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EXOT402-0712: Rabbit Physiology, Husbandry and Behavior

This course has been postponed until further notice.
For more information, please contact Andrea Pomposo: 1.800.846.0028 x126

INSTRUCTOR(S): Thomas Donnelly, BVSc, MS, DACLAM and David Vella, BSc, BVSc(Hons), DABVP(ECM)
COURSE OPEN: July 17-August 17, 2012
REAL TIME SESSIONS (RTS): Tuesdays, July 24, 31, August 7; 9:30-11:30 pm ET (USA)
Course RTS Times in Your Area: World Clock Converter

Practice Sessions: In order to prepare you for a successful experience in your CE course, we request you attend a Practice Session prior to the first Real Time Session. Please arrive promptly at the start time; each Practice Session is up to 1 hour in length. For more information, please visit the CE Practice Area.

Level and Prerequisites: This basic course will be open to veterinarians and veterinary technicians actively interested in rabbit physiology, husbandry and normal behavior
VIN CE Course: Open to veterinarians and veterinary technicians. This course has been submitted for RACE approval for veterinarians and veterinary technicians.

Course Description:
Rabbits are now the most popular herbivorous mammalian pet. Their anatomy & physiology is quite different to that of popular carnivorous mammalian pets such as dogs, cats and ferrets. The aim of the course is to review the unique anatomy and physiology of rabbits, especially when compared to dogs and cats. We will emphasize clinically important aspects of rabbit anatomy and physiology to help the course participant understand the pathophysiology of rabbit diseases and the pharmacological basis of their treatment. Part of the course will focus on rabbit behavior, how it is different to dogs and cats, and some common behavioral abnormalities seen in pet rabbits.

This course consists of three (3) two (2) hour Real Time Sessions with audio for questions and answers, supplemental library materials, interactive message board discussions, and a mandatory end-of-course test. Successful completion (scoring 80% or better) on the end-of-course test is required to earn a certificate of completion for the course.

Upon completion of this course, the participant should be able to Course Materials: Course materials will be available in the course library prior to each Real Time Session.
Required Textbook(s): There is no required textbook for this course.

Recommended Textbook(s):

About the Instructors:
Thomas M. Donnelly is a New York based veterinarian. He is a Founding Member of The Kenneth S. Warren Institute and provides biomedical research services to biotechnology groups and research institutes primarily in the New York area. Tom received his degrees in veterinary medicine and veterinary pathology from the University of Sydney. He moved to New York in 1981 to study comparative medicine and pathology at The Rockefeller University and became a Diplomate of the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine in 1987. He is the author or co-author of over 200 scientific and clinical publications, including four chapters in the book Ferrets, Rabbits and Rodents: Clinical Medicine and Surgery. Tom also enjoys seeing exotic pets. He was a part-time member of the Avian & Exotic Pet Services at AMC from 1997-2000 and in 2007 became Adjunct Faculty at Tufts Veterinary School where he sees patients in the Exotic Pet service. In 2005, Tom was the recipient of the Mike Hutchinson Rat Veterinarian Award. To encourage the development of Exotic Pet Medicine as an evidence-based medicine specialty, Tom is a consultant to Veterinary Information Network (VIN) on the Mammals Small and Exotic Board and was a founding member of the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (ABVP) Certification Committee for the new veterinary specialty of Exotic Companion Mammals (ECM). Tom is allergic to most mammals. Although his veterinary medicine career and allergies collide, he is fortunate in finding the challenges and diversity of working with researchers, laboratory animal science professionals, exotic pets and their often equally unusual owners constantly gratifying.

David Vella is a primary accession and second opinion exotics veterinarian in Sydney, Australia. He graduated with a Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Honors) in 1996 from the University of Sydney and spent the first four years of clinical practice in the UK, where he saw numerous exotic pet cases. Upon returning to Sydney, he established his exotics veterinary service, which now provides work for five veterinarians. In 2009, David became a Diplomate of American Board of Veterinary Practitioners in Exotic Companion Mammals. His practice is a University of Sydney Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Intern Mentoring Program for final year internship practical rotations. David is involved actively with WIRES (Wildlife Information Rescue & Emergency Service) where he participates in casework and training for wildlife rescue, handling, rehabilitation, and foster care. David is a frequent speaker at veterinary and continuing education conferences in Australia where he also often runs popular workshops on surgery in small mammals and reptiles. Internationally he has spoken at NAVC and given lectures and workshops in SE Asia. David is a contributor and editor for the UK based Vetstream Lapis online rabbit veterinary information, a frequent contributor and editorial board member of the Australian journal "The Veterinarian" and editor of the Rabbit Section in the forthcoming Clinical Veterinary Advisor: Birds and Exotic Pets (Elsevier).

Course Outline:
Week 1 (Real Time Session July 24):
Content: Week 2 (Real Time Session July 31):
Content: Week 3 (Real Time Session August 7):
Content: CE CREDITS: 6

Tuition: Member $120 ($108 early bird special if enrolled by July 3, 2012)
Non-Member $201 ($181 early bird special if enrolled by July 3, 2012)

*To ensure participants are ready and prepared for classes, enrollment will close when the maximum number of participants is reached or at 5pm ET the day of the first Real Time Session unless otherwise noted. If the first Real Time Session is on a weekend, course enrollment will close on the Friday before the first Real Time Session.

*For more information on how online CE works, see the Participant Resource Center.


  1. Enrollment qualifications: VIN CE courses are open to VIN member and non-member veterinarians. Veterinarians enrolling in a VSPN CE course must be a VIN member. Veterinary support staff must be a VSPN member to enroll in a VSPN CE or a VIN CE course open to VSPN member enrollment.
  2. Each enrollee must be able to receive emails from and addresses. Email is our major form of communication with participants; personal emails are highly recommended rather than clinic/hospital email addresses.
  3. Each person is individually responsible for his/her own registration. To ensure that all information received is secure and correct, please do not enroll for a course on behalf of another individual.
  4. For further assistance call 1-800-700-INFO (4636) or email (VIN CE) or (VSPN CE) Please include the course title, your full name, and contact information in your correspondence.
*Note: "This course is submitted for approval for 6 continuing education credits in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB RACE approval; however participants should be aware that some boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or restrictions on certain methods of delivery of continuing education." Call VSPN/VIN CE at 1-800-700-4636 for further information. (Attendees are encouraged to check with their licensing jurisdiction(s) for information regarding recognition by their board).

Course withdrawal and refund policy: A complete refund of the paid course price will be issued when your withdrawal request is received prior to the listed start date of the course. If you wish to withdraw after the start date please contact the VIN/VSPN office 1-800-700-INFO (4636) to discuss eligibility for a pro-rated refund.
* Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you call the VIN/VSPN office at 1-800-700-INFO (4636).

* For more information on VIN's Upcoming CE Courses check the Course Catalog at

Katherine James, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (SAIM)
VIN Education Coordinator

VIN CE Services:
1-800-846-0028 or 1-530-756-4881 or direct line to VIN/VSPN from the United Kingdom: 01452226154
Andrea Pomposo (; ext 126
Debbie Friedler (; ext 756
Heather Schoffstall (; ext 116
Jennifer Boyle (; ext 169


800.700.4636  |  |  530.756.4881  |  Fax: 530.756.6035
777 West Covell Blvd, Davis, CA 95616

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