Rabbit health

How to get rid of hemorrhagic disease of rabbits

August 20, 2019

Most rabbit breeding people will sooner or later encounter infectious diseases in these animals. Knowing how to prevent or cure the disease will save the number of livestock and avoid losses.

Decorative rabbits, although kept at home and most often alone, are at greater risk of contracting contact with the pathogen. Reduced immunity. payment for many years of selection.


Myxomatosis is a dangerous infectious disease of rabbits. When an outbreak occurs, the entire population quickly becomes ill. Effective treatment has not been developed, and mortality reaches 100%. The best way to combat myxomatosis is the preventive vaccination of animals.

Pathogen and routes of transmission

Myxomatosis is of a viral nature. The causative agent is quite stable in the external environment, therefore, the disease can be transmitted by contact. through direct contact with a sick animal, through food, litter, and the hands of the breeder. Another transmission method is transmission, i.e. through bites of blood-sucking insects (fleas, mosquitoes, midges, gadflies). The incubation period when the rabbit is already infected, but there are no external signs of the disease, lasts from 3 to 15 days. This is important to consider before vaccination and quarantine.

Manifestations of myxomatosis

There are two forms of the disease. The first sign of any form of myxomatosis is the appearance of red spots or nodules on the skin of the ears, in the eye area or on other parts of the body.

  1. Edematous. It begins with an increase in body temperature to 41 degrees C, which holds until the first signs of the disease appear. First conjunctivitis develops. the animal’s eyelids turn red, purulent secretion is released from the eyes. Then a runny nose with copious discharge from the nose joins, the rabbit’s breathing becomes noisy, heavy. Tumors appear throughout the body, 3-4 cm in diameter. The disease proceeds within 4-10 days, sometimes up to a month. Associated pneumonia is usually fatal.
  2. Nodular. It proceeds more benignly, half of the diseased individuals survive. Numerous dense tumors appear on the skin of a rabbit, ranging in size from 5 mm to several centimeters. Body temperature does not rise. 14 days after the occurrence, if the rabbit survived, the tumors begin to die. Foci of necrosis (necrotic tumor tissue) heal within 2-4 weeks.
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Ill animals gain immunity to this disease and, in most cases, do not get sick again.

Myxomatosis Prevention

Myxomatosis in a rabbit

The only effective way to protect rabbits from myxomatosis is preventive vaccination. For its implementation, two types of vaccines are used:

  1. Dry live culture vaccine against myxomatosis from strain "B-82". protects only from the pathogen myxomatosis.
  2. The vaccine associated against myxomatosis and viral hemorrhagic disease of rabbits. protects against pathogens of these diseases.

A vaccine is not a medicine, but a preventative measure! It causes the formation of immunity by introducing into the living organism weakened pathogens (viruses in this case). Inoculate already sick animals is pointless and even harmful.

Vaccination age

Rabbits are vaccinated when they reach 28 days of age, adults, pregnant and lactating females (vaccination in the last stages of pregnancy is not recommended). If the rabbit has a weight of less than 500 g, vaccination is delayed until this mass is recruited.

Vaccination schedule

  • The first vaccination is 28 days;
  • revaccination. after 3 months, i.e. at the age of four months;
  • subsequent revaccinations. after 6 months in areas unfavorable for myxomatosis, after 9-12 months. in favorable ones.

The same pattern is observed in the case of vaccination of adult rabbits. Revaccination is recommended in the spring and autumn, since it is during these seasons that the incidence of myxomatosis increases. If the revaccination time was missed, rabbits should be vaccinated as soon as possible, despite the season.

Vaccination Technique

Myxomatosis vaccination for rabbits

Only healthy animals are vaccinated. Two weeks before the planned vaccination or after it is recommended to give rabbits an anthelmintic drug.

How to get rid of hemorrhagic disease of rabbits

The formation of immunity begins on the 3rd day and ends on the 9th. The protective effect lasts from 9 to 12 months.

  • Intradermally. in the middle part of the auricle, so as not to touch the blood vessels. The skin is pierced by a few mm needle, it is necessary to achieve the appearance of a “button”, as when setting the Mantoux test. You can use a needleless injector. 0.2 ml of the vaccine is administered.
  • Subcutaneously. in the thigh area. 0.5 ml of the drug is introduced. It differs from intramuscular injection by the depth of the needle (inserted to a shallower depth).
  • Intramuscularly. the area of ​​administration and the volume of the drug is the same as with subcutaneous administration of the drug, but the needle is inserted a few cm deep.
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An individual needle is used for each rabbit. When using reusable syringes and needles, they must be sterilized by boiling for 15-20 minutes. Do not sterilize with chemicals. A needleless injector is treated with the method specified in the instructions.

The injection site is treated with 70% alcohol or another skin antiseptic. The vaccine is diluted with physiological saline at the rate of: 0.2 ml of saline per 1 dose with intradermal administration and 0.5 ml per 1 dose with subcutaneous / intramuscular administration.

See clearly how to vaccinate the rabbit yourself in the video clip.

Complex vaccine

Protects animals from myxomatosis and viral hemorrhagic fever. It simplifies the vaccination process, but is not recommended for use in areas unfavorable for these diseases. After it, less strained immunity is formed. The vaccination schedule and technique is the same as for the myxomatosis vaccine.

How to get rid of hemorrhagic disease of rabbits

Vaccination complications

The risk of their occurrence increases if non-compliance with the rules of vaccination of animals. The following complications are possible:

  • Infiltrate, abscess (limited cavity filled with pus) at the injection site. if the aseptic rules are not followed and the rabbits are not adequately cared for;
  • An allergic reaction to the drug. occurs more often in rabbits affected by worms;
  • The disease in a mild form is possible with vaccination of a weakened animal, lightweight (up to 500 g), pregnant females in the last stages and lactating females.

Vaccination efficacy

A rabbit is vaccinated against myxomatosis

The vaccine does not give a 100% guarantee of protecting animals from myxomatosis, but significantly reduces the risk of death. The formed immunity will allow the rabbit to transfer the disease much easier.

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In order to be sure of the vaccination, it is necessary to strictly observe the rules of storage and use of the drug:

  • store the vaccine in the refrigerator at a temperature of 0 to 5 degrees C;
  • a diluted drug must be used within 1 hour;
  • You can not enter the vaccine, with any signs of impaired integrity of the ampoule or vial;
  • pay attention to the expiration date, the drug with an expired expiration date should be disposed of.

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