A disabled pet bunny recently became the 1,000th rabbit to be rescued by Scotland’s only registered rabbit rescue charity.
The young rabbit lost his front paw during birthing complications and has been nicknamed “Adam Hills” after C4’s The Last Leg comedian.
Fairly Beloved Rabbit Care, who began rescuing domestic rabbits in December 2010, are now preparing Adam for his forever home through their adoptions process.
Heather Thomson, one of the charity’s Adoptions Managers and Adam’s foster carer, explains their hopes for Adam’s future.
“Company is really important for rabbits so we have already bonded Adam with another young rabbit who entered the rescue at the same time, who we have nicknamed Josh Widdicombe.”
The charity continues to seek new adoptive homes for Adam and Josh, as well as the numerous other rabbits in the charity’s care.
Rabbits continue to be the most abandoned, neglected and misunderstood pet in the UK, with recent estimates suggesting over 67,000 rehomed through rescue charity’s every year and several thousands more privately rehomed through friends, family, social media and classifieds.
“Rabbits are very much the unheard pet,” says David Bell, founder and director of the charity. “Most people are surprised to learn all that is needed to provide an appropriate diet, space, company and stimulation.”
Fairly Beloved Rabbit Care was started by David and his wife Feona when they recognised there was a lack of rabbit welfare services in Glasgow. Relying on a team of volunteer foster carers and care assistants, the team is now provided rabbit rescue services throughout most of Scotland, including a recent rescue of rabbits from Aberdeenshire.
“There are other organisations that will rescue rabbits, but we are the only registered rescue charity in Scotland that specialises in rabbits only. They are more complex and specialist than people realise, and the dedication of our volunteers makes a massive difference in terms of meeting the full needs of the rabbits in our care.”
Research has shown that rabbits actually need a significant amount of space and should always be kept in pairs or small groups. Many of the hutches and cages available from pet suppliers fall short of the requirements of recommendations by the leading animal welfare charities including The Rabbit Welfare Association, PDSA and RSPCA.
“When we started the rescue we thought we would rescue around 12 rabbits a year” explains Feona Bell. “We now rescue over 200 per year, and we all still run the charity alongside our other work and family commitments too”.
As well as rescue services, the charity offers adoption, rabbit bonding, educational talks and care advice services too. They also rely heavily on volunteers and fundraising activities to keep the service running. For more information, or to begin the rabbit adoption process, visit their website at http://www.fairlybelovedrabbitcare.org.