Friday 7th September
This is a strange time of year – we have just finished the rabbit pre-holiday dumping phase and have yet to enter the winter dumping phase so it is a sort of calm before the storm. Despite that we are receiving several enquiries a day regarding the off-loading of unwanted rabbits, almost all of them for totally avoidable reasons had owners given just a bit of thought to the commitment they were about to embark on, not to mention the lack of awareness of basic rabbit welfare and the complex needs of such a pet. We have now been running for over 25 years and although I have seen positive changes in general attitude during that time, owners are still making the same fundamental mistakes despite there now being a wealth of good information available that is easily accessible. It does not look like I will be able to hang up my hat for a while yet.
I will have one last moan before I move on – why oh why do people make appointments to either view an animal or to bring one in and then not bother to turn up? Not only does this inconvenience things at this end but it also can potentially lose a rabbit a home if a temporary reserve has been placed on it. It also affects intake numbers as I can only take so many and if I set aside space for some that are booked to come in I am then going to have to turn other potential urgent cases away, so when the first set fail to arrive it is possible that the ones that were turned away could have been dumped in a field in the meantime. I suspect all I am witnessing first hand is the general “me me” attitude of the general population, and the ones who suffer as a result are the innocent rabbits who end up with the short straw.
One thing that would help is if more people would offer to be temporary foster carers. They need to be local to us for practical reasons but it can help enormously to spread the load a bit and it means that more urgent cases can be taken into safety quicker. This does not solve the issues surrounding getting the rabbits to the vets in Bristol for neutering, but that is another story for another day.
Having got that off my chest, I have some positive news. In the last 3 weeks I have had several people expressing interest in some of the rabbits we currently have here, and it looks like Cookie and Fudge will be going to their new home soon, Holly is going out on trial on Sunday, and I have an enquiry regarding Yoda and Daisy but nothing definite on that as yet. They have been with us the longest now so it would be great if someone would offer them the loving home they deserve.