On July 29th GA HRS was asked to assist Gwinnett County Animal Control in the assessment of over 170 rabbits that were at a property in Grayson, GA. The owner and operator of Pet Parties Plus was using the animals for entertainment at children’s parties and as a petting zoo, and the bunnies were sick and living in filthy conditions. Thursday the rabbits were confiscated and were taken to Gwinnett County Animal Control where they were triaged and can stay for one week. GA HRS is accepting 50 of these bunnies and is working to find rescues and foster homes for as many as possible. Bunnies started receiving medical treatment immediately. All are receiving antibiotics and will be spayed and neutered in the next few days.
GA HRS and Dr. Colby will be working with Gwinnett AC to get these rabbits spayed and neutered, medicated, and rehomed. Resources are limited. Space is an issue. Where do you properly house 200 rabbits? How do you find enough volunteers to care for them each day? How do you find good homes for that many? Who pays for the supplies and medical treatments?
We will do everything we can with your help. Donations are much needed. People willing to transport will be needed. Donations of towels (no holes please) hidey boxes, exercise pens, large crates, large cat litter boxes, bales of timothy hay, food and water bowls, laundry soap, white vinegar, 33 gallon drawstring trash bags, and newspapers will be needed. Funds will be needed to purchase medications and provide food and fresh greens.
To make a donation, please click here: http://houserabbitga.com/donation/ and note this is for the Gwinnett County Bunnies and these funds will be designated specifically for this rescue effort. To donate supplies, please call the shelter at 678-653-7175 to arrange a drop off time. Thank you for supporting our efforts to save these bunnies!
More details on the Gwinnett County rabbits:
While on the property Thursday, we noticed one little dutch rabbit running loose that was reported to be sick, and we were able to take it with us. Dr. Colby of Windward Animal Hospital, was on site with us to help assess the rabbits and the situation, and he did an exam on the bunny while there. ZuZu was diagnosed with syphilis, an eye infection and an upper respiratory infection. The syphilis is so bad in the genital area that we cannot determine the sex yet. ZuZu is now at our shelter, treatment started immediately and he/she is happily munching away on dried kudzu and hay in a nice clean pen.
When on the property, we were told not to take photographs of the hot, small, crowded, dirty cages the rabbits and guinea pigs are being kept in. Edie counted 22 rabbits in one cage. Males and females were kept together, none of them altered. There were at least 2 litters of small babies that we could see. Most had dirty water in dirty bowls. Any hay in the cages was completely soiled with urine. The cages had wire bottoms with poop underneath and there were flies all over. Some bunnies were housed with guinea pigs, and one was with chickens, and we know that living with chickens causes salmonella poisoning in rabbits. The bunnies were so hot! The temp was in the mid 90’s, even in the shade.
The individuals who patronized her business probably had no idea of the horrible conditions these animals live in. They only saw the cute healthy ones outside of their cages, or they weren’t brave enough to report her if they did see animals in poor living conditions. Gwinnett Animal control said that the owner was not violating any county laws. Department of Agriculture said that she was not licensed for what she was doing and was in violation of their requirements.
One thing that’s so disturbing and sad to us is that it’s not against the law to house bunnies in these horrible conditions and the sick ones are not being vetted. How that can be considered humane and not a violation is beyond our comprehension.
We do have one other rabbit at our shelter that we took in last week from this same property – her name is Serafina. She was put in a cage at the road in 90 plus degree temps, sick, and had a sign on her that said Free Rabbit. After 3 days a volunteer took her out of the cage and brought her to us. She was falling over, and about to have a heat stroke. Serafina had developed head tilt – her center of balance is way off and her head tilted so far to one side that she couldn’t sit up straight and she started rolling with dizziness. She needs assistance to eat and drink. We started medications and fluids and lots of TLC and she’s doing better, but is still tilted. She has a beautiful sweet spirit for what she’s been through!