What if I find a bunny running loose in the street?
Well, this will depend on the situation. If the rabbit you see is running loose in a street, it would be advisable if you can to catch it without making the situation worse. A rabbit loose on a suburban street has so many obstacles to avoid, that it would be basically impossible for the bunny to live freely and happily for very long. A rabbit let loose will be predated
upon by dogs, cats, unfriendly people and possibly foxes. If the rabbit can avoid these conditions, then they face fast
moving cars, severe weather conditions and lack of nutritional food and water.
Catching a stray bunny
The best way to catch a loose rabbit is with a group of people, as you can quietly surround the bunny. If everyone has a
rug or towel to form a net, you can move in slowly and eventually the bunny has nowhere to go but into someone's
rug/towel. If you are planning on catching a loose bunny, always have with you a pet carrier so you will have somewhere
to put the rabbit once it is caught.
The rabbit you now have will most likely be very scared and frightened. If you know who the owner of the rabbit is, talk to
them and ask why the rabbit is left to run loose (in the nicest possible way). It's debatable whether you should return a
rabbit to a person who is not responsible enough to look after their bunny without any consideration of its safety.
Whether you return to it to them or not is up to you. You might find that the person is unwilling to take the rabbit back
anyway as in a lot of circumstances, the bunny is the pet of a child who has lost interest and the parents do not care
What if I come across a bunny poorly treated in a pet store?
If you come across a bunny that is being poorly treated in a pet store, you will have to decide whether you will do
something about it. Pet stores are constantly playing a role in overpopulation of animals by working together with
backyard breeders, therefore if you purchase from a pet store you will be assisting them with stock turnover, meaning
another bunny will just replace the one you remove. This doesn't mean don't do it (we did! Two at one time, but how can
you leave them there to suffer!). What I didn't do, however, was send a written complaint to the shop and the RSPCA.
So things were never followed up and as I never want to go back there again, they are probably still doing everything the
same way 2 years later.
What if I come across a bunny being poorly treated by a member of the public?
Report any incident of animal cruelty to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals immediately. If you do
not report it, then they will not know about it!
Sometimes you may be able to talk to the bunny owner and find that they will be quite happy to give the rabbit to you.
Although, if you think that the rabbit is in danger, do not contact the people directly but contact your local authorities. Do
not let the person in question know that you have done so as this may provoke further cruelty and also put you in danger.
What do you do with a rescued bunny?
If you find yourself taking a rabbit home, find somewhere quiet and safe for the bunny to relax in it's new surroundings eg.
laundry, bathroom (put some towels down and supply your new guest with fresh water and some greens. You can supply
a litter tray too if you have one and all the better if you can supply some hay and a cardboard box to hide in.
If you cannot look after the bunny you have rescued, take it to a shelter to be rehomed.
If you don't want to take the bunny to a shelter, you can try and rehome it yourself. If you would like us to advertise for you, please send the details of your rabbit/s (eg. sex, history, traits) as well as your contact details and a small photo of
your rescued bunny to email@example.com and we will put it in our Bunologist newsletter. You must be prepared to foster the rescued rabbit until a suitable home is found. You will also need to keep us up to date with current information on the availability of your rabbit and advise us if there are any changes. If you would like to have your bunny desexed before rehoming, please let us know and we will put you in contact with a good veterinarian if we can.
There may be a time when you come across a rabbit that needs to be rescued from its environment. What should you do?