ADOPTION CRITERIA, fees, and REHOMING INFORMATION

If you need to find a new home for your rabbit, you need to read our policy regarding rehoming, which you will find here:

Information ~ Re-homing Your Rabbit

ADOPTION FEES

The Minimum donation fee at CottonTails is £45 for each neutered male or female rabbit, making a bonded pair £90. This includes neutering and full vaccination (VHD and Myxomatosis combined vaccine). Our rabbits are also fully screened for dental disease whilst under anaesthetic for neutering, although this does not guarantee that dental disease will not appear in later life. Rabbits with dental disease or temperament problems are not offered for adoption.

As the parasite E. cuniculi is now known to be present in at least 50% of all rabbits (not just those here at CottonTails but all pet rabbits), we now give medication (a 9 day course of Panacur) to every rabbit as a precaution prior to adoption, usually mixed in with their food as many rabbits hate being handled daily for such a procedure.  All the rabbits and guinea pigs are also weighed on arrival so we can keep an eye on their general health.

The minimum adoption fees for guinea pigs are £10 for each guinea pig and £20 for a neutered male guinea pig.

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Accommodation

You will need a large hutch preferably 6 feet x 2 feet x 2 feet with the run permanently attached at all times, so the rabbits do not need to rely on you for their exercise. As the rabbits must have access to their run even at night, the run must be safe to make sure the rabbits can’t dig out out or foxes dig in. Putting the hutch and run on a patio is often the safest idea, and this also makes cleaning out easier too.  Make sure all the catches are secure – using strong bolts works well but do have a look at the film below regarding accommodation and the bit about run top catches, as well as other really useful information essential to know before you go ahead and purchase rabbits.

A Wendy House or suitable shed leading onto a safe garden is also suitable, so long as the rabbits are not shut in to a hutch within the shed at night. Please note that most two-storey hutch-run units (with ramps) are NOT suitable for rabbits as not only are they not big enough, the rabbits can receive serious injury from twisting or slipping on the ramps. However, if it is a 6′ version and you are able to carry out modifications such as fixing sides to the ramp and adding a proper run permanently to the lower section it should be okay.  You will find several excellent examples of rabbit accommodation ideas in the rabbit care information article on this website, and below you can see a photo of the sort of accommodation we use here at CottonTails. Ideally the run should be bigger if the rabbits are not going to be running around the garden during the day. Please note that the run top has been removed so you can see the set up better, but usually the top is on securely otherwise the rabbits could jump out!

The tops that we use here are made of plastic sheeting (the type used on conservatory roofs) attached to a frame of wooden batten, secured by the clips you use on dog leads (available from pet shops and DIY stores). The catches should be heavy duty bolts to prevent foxes from opening them, and the wire should also be heavy duty (not chicken wire) and securely attached to the frame so that the rabbits cannot chew their way out or predators push their way in.

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The photo below shows the same hutch with the run lid in place.

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For anyone who still thinks it is okay to shut a rabbit into a hutch, have a look at the film clips below and you will surely change your mind …

You may wish to try the following links, but make sure you order  minimum size of a 6 foot hutch, with run attached, as there are smaller sizes available which are not big enough for a pair of rabbits.  Do make sure you don’t order double storey hutches or double storey hutch/run combi’s for rabbits).  The third link is specifically for aviaries, and if your budget can stretch to one of these it would be well worth it as not only are they sturdy and great for size, they also look good too!

https://boylespethousing.co.uk/product-category/rabbits/

http://www.welfarehutches.co.uk/

http://www.ukaviaries.co.uk/

https://dunsterhouse.co.uk/rabbitopia-w3-0m-x-d4-0m?gclid=CNr2huid88QCFczHtAodGhUAhQ

www.bunnybunker.co.uk

House Rabbits

I am happy for rabbits to be adopted as house rabbits, but you need to be aware of how destructive rabbits are, that many will still leave droppings on the floor even if they are good with their litter training, and that they still need access to daylight on a regular basis to keep them healthy. Also, they must not be shut into a cage as this defeats the whole object of making sure they have access to exercise 24 hours a day! However, being confined to a particular room is practical and will give a pair lots of room to exercise and play. They are healthier if allowed access to the outside on a regular basis. Contact me for advice if you would like to consider adopting rabbits as house pets if this is a new concept to you, and I will be delighted to help.

For an informative film about what to feed your rabbit, have a look at the following:

Bonding

Although I often bond our rescued rabbits into suitable pairs, I no longer can provide a bonding service for other rabbits.  However, I am very happy to advise!  Do have a read of the bonding article too as there is a lot of helpful information included in there.

GUINEA PIGS

Guinea pigs are available in compatible pairs or small groups, or as singles to match with your lonely guinea pig. They are all given an injection of Ivermectin on arrival to ensure they are not carrying mites.  Our guinea pigs are kept in a non-heated shed in the winter so can be housed either outside or inside in their new home.  However, if they are to be outside you must ensure they are situated in a sheltered position and the accommodation is thoroughly insulated to ensure they are kept warm, dry and draft-free.

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Donations

CottonTails® does not receive any official funding so the money for food, bedding and veterinary care has to be raised by us.  In addition to the standard adoption donation, any extra donation, no matter how small, is always welcomed to help our much-needed charity to keep going.