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Rescue

Tigger Update 2

By | Rescue, Sick Bunny | No Comments

Hi all, Tigger (or Oscar) is through the surgery and awake, so far, so good. Thanks so much to Adam, Joseph and Diana at Little Paws, it took up their whole day off.
They opted to amputate, they didn’t have a plate small enough, pins aren’t an option and they were afraid the recovery time and chance of complications was too great. They manipulated his other leg/hip back into the socket and hopefully it will recover without being compromised, otherwise we’ll be looking for a wheelchair.
Right now we’re looking for some pretty intensive foster care, especially if he doesn’t start eating. He’ll need three different meds two and three times a day. The incision will need to be iced and he may need to be fed Critical Care.
It would also be helpful (and potentially necessary) to find someone who can give him shots.
His cage is going to require at first constant cleaning, we really need to make sure he stays dry and doesn’t pick up an infection. Once he starts getting back on his feet (after a lot of cage rest) he’ll need a surface with traction, he can’t be on hardwood or linoleum.
Some people have offered to foster and/or adopt, thanks so much, but as you can tell, we really need to make sure it’s the right fit.
Thanks also to everybody who donated, sent prayers and gave advice.

Tigger Update

By | Rescue | No Comments

Tigger, the broken leg bunny, is doing well with cage rest, he’s eating and moving around. The Little Paws Animal Clinic is closed tomorrow but the crew has volunteered to come in on their day off to do the surgery. They are beyond awesome.  Both Dr. Avitan and Dr. Martinez will be there along with Diana. The x-rays are being circulated and they’ll have lots of additional opinions. Bunny rescuer Oscar found Tigger on the side of the road not moving at 2 in the morning so it’s pretty apparent he was hit by a car. (This is a photo he took soon after). His other hip is also dislocated. He’s in good hands. Thanks to everybody who’s been helping out.

Bunny Emergency

By | Advocacy, Donate, Rescue, Sick Bunny | No Comments

We have a bunny emergency. Somebody found an abandoned rabbit with a broken leg, they couldn’t find anywhere to take the poor thing (the agencies supposedly mandated to do this apparently can’t or won’t), so they called us and we couldn’t say no. The rabbit is at the Little Paws Animal Clinic in Richmond (Steveston) and will be having surgery when we get everything in place. Dr. Avitan will be giving us an awesome deal but we still need to fundraise to cover the costs and we’ll need a special needs foster home for this rabbit.

Our YouCaring fundraising account has been deleted (!) as they transition to GoFundMe (which doesn’t take Paypal) so funds can go through Rabbitats’ email address (rabbitats@gmail.com) for both Paypal and e-transfers, or contact Little Paws to put a payment on our account (604-241-7387). The Donate button on our Facebook page links to our website (rabbitats.org) donate page which also takes credit cards.

Please donate if you can.  We’re already stretched to the max.

Las Vegas Ferals

By | Advocacy, Rescue | One Comment

Rabbitats has been trying to address the Vegas issue and help them out for awhile, but we didn’t have a lot of information and we’ve been time challenged with some of our own issues. Now I see there were some important things we could have advised on, so sorry we dropped that ball.
When the Rabbitats founder (Sorelle) worked on the UVic rescue (903 rescued and relocated) and the Richmond Auto Mall rescue (300+ rescued and relocated) we learned it was imperative to clear the areas in a grid so that ALL the rabbits in any given area were removed. Any rabbits wandering into that area were then easy to spot and catch before they started families. Picking up numbers of random rabbits did not work. I’m sure the rescuers are now realizing this, given how the poisoning issue spurred the successful removal of most of that dump site’s rabbits.
We also operated on the premise that it was the property’s responsibility to cover the costs they would have spent regardless to remove the rabbits. The same issue happened at UVic with the University trying to send a budget to a rescue who was unsuccessful at making a dent, and people only stepped forward to donate when there was a lethal cull.
We approached the landowners with proposals that quoted the costs of lethal removal by pest control companies and the costs of landscaping repairs. We asked for these budgets to be re-allocated to rescue and they complied. Fundraising made up the difference.
The other failings were based in the rescuers trying to rehome the rabbits as house bunnies. While we did rehome the recently dumped rabbits to pet homes, the rest were rounded up, sterilized and placed in secure, predator proof and escape proof colonies in rural locations. With this method we were able to house dozens to hundreds at once, the enclosures were cheap to build and our designs made for very low maintenance. The rabbits can be very cheap to feed considering they were well able to survive on the natural foods in their environment before. Grass, hay, tree branches, bushes, etc, provide very low cost feed.
It is very possible to control these rabbits when it’s done correctly. It’s just been a learning curve.
Once the existing colonies are rounded up and new arrivals controlled, the pet rabbit world needs to address how to close off the supply with the municipalities including rabbits in their animal control programs (the same as cats and dogs), strict rules and regulations about breeding, spays/neuters, pet shop sales, etcetera. This is really not the overwhelming problem it appears to be.
https://www.atlasobscura.com/…/feral-bunnies-are-taking-ove…

RHD Information Sheet for Pet Rabbit Guardians

By | Advocacy, Rescue, Sick Bunny | No Comments

What is Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease?
Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease (RHD) is caused by a virus in the calicivirus family. There are a number of related viruses, some which do not cause disease. RHD was first reported in B.C. in February 2018 in the Nanaimo area of Vancouver Island. Follow-up laboratory work identified an RHD virus. Since then, the disease is suspected to have killed rabbits in at least one other community on Vancouver Island and is confirmed in one location on the Lower Mainland (Annacis Island). All dead rabbits have been feral European or domestic rabbits. All domestic rabbits are susceptible, so pet rabbits are at risk. RHD is a serious and extremely contagious disease with high mortality rates. Most infected rabbits will die but some have survived. The disease does not affect humans or other species including dogs and cats. The virus can persist in the environment for several weeks and may survive both heat and freezing.

How does RHD virus spread?
RHD virus spreads easily between rabbits through direct contact with bedding, feed and water as well as feces and body fluids. It can also spread between areas through contaminated materials (food, bedding, water, surfaces, human clothing/ hands, vehicles), dead rabbits, insects and wildlife (flies, birds, mammals) that have contacted or fed on infected rabbits. What are the symptoms of RHD? The virus causes hemorrhages by affecting the blood vessels and attacks the liver and other organs. Most affected rabbits die suddenly, but can show signs of listlessness, lack of co-ordination, behavioural changes, or trouble breathing before death. There is often bleeding from the nose at the time of death. Once infected, signs of illness usually occur within 1-9 days.

How can I protect my pet rabbit?

  • Minimize exposure to the virus
    • Limit human visitors who have been in areas where the disease was reported and avoid your travel to these areas.
    • Avoid taking your rabbit to shows/fairs or introducing any new rabbits into your home.
    • Ask visitors to remove footwear before entering your home and wash their hands before handling your rabbit.
    • Use designated clean clothing that has not been outside when caring for your rabbit.
    • Clean and disinfect any rabbit supplies entering your home (see below).
    • Use only high-quality commercial feed from manufacturers with good quality control.
    • Don’t use wild plants or vegetables or grass grown in areas accessed by feral rabbits or other wildlife, as food.
    • Remove or tightly secure anything outside (feed, garbage) that could attract feral rabbits, wildlife, or flies.
    • Exercise rabbits outdoors only in secured areas with no possibility of contamination. o Do not allow cats or dogs who go outside to potentially contaminated areas to access your rabbit’s housing area.
  • Monitoring and prevention
    • Monitor your rabbit daily for signs of illness and contact your veterinarian immediately with any concerns.
    • Talk to your veterinarian about vaccinating. A vaccine is not yet available in Canada but a process is underway and a vaccine may be available later this year.

How do I clean and disinfect rabbit supplies?
Feeding and housing should be cleaned with soap and water, and then disinfected with a disinfectant that is effective against caliciviruses following manufacturer instructions. Most household cleaners are not effective against this type of virus. Advised to be effective: bleach (1:10 dilution), potassium peroxymonosulfate (Virkon), accelerated hydrogen peroxide (Prevail, Accel, and Peroxigard). The latter disinfectants are more user-friendly than bleach and may be obtained from your veterinarian.

Who do I contact with questions?
Contact your local veterinarian with questions about your rabbit. If you find a dead rabbit or rabbits outside, do not handle the rabbit(s), and contact your local animal control. Veterinarians and shelters have access to additional professional resources and support. For more information, visit www.spca.bc.ca/rhd.

More information from the BC SPCA

Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease Information Sheet for Rabbit Guardians (PDF)

Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease published by Iowa State University (PDF)

Little white baby!

By | Rescue, Sick Bunny | No Comments

Deanna Hamm takes such good care of our special needs guys. She built a nest from loose bunny hair for the little baby picked up off the street earlier this week, and when he/she started to get the dreaded diarrhea stressed out babies are prone to, she nursed the little one back to proper poops. She’s also been keeping the little tyke warm and de-stressed with some reassuring cuddles, and she’s been getting some grooming in return. The baby isn’t out of the woods yet, but he or she is in very good hands.

The little white baby found on the street went to see Dr. Martinez at the Little Paws Animal Clinic today. The little tyke tested positive for parasites so he or she (still too young to tell) has been prescribed panacur and (expensive) supplements along with nutritious food (like Dr. Joseph’s own dandelion). Thankfully there’s no sign of coccidia or further signs of enteritis. Please donate to our Sick Bunny Fund to help us keep helping these rabbits! https://www.youcaring.com/rabbitatsrescuesociety-1084561

End of January baby season?

By | Rescue | No Comments

End of January, cold, wet weather or not, it’s baby season. (And we keep telling people rabbits are smart!) These little guys were the only survivors in a flooded nest up the road from the Auto Mall. They were born in front of an office where a kind staffer took them in.

The three new Richmond babies (although now there are four). They are very delicate at this age, they were all found in rough shape, send them lots of good wishes for their recoveries!

Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary Trip

By | Donate, Events, Rescue, Sanctuary | No Comments

The trip out to the Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary yesterday left us speechless. The good work that Diane, Stephen and their volunteers do is truly amazing. And what everybody did for Rabbitats was phenomenal.
First off, meet Bunny the chicken. We started the day by being asked to pick up a Christmas chicken on the way. A family had apparently been given this girl for dinner but thankfully had a change of heart and wanted to surrender her. The sanctuary had recently taken in 25 about to be euthanized by UBC’s farm program so what was one more. Towards the end of the day, they also got a call about a sheep with an injured eye. They sprang into action, making transport and vet arrangements. The care was the priority, not the story.
Meanwhile the sanctuary had made Rabbitats the recipient of donations brought in at their open house (and we in turn had decided to share with the in-need RASTA Sanctuary), The total was a whopping $1380!!! We were stunned, barely able to say thank you at the time. We need to say thank you now. We desperately need the funds, we’ve been saddled with unforeseen rent costs and we have to move from our shelter soon. But we also really feel we need to spread some love back to Happy Herd. If the people who did not get to attend the open house on Boxing Day can see their way to making donations to account for 1/3 of what they raised for us, we’d feel a whole lot better about accepting it. Can we raise $450 for Happy Herd? Thanks to all who care! https://happyherd.org/donations/