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Is Rabbit Flu The Next Bird Flu?

16 years ago

22nd August, 2006 00h00

Following reports on 21st August that a young farmer died from Rabbit Flu, The Rabbit Welfare Fund (RWF) has been inundated with phone calls and emails from anxious owners asking if they are in danger from their pet rabbit. Judith Brown BVM&S MRCVS, Veterinary Executive for the charity stated “We want to reassure pet rabbit owners that cases such as this are extremely rare, and human Pasteurella infections are usually caught from cat and dog bites rather than rabbits. It is also a treatable with antibiotics, if caught in time”. She went on to say “The term ‘rabbit flu’ is very misleading as Pasteurella is actually a bacterial infection not a viral one” To clarify the position, the RWF Health Liaison Team has put together an article outlining inter-species disease risk, and this is available from their Website: “The RWF are extremely concerned that pet rabbits will be abandoned or worse with the scaremongering that has taken place during the course of these reports” explained Rachel Todd, Welfare Executive for the organisation. For further details about the rabbit Welfare Fund, please visit their Website: or phone the helpline on: 0870 046 5249.

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