UK vets together with rabbit welfare and industry groups are hopping to the help of one of the nation’s most popular pets, by offering free health checks during Rabbit Awareness Week.
Rabbit Awareness Week (RAW) runs from 15 to 22 September 2012.
The RAW partnership, which aims to promote rabbit health and wellbeing and raise awareness of their long term needs, will feature hundreds of participating vet practices offering free rabbit health checks, as well as pet shops and rescue centres running educational events throughout the week. This offer of free advice aims to re-educate the nation’s rabbit owners on their pets’ health and welfare needs, as well as reducing the risk of fatal rabbit diseases with a simple vaccination.
Raising the care standards of pet rabbits
This year's campaign centres on the importance of regular vet health checks and vaccinations, to protect pet rabbits from two distressing and potentially fatal diseases, Myxomatosis and Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease (RHD), which can cause intense suffering in pet rabbits.
Suffering in rabbits can often be prevented by owners checking them regularly. However research carried out by the University of Bristol revealed that many owners groom, nail or teeth check their rabbits less than once a month.
Matt Brash, TV vet and RAW supporter, said:
As avid supporters of RAW, we know that many owners are very attentive to their rabbits, but don’t always fully understand their complex needs.
Along with diet, behaviour, environment, companionship and health care, regular vaccinations for rabbits are a necessity for them to live long, happy and healthy lives.
This week we are here to help owners ensure their bunnies are protected from these fatal diseases, answer any queries they have and make sure their rabbits are all round fit and healthy.
Supported by Burgess Excel and RAW partners, including MSD Animal Health, RSPCA, PDSA, Blue Cross, Wood Green The Animals Charity and RWAF (Rabbit Welfare Association and Fund), a collective group of rabbit health and welfare experts unite once a year with the aim of raising the care standards of Britain’s pet bunnies.
Where to go for your free health check
Hundreds of veterinary practices all over the UK are offering free rabbit health checks along with advice and offers on vaccinations.
To find your nearest participating vet practice, visit: www.rabbitawarenessweek.co.uk
Find out more about caring for your rabbit
Read our blog post