This powerful and heartfelt letter by Shana Abe says what all rescuers wish they could say. – Beth Woolbright, Letters Editor of House Rabbit Society. Modified to pertain to our recent rescue by Anne-Marie, Becky and Cesar. Disclaimer – the views stated in this letter are harsh but are views that I and many other house rabbit owners agree with, they are not the formal opinions of the Tarrywile Park & Mansion, TPA or any Danbury official connected to this park.
I have your rabbit. I doubt that you care, but I do. She’s safe now, if very thin, very dehydrated and very frightened. I’m slowly convincing her that I will not hurt her when my hand moves or when I offer her any delicious treat I can think of to woo her out of her state of wild-eyed dread.
I have your rabbit because , one day two weeks ago, our grounds and building staff Cesar, noticed her huddled and shivering behind the dumpster in the upper parking lot. When he touched her she did not move or run away so he came to the office and asked for my help. That moment in time when they came across each other is what saved the rabbit you used to own. Our grounds and building staff walk the 722 acres of the park on a regular basis and did not come across any signs for a lost bunny, there were no signs posted on nearby telephone poles, no calls to the office or missing bunny posts to Facebook.
This was not the first report of abandoned bunnies, a month or so ago another of our staff passed a cage that was placed on the side of the road right next to some garbage cans, the cage held a group of baby bunnies. I did not make it back in time to rescue them, I pray that some kind hearted soul took pity on them and brought them home to either adopt or foster until their forever home could be found.
I admit, Abandoner, that I hoped it was a wild rabbit, one I could pass off to a wildlife group. My home already contained house rabbits, and I knew that if this one wasn’t wild, I’d have another addition to our household.
I walked with Cesar to behind the dumpster, and there was your bunny; a grey, long haired Holland Lop, hunched up and staring back at me with the whites of her eyes showing round and bright as the moon.
A week outside meant that she had endured days of heavy rains, strong winds, almost freezing temperatures. She had survived the skulk of foxes living in the woods, and the coyotes that prowl the backyards and park in the dark, hungry and hunting for unattended pets. The many dogs running around off-leash. The un-collared cats that roam anywhere and everywhere.
We’ve seen the cars stealing along the streets in the dead of night; dogs and cats-and least one rabbit-tossed out of a hastily opened door before the car speeds away. It happens here all the time.
You never posted notices for your rabbit on the streets, in the newspaper, at the shelters or on the web. But for that perfect timing and sharp eyes of our staff, your little grey rabbit would have surely have died. By starvation or hypothermia if she was lucky. More likely, though, she would have been torn apart and devoured.
“portion of letter omitted due to strong views” to read the entire letter you will find it at; House Rabbit Society
Or perhaps you convinced yourself you were doing her a favor by dumping her; one little anonymous car ride, and your mistake of a pet would be free to live wild or else become someone else’s responsibility. you never once considered that a domestic rabbit isn’t remotely a wily wild one.
Your rabbit is my rabbit now. She she was malnourished, dehydrated, has scabbed over sore on her back, tears in the skin of her ears, an infected eye and according to the vet, urine burns on her bottom and back legs from being in too small of a cage that was not cleaned on a regular basis. I have paid her vet bills, I have taken her into my home. I’ve named her Georgie. And today, for the first time, she let me stroke her head. She stretched out her neck and rested her chin on the floor and closed her eyes as I ran my fingers along her fur, assuming a posture of tentative pleasure and trust that I bet you never once had the patience to see.
So the heck with you (modified from the original letter).
-Revised Edition – Anne-Marie & Becky
HRJ Vol. 5, No. 7, Winter/Spring 2011
If you want further information on rabbit adoption, what to do with wild/domestic rabbits that have been abandoned visit the House Rabbit Society.