What is vaccination?

Vaccination is giving an injection to protect your rabbit against certain diseases.

How does vaccination work?

Once the vaccine is given, the immune system prepares itself in case of disease. If the disease tried to infect your rabbit, the immune system would be ready to fight it. This prevents your rabbit from becoming unwell.

Which diseases can I protect my rabbit against?

There are two fatal diseases rabbits can be vaccinated against:


  • Transmitted by fleas and biting insects, so even house rabbits can be infected.
  • Causes swelling of head and genitals, skin lesions and death.

Viral haemorrhagic disease

  • Transmitted via body fluids, can survive for three months on animals or items or in the environment.
  • Causes internal bleeding, convulsions and death.

What does the vaccination involve?

The injection is a tiny volume of fluid given under the skin of the neck; many rabbits don’t even feel the small needle.

What is the initial vaccination schedule?

A single vaccine is given from five weeks old.

When will my rabbit be protected?

The rabbit’s immune system will respond to the vaccination, resulting in protection three weeks after the course is completed. This means a rabbit having the initial injection should not be mixed with unknown rabbits or go on the ground outside until three weeks after the injection.

When will the protection run out?

To keep the immune system ready to stop your rabbit becoming ill, yearly boosters are essential. This annual visit also allows us to health check your pet, so we can identify any health concerns early.

Are there any reasons not to vaccinate my rabbit?

Not having your rabbit vaccinated means they will not be protected against these diseases and could become unwell and die. This risk is present as there are so many pets and so much wildlife in this area for your rabbit to catch disease from. Even rabbits who never leave their home may be exposed to some diseases from wildlife in the garden, and transmission via biting insects.

Vaccinations are an extremely safe treatment, with very rare side effects of slight swelling at the injection site, or a mild fever.

How can the Healthy Pet Club help with vaccination?

Our Healthy Pet Club gives you a significant discount on the cost of the year’s vaccine, flystrike treatment, and includes food and some hay. It also allows you to spread the cost into monthly payments.