Help keep One Green Planet free and independent! Together we can ensure our platform remains a hub for empowering ideas committed to fighting for a sustainable, healthy, and compassionate world. Please support us in keeping our mission strong.
Veterinarians are warning rabbit owners about an emerging virus in the United States. The fatal virus causes an ebola-like disease called rabbit hemorrhagic disease has been reported in western and southwestern United States. The fatal virus can affect both wild and domestic rabbits.
The virus was first found in China in 1984, but scientists believe it emerged from wild European rabbits. The virus spread with global travel.
“We’ve tried to keep this virus out of the country, but there have been sporadic outbreaks in domestic rabbits,” said Jennifer Graham, a veterinarian at the Henry and Lois Foster Hospital for Small Animals. “For example, there was one situation where a woman working in a restaurant that served rabbit brought the virus home to her own rabbits.”
The virus has been discovered in wild, pet and feral rabbits in Colorado, Texas, California, Nevada, and Washington. It cannot be transmitted by rabbits to humans or other animal species but it is incredibly contagious between rabbits and the virus can survive extreme temperatures and long periods of time in its’ environment. A vaccine is not currently available.
- Keep a closed rabbit environment, no new rabbits in the home, and prevent contact between your rabbit and wild animals.
- Keep rabbits indoors.
- Wash your hands thoroughly before and after handling your rabbit.
- Don’t wear outdoor shoes inside and keep shoes away from your rabbit.
- Don’t feed rabbits native grass, branches, plants, or hay.
- Speak to your veterinarian for more prevention tips and for recommendations pertinent to your local area.
For more Animal, Earth, Life, Vegan Food, Health, and Recipe content published daily, subscribe to the One Green Planet Newsletter! Also, don’t forget to download the Food Monster App on iTunes — with over 15,000 delicious recipes it is the largest meatless, vegan, and allergy-friendly recipe resource to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy! Lastly, being publicly-funded gives us a greater chance to continue providing you with high-quality content. Please consider supporting us by donating!