Conference Classes


  • Adaptive Impoverishment/Total Rabbit. This talk will cover the critical state of rabbit emotions, your responsibility as an educator, rescuer, or caretaker to understand them and will include looking at all of the components that go into the care of a rabbit; not just the ones most commonly considered. By Joy Gioia and Marlene Larkin. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Non-Scientific/Non-Clinical
  • Book Signing with Marinell Harriman, author of the HRS Handbook and Margo DeMello, co-author of Stories Rabbits Tell
  • Bunny  Bonding  201. We all know how important rabbit bonding is. This workshop will get down to the nitty gritty of bonding pairs, threesomes, and will especially focus on large numbers of rabbits together. It will be a hands-on class using local rabbits from St. Louis HRS. By Margo DeMello, PhD. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Non-Scientific/Non-Clinical
  • Emergency Care.  You Can Save Your Rabbit’s Life! Miami HRS President Dana Krempels will cover all of the basics, as well as the advanced information, on how to administer life saving care in an emergency, including what to have in your emergency kit. By Dana Krempels, PhD. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Non-Scientific/Non-Clinical
  • Fundraising  and Networking. Help get your fundraising to the next level with tips and new ideas, including  forming relationships with businesses and using social media from Anne Martin, HRS Executive Director. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Non-Scientific/Non-Clinical
  • It’s a Gut thing: Rabbit Gastrointestinal Anatomy, Physiology and Nutrition. This  talk will cover the details of rabbit digestion and the what’s and how’s of the rabbit diet. By Micah Kohles, DVM, of Oxbow. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • Meet Marinell Harriman. An informal chat and interview with the founder of House Rabbit Society, Marinell Harriman.
  • Palliative Care.  This talk will cover the kinds of care that can be provided by veterinarians and caretakers alike when our rabbits are in pain or severely compromised. It will cover how to support quality of life when the underlying disease can’t be cured, and will include topics like massage, acupressure, herbs, as well as pain management, nutrition, benefits of routine monitoring (like blood tests or urine cultures), and end of life issues.  By Dr. Carolynn Harvey. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • Panel on Pushing  the Mission Forward. A panel discussion with the HRS Board of Directors.  Panel members: Margo DeMello, Joy Gioia, Mary Cotter, Paris Gray, Laurie  Gigous, Beth Woolbright, Dana Krempels, and Marinell Harriman.
  • Panel on Working with Shelters. This panel discussion will cover such topics as reducing euthanasia, dealing with large confiscations, and increasing adoptions. Panel members: Debby Widolf, Dr. Susan Brown, Joy Gioia, Nancy LaRoche, and Dawn Sailer. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Non-Scientific/Non-Clinical
  • Practical Nutrition: Adapting Dietary Recommendations for Specific Rabbit Needs. We all know the basics of rabbit nutrition. But how can we determine that a particular food is appropriate? How do these basic recommendations change when the rabbit has a particular disease, health history, or genetic condition? We’ll talk about how to adapt the core diet recommendations to the unique needs of special rabbits. Taught by nutritionist and HRS educator Sue Smith, PhD. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • Rabbit Dentistry. This talk will cover the most common dental problems along with contemporary treatments, and will cover the role diet plays in preventing and correcting dental disease. By Dr. Anthony Pilny. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • Rabbit Pharmacology: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. This class will cover the changing world of drugs for rabbits.  Some drugs used with humans, dogs, and cats work fine, but not in rabbits.   Other drugs are great –Why is that?  We will go over basic pharmacology of a couple of drugs to show how this makes a difference and to give people an idea about some of the issues involved and how the changing drug landscape can be suddenly altered – good or bad – with a new drug. We will talk about anesthetics, antibiotics, and steroids, to name a few.  We will discuss a little about poisoning – the real lesson is that most rabbits are quite a bit smarter than dogs.   By George Flentke, PhD. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • So You Think You Know Rabbits?  This talk isn’t just for beginners; it’s for everyone, and includes some insight on care from different viewpoints, including the rabbit’s.  It will help rescuers make adopters better equipped to understand themselves and their bunny or provide a caretaker with some unique insight.  By Joy Gioia.
  • Solving “Problem Rabbits:” Strategies for Managing Behavior Problems in Companion Rabbits.  Since HRS chapters take in rabbits regardless of behavior problems, many  of us end up with long-term fosters because potential adopters (and often  our own volunteers) do not realize that such problems can be very  satisfactorily resolved using contemporary behavioral science techniques. This workshop will focus on how to use insights from the discipline of  Applied Behavior Analysis to understand and resolve behavior issues in  companion rabbits, to help these rabbits become more adoptable.  We will cover alternative ways to analyze interactions, and to approach, handle, and work with rabbits who exhibit fear or “aggression.”  Rabbit models, as well as a limited number of live rabbits,  will be used for hand-on practice. By Mary Cotter, EdD/LVT and Susan Brown, DVM. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • State of the Art Diagnosis and Treatment of Common Rabbit Diseases. This talk will cover the newest and most up-to-date diagnostic and treatments modalities in rabbit medicine. Topics will include an in depth look at gastrointestinal, urogenital, and dermatologic disease as well as E.cuniculi.  By Dr. Peter Fisher. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • Surgery: Then and Now. There have been many advances in surgery in the past few decades. Using magnification and microsurgical instrumentation and techniques allows surgeon to accomplish difficult procedures in small patients with positive outcomes. Magnification also helps control blood loss because a smaller amount of bleeding appears worse when it is magnified and that catches the surgeon’s attention. Magnification also allows the surgeon to be able to find a small blood vessel that might be causing significant hemorrhage. We have seen the advent of minimally invasive surgery such as laparoscopy and thoracoscopy. This technology has been applied to rabbits, minimizing pain, and allowing for a faster recovery. With the development of better monitoring equipment for blood pressure, heart function, and respiratory function, as well as attention to pain management, thoracic surgery such as for removal of thymomas, has become possible. Advances in fracture management have made it so amputation is not necessarily the best way to manage a broken leg in a rabbit. And advanced imaging such as CT scans has allowed us to better manage dental abscesses to effect a cure. We have come a long way and continue to develop better techniques as technology advances. By Dr. Avery Bennett. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Scientific/Clinical
  • Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR)  for “Community” Domestic Rabbits. Dr. Diane McClure, DVM and Debby Widolf, HRS Educator, will share their experiences and knowledge gained while working with a TNR and adoption project for community rabbits living on the campus of Long Beach City College in Long Beach, CA.  Both speakers will speak to the coalition of institutions, organizations and volunteers needed to bring about and carry through with the project.   Ms. Widolf will  share her perspective from a rescuer’s viewpoint: pros and cons, the role of rescue organizations, volunteers and community members, adoptions and other challenges of a campus rabbit TNR.  Dr. McClure will address the medical aspects, organization, pre- and post- operative care and follow up of the campus rabbits.  Ms. Widolf will conclude with a discussion why TNR for rabbits might provide another humane option to save lives. By Diane McClure, DVM and Debby Widolf, with contributions by Dr. Frank Bossong. CE – 1, Seminar/Lecture, Non-Scientific/Non-Clinical