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Rabbit haemorrhagic disease (RHD) or viral haemorrhagic disease of rabbits

Rabbit haemorrhagic disease (RHD) is a sudden onset, highly contagious and fatal viral disease of lagomorphs (rabbits and hares). There are 2 main genotypes of the virus, both of which have been reported in Canada:

RHDV2 affects several species of rabbits and hares, including both captive and feral European rabbits, from which our own domestic rabbits are descended. It might also affect several species of wild rabbits and hares that are indigenous to Canada.

In Canada, RHD is an immediately notifiable disease under the Health of Animals Act. Only laboratories are required to contact the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) regarding the suspicion or diagnosis of one of these diseases.

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