It only feels like a couple of weeks since I was writing my Christmas message. Life doesn’t change much here and most days blur into one!
Baby wildy season started early with the first arriving in February! Some have thrived but others passed on, unable to fight any longer.
Tortoises came out of hibernation went straight into the garden. they were only out far days when winter decided it wasn’t quite over. They are now tromping about in my spare bedroom desperate for any small ray of sunshine that comes through the window!
I would like to take the opportunity to remind people that rabbits are for life not for Easter. Since Covid restrictions have eased we have seen an increase in people wanting to give up their pet rabbits. Some of which are only weeks old. Reasons include:
Unable to povide appropriate housing
The rabbit doesn’t want to be cuddled so will kick and scratch
Got bored of them
Not realising they lived 8-12 years on average
Child has left for University
Cost of vet bill
Impulse buy because they were lonely over lockdown and/or school holidays
It’s heart breaking to tell them that we are full to capacity for domestic rabbits but we can only look after so many at once and we know that it is not just us stretching our resources, our time and space to care for these unwanted rabbits.
So please remember rabbits are a life tine commitment and not for Easter.
Thank you to everyone who has joined in our Easter fundraiser; the winner will be announced on Easter Monday.
Last year I jinxed myself by ending my Christmas message with the hope that 2021 would be a quieter year. I didn’t think we could have a busier year than 2020. How wrong could I be? Turns out 2020 was just the warm up!
Baby wildies started arriving early March following a false spring in February. Once they started arriving they didn’t stop until mid September. I have never hand reared so many in one year. I gave up counting once we passed 30! At one point I was nursing two litters of 8 at once. Unfortunately for the first time in the 25 years I’ve been running the charity I had 3 baby wildies arrive with Myxomatosis. The two smallest didn’t make it however the oldest of the 3; Magic named after the Queen song ‘It’s a kind of magic’ did.
Like most years we have had our ups and our downs. We’ve lost several of our long term residents this year; many tears have been shed. Each death seems to hits us harder.
Fundraising has been crazy. I have been incredibly lucky with the amount of donations that have been received. Many a time I have looked around my sitting room and wondered where I am going to put it all! But between eBay, Facebook Market Place and our Facebook auctions it soon goes. I am thankful for each and every donation that Bunny Burrows receives. Without them I wouldn’t be able to run Bunny Burrows.
Many thanks to everyone who has donated goods, money or time Bunny Burrows would not exist without you.
Meet Magic; so named because not only is Gwen a massive Queen fan but because it’s a kind of magic that she’s here with us today. Magic has battled Myxomatosis and won.
Magic came into contact with Myxomatosis not long after she arrived at Bunny Burrows. As soon as we noticed symptoms of Myxomatosis in the other baby wild rabbits in our care at the time we vaccinated her. Although it wasn’t enough to stop her from getting myxomatosis it definitely helped in her fight for survival.
There is no treatment for Myxomatosis so Gwen was making it up as she went along. There were many a time she questioned if she was doing the right thing but she couldn’t give up on such a little rabbit who was determined to survive. Little Magic needed round the clock care and a carer with a strong stomach.
Poor magic wasn’t a pretty sight. Huge red legions covered her face, her ears, her eye and her toes. These legions needed to be cleaned and treated every day. Antibiotics were given in case of a secondary infection and anti inflammatories to help with pain and swelling.
Slowly but surely the legions began to dry and drop off. Magic began to look like a rabbit again rather than an angry red blob.
It’s taken 10 weeks of intensive care, hundreds of pairs of gloves, countless disposable aprons, an arsenal of medication and lots of love for Magic to come through to the other side. She will remain with Gwen at Bunny Burrows as one of the resident wild rabbits.
Myxomatosis is a man made virus originally introduced in Australia in the 1950s to control the rabbit population. It is passed from rabbit to rabbit by direct contact or through insects. No rabbit is safe, even if it lives indoors. Get your rabbit vaccinated.
You know it’s hot when the tortoises won’t come out of their house!
As the temperatures rise across the UK we need to watch out for signs of heatstroke in our small furry friends. It can be fatal. We believe that prevention is better than a trip to the emergency vet and a huge vet bill. So here are our tips on keeping them cool and how to spot heatstroke.
Remember heatstroke is an emergency and veterinary advice should always be sort.
Top Tips for Keeping Cool
Keep curtains and blinds closed.
Move them inside where it is cooler if possible..
If you can’t bring them inside move their hutch into the shade. If you can’t move the hutch or if no shade is available use parasols to create shade.
Provide them something cool to lie on. The cool pads for dogs/cats are good if they aren’t chewers! If they are chewers try a tile that’s been in the fridge or a damp towel.
Use fans and air-conditioning units to keep the room cool and to create air flow but don’t have them pointing directly at their hutch and make sure that they have enough space to move away from them.
Cool pods such as those by Scratch and Newton fit in snuggle safe fleece covers and are great for lying against. Alternatively you can freeze bottles of water and wrap in a towel.
Keep them hydrated. Offer plenty of fresh cool water and soak their veggies in water before feeding them
Signs of Heatstroke
Salivating and/or drooling
Weakness, sleepiness and lethargy
Panting or taking quick short breaths
Remember heatstroke is an emergency and veterinary advice should always be sort.
If you are too hot then we can guarantee that your small furry friends will be feeling the same way.
I am a big bun who has lots of fur but not a very big tum. I like to keep myself clean, my bunwife too. I worried my mum sick when I stopped eating late the other night. GI Stasis caused by fur blocking my gut.
Mum says the strings of pearls I leave behind are a welcome sight but she can’t sell them to recover the costs.
I am the Bunny Burrows’ guard rabbit. I may be tiny. I may be cute. But I take my job very seriously. I don’t care if you have two legs or four; disturb the peace and I’ll be there. My warning thump can be heard all over the house.
Nanny Gwen says its a good job I have no front teeth. I’m not sure that I agree. I cannot bite you so I’ll have to box you instead!
The Christmas Miracles are getting ready to fly the nest and go to their furever home. They want one last party before they go so they are hosting the first fundraising auction of 2021. And they’ve made it a bumper one! An Easter extravaganza even.
Their auction can be found on our Facebook page until 9pm Sunday 7th March 2021.
What a winter it has been so far. We’ve not had one like this for 10 years. Plans keep having to be changed due to snow but the animals here do not understand the concept of a snow day!
No matter how much snow has fallen the animals in our care still need feeding, medicating and cleaning out.
We are very grateful to our dedicated volunteers who have been braving the elements and walking to Bunny Burrows to offer their services. Especially on days where the road has been impassable! Without them we would be sweeping Gwen up off the floor.
Unfortunately we have decided to cancel January’s auction. Due to high levels of COVID 19 in our small area of North Yorkshire; it is unfair for us to ask our volunteers to take so many parcels to the post office. We will review the situation for February’s auction nearer the time.
In the mean time watch this space for our next online fundraiser … coming soon to a screen in your home.