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Helping Rabbits at an Animal Sanctuary

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RunnyBabbit

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So, last year, I went to a place that started out doing horse rides but now has many other animals and is an animal sanctuary.
I noticed that some of their animals weren't being taken care of well, especially the rabbits.
One of them is in a very small and dirty cage.
20200927_150429.jpg
The other three are outside with no protection from predators. The area is covered though.
It is quite large but they dont use the space.
20200927_144702.jpg

None of them have any toys or hay. Or hidey houses (besides that wood box thing). Dirty little water bottles. And they being free feed pellets.
They look to be over weight, and they don't really move around much. They just lay there all day.

It's really sad so I decided to come up with a plan.
First, I'm going to drop off a bunch of DIY toys I made over the past few weeks (I've a lot made more since taking this picture), and some cardboard boxes and tunnels.
20201011_181802.jpg
I'm also going to pick up a bag of hay, and a few other toys from the pet store, as well as some fresh veggies, bananas, and apples.

I'm going to have to feel them out you know, but I would love to be able to get Sprite (the Florida White) our of that cage. And would also like to talk to them about how they are currently being cared for without bashing them. I'll have to be careful with my words so they dont get defensive about it. Otherwise, my plans may not work.

And depending on how that goes, I'm going to talk with them about my bunny cottage plans.
I plan on building them a large wooden shed that they can run and play in and stay safe from predators. It will have a cooling system too (still working on that part).

It will be 13x7 feet total, including the front porch. The front room will be 5x5, which is where people can come in to see the bunnies without bothering them. This will have have space for any supplies.
The bunny room, separated by a gate, will be 8x7.
20201102_120028.jpg
(Sorry for the sideways pic and bad lighting)
When finished it will look something like this.
Screenshot_20201101-110409_Pinterest.jpg

Inside they will have a large storage bin litter box, with a huge hay rack or box. An area rug in the middle. A teepee. A tunnel. A wooden bridge. Some cardboard boxes. A tent bed. And shelf/second floor.
Screenshot_20201110-214415_Pinterest.jpg
Screenshot_20201110-214548_Pinterest.jpg

The inside will be painted with some cute wallpaper for an accent wall.




We've emailed them and we are going to schedule a time to give them the toys and treats.

I can't get rabbit so I'll share info with new rabbit owners and help any rabbits that I can.

Yes, this is going to be expensive. Yes, it's a lot of work. Yes, I'm only 13 😳
Help.
Lol
Wish me luck ❤
 

RunnyBabbit

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I've seen that video before actually

I think they don't know anything about bunnies and they aren't willing to fix anything on their own.
I've researched a lot about duck and I've joined a chicken site that has info on all kinds of birds (BYC), but it doesn't take a lot of knowledge to see 5here was an issue with their ducks.
They had a large muscovy with Mallards and calls (the smallest duck breeds). A bunch if them has angle wing and the muscovy was hurting a small mallard.
Before we left we talked to them about it and they've known about for a while but still haven't done anything.

I think the volunteers are just lazy. They have the money to fix these things I mean, they just built a huge nice ba5n for weddings and events. And yet they can't c ar e for their own animals.

I'm going to talk to with owner if they won't do anything even with my help.

But, I hope that they'll realize the issues and let me help them
 

Lucas the Bun

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Well it’s awesome that you’re doing this
I‘d suggest reading this article 👇🏻

Complements should match your voice tone and such.
If it does’nt it looks really fake, & would’nt be good for your cause.
 
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RunnyBabbit

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zuppa

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So, last year, I went to a place that started out doing horse rides but now has many other animals and is an animal sanctuary.
I noticed that some of their animals weren't being taken care of well, especially the rabbits.
One of them is in a very small and dirty cage.
View attachment 51327
The other three are outside with no protection from predators. The area is covered though.
It is quite large but they dont use the space.
View attachment 51328

None of them have any toys or hay. Or hidey houses (besides that wood box thing). Dirty little water bottles. And they being free feed pellets.
They look to be over weight, and they don't really move around much. They just lay there all day.

It's really sad so I decided to come up with a plan.
First, I'm going to drop off a bunch of DIY toys I made over the past few weeks (I've a lot made more since taking this picture), and some cardboard boxes and tunnels.
View attachment 51329
I'm also going to pick up a bag of hay, and a few other toys from the pet store, as well as some fresh veggies, bananas, and apples.

I'm going to have to feel them out you know, but I would love to be able to get Sprite (the Florida White) our of that cage. And would also like to talk to them about how they are currently being cared for without bashing them. I'll have to be careful with my words so they dont get defensive about it. Otherwise, my plans may not work.

And depending on how that goes, I'm going to talk with them about my bunny cottage plans.
I plan on building them a large wooden shed that they can run and play in and stay safe from predators. It will have a cooling system too (still working on that part).

It will be 13x7 feet total, including the front porch. The front room will be 5x5, which is where people can come in to see the bunnies without bothering them. This will have have space for any supplies.
The bunny room, separated by a gate, will be 8x7.
View attachment 51330
(Sorry for the sideways pic and bad lighting)
When finished it will look something like this.
View attachment 51331

Inside they will have a large storage bin litter box, with a huge hay rack or box. An area rug in the middle. A teepee. A tunnel. A wooden bridge. Some cardboard boxes. A tent bed. And shelf/second floor.
View attachment 51332
View attachment 51333

The inside will be painted with some cute wallpaper for an accent wall.




We've emailed them and we are going to schedule a time to give them the toys and treats.

I can't get rabbit so I'll share info with new rabbit owners and help any rabbits that I can.

Yes, this is going to be expensive. Yes, it's a lot of work. Yes, I'm only 13 😳
Help.
Lol
Wish me luck ❤
It sounds like a good plan to me and I am so glad to hear that you want to help and educate them without humiliating them. In my experience some people become very defensive and just refuse any help if they feel offended, and it happens quite often, but if they are open minded and will listen to you and will be willing to learn also if you manage to stay polite and also won't ask for big investments at the very beginning, it may be success. You can start really small, new toys, great, bring hay and explain that hay is a must for rabbits, great, limit pellets, clean their cages and make protection from predators, it all won't require much money I believe. And then when they see results that rabbits on hay and limited pellets will become more healthy and good looking and more active then maybe you can try to push some more changes. But as i said it is crucial that you maintain very good and respectful communication and do small steps.
Also I find that talking is less effective than doing small changes and showing results after with an explanation of what was done and what results as you can see and why it is so.

I wish you best of luck with your plans and please keep us updated :)
 
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Blue eyes

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Your concern for the rabbits is great. Your willingness to do something about it is even greater. I'd agree with @zuppa to start small with small changes to begin with. It comes across less offensive that way.

HUGE CAUTION PLEASE: Do not offer the rabbits bananas, apples, and fresh veggies as you've intended. This would almost certainly put them all into GI stasis!! While greens are a good part of a rabbit diet, they must be introduced very, very slowly and over time so their delicate gut can build up the proper enzymes to digest them. Offering any fruit would be much worse as the sudden intro of all that (natural) sugar would wreak havoc on their digestive system.

On a similar note, the cardboard toys you've made are fantastic. However, until you know for certain that the rabbits have begun eating the hay you intend to buy, then the rabbits shouldn't have access to cardboard or cardboard toys. Rabbits often like to ingest cardboard. That can cause a gut blockage IF they aren't eating loads of hay.

You may want to consider just buying a bale of grass hay. Bales are much much cheaper than bagged hay. A full bale may cost from $8 - $18. In fact, the place with the horses likely has bales of grass hay already.
 

RunnyBabbit

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Your concern for the rabbits is great. Your willingness to do something about it is even greater. I'd agree with @zuppa to start small with small changes to begin with. It comes across less offensive that way.

HUGE CAUTION PLEASE: Do not offer the rabbits bananas, apples, and fresh veggies as you've intended. This would almost certainly put them all into GI stasis!! While greens are a good part of a rabbit diet, they must be introduced very, very slowly and over time so their delicate gut can build up the proper enzymes to digest them. Offering any fruit would be much worse as the sudden intro of all that (natural) sugar would wreak havoc on their digestive system.

On a similar note, the cardboard toys you've made are fantastic. However, until you know for certain that the rabbits have begun eating the hay you intend to buy, then the rabbits shouldn't have access to cardboard or cardboard toys. Rabbits often like to ingest cardboard. That can cause a gut blockage IF they aren't eating loads of hay.

You may want to consider just buying a bale of grass hay. Bales are much much cheaper than bagged hay. A full bale may cost from $8 - $18. In fact, the place with the horses likely has bales of grass hay already.
Thank you so much! I haven't considered that the would go into GI status with the greens and fruits. I'll bring some with me, and ask if they'd had it before to be sure. But if they haven't then I definitely won't give them any.

I know they have plenty of hay there, I mean, they have lots of horses.
But yeah, I'll would normally get hay from a local farm but since they haven't had any I was going to get hay from the pet store. But since they could injest the cardboard I'll start them off with lots of hay from a farm
 

RunnyBabbit

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Update!!
Just dropped off some hay and toys.

20201119_171906.jpg
I don't have a pic of the other rabbits on my phone. I'll attach it later.

But, the reason Sprite is in the cage is because he is male and the other three are females. His owners were very busy and couldn't keep him so he's here now. They pay a monthly fee of $25 for him.
He gets some time out of the cage in the afternoons.
He was very sweet. Not too sure of us, but he let me pet him and put him back in the cage.

I'll start a GoFundMe and save up some money to get him fixed.

The owner said we can stop by any time after they closed to see Sprite.
After another time or two I'll talk with the owner about building the Bunny Cottage.
 

RunnyBabbit

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20201119_170012.jpg
Here's a pic of the inside. I couldn't get a very good picture, and it doesn't show the whole cage, but you get the idea.
He had some hay in there. Still not unlimited hay, but it's better than none.
There is a bowl full of pellets worh some broccoli and carrots. He shouldn't be having that many carrots, but I'll talk to them about their diet afterwards.
 

Mariam+Theo

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I love this idea!!!!! I do think that you should add the cost of getting all of the rabbits spayed and neutered so you could maybe bond all 4 of them and house all of them in the bunny cottage. If you can find a local spay and neuter facility you maybe could get all of them done for $200. At my local facility, it is $50 for a rabbit spay/neuter.
 

zuppa

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25 dollars a month that's a lot of money sure they can buy hay and wood pellets for him.
I see his floor is fully covered with shavings, it's probably because he is not toilet trained, but normally rabbits like using their corners to keep the middle dry so you maybe can bring some wood pellets and add to all four corners, mix with shavings. Then you will see which corner he likes for his toilet and can gradually move all the shavings there, reduce shavings just use pellets later. I would suggest cleaning the rest of the cage, particularly all other corners with 5% white vinegar so only one corner will smell as toilet and you will see he will probably use it all the time.
The cage in your photos has grids which is great for them because it is not slippery.
 

RunnyBabbit

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I love this idea!!!!! I do think that you should add the cost of getting all of the rabbits spayed and neutered so you could maybe bond all 4 of them and house all of them in the bunny cottage. If you can find a local spay and neuter facility you maybe could get all of them done for $200. At my local facility, it is $50 for a rabbit spay/neuter.
Thanks!
I've been looking for spay and neuter clinics around here that can do rabbits.
This is probably a dumb question, but would I have to get all the females spayed to be able to bond them? I plan on getting them all spayed eventually, but I want them to be able to be together in the Rabbit Cottage since it will take a while to save up.
25 dollars a month that's a lot of money sure they can buy hay and wood pellets for him.
I see his floor is fully covered with shavings, it's probably because he is not toilet trained, but normally rabbits like using their corners to keep the middle dry so you maybe can bring some wood pellets and add to all four corners, mix with shavings. Then you will see which corner he likes for his toilet and can gradually move all the shavings there, reduce shavings just use pellets later. I would suggest cleaning the rest of the cage, particularly all other corners with 5% white vinegar so only one corner will smell as toilet and you will see he will probably use it all the time.
The cage in your photos has grids which is great for them because it is not slippery.
Thank you!
Next time we go I was going to work on litter training.
I'll have to see what litter box I could fit in there. He's a pretty big rabbit. I would get a cat litter box, but that will take up a lot of space in there. And I hate those little corner trays, but that may be the only thing that will fit in there.
I'll look for a big one.
 

Mariam+Theo

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You will need to spay all the females before you bond them because they will fight over the new territory the Bunny Cottage provides when you move them in. I suggest bonding all 4 of them once all of them have been spayed/neutered and it has been a month for the hormones to settle down, instead of bonding the 3 girls and then later bonding those three to Sprite. If you bond the girls and then try to bond them with Sprite it will probably break their bond or all 3 of them will go up against Sprite and attack him.
 

RunnyBabbit

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You will need to spay all the females before you bond them because they will fight over the new territory the Bunny Cottage provides when you move them in. I suggest bonding all 4 of them once all of them have been spayed/neutered and it has been a month for the hormones to settle down, instead of bonding the 3 girls and then later bonding those three to Sprite. If you bond the girls and then try to bond them with Sprite it will probably break their bond or all 3 of them will go up against Sprite and attack him.
That makes sense, thanks!
The three girls are already in one pen together and they seem to get along well.

I'm trying to think of a plan incase they get more rabbits. People drop them off there often. I don't think they've gotten rabbits in a while though.
He said if/when they get another I could have them though 🤗
 

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