There are numerous reasons why a rabbit may need to see a vet. These range from preventative treatments through to emergency treatment which is why it is important that any new pet rabbit is promptly registered with a local rabbit savvy vet practice. It has been found that only 71% of rabbits are currently registered with a vet. This may sound high but in comparison to the 84% of cats and 92% of dogs that are registered, it is a much lower figure.
Research has shown that rabbit owners are much less likely to provide preventative healthcare to their rabbits in comparison to dog and cat owners. Preventative healthcare includes things such as vaccinations and neutering which are both important for rabbits.
Vaccinations are one of the main reasons that you may need to take your rabbit to the vet. They are super important for rabbits to have as they immunise them against Myxomatosis, Rabbit Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (RVHD) and a newer strain of RVHD known as RVHD2. These three diseases are incredibly deadly in rabbits, hence the importance of having them vaccinated and ensuring that they also get their yearly booster vaccinations. Only around 50% of owners regularly vaccinate their rabbits and 30% of these people have said that they don’t vaccinate as their rabbit doesn’t interact with other animals. This reasoning is incredibly misinformative as these diseases are not just transferred through animals, but also through other ways such as on human clothing. This is also why it’s important for both indoor and outdoor rabbits to be vaccinated.
Another main reason a rabbit may need to go to the vet is to be neutered. Sadly, only around half of bunny owners get their bunnies neutered and the main reasoning for not doing so is because their rabbit lives alone. It is super important for rabbits to be neutered regardless of whether they are living alone or not as neutering limits behavioural issues such as spraying and biting, and it can also reduce the likelihood of cancer within female rabbits.
In addition to both of these, rabbits are also susceptible to other health conditions that may require a vet visit and treatment. Such issues can include GI Stasis, E. Cuniculi, teeth issues, microchipping and mites. This list is not exhaustive and the things on it will range from requiring emergency treatment to a general scheduled vet visit.