Volume 9 Number 1 January 2011
The Year Of The Rabbit
It's all ours for the taking, so seize it in all four paws. Love
Some of our buns looking for homes
Reserves can be made in advance, but a home check is done before a rabbit is adopted. Owners must have suitable accommodation and somewhere secure to exercise their rabbit(s).The sanctuary is run entirely from donations and re-homing fees - £65 for a doe, £55 for a buck. The re-homing fee includes castration/spaying, VHD and Myxi jabs and a vet health check. If you ring and we are out, please leave a brief message. We are unable to return calls to mobiles due to the high cost. We occasionally experience problems with email so you may wish to telephone instead.
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Age: 2 Breed: Dwarf Lop Sex: Male Bonded: No Description: mink coloured lop. Very cute General health: Good Temperament: Friendly and lively Type of home wanted: Loving home.
Ginger and white lop
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Age: 2 Breed: Dwarf Lop Sex: Male Bonded: No Description: white lop with ginger markings General health: Good Temperament: Lively and friendly Type of home wanted: Loving home.
If you like the Bunny System then buy the book at
How to trim a rabbit's claws. 1) Drink Vodka. 2) Drink more Vodka. 3) Catch the rabbit. *hic* Maybe I should have done this BEFORE the vodka. 4) Sit the rabbit down in my lap. 5) Catch the rabbit. 6) Wrap the rabbit in a towel. 7) Have a tasmanian towel devil in my lap. 8) Drink more vodka and go catch the rabbit. 9) Give the rabbit a piece of papaya (Thank you Lisa) 10) Go catch the rabbit. 11) Wait till the rabbit is tired out and catch the rabbit. 12) Put rabbit on her back and clip her front paws while baby talking her. She'll be too busy gagging at the mushy stuff to fight. 13) Grab her ticklish hind feet and collect scratches and bruises while clipping rear claws. 14) Release the rabbit to foot flick, thump, shake, grunt and possibly pee. 15) Give the rabbit another piece of papaya. 16) Finish the vodka.
Cruelty Will Only Be Stopped by Licensing Breeders, says Rabbit Welfare Charity
January 17, 2011, UK. Press Dispensary
The Year of the Rabbit is the Year to End Breeding Cruelty
“Too often rabbits are seen as an easy way to make a quick buck because the system fails them, and it has got to stop. ”
Despite 2011 being the ‘Year of the Rabbit’, the UK is in the wake of another horrific case of rabbit cruelty and neglect. In response, the Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund (RWAF) – the largest charity dedicated to improving the health and welfare of domestic rabbits in the UK – is calling it a day on unregulated breeding and appealing for all rabbit breeders to be licensed. PACT, an animal sanctuary in Norfolk, recently came to the rescue of 74 rabbits, including babies, living in filthy, squalid conditions. The 74 were those that survived; many others were not so lucky and were found dead at the heartbreaking scene. The RWAF advises that this is not the first case of its kind and stress that the cruelty only came to light because the breeder was admitted to hospital and his premises visited in his absence. “How many other animals are suffering like this without anybody knowing?”asked Rae Todd of the RWAF. “We know nothing is foolproof but one way of tackling irresponsible back yard breeders like this, and preventing further cruelty on this scale, is to insist that every rabbit breeder in the UK is licensed and regularly inspected. Too often rabbits are seen as an easy way to make a quick buck because the system fails them, and it has got to stop.” Realistically, the implementation of licensing schemes is a long way off, so the charity urges that, in the meantime, everybody can play a role in pushing for better standards, asking that:
• Pet retailers visit their breeders on a regular basis, and publish this information in-store to inform their customers. If a breeder is not maintaining their standards appropriately then the retailer should sever ties with them. • Pet shop customers should question their pet shop about the breeders they use. They should ask how often the store visits the breeder, and seek conformation that they are reputable maintain good welfare standards. • Members of the public who buy directly from breeders should have a good look around the premises and report anything suspicious to their local authority, the RWAF or the RSPCA. But don’t forget that a local rescue centre will have lots of rabbits looking for good homes, in most cases already vaccinated and neutered. For information about the Norfolk PACT bunnies, who all are in need of homes, please contact PACT on 01362 820 775 or via their website http://www.pactsanctuary.org/about-us.html or visit the RWAF blog: http://rabbitwelfare.blogspot.com/2011/01/urgent-help-needed-for-pactrescue.html For more information on rabbit health and welfare visit http://www.rabbitwelfare.co.uk
Rabbits rescued from rat-infested shed near orwich after owner taken ill
Jon Welch Saturday, 8 January, 2011 12:50 PM Animal welfare workers have been at a shed near Norwich today to rescue more than 40 rabbits after their elderly owner was taken ill. PACT Animal Sanctuary was contacted by the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital on behalf of a patients in his 70s who is understood to have had a Animal sanctuary workers removing rabbits from the shed at Horsford.; Photo: Bill Smith stroke. He told nurses he had about 30 rabbits that had not been fed for two days.
The man handed his keys over to charity last night and gave workers directions to the dilapidated shed at Horsford. They arrived last night and rescued about 20, before returning today for the rest. George Rockingham, of PACT Animal Sanctuary, said: “There were at least 40 rabbits kept in boxes on the floor and in filing cabinets. One was in a wet cardboard box. “Most of the animals were in reasonable condition but had obviously never been out of the place. There was plenty of food but no water and they were very thirsty. The place was totally ratinfested and some of the animals had rat bites.” The animals will now be taken to the sanctuary at Woodrising, near Hingham, and cared for, before being re-homed. But Mr Rockingham said the cost of keeping them for six months could reach between £3,000 and £4,000,
The rabbit shed at Horsford.; Photo: Bill Smith
including £1,000 for myxomatosis injections alone, and appealed for donations to help look after them.
Dayton Small Pets Examiner
Are carrots good or bad for small pets?
The good news: carrots fat free, high in anti-oxidants and very nutritious. The bad news: half of the calories in carrots are derived from sugars. The carrot that we know today is a domesticated form of the wild carrot (known as Queen Anne’s Lace in America), a plant native to Europe and south-eastern Asia. Our modernday orange carrot has been selectively bred for a larger, tenderer taproot. Most storebought carrots are orange, although purple, red, white, and yellow varieties also exist. Carrots are actually biennial plants, meaning the plant grows its fernlike rosette of leaves during the first year, while building its taproot, where large amounts of sugars are stored for energy the following year, when the carrot flowers. The characteristic orange colour results from the high beta carotene content, which metabolizes into vitamin A in the intestines. Carrots were first grown for their leaves and seeds, and some carrot relatives are still grown for leaves and seeds (parsley, fennel, dill and comino). Carrots are an excellent source of Vitamins A, B6, C, K, Folate, Pantothenic Acid, Iron, Copper and potassium, as well as a good source of dietary fiber and manganese. Carrots are beneficial to the eyes, urinary tract, intestinal tract, and mucous membranes. The nutritional value of carrots is such that it is a most beneficial vegetable to offer your small pet in small quantities. A ½ inch slice of carrot offered daily to your bunny is a fine healthy treat; guinea pigs and smaller pets would benefit from ¼ inch slices Carrot tops can be fed more liberally as part of your small pet’s daily diet, and can be grown and harvested a few leaves at a time (the taproot will continue to produce more leaves all season as long as you leave a leaf or two on the plant). Carrots are easily grown in large pots, which can be moved to the shade in hot weather and even brought indoors in the winter to delay the end of their growing season. Renal failure in small pets: symptoms and diagnosis
January 10th, 2011 8:08 pm ET
There are two forms of renal (kidney) failure: acute and chronic. Acute renal failure may occur suddenly and be very severe, due to an accumulation of toxins in the kidney(s), or as a result of an electrolyte imbalance in the blood. For example, some drugs, especially certain antibiotics, can cause renal toxicity in rabbits, who will then display the typical signs of kidney disease. Acute renal failure may also xiv
arise from shock, trauma, extreme stress, stroke, heart failure and septicemia ("infection in the blood"). Chronic renal failure progresses slowly in small pets, sometimes over the course of several months.The onset may be very slow and the signs non-specific: the pet is simply "not doing well." Some disease processes can cause either type of renal failure: a urinary tract obstruction or even a urinary tract infection which has spread to the pelvis can bring on either the chronic or acute form of renal failure in small pets. Encephalitozoon cuniculi is a parasite that most commonly causes neurological signs in rabbits, such as a head tilt or paralysis, but can also cause chronic renal disease. Whether the disease is acute or chronic is usually related to the cause of the disease. Other causes of kidney disease:
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Viral infections or bacterial infections leading to pyelonephritis, in inflammation of the kidneys Ingestion of toxins High blood calcium levels, usually due to poor diet Calcification of the kidney, resulting from excessive levels of vitamin D Fatty degeneration of kidneys in overweight pets Cancer, especially lymphosarcoma Diabetes Aging
Common signs of renal disease include:
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Depression and lethargy Weakness Increased drinking and urination Difficult or painful urination if an obstruction (e.g., a kidney stone) is present Weight loss and loss of appetite Dehydration Fever Diarrhea OR constipation Urine scalding Cardiac complications Pain or tenderness upon palpation by the veterinarian Seizures
Diagnosis The veterinarian diagnoses renal disease by performing a complete physical examination with medical history and running a urinalysis and bloodwork to help determine the functionality of the kidneys. X-rays can be very helpful, and CT scans or ultrasounds may be needed to reveal kidney or bladder stones.
Early diagnosis and treatment are the keys in maintaining the remaining functionality of your pet’s kidneys, regardless of whether the renal failure is acute or chronic. If your pet is displaying any of the signs and symptoms noted above, do not delay in getting your pet evaluated by your veterinarian. By the time your pet begins to display symptoms, much of the filtration ability of the kidneys has been lost. Even chronic forms of renal failure can be successfully managed by following your veterinarian's instructions and bringing the pet in for follow-up care. Renal failure in small pets: treatment and follow-up care
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January 11th, 2011 7:09 pm ET If you have a small pet that has been diagnosed with renal (kidney) failure, it is vitally important to follow your veterinarian’s treatment instructions and take your pet in for regular follow-up visits. Treatment Your small pet will likely be treated as an outpatient unless s/he is in acute renal failure (crisis); this would require hospitalization. Your veterinarian will most likely administer immediate intravenous or subcutaneous fluid therapy to stabilize your pet and prevent further kidney damage. The fluids administered are soon urinated out and carry away waste products in the process. Diuretic medication may also be administered to further increase urine flow. A special low-protein diet is often prescribed to lessen the amount of waste products processed by the kidneys and thereby reduce their workload. Your veterinarian may also suggest increasing fresh greens in the diet to help with rehydration. Steroidal or glycoprotein medications may be prescribed to encourage red blood cell production, as anemia (low red blood cell count) is not uncommon in chronic renal failure. Antibiotics are often prescribed, as bacterial infections can be the cause of the disease, or can occur as a result of the disease. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) such as ibuprofen should be avoided in pets at risk of renal problems, as these drugs are hard on the kidneys. Surgery may be needed to remove any uroliths (bladder stones). Ongoing care Your pet is going to need lots of rest (with opportunities for exercise as prescribed by your veterinarian), a stress free lifestyle, a good diet (including lots of greens) and adequate consumption of fresh water to optimize his or her quality of life. Your pet may require periodic fluid therapy and bloodwork for the rest of her life to monitor the progression of the disease and her response to treatment. While renal disease is progressive and has no known cure, much can be done to maintain and/or improve your pet’s quality of life. The sooner treatment and ongoing care is begun, the more dramatic the response and the longer the lifespan of the pet. Even chronic kidney failure can be successfully managed if you follow the advice of your veterinarian and maintain regular follow-up visits.
A Rabbit's Garden (with thanks to triangle rabbits)
Growing a garden for your rabbit (and you) can be easy and fun. Everyone loves fresh herbs and vegetables, and when you grow your own they are always fresh! A rabbit garden can have other benefits, including helping your budget. Those little herb bunches seem to cost a fortune at the grocery. The good news is that herbs can be among the easiest plants to grow yourself. This year why not give gardening a try? You don't need a big yard, just a few pots on your deck or patio can get you started. Many herbs and vegetables grow well in containers. In a sunny spot, most herbs will do well in a large pot. If you are growing vegetables in containers, look for the dwarf or bush varieties. A container garden has unlimited possibilities. Here are some plants you can try out in your bunny garden:
Basil - Ocimum basilicum Blackberry leaves and fruit - Rubus fruticosus Borage - Borago officinalis Chamomile/Camomile - Anthemis nobilis Chervil - Anthriscus cerefolium Cilantro - Coriandrum sativum Dill - Peucedanum graveolens Dandelion - Taraxacum officinale Lemon Balm - Melissa officinalis Marjoram - Origanum marjorana Mint - Mentha sp. Oregano - Origanum vulgare Parsley - Carum petroselinum Peppermint - Mentha piperita Raspberry leaves and fruit - Rubus idaeus Rosemary - Rosmarinus officinalis Sage - Salvia officinalis Strawberry leaves and fruit - Fragaria × ananassa Thyme - Thymus vulgaris Beets (for the tops) - Beta vulgaris Bok choy (Chinese cabbage) - Brassica rapa Broccoli - Brassica oleracea Carrot - Daucus carota subsp. sativus Oat grass - Avena sativa Kale - Brassica oleracea Acephala group Radish (for the tops) - Raphanus sativus Rye grass - Secale cereale Wheat grass - Triticum aestivum Additional Ideas: You can make homemade botanical blend hay: Thyme, rosemary, lavender and chamomile may be added to timothy hay to make your own botanical blend. Make sure they are well dried and add them by the handful. You can use a large Rubbermaid type container to mix.
Pet Rabbits Beneficial to Woman’s Health
Wednesday, January 5, 2011, 11:54
The trend of having rabbits as pets has been popular for quite a while now. Yet, only recently have specialists managed to prove that those animals are not just pretty but also good for our health. Now, the relatively new technique of having cells with bunnies present during consultation sessions with psychologists and psychotherapy is becoming increasingly popular. The new study was conducted by a team of specialists from the University of Missouri and was led by Professor Rebecca Johnson. The results of the study show that even mere presence of bunnies gives women sense of calmness and tranquillity. Furthermore, the scientists observed decrease in the level of stress hormone cortisol in the women’s bodies after they petted those fluffy animals for a few minutes. Dr. Johnson notes that presence of a bunny in a household and the process of taking care of it facilitate social bonding, teach women and girls how to better understand themselves and others, and how to communicate with other people more effectively. In particular, women who had rabbits also had better control of their emotions and behaviour. Bunnies used as part of therapy also facilitate healing of serious illnesses in children and adolescents, such as autism or depression, depression and help them cope with lack of confidence. xviii
Spay or Neuter my Rabbit? by Dana Krempels, Ph.D. Many people are surprised to learn that it's a rabbit's best interest to have him neutered or her spayed. But it's as true for a rabbit as it is for a dog or cat. Depending on his/her genetic makeup, a rabbit will reach sexual maturity somewhere between the age of 3 to 8 months. Once the sex hormones start flowing, expect to see behavioural changes. Some may be cute: a sexy rabbit may circling your legs, honking a little love song, be very needy and cuddly and follow you around incessantly. Other puberty-related behaviours are not so cute: a honking, singing bunny circling your legs who finishes the symphony with a flourish of urine spray and then sits there looking up at you for approval of this sign of unconditional love. And some hormone-related phenomena are simply dangerous to your bunny: un-spayed, un-bred female rabbits have a very high risk of uterine cancer. Although not all rabbits exhibit objectionable behaviours upon reaching sexual maturity, many (if not most) do. One can expect to see the following behaviours once those sex hormones kick in: *loss of previously good litter-box habits *spraying urine (a sign of love, but still...) *mounting/humping of objects such as toys or your unsuspecting head *growling and boxing *territorial biting/nipping *aggressive/possessive lunging and biting *circling and honking *destructive chewing and digging (especially in females) When intact, both male and female rabbits usually mount one another endlessly out of sex drive and/or to establish social dominance. Same-sex pairs who tolerated each other as babies will often begin ferocious fighting upon reaching sexual maturity. This can result in permanent "un-bonding," not to mention serious physical injury xix
*Opposite sex pairs will begin reproducing as soon as they mature. Left unchecked, an un-spayed rabbit and her intact female descendants can produce more than 1300 offspring in a year. Over the course of five years this number balloons exponentially to more than 94 million! (If you don't believe me, check out the calculations.) A well-meaning, if naive, person might think it's a simple matter to find homes for those babies born so that a female rabbit could be bred "just once" or "so the kids can witness the miracle of birth" (For a balanced view, be sure to take the kids on a field trip to the local animal shelter's euthanasia rooms so they can also witness the "miracle of death".). Finding a safe forever home for a rabbit is not simple. Thousands of sweet, perfectly wonderful rabbits (purebred and mixed breed alike) are abandoned at shelters every year, and perhaps an equal or larger numbers are "set free" in parks or neighbourhoods to face an death from predators, disease and starvation. For every rabbit produced by a casual breeder, another is put to death at an animal shelter or dumped in a park to die, because there are simply not enough homes for all of them. Un-spayed female rabbits have a very high risk of uterine cancer. Our vets commonly see uterine changes and tumours in un-spayed rabbits as young as eighteen months. As the bunny ages, her risk increases, and our experienced rabbit vets report that many, if not most, rabbits older than about four years who are brought in for spaying reveal uterine changes and/or tumours. A rabbit's reproductive system is evolved for constant reproduction over a relatively short lifespan. When reproduction is thwarted, but the uterus is left intact, the system can go a little haywire. It's not unexpected. Un-spayed rabbits, and rabbits who are spayed late in life also face an increased risk of mammary cancers, though these are less common than uterine cancers. Upon reaching sexual maturity, male rabbits often begin displaying mounting xx
behaviour (on your shoes, the cat, stuffed toys, your leg, your sleeping head...), marking territory with urine and producing a musky sex odor. Male rabbits, like females, can become very aggressive when the testosterone kicks in, and the only truly viable solution for this problem is castration, also known as neutering. Testicular cancer, while far less common than uterine cancer, does occur, usually in older rabbits. Neutering eliminates this risk. ---------------------------------------------------------How can spaying/neutering help? Modern rabbit medicine is far more sophisticated than it was even ten years ago, and many excellent vets are now spaying and neutering thousands of rabbits a year without incident. Still, no surgery is 100% risk-free, and each rabbit caregiver must make the decision to spay/neuter on an individual basis, in consultation with an experienced rabbit veterinarian. But there are plenty of reasons to spay/neuter your rabbit. *Rabbits who are spayed (females) or neutered (males) are much less likely to display objectionable sex-hormone induced behaviours such as aggression, mounting, and urine spraying. *Neutered/spayed rabbits generally have much more reliable litter-box habits than intact rabbits. *Neutered/spayed rabbits are generally calmer than their intact counterparts, and suffer less stress from sexual frustration. *The urine and faecal pellets of spayed/neutered rabbits have less odour than those of intact rabbits. *Rabbits who have been spayed/neutered can live with a rabbit companion of the opposite sex without the risk of unwanted litters. xxi
Rabbits of the same sex can more easily learn to get along without fighting (though bonding must still be done with care and patience). *Rabbits who are spayed/neutered will never contribute to the terrible domestic rabbit overpopulation problem. Thousands of rabbits are abandoned every year when they outgrow their Easter Bunny cuteness. You will never have to worry if your rabbits offspring will suffer a terrible death after being abandoned in the wilds of suburbia, being dumped at a pet store to be sold as snake food or being euthanized at an animal shelter if you don't contribute to this problem. And just so you know.... *Spaying/neutering your companion will NOT make him/her "fat and lazy." Lack of exercise, wrong foods and boredom will do that. *Your rabbit will still love you after she's spayed/he's neutered. He might not be as clingy, and you may notice a change in the sex-hormone induced behaviours. But the basic personality usually does not change, especially if the rabbit is altered at a relatively young age. ---------------------------------------------------------Don't Abandon Your Bunny: Spay or Neuter them! Our domestic rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) are derived from an ancient line of the wild European rabbit. European rabbits live in warrens (a series of underground tunnels excavated by family groups) in an established territory. A domestic rabbit who has been abandoned in a park that looks inviting and safe to a human has been sentenced to a cruel death *s/he has no warren in which to hide from predators or from the elements
*s/he has no family, and if there are already resident feral rabbits in the area, s/he will most likely be attacked ferociously because she is not a member of the warren. *If s/he survives the threat of predators, cars, humans running their dogs and other immediate dangers, s/he runs a high risk of succumbing to parasites, disease or starvation. Turning a rabbit loose in a wild area is not much different from turning a human loose, naked, in the most dangerous neighbourhood in town. Don't consign your rabbit to such a fate. A domestic rabbit depends on human care! No matter how appealing a "natural" environment appears to a human, the most likely outcome of a rabbit turned loose there is suffering and death. Before you consider abandoning your companion rabbit to "the wild" or to a shelter when he or she matures and becomes wilful and difficult to manage, give him or her a fair chance to be a wonderful companion: have him/her spayed or neutered. You will experience one of the most delightful, intelligent, loyal, affectionate and entertaining friends you could hope to know.
A FEW MYTHS: Myth You can let an unwanted rabbit go in a field and it will be fine, fending for itself. The Truth: Domesticated rabbits, once released into the wild will, in most cases, quickly become food for the local predators, whether they be dogs or cats or, if you live in the country, hawks, eagles, coyotes, etc. If they survive the predators, released rabbits still have to face a gauntlet of diseases, poisoning, and starvation. Contrary to another popular myth, rabbits do not instinctively know which plants are safe to eat and which ones can be dangerous to them. Although they do retain many of the "prey" instincts, domesticated rabbits have never had to rely on those instincts to survive, and they honestly have no clue as to what to do. Myth Rabbits can live on just carrots, lettuce, and cabbage. A million non-rabbit people I know think this is true. The Truth: Just like people, rabbits require a balanced diet of vitamins and minerals as well as proteins and fibre. And just like people, they simply cannot survive on a diet limited to just two or three items, especially if one of those items is basically nothing but water (iceberg lettuce). The easiest way to provide for a rabbit's nutritional needs is to find a feed dealer who sells a good quality rabbit pellet. Then you can add the carrots as an SMALL treat. Myth A rabbit can be picked up by the ears. Ouch! The Truth: A rabbit's ears are not a handle. Try having someone pick you up by your ears if you want to see how it feels! The proper way to pick up a rabbit is to scoop them up, supporting their body with both hands. This myth was popularized by the outdated image of magicians pulling a rabbit out of a hat, and many still believe that is the way to handle rabbits. Magician xxiv
societies of today strongly discourage picking up a rabbit by the ears. A big nono! Myth Rabbits don't need water. The Truth: No one is quite sure how this myth got started. One possibility is the rarity of actually seeing wild rabbits drinking. Another explanation is that wild rabbits' diet of fresh greens is filled with moisture, so rabbits don't appear to need water. But domestic rabbits on a dry, pelletized feed absolutely requires fresh drinking water. Without it, they won't eat and if they don't eat, they starve. Another idea on how this "no water" myth came about as a result of misunderstanding. European countries with severe winters commonly give ice to their rabbits, rather than water, and which then led to the saying "rabbits don't need water." Myth It's a myth that all pet store bunny treats are good for your rabbit...most are just junk food. The Truth: Most of the fancy pet store treats sold for rabbits are actually meant to be visually appealing to the person buying them. The dried, sweetened fruits and nuts included in these feeds can make a rabbit obese as well as cause digestive problems. Myth Perhaps the worst myth out there is that baby bunnies are weaned and ready to be sold at three to four weeks of age. So many people think that because rabbits are eating solid food at that age that the rabbits are ready to be away from mom. The Truth: A baby rabbit of only three or four weeks still requires his mother's rich milk even though it may be nibbling solid food. Forcibly weaning them this young can cause serious problems later.
Myth A rabbit and a hare are the same thing. The Truth: Hares differ from rabbits in that they don't dig burrows and their young are born more mature. Rabbit young, or kits, have a gestation of approximately 28-31 days. They are born naked and blind and require a period of time to grow in a safe nest before they can run. The hare, on the other hand, is born after a gestation of approximately 42 days. The young, called leverings, are born fully furred, eyes open, and they are ready to run immediately after birth. You can't necessarily tell a hare from a rabbit just by its common name. The jackrabbit is actually a hare and the Belgian Hare is actually a rabbit. Talk about confusion! Myth Domestic rabbits can interbreed with wild rabbits. The Truth: Hares (Lepus) have 24 pairs of chromosomes while the domestic rabbit (Oryctolagus) has 22 and the cottontail (Sylvilagus) has 21 pair. While mating is possible between the different species, the resulting embryos will die after a few cell divisions because of the differences in the number of chromosome pairs. Myth Rabbits are soundless animals. The Truth: So many non-rabbit people are amazed when they come into our home and hear some of our bunnies make that excited, happy-to-see-you sound. It goes from sort of a buzzing noise to real chatter. Rabbits make a wide variety of sounds from the contented "purr" of a happy rabbit to the shrill scream of a rabbit in fear for his life and that is a sound you will never forget nor would like to hear again! Myth The size a rabbit will become as an adult depends upon the size of the cage.
The Truth: Now if that were true, many people with house bunnies would have mammoth rabbits! The size of a rabbit entirely depends on the breed(s) of his parents and his genetics. Myth Rabbits are "dirty" creatures. The Truth: No, it is the people who do not clean the cages often enough. Rabbits will normally go in one corner of their cage and can be litter-box trained. Due to the fact that the rabbit is a "prey" animal, he instinctively keeps his home clean to prevent a build-up of odour that would reveal his location. When confined to a cage, rabbits usually will pick one spot in the cage and will continuously use it as their "potty" spot. Observant owners can watch this potty spot to help keep track of their animals' health. This myth might have its origins in the Bible, where rabbits are considered to be "unclean," like pigs. Deuteronomy, chapter 14, verses 7-8 says, "However, of those that chew the cud or that have a split hoof completely divided, you may not eat the camel, the rabbit or the coney. Although they chew the cud, they do not have a split hoof; they are ceremonially unclean for you." (Different versions of the Bible will have it worded slightly differently.) Of course, we all know now that a rabbit doesn't chew cud but, back in Biblical times, they didn't have the extensive knowledge of animal biology that we do now. Myth Netherland Dwarfs are nasty-tempered and unsuitable for children. The Truth: There are a few evil-tempered ones, but then again that is true for any breed! Just like any other pet, a rabbit lives as he is treated. A rabbit that is handled gently and carefully will be a happy rabbit and a joy to handle. A rabbit that is treated roughly will be a frightened rabbit and will respond in kind. The breed of the rabbit bears little influence on how it develops.
Myth Every rabbit with long hair is an Angora. The Truth: There are other long-haired breeds, such as the Jersey Woolly and the American Lop , Cashmere lop. Myth They breed like rabbits. The Truth: This is a common line that people use, which seems to make them think that rabbits are easy to breed and raise to adulthood. Myth A doe will kill her babies if you touch them. The Truth: A doe rabbit that is used to being handled won't object to her owner handling her kits in most cases. But on occasion, you do find the over-protective mother who doesn't want anyone touching her kits. Each rabbit has to be considered individually. Myth The mother will curl up with her babies in the nest-box and keep them warm all night. The Truth: As part of a prey species, a doe rabbit actually spends very little time with her young. This is to help prevent detection of the kits by various predators. She builds a nest of grass, hay, or straw, pulls fur off her chest and belly to line it, then leaves her kits in the warm, cosy nest, except for feeding them once or twice in a 24-hour period. A doe's milk is among the richest in the animal kingdom, which allows the infrequent feedings. Myth A doe can be successfully bred only during the first two years of her life. The Truth: A lot of does are still capable of having litters up until they are six xxviii
years old. Myth All albino rabbits are deaf. The Truth: There is nothing to substantiate the belief that white rabbits are deaf. A rabbit's colour is set by a specific set of genes that has nothing to do with his hearing. Myth All people who buy rabbits know what they're getting themselves into! The Truth: Adopting a rabbit is a very BIG commitment. Rabbits have a life span of over ten years. Many shelters have older rabbits that would love a caring forever home. Remember that rabbits are family pets, not children's pets. It takes a family level of commitment to care for and provide a good life for a rabbit. This is why ADOPTING a Rabbit from a shelter is the best way to go as the shelter provides education and lots of helpful information.
Residents plea to get rabbits at Canford Bottom relocated
7:00am Wednesday 5th January 2011 By Harriet Marsh
OUR rabbits deserve better than to be chased out by ferrets. That’s the message from residents near Canford Bottom roundabout, earmarked for a £5.9million re-build that would see the A31 cut through the bunnies’ home. On Monday, January 10, Councillor Janet Dover, who represents Colehill East, will hand over a 52-signature petition to East Dorset District Council asking that the rabbits are found a new home rather than being forced from their warrens and killed. Another petition with 56 signatures has already been posted to the Highways Agency, which wants to complete the work to ease congestion ahead of the 2012 Olympics. Cllr Dover said: “Children and families love the rabbits. “Although the district council aren’t responsible for the work, it’s in their area and I’m asking for them to urgently forward it to the Highways Agency with a message that the residents want them to actively seek alternatives to this plan to kill them. “Relocation is the humane option and the right thing to do.” Campaigners say there’s been one colony on the roundabout and another on the verge for more than 20 years. “We think they took up residence almost as soon as the road was re-developed,” Cllr Dover added. “It’s a relatively safe environment for them, fairly safe from predators. “Not many foxes would travel across that traffic. The rabbits enjoy a quiet life there and it’s nice to see the babies in the spring. “Rabbits are happy little things and it makes you feel cheerful to watch them nibble away at the grass.” A Highways Agency spokesman said: “If the scheme goes ahead, to prevent rabbits being killed by construction machinery, prior to any work we would trap and humanely kill them. “However we are looking at the possibility of relocating them, provided that we can find a site where they would not present a nuisance.”
VOLU TEERS WA TED! U
The Bunny Camp Sanctuary in Bradford is looking for more volunteers to more help clean out our hutches on a regular basis. Over the past few years some of our volunteers have had to give up helping in this way as their circumstances have changed and we really need more help on a practical basis.
If you can commit to a few hours every week on an evening or a weekend and love it rabbits and want to help us, we’d love to hear from you! It is physically demanding work and not for those who don’t like to get their hands dirty, but it is rewarding too. Not only will you be cleaning out the cages, which keep our bunnies happy and healthy, but also you’ll get to know our residents and their individual personalities. You’ll get to know about all the re homing successes and occasionally the re-homing sad news too. You will also help with grooming and socialising the animals and putting help them out for exercise. The rabbits really relish their play time and it’s a wonderful sight to behold. Depending on your level of experience you could learn an awful lot about rabbits too.
You don’t need to be rabbit experienced so long as you are enthusiastic and n’t rabbit-experienced love animals, particularly rabbits. Of course, any rabbit experience is a bonus.
You’ll find that we are a friendly bunch of people who are all passionate about rabbit welfare and if you wish, you could also help with fund ou fund-raising.
If you’d like to know more, please ring Sonya McDonough on 01274 821665.
Hello Everybun. Welcome to the ninth year of Bunny Camp ews. It is both a pleasure and a privilidge to be able to assist in producing this newsletter for your enjoyment. As you know, we don't charge anyone anything to receive it, but any time you are feeling generous, the residents of Bunny Camp would appreciate any help you could give them. Still to come is some bunny art for you, but before that a vintage article from September 2006 and it is the story of Bailey's sponsored pram ride. Lots of Love Cedric.
BAILEYS SPONSORED PRAM RIDE WITH TWO FOOTS (Written by Bailey) Today was the day I had been preparing for, the sponsored walk, lots of trips round the shops in Knaresborough and walks along the river had got me ready for this challenge. I loved being in my pram but a lot of people were sceptical about me enjoying trips out in the pram but I love it. This was a chance for me to raise lots of money for the bunnies at the sanctuary with the help of my friends. Most of us met at Hirst lock Saltaire, there was me (Bailey) of course, Mum (Sonya), Bobby, Chris, Paul, Gregory, Alistair, Julie, Martin, Lauren and my very special bunny friends Quincey and Angelica. Also Jayne and Fransis were doing the walk but they were taking two R.S.P.C.A. dogs with them (as Jayne dog walks for them) and couldn't collect them until 9am so they started at the opposite end from us, this was Booth Swing Bridge.
Bobby getting me settled in my pram, and the gang all ready to set off from Hirst Lock
It was raining very slightly when we set off but it soon dried up and the sun came out which was fab as I love the sun. Everyone took turns to carry the bucket which we took in case anyone wanted to give us the change out of their pockets. We met lots of nice two foots along the canal some even pulling their boats up at the side to meet me, can you imagine I am famous now.
....People greeting us from their boats..... .Meeting Jayne and Francis and the dogs
We met Francis, Jayne, Brian and Moss about half a mile past the Five Rise locks where we stood and chatted for five minutes.
Group picture at the crossover point
We then set of in different directions to meet again later. We arrived at Boothe swing bridge about 12.30 were we stopped and had lunch and a short rest before
Lunch time at Boothe swing . bridge..
Jane at Hirst Lock
Me having a sneaky cuddle
We travelled back to Stockbridge Swing Bridge were a Photographer from the Local newspaper met us and took some photos to go in the paper that was fun as I am now a celebrity. Jayne Francis and the dogs joined us at the pub at Stockbridge where all the two foots had fluids. We all then said our goodbyes and went our separate ways. We were now on the last leg of the journey all the two foots were slowing down they have no stamina.
Chris pushing me, and Alistair carrying the bucket
At Five Rise Locks
We finally arrived back at Hirst lock about 4 o'clock having had a great day with great company. The two foots;
Did 33,002 steps Burned off 972kcals We collected £47.28 in the bucket which was fantastic. As soon as we know the total raised we will let you know. If you wish to contribute and haven't done already it is not to late you can either send a cheque or pay by paypal using the link at the bottom of the page.
THA K YOU TO EVERYO E WHO TOOK PART A D ALSO EVERYO E WHO HAS GIVE MO EY AS WITHOUT YOUR HELP IT WOULD OT BE POSSIBLE TO DO THE WORK WE DO. LOVE BAILEY Please note the two dogs with Jayne and Francis were being walked for the R.S.P.C.A but are looking for a home, they were both very sociable with other dogs and exceptionally well behaved. If you are interested in offering either of them a home then contact Sonya at the sanctuary and she will put you in touch with someone who can give you more information. xxxv
Prince El-ahrairah Casper Fiver- Mom's art Isis September 2008
Buns of the month Bella & Greta
Millie Bun’s Column
Hello everybun. I really don't have much to add to what Cedric has already said in his column except maybe to say a big thank you to everyone that helps us to find things to put into Bunny Camp News so that we can always make sure that it is an entertaining read. As I keep saying, if you would like your very own copy of EITHER of our serials, then why not buy the book? Remember, Dandy’s book (our first serial) or the last one “Where Bunnies Dare” can be purchased by sending a cheque for £10 to :Bunny Books 42 Nidd Approach Deighton Bar Wetherby LS22 7UJ Lots of love Millie Bun
Problems With Boogey
Dear Boogey, We like having mum here at our service 24/7 but are not happy re the lack of gold coins and treats. What should we do? - Maddie
Dear Maddie, Whilst youre are snoozing, you need to make your mama get a job so that when she's not with you, she'll be out working hard for the gold coins to bring home to you! Even better, on her way home from work, she can stop somewhere and pick up some nommy treats for you too! -Boogey Enrique Gallagher
Dear Boogey, I keep getting this urge to hump my 2foot. I don't know why but I find her irresistible. What should I do about it? - Alfie (aged 5 months)
Dear Alfie, *snicker* I think your problem has been nipped... or snipped! BAHAHAHA! Don't worry, if you're as awesome as your Uncle Boogey you'll still hump everything in sight! -Boogey Enrique Gallagher
Dear Boogey, There seem to be very few gold coins around now. The plastic cards have been hidden away and I've forgotten those magic numbers - I'm a middle-aged bun now and my short-term memory isn't what it once was. As a result, my shopping is suffering and this is making me depressed. What can I do to get more gold coins for my shopping? (Don't suggest sending mum out to werk - she's too fick. How do other buns cope with the recession? - Maddie
Dear Maddie, Check your E-Mail. You should have at least one or two E-Mails from a Prince So-And-So from Africa wanting to give you a TON of gold coins!! -Boogey Enrique Gallagher
Dear Boogey, Why do we have a fight every morning when mum comes in to the kitchen? We don't do it when dad comes in or later in the day. - The Scuttles Dear Scuttles, Your mama clearly is not giving yous guys your breakfasts quickly enough! You should continue fighting until she's up to speed. -Boogey Enrique Gallagher
Now turn to the next page for our new short story...
andy on the top of the story telling hill and surveyed the expectant audience. "As you all seemed to enjoy it last time when I told you a couple of short traditional stories I'm going to do the same thing again. The first one is about a rabbit who was a little too clever for his own good. The second one though paints us in rather a better light" Dandy shuffled coughed, stamped his foot for silence and then began the story of
The Rabbit Goes Duck Hunting
The Rabbit was so boastful that he would claim to do whatever he saw anyone else do, and so tricky that he could usually make the other animals believe it all. Once he pretended that he could swim in the water and eat fish just as the Otter did, and when the others told him to prove it he fixed up a plan so that the Otter himself was deceived. Soon afterward they met again and the Otter said, "I eat ducks sometimes." Said the Rabbit, "Well, I eat ducks too." The Otter challenged him to try it; so they went up along the river until they saw several ducks in the water and managed to get near without being seen. The Rabbit told the Otter to go first. The Otter never hesitated, but dived from the bank and swam under water until he reached the ducks, when he pulled one down without being noticed by the others, and came back in the same way. While the Otter had been under the water the Rabbit had peeled some bark from a sapling and made himself a noose. "Now," he said, "Just watch me;" and he dived in and swam a little way under the water until he was nearly choking and had to come up to the top to breathe. He went under again and came up again a little nearer to the ducks. He took another breath and dived under, and this time he came up among the ducks and threw the noose over the head of one and caught it. The duck struggled hard and finally spread its wings and flew up from the water with the Rabbit hanging on to the noose. It flew on and on until at last the Rabbit could not hold on any longer, but had to xlii
let go and drop. As it happened, he fell into a tall, hollow sycamore stump without any hole at the bottom to get out from, and there he stayed until he was so hungry that he had to eat his own fur, as the rabbit does ever since when he is starving. After several days, when he was very weak with hunger, he heard children playing outside around the trees. He began to sing: Cut a door and look at me; I'm the prettiest thing you ever did see. The children ran home and told their father, who came and began to cut a hole in the tree. As he chopped away the Rabbit inside kept singing, "Cut it larger, so you can see me better; I'm so pretty." They made the hole larger, and then the Rabbit told them to stand back so that they could take a good look as he came out. They stood away back, and the Rabbit watched his chance and jumped out and got away.
Dandy shuffled on his haunches took a deep breath and then began the second story
How Rabbit Fooled Wolf
Two pretty girls lived not far from Rabbit and Wolf. One day Rabbit called upon Wolf and said, "Let's go and visit those pretty girls up the road." "All right," Wolf said, and they started off. When they got to the girls' house, they were invited in, but both girls took a great liking to Wolf and paid all their attention to him while Rabbit had to sit by and look on. Rabbit of course was not pleased by this, and he soon said, "We had better be going back." "Let's wait a while longer," Wolf replied, and they remained until late in the day. Before they left, Rabbit found a chance to speak to one of the girls so that Wolf xliii
could not overhear and he said, "The one you've been having so much fun with is my old horse." "I think you are lying," the girl replied. "No, I am not. You shall see me ride him up here tomorrow." "If we see you ride him up here," the girl said with a laugh, "we'll believe he's only your old horse." When the two left the house, the girls said, "Well, call again." Next morning Wolf was up early, knocking on Rabbit's door. "It's time to visit those girls again," he announced. Rabbit groaned. "Oh, I was sick all night," he answered, "and I hardly feel able to go." Wolf kept urging him, and finally Rabbit said, "If you will let me ride you, I might go along to keep you company." Wolf agreed to carry him astride of his back. But then Rabbit said, "I would like to put a saddle on you so as to brace myself" When Wolf agreed to this, Rabbit added: "I believe it would be better if I should also bridle you." Although Wolf objected at first to being bridled, he gave in when Rabbit said he did not think he could hold on and manage to get as far as the girls' house without a bridle. Finally Rabbit wanted to put on spurs. "I am too ticklish," Wolf protested. "I will not spur you with them," Rabbit promised. "I will hold them away from you, but it would be nicer to have them on." At last Wolf agreed to this, but he repeated: "I am very ticklish. You must not spur me." "When we get near the girls' house," Rabbit said, "we will take everything off you and walk the rest of the way." And so they started up the road, Rabbit proudly riding upon Wolf's back. When they were nearly in sight of the house, Rabbit raked his spurs into Wolf's sides and Wolf galloped full speed right by the house. "Those girls have seen you now," Rabbit said. "I will tie you here and go up to see them and try to explain everything. I'll come back after a while and get you." And so Rabbit went back to the house and said to the girls: "You both saw me riding my old horse, did you not?" "Yes," they answered, and he sat down and had a good time with them. xliv
After a while Rabbit thought he ought to untie Wolf, and he started back to the place where he was fastened. He knew that Wolf must be very angry with him by this time, and he thought up a way to untie him and get rid of him without any danger to himself. He found a thin hollow log and began beating upon it as if it were a drum. Then he ran up to Wolf as fast as he could go, crying out: "The soldiers are hunting for you! You heard their drum. The soldiers are after you." Wolf was very much frightened of soldiers. "Let me go, let me go!" he shouted. Rabbit was purposely slow in untying him and had barely freed him when Wolf broke away and ran as fast as he could into the woods. Then Rabbit returned home, laughing to himself over how he had fooled Wolf, and feeling satisfied that he could have the girls to himself for a while. Near the girls' house was a large peach orchard, and one day they asked Rabbit to shake the peaches off the tree for them. They went to the orchard together and he climbed up into a tree to shake the peaches off. While he was there Wolf suddenly appeared and called out: "Rabbit, old fellow, I'm going to even the score with you. I'm not going to leave you alone until I do." Rabbit raised his head and pretended to be looking at some people off in the distance. Then he shouted from the treetop: "Here is that fellow, Wolf, you've been hunting for!" At this, Wolf took fright and ran away again. Some time after this, Rabbit was resting against a tree-trunk that leaned toward the ground. When he saw Wolf coming along toward him, he stood up so that the bent tree-trunk pressed against his shoulder. "I have you now," said Wolf, but Rabbit quickly replied: "Some people told me that if I would hold this tree up with the great power I have they would bring me four hogs in payment. Now, I don't like hog meat as well as you do, so if you take my place they'll give the hogs to you." Wolf's greed was excited by this, and he said he was willing to hold up the tree. He squeezed in beside Rabbit, who said, "You must hold it tight or it will fall down." Rabbit then ran off, and Wolf stood with his back pressed hard against the bent tree- trunk until he finally decided he could stand it no longer. He jumped away quickly so the tree would not fall upon him. Then he saw that it was only a leaning tree rooted in the earth. "That Rabbit is the biggest liar," he cried. "If I can catch him I'll certainly fix him." After that, Wolf hunted for Rabbit every day until he found him lying in a nice xlv
grassy place. He was about to spring upon him when Rabbit said, "My friend, I've been waiting to see you again. I have something good for you to eat. Somebody killed a pony out there in the road. If you wish I'll help you drag it out of the road to a place where you can make a feast off it." "All right," Wolf said, and he followed Rabbit out to the road where a pony was lying asleep. "I'm not strong enough to move the pony by myself," said Rabbit, "so I'll tie its tail to yours and help you by pushing." Rabbit tied their tails together carefully so as not to awaken the pony. Then he grabbed the pony by the ears as if he were going to lift it up. The pony woke up, jumped to its feet, and ran away, dragging Wolf behind. Wolf struggled frantically to free his tail, but all he could do was scratch on the ground with his claws. "Pull with all your might," Rabbit shouted after him. "How can I pull with all my might," Wolf cried, "when I'm not standing on the ground?" By and by, however, Wolf got loose, and then Rabbit had to go into hiding for a long, long time.
Dandy smiled at his audience "I hope you enjoyed those tales" he said. "We don't have wolves here I'm happy to say, but I bet that some of you will try those tricks out on each other!"
Bunny Camp is not a large undertaking. It is all run from a normal house in a normal street. However, we do our best to help as many bunnies as possible given our very limited resources. Bunny Camp at:is situated at:4 Stoney Ridge Avenue, Heaton, Bradford West Yorkshire BD9 6PA England Tel: (0044) 01274 821665 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org