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Ask RiotACT: Pet rabbit deaths

By MissChief 7 December 2015 27

Ask RiotACT

In the past week we’ve lost 3 of our 4 very healthy pet rabbits suddenly, and are aware of another instance of 4 pets rabbits being lost suddenly 3 weeks ago.

Has anyone else had this happen to them recently?

Is it possible the ACT Government has recently released calicivirus near the suburban areas of Tuggeranong without consultation or notice to residents?  Tracking down the relevant Government webpage only reveals information from a few years ago.

What’s Your opinion?

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27 Responses to
Ask RiotACT: Pet rabbit deaths
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BooUrns 6:16 pm 14 Dec 15

dungfungus said :

steveu said :

apologies for my ignorance, how is the virus spread if a bunny is confined to a backyard? I presume airborne?

Sorry to hear about so many lost pets. 🙁

Mosquitoes; and there are plenty of them in Canberra.

Maybe bring it inside if you can, Ours are inside. The virus is quite hardy and spreads with mozzys but also Birds,Dogs,Shoes and even dust to some extent.

Direct virus transmission by
Nasal and eye secretions

Indirect virus transmission by
Insects/wild birds/rodents
Clothing, shoes, etc.
Cages and bedding
Dogs or people
Cleaning equipment and tools
Food or green feed


BooUrns 6:04 pm 14 Dec 15

I don’t think TAMs had anything to do with this release. They did fumigation and pellets i think.

Nilrem 9:38 am 14 Dec 15

crackerpants said :

Nilrem said :

BooUrns said :

I think a map would be a great idea, our vet said a few months ago that it was confirmed in Goulburn 6 months ago so it spreads fast we had all ours double doesd just recently. We will probably start leaving our shoes outside as you only need to walk up Mt Taylor or go for a walk along the tails were the wild bunnies live and you could potentialy bring it inside.

Hope they do find a vaccine and politcs stays out of it, one can only imagine the outccry if everyones dogs or cats started dropping.

Good luck all

Does it affect guinea pigs?

I called the RSPCA to find out – their vet said no. Our guinea pigs are indoors most of the time, but it’s no guarantee when mosquitoes are a vector.

Thanks mate.

XK140 4:58 pm 11 Dec 15

dungfungus said :

XK140 said :

Anniedehoog said :

I had 4 baby bunnies die yesterday. I suspected heat stroke as the mumma bunny had knocked the shade down, and some are still alive. Hope the others aren’t dying of the virus too!


– don’t like your chances, we had 14 rabbits from three generations in an outdoor, but totally contained enclosure, and over a period of two weeks, babies and two-mothers, all died one by one.

Absolutely sickening to see, one mother died, so her barely 8 week old daughter, tried valiantly to protect her siblings all dying one-by-one, until she succumbed herself.

All wiped out over two weeks.

If you are referring to my comment about the Mugga Lane land fill odour, you are correct.
The toxic odours from there only kill humans, not rabbits.
I really hate to see pets and wildlife suffer too. It also concerns me how insidious this virus is.
Imagine if something like this stuff that affected humans was dropped in our water supply?

Sorry Dungfungus – I meant to reference Anniedehoog’s comment, but I agree the analogies of such a deceitful and uncontrolled release of such a deadly virus, without any ACT Government warning and available vaccine for pets, and now TAMS downplaying extent, is mind-blowing.

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