Maybole vet to the (rabbit) rescue

Gill Fraser, Gillian Campbell, Emer Macken, Megan McHarg, Emma Auld
Gill Fraser, Gillian Campbell, Emer Macken, Megan McHarg, Emma Auld

A VET from Maybole is hopping to the help of one of the nation’s most popular pets by taking part in a national awareness campaign.

Rabbit Awareness Week (RAW) kicked off on Saturday, and Maybole vet Emma Auld is determined to do her bit.

Emma, 29, hopes to boost the health of suffering bunnies and the pockets of their owners by providing free rabbit health checks throughout the week.

The RAW partnership, which aims to promote rabbit health and wellbeing, will feature hundreds of participating vet practices offering free rabbit health checks UK-wide, as well as pet shops and rescue centres running educational events.

The offer of free advice aims to re-educate the nation’s rabbit owners on their pets’ health and welfare needs, after research by the University of Bristol recently indicated that nearly 40 per cent of owners groom their pets and check their teeth less than once a month.

This year’s campaign also seeks to raise awareness of two distressing and potentially fatal diseases - Myxomatosis and Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease (RHD).

Heads of Ayr resident Emma, a vet of seven years who started up County Vets at Maybole’s Whitefaulds Farm in July, came across RAW online and decided to sign up.

“We decided to participate in Rabbit Awareness Week as we see more and more rabbits being kept as pets and often not in the best environments for their optimum health,” she said.

“Often we do not even see rabbits until they are really sick and we can’t do much for them, so I thought this was quite a good thing to take part in.”

She said she was proud to offer a free service in Carrick for the duration of the awareness week, especially given the youth of her practice.

RAW 2012 runs from September 15-22, and is supported by partners including the RSPCA, PDSA, Blue Cross, Wood Green The Animals Charity and Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund.

To find out more about County Vets visit www.facebook.com/CountyVets, or to book an appointment call 01655 883531.

If you live outside South Ayrshire and would like to find your nearest RAW participating practice visit www.rabbitawarenessweek.co.uk/event-locator.