Myxomatosis

*99% fatality *Extremely contagious – viral infection caused by member of Poxvirus family, with various forms of transmission — currently has spread into multiple other countries, including the UK & USA.

What causes Myxomatosis?

deadly virus designed by humans, originally introduced in 1950 in Australia, in attempt to control population of wild rabbits. TRANSMISSION BY: blood sucking insects (mosquitoes, flies, lice, ticks, & mites), as well as direct and aerial contact, including mechanical contact with infected hutches, dishes, contaminated clothing, or other such items…. Infection includes several different forms of the disease.

What are the symptoms of Myxomatosis?

(STAGE 1) progresses within 7 days, death within 48hrs of onset of symptoms – lethargy, swelling of eyelids, loss of appetite, and fever… (STAGE 2) sleepy appearance of eyes, full facial swelling, ears my droop, swelling in genital area followed by quickly developing lesions which become severe within 24-48hrs, causing death by hemorrhage and seizures within 10 days… (STAGE 3) less common as it only occurs in rabbits that survive stages 1 & 2 – thick discharge of eyes, swelling around base of ears, followed by nodules (aka “myxomas”) may develop (not common in the strain found in the Pacific Coastal regions of the USA, known as the “California Strain”)… may also show signs of difficulty in breathing and death within 2 weeks. IF rabbit survives this, he is contagious for 30 days, and most usually are then completely immune to re-infection.

What are the medicinal treatments for Myxomatosis?

Diagnosis by visual symptoms & biopsy of lesions. Most often, death is very quick so diagnosis is made via necropsy. *There is no effective treatment! Euthanasia is typically required. *Eradication is extremely difficult! Often kills a minimum of 90% of each herd that it comes in contact with. *Vaccine is available in the UK and possibly other countries, however it is NOT available in the USA… vaccine does not prevent infection, but improves chance of survival of infected rabbits – if treated early and aggressively by a knowledgeable Vet.

What are the homeopathic treatments for Myxomatosis?

No known treatment of infection is available.

How could Myxomatosis be prevented?

Extreme parasitic control, total isolation, and excessive quarantine; place mosquito netting over all areas of hutches/cages. *Vaccine is available in the UK and possibly other countries, however it is NOT available in the USA… vaccine does not prevent infection, but improves chance of survival of infected rabbits – if treated early and aggressively by a knowledgeable Vet.

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