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If this is your problem, don’t panic.

You are most likely to need to show your pet’s vaccination card if they go into a kennel or cattery. Some dog training classes will ask for proof of vaccination as well.

A vaccination card should be filled in correctly, and signed, by your vet and as such is a legal document. You should keep it in a safe place, but if it does go missing don’t get too stressed out.

An original vaccination is a valuable document but it can be replaced. Get in touch with your vet and they will happily write you out a new one. If you have switched vets at some point during your pet’s life, your present vet may only be prepared to include details of the vaccinations they have given themselves. Don’t panic; double check with the organisation asking to see the vaccination card but most likely they will only be interested in whether your pet was vaccinated during the last 12 months.  However, it is possible a vet may charge you for this service.

Things can be trickier if your pet is a rescue animal and the history is unknown. A lot of rescue organisations and shelters vaccinate animals themselves before they re home them, so it’s worth contacting the organisation you got your pet from. It’s highly likely they will be able to get you a replacement card.

If you have got a rescue animal from a private source, and have no way of finding out where they were last vaccinated, you may have to just bite the bullet and get them vaccinated even if you know the last vaccination’s Duration Of Action isn’t up yet. It’s not recommended to have vaccinations too close together but it’s unlikely to hurt your pet, just the once.

And when you have that new card, remember to put it somewhere *really* safe!




Today, when I was in the woods with my dogs and children, we walked into a clearing and found a young rabbit wandering in circles.

The dogs couldn’t believe their eyes and of course jumped in, thinking it was dinner time. I managed to grab them, but this left me with a dog in each hand, and no way of attending to the poor bunny. Eventually, I got both dogs onto their leads and tied them up.

Of course the kids were hysterical by this time, and the rabbit was in a bad way. Its eyes were swollen shut and it had lumps all over its body. It had myxomatosis.

This is a horribly contagious disease that can kill up to 90% of rabbits that it infects. It is sometimes spread by contact with infected animals, or by exposure to something that has been in contact with a sick bunny. But more frequently it is spread by an insect, such as a fly or mosquito, that has landed on a rabbit with Myxomatosis. If this insect lands on your rabbit’s food or bites it, your bunny can get sick.

Sometimes rabbits with Myxomatosis will survive but most often they die, even with careful and expensive medical treatment and nursing. If a rabbit is presented with signs of this disease in summer, with no history of vaccination, then most vets will recommend euthanasia on humane grounds.

If you have a pet rabbit, please make sure it is vaccinated against Myxomatosis. Some vaccinated bunnies still get ill but it’s a much milder form of the disease and they rarely die.

Using Advantage or Xeno100 on your rabbits will help prevent flea infestations and bites from mosquitoes.

And if you live near a lake or pond, then mosquito control is more important and it is wise to use a mosquito net to cover the hutch during  summer evenings. Dry bedding also discourages mosquitoes, so make sure you  keep your rabbit’s home clean and dry.

We were walking in Bayhurst Woods, which are part of Ruislip Woods in Hillingdon. If you live nearby and your rabbit hasn’t been vaccinated in the last 6 months, you should contact your vet and arrange an appointment now.

If you live elsewhere, there is also a good chance that a wild rabbit colony near you is harbouring Myxomatosis. Don’t hedge your bets when it comes to your family pet, get them vaccinated against this fatal disease.


It’s grey and damp in London atm and everywhere I look there is mud. I find myself scanning the weather forecasts looking for the next cold spell ( middle of next week apparently, if anyone is interested) but I’m what I’m really thinking about is summer, and where we are going on holiday.

A lot of people take their pets, especially dogs, on holiday with them but not us. We have 4 children and don’t feel able to cope with the added stress that a couple of canines would involve. Besides, there would be no room for luggage in the car!
But even if you are not taking your pets away with you, please don’t forget them in your holiday preparations. As soon as you have your dates booked, ring the kennels, cattery, pet or home sitter or check with the neighbour/friend who usually feeds them. Check their vaccinations are up to date and start tweaking their flea/worming schedule so they won’t be due for a treatment while you are away. If your pet is microchipped, make sure the address the company has is up to date and if your pet isn’t chipped, consider having it done. If you have no idea who your pet’s chip is registered with, talk to your vet, they will be able to scan your pet and tell you which company you should be registered with.
If your pet is travelling with you, you need to check their vaccinations and passport ( if required) are all up to date. And having the correct address recorded against their microchip is obviously vitally important when they are away from home. Also do some research and write down the details of the closest vet to where you will be staying, just in case.
Sorting these details out now, and making a record of what you’ve organised will save you from panicking about pet-care closer to holiday time. You’ll be able to spend your time stressing about packing and your passports instead!