What Can I Do

People across North America can get involved to help protect rabbits against RHDV2. Whether or not you own or interact with rabbits, everyone can take the following steps to help slow the spread of RHDV2:

Photo: Erin Stahler
  • Keep a look out for any sick or dead rabbit or hare that:
    • Have blood around its nose/mouth.
    • Do not show any obvious signs of death.
  • Report these cases to a veterinarian or state agricultural agency (domestic animals) or state wildlife agency (wild animals) immediately!
    • Mark the location of the dead animal with flagging or other visible object, and record the location GPS coordinates if possible.
    • Do not touch the dead animal unless directed otherwise.
  • Leave wild rabbits (including young rabbits) where you found them!
  • Do not move or transport rabbits long distances.
  • If you live in or near a county with confirmed RHDV2 cases and are taking an injured rabbit to a wildlife rehabilitation center or veterinarian, contact the business before arrival to discuss their RHDV2 precautions.
  • Be aware that regulations and recommendations vary by states and even across state agricultural and wildlife agencies with a state. Please visit the websites for each of these agencies for your state to understand specific actions that you may be required to take regarding RHDV2.

When implementing these prevention efforts, understand that the greatest risk of RHDV2 spreading to new areas is from people moving infected rabbits and contaminated materials.

Essential prevention actions that reduce the risk of human-caused spread of RHDV2 include:

  • Do not transport live or dead rabbits into or out of RHD positive areas.
  • Isolate rabbits that have been moved from other locations for 30 days.
  • Clean and disinfect any equipment, tools, or clothing (including shoes) that has come in contact with rabbits.
    • Clean hard surfaces with a solution of either 10% bleach or 10% sodium hydroxide mixed with water.

For additional information, please see what specific actions you can take: