RHD, also called Chinaseuche, is one of the most feared diseases in rabbits. Once the animal has become infected with the RHD virus, the disease is fatal in most cases. Fortunately, you can prevent an infection by having your rabbit vaccinated at the vet and then refreshing the vaccine regularly. Learn more about the causes, symptoms and prevention of dangerous rabbit disease.
Every rabbit owner should be aware of the dangers posed by RHD. There is no effective treatment against China Search. Therefore, it is even more important to take preventive measures in the form of vaccinations - not only for rabbits living outside, but also for domestic animals. In particular, if you keep several rabbits, you should also know the symptoms of China Search so that you can act quickly in the event of an animal disease.
What is RHD or Chinase Search in rabbits?
RHD (Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease) first appeared in China in 1984. This is how the name Chinaseuche came into being. In 1988, rabbits in Germany also became infected with the dangerous viral disease. The pathogen is a so-called calicivirus, which is increasingly infected with wild and breeding rabbits, but even domestic rabbits, which are kept indoors, can become infected. Especially in the summer months, the illnesses increase, but in general, it is possible to catch the disease throughout the year.
In 2010, a new pathogen (RHD-2) appeared in France. This was also detected in Germany in 2014 and is more resistant than the original RHD virus. The new virus also killed rabbits vaccinated against RHD-1. Your animals should therefore be vaccinated against both virus variants of Chinaseeker to protect them safely. Because otherwise, the disease leads to organ death, internal bleeding and blood clotting disorders in nearly 100 percent of all cases very quickly to the death of the rabbit.
This is how RHD is transferred
The incubation period is usually between one and three days. The RHD virus is transmitted in different ways:
● The healthy rabbit can become infected through direct contact with a sick animal.
● Parasites such as mosquitoes and rabbit fleas - but also mites, ticks, lice or flies - transmit the disease.
● The rabbit may become infected during vet visits or while running outdoors, as well as objects that have come into contact with the virus, such as shoes, clothing or contaminated food.
China Seizure Symptoms: Signs of RHD disease in rabbits
The perfidy of China Search is that the symptoms are less characteristic. Often the death occurs suddenly, without the animal has previously shown great abnormalities. The following signs indicate that your rabbit may have been infected with RHD:
● The animal is apathetic or dizzy and refuses to eat or at least shows a reluctance to eat.
● The rabbit's breathing is irregular: it can be accelerated or aggravated. When the disease is more advanced, the animal often struggles to breathe, as it becomes increasingly difficult for him to breathe.
● The body of the rabbit contracts convulsively.
● The animal is bleeding from orifices such as the nose or anus. Also, blood in urine or faeces may indicate an RHD disease.
● Shortly before they die, the rabbits often get very high fever, then the body temperature drops sharply.
● In addition to the acute and fatal form of China's disease, there is also a weaker variant, where the chances of survival are significantly higher. However, this is extremely rare. The rabbits usually become ill only two weeks after infection with the virus. They also show themselves apathetic, eat less food and in some cases have diarrhea and / or fever. However, after a few days, they recover from the disease.
So you can protect your rabbit from the China Search
Because there are no effective treatments for RHD, prevention is the only safe option to protect your rabbit from the disease. For animals on exhibitions a vaccination against the China Search is even mandatory, but all other rabbit owners should not hesitate to take this protective measure. At the age of about six to eight weeks, have rabbits vaccinated against RHD at the vet.
The vaccine is administered subcutaneously - ie with a syringe under the skin - and is tolerated by the rabbits in most cases. The RHD vaccine should be refreshed annually, with immunization lasting nine to twelve months. There is also a combination vaccine for RHD and myxomatosis. Your veterinarian will be happy to advise you on all other questions regarding the course, course and course of the vaccination.
To protect your rabbit from RHD, you should also avoid contact with wild rabbits and attach insect screens to the windows to prevent insect bites on the animal. Increased caution is advised when using China Quarry in the environment. Find out about the distribution areas on the Internet or at the vet.