Regular followers of Fairly Beloved Rabbit Care may have noticed a sudden ‘hop’ in the numbers of rabbits we have listed for adoption. In fact, in the past few weeks we’ve added a whopping 23 additional rabbits on to the list.

We’ve not gone ‘rabbit hunting’ – these are genuine cases that have approached us. In fact, they are all from just two cases.

The first case is from a home where the family had started rescuing rabbits themselves via local classifieds, and also had a stab at ‘hobby breeding’ too. They’re hearts were in the right place and they have a genuine love of rabbits. However, their experience in rabbit care was limited, and they approached us as they started to recognise things had got a little out of control. As much of their learning had come from the breeding network, we found the rabbits were all in very small hutches, often with multiple rabbits within tiny breeders hutches (although they had been getting daily garden exercise). Over the past few weeks we have been working closely with the family to improve conditions, and this weekend we spent most of Sunday helping transfer the rabbits into larger hutches within a large communal shed. The family have been very open to our suggestions and keen to learn from our experience. Conditions are now much better, although still not ideal as many rabbits are still sharing hutches that are slightly too small for them. This will just be temporary until we are able to find alternative, or permanent homes for the rabbits and reduce the over-crowding. The aim is to reduce numbers from 20 to only 4, and the family are very encouraged and enthusiastic about the prospects of having interactive rabbits around as a result of improved Space, Exercise, Company and Stimulation. We have already found homes for some of the rabbits, and are hopeful that we will continue to work down the numbers as quickly as possible.

Another 9 rabbits were added to our list as a result of a new partnership with a boarding cattery. They found themselves accidentally in a position where they were rescuing rabbits and have been doing an excellent job with the 9 residents they have at the moment. Through their partnership with Fairly Beloved Rabbit Care they are hopeful they can continue to provide excellent levels of care for the rabbits whilst tapping in to our customer base to find new permanent homes for them. We are quite excited about the opportunities this will provide us as we extend our foster care network over a wider area of Glasgow & West Central Scotland, where we believe rabbit welfare awareness continues to be amongst the poorest in the country. Sadly, we’re unable to announce the name of the cattery through fears that there may be an increase in unannounced abandoned rabbits on their doorstep (it is a criminal offence to abandon an animal in this way, and we urge anyone looking to give up their rabbit to contact us directly to arrange for rehoming appropriately).

As we type today’s blog though, we have another 3 cases entering our inbox that we need to investigate further. As we expected, the winter season is well and truly upon us, and we anticipate that the waiting list of rabbits will continue to grow.

Can you help? This time of year burdens the rescue service with additional pressures, both in terms of finances, time and capacity. You can help by volunteering as a foster carer or fundraising officer, adopting a rabbit, donating money or equipment or in the simplest way just by making other people aware of our work. Please, do whatever you can – your continued support is very much appreciated.