Rabbit hemorrhagic disease: Understand and prevent it

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A rabbit sits in a grassy outdoor setting.

New AVMA resources help veterinarians, clients 

Rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus type 2 (RHDV2) is a highly infectious and lethal virus that is spreading through the southwestern United States. There’s currently no approved vaccine to protect against it in the U.S. Owner education is particularly important to protect animals and reduce the disease’s spread.

The AVMA has created a new webpage and downloadable client handout to help you share information about this disease, which infects only lagomorphs, including rabbits and hares.

  • Find answers to frequently asked questions.
  • Know the clinical signs of RHDV2.
  • Learn about transmission and prevention.
  • See reporting guidelines and procedures.
  • Access resources from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Existing RHDV vaccines don’t cross-protect for RHDV2—it’s important that rabbit owners and rabbit clubs follow biosecurity protocols and quarantine orders. Anyone can access the new webpage at avma.org/RHDV2, and AVMA members can download the ready-to-use client handout.

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Client handout: RHDV2

Use this handout to help educate clients about rabbit hemorrhagic disease and its prevention.



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