CALICIVIRUS: How to protect your pet rabbit

Is your pet rabbit protected against Calicivirus?

A new Korean strain of the calicivirus known as “K5” is set to be released in Canterbury this month and is just as deadly to pet rabbits as the existing strain. It is expected there will be an increase in the disease among the wild rabbit population therefore increasing the possibility of exposure to pet rabbits.

The Cylap rabbit vaccination is not licensed for the K5 strain but appears to be protective. We recommend that all rabbits are fully vaccinated.

The current schedule recommended by a specialist rabbit clinic in Australia is:
• Unvaccinated rabbits
require 2 injections, 4 weeks apart and then re-vaccinated annually to maintain this protection.
• Vaccinated rabbits need 1 annual boster.

FLIES AND FLEAS ARE THE MAIN VECTORS THROUGH WHICH THE VIRUS IS SPREAD, so remove all uneaten food daily and keep your pet rabbit indoors where possible. Rabbit proof your backyard to prevent wild rabbits and limit contact time with, and handling of unfamiliar pet rabbits.

We are welcoming all owners of pet rabbits to participate in our vaccination programme. Call RVC to book your rabbit in for their vaccination to protect them against this deadly disease.

Clinics are running all day Tuesday at RVC Woodend Vet Clinic, and also on Wednesday afternoons at the Rangiora Vet Centre.

Cost for Vaccination during these special clinic times is only $49.00.
Rabbits vaccinated outside of these times may incur additional costs.

Call now to book.
RVC Woodend: 312 8387
RVC Rangiora: 313 8387
RVC Kaiapoi: 327 8387


A centre of veterinary excellence for North Canterbury.

24hr/7day emergency care available by phoning 03 313 7438