The Outdoor Rainbow Rabbits
Custard and his companion Lulu are spending their retirement at Rainbow Rabbits as their owner has emigrated and she couldn’t take them with her. They are extremely well loved bunnies and Custard’s owner was heartbroken to have to leave him behind. Custard was originally used for breeding and showing before going to his previous owner where he lived a luxury life for 5 years. As you can imagine it was a big change for Custard to come to live with us and the day after he moved in the stress caught up with him and he did stop eating and became quite poorly. But thankfully he has started to settle now and is getting used to his new surroundings. It also makes a lovely change for us to take in a happy healthy and loved little bunny. Sadly it doesn’t happen often!
Lulu and her companion Custard are spending their retirement at Rainbow Rabbits as their owner has emigrated and she couldn’t take them with her. They are extremely well loved bunnies and Lulu’s owner was heartbroken to have to leave her behind. Lulu has the most beautiful blue eyes and is the shyer of the two bunnies but seems to be taking the change in her stride. She is very interested in being in a home with lots of other bunnies around her and can often be found periscoping in her run for a better view! Both her and Custard are wonderful little bunnies and it makes a lovely change for us to take in a happy healthy and loved little bunny. Sadly it doesn’t happen often!
Lacey was handed in to a vets at the age of 11 months by her original owner as she was fighting with her sister and the owner didn’t have the funds to neuter or vaccinate her. She also said she could no longer be bothered with her fluffy coat but otherwise was in good health. At the vets it soon became apparent that all was not well with Lacey, on being thoroughly examined it became clear that Lacey had sight and neurological issues. So much so, that the vet wanted to put to sleep. Thankfully a vet nurse at the practice was experienced in special needs bunnies and asked to take her home and foster her. We were then contacted and asked if we could give Lacey a permanent home with us. Lacey had to wait several weeks to come to us but we knew she was in good hands. During that time she was neutered and struggled to recover from the op. But she pulled herself through and was able to be fully assessed by an exotics vet who diagnosed EC and also EC related cataracts. EC is when a parasite affects the cells in the brain, kidneys and eyes causing the cells to become inflamed and rupture.
When Lacey arrived, because of her problems she was very nervous, startling easily. But as the weeks have progressed she has started to settle in and get used to her routine. She is a very gentle girl, who spends an awful lot of time in her own little world. Her head is held high and sways backwards and forwards, but she seems happy enough with life.
Tiffany had a terrible start in life. She was abandoned in a tiny hutch along with her Mum and 7 other litter mates. The filthy hutch was dumped in a park and was luckily found by a member of the public who took it to the local rescue centre. Unfortunately for Tiffany she had got her back leg caught in the mesh of the hutch. It was badly broken, so at the age of around 5 weeks she had her leg amputated. Tiffany was lucky to survive such a big operation at that age, but she has made a full recovery. She is just over 4 years old now but has not grown to the size she should be. She is very small weighing only 1kg, about half the size she should be.
Tiffany has a few minor dental problems and is now developing problems with the muscles in her legs. Even though she weighs very little her remaining three legs are struggling to hold her up. In the future she will get to a point where she will loose all mobility, but for now she is still managing to get about very well. Tiffany was really struggling to walk indoors, she could get no grip on carpet and towels, so we moved her and her brother Elvis outside to see if it would help and it did. On thick hay and also concrete Tiffany can go a good speed, she still manages to give me the run around when I want to catch her, the little monkey!!
Elvis is Tiffany’s brother, so he has also had a very bad start in life. Elvis was the runt of the litter and took a long time to develop. We were not able to get him castrated until he was 8 months old. Even at 4 years old he still only half the size he should be, probably due to the bad conditions he was kept in as a baby. Despite being found at just a few weeks old Elvis is not a cuddly bunny. He will growl and launch at you when you go into his pen even with food. This just shows what effect a bad start in life can have on the future development of such wonderful creatures.
We were asked to take in Geoff along with his partner Marion as he needed to be rescued from a “rescue”. He is a beautiful but very nervous chinchilla coloured bunny. As soon as he arrived we could see that he had a badly infected eye probably caused from the appalling conditions he was kept in. We did have dental x-rays taken to rule out tooth root problems and thankfully his teeth are great, so a course of antibiotics was all that was needed. Marion shortly died a few weeks after arrival, leaving Geoff alone. Over the next 18 months we tried to bond him to a number of female bunnies but none of them liked him. Geoff did nothing wrong, the females turned on him every time. We have no idea why as he is such a gentle boy. Finally in Autumn 2010 he met Babs, an unneuterd female, yet they settled down together straight away. It is so lovely to see these two cuddled up next to each other, usually in their litter tray! We have no idea how old Geoff is but he is certainly an old man now. However he still sits out in his run in all weathers, even last winter when the nights were -10. To us it seems he thinks that if he leaves his run it will be taken away from him as he lived in such cramped conditions for so many years. We have tried everything to entice him in to his warm hutch in bad weather but Geoff is happy sat out in the cold, so we have to respect his wishes and let him do what he chooses given that he spent so much of his life with no choices.
Betsey is a pretty little bunny who was originally taken into rescue after a relationship break down. She is a nervous girl which is hardly surprising given that she was mistakenly bred with a French lop! Only one baby survived and in all honesty it is a miracle that Betsey survived given that she is a tiny netherland dwarf/ dutch cross. Unfortunately after her baby found a new home she passed away due to E cuniculi, so it is 99% certain that Betsey has also been exposed to this deadly parasite. At the moment Betsey is bright and healthy and definitely has a good appetite, but we do need to watch her carefully for the start of any possible symptoms. Betsey has recently need a dental.
Betsey is currently bonded to Dexter, however Dexter may have a few problems keeping up with her as she likes nothing better than to tear around the large garden run at top speeds!
We noticed Hedgehog and Spud-gun being advertised on some local online free ads before Christmas. They were being sold for £45 with their cage. As time passed the price dropped and dropped, but my main concern was that they were getting older and were still together despite not being castrated. When we found they had been reduced to £5 we decided to get them thinking we would get them castrated and rehome them, even though it’s not what we normally do. When they arrived we got quite a shock. They were long coated and at the age of only 14 weeks they were matted solid. Not only that, they were skin and bone underneath. We couldn’t even tell if they were ready to be neutered as they were so matted it was preventing their testicles from dropping! Spud-gun is now a happy healthy rabbit and is enjoying life with his brother Hedgehog. His only problem is keeping on top of his long coat. He gets terribly distressed during brushing and has been known to collapse during a grooming session. To try to prevent this he is generally a "work in progress" with his coat a we try to keep brushing to a minimum.
We noticed Hedgehog and Spud-gun being advertised on some local online free ads before Christmas. They were being sold for £45 with their cage. As time passed the price dropped and dropped, but my main concern was that they were getting older and were still together despite not being castrated. When we found they had been reduced to £5 we decided to get them thinking we would get them castrated and rehome them, even though it’s not what we normally do. When they arrived we got quite a shock. They were long coated and at the age of only 14 weeks they were matted solid. Not only that, they were skin and bone underneath. We couldn’t even tell if they were ready to be neutered as they were so matted it was preventing their testicles from dropping! It took a few weeks to completely de-mat Hedgehog as he was very difficult to handle and hated being brushed, to the point that he would bite. Over the weeks we observed Hedgehog closely, as it became apparent quite quickly that he had some neurological issues. He is often “abscent” and displays some quite bizarre behaviours. These were made much worse by his high hormone levels. We took him to the vets a few times to try to get him castrated but they were concerned about his failure to thrive and thought it best to leave him longer. As time progressed Hedgehog became more hyper active and hormonal to the point where he couldn’t concentrate to eat or sleep. We became very concerned that he would end up so under weight we would loose him. After discussions with our vet we all decided we had to risk a castration despite his low weight. Thankfully Hedgehog came through it well. He has now settled a bit more and will flop out to sleep and also gets stuck in at eating time. However he still has behavioural problems and also likes to nip especially at grooming time. Hedgehog is definitely a strange little bunny, but we love him all the more because of that
Prudence is a 6 year old dwarf lop. She came to us via a local rabbit rescue as a baby, and was handed to them as she was born with her front teeth misaligned. She had her front teeth removed and can now eat perfectly well as long as her veg is cut up into pieces. In 2008 Prudence developed a cyst in her neck. It was successfully removed but was thought to be attached to her lymph nodes. She has always been a bunny that we have struggled to keep in good condition so we wonder if there is more going on with her than we have so far discovered. During the summer Prudence developed some hind leg weakness. A vet check showed that she is now suffering from arthritis. Despite this, with her medication, Prudence is a lively bunny who loves her partner Bruce and food even more!
Bruce is a 8 year old Dutch cross. Before he came us he had been in a local rescue for a year, along with his brother Wilbert. This is because Bruce has a tendency to bite. He is not an aggressive bunny, he doesn’t growl or launch at you, just likes to give you a good nip when he says hello. Despite this Bruce is a happy and relaxed rabbit who loves sunbathing with Prudence on top of his activity cube. Bruce does have a runny eye, which means he needs regular eye drops and his tear ducts need draining. In 2008 Bruce managed to dislocate his hip and was confined to cage rest for 6 weeks, thankfully he made a full recovery. Despite his age Bruce is in excellent health and loves nothing better than finding a sun spot to flop out in!
Sienna is a 3 year old beautiful rex rabbit. Unfortunately she was for sale at a garden centre when she started to experience fits. Her brother also had fits and sadly died. Sienna was therefore unable to be sold and her future became uncertain. She is now happily living with Robin. She loves all the space and makes great use of it, constantly running and skipping around, she is a joy to watch. So far Sienna has not experience any more fits since her arrival, but we always keep a close eye on her just in case.
Meet the Indoor Rainbow
Rainbow Rabbits © 30/03/2013