear shoes.
Furthermore, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly with warm, soapy water before and after handling rabbits or anything that rabbits have touched. Lather up with soap for at least 20 seconds, which is how long it takes to get to the first syllable of Jefferson Airplane’s “White Rabbit.” Clean and sterilize anything the rabbits have touched as well. Remember that rabbits are not very good at cleaning up behind them.
Then there is the vaccine. Some states such as Connecticut and Wisconsin have already agreed to sell the RHDV2 vaccine that has received an emergency use authorization from the USDA’s Center for Veterinary Biology. So you may want to talk to your vet about vaccinating your rabbit against RHDV2. One challenge is the lack of a test to see if your rabbit has been vaccinated against the virus. Asking your rabbit about pre-vaccination is likely to stare at your rabbit “when are you going to feed bananas”. Therefore, a vet, or rather a rabbit vet, must have some means of keeping track of vaccinated rabbits.
Meanwhile, authorities in Connecticut continued to try to determine the source of the RHDV2 outbreak. They will want to contain this virus as quickly as possible. Or risk facing a receding bunny streak.