Please don’t breed or buy while rabbits needing rescuing or adoption die.

Yes, they die - some quite literally as they aren't found rescue space in time, or maybe metaphorically - they die inside - just waiting for their chance of a home where they are loved and cared for as they deserve.

In case you are new to the world of rabbit keeping, or in case you have only just found your way to this place of knowledge and likeminded people, you may not be aware that there is a huge welfare crisis in the UK.

There are too many rabbits and not enough suitable homes for them.

There are too many being produced in large breeding factories to stock pet stores.

There are too many being bred by hapless backyard breeders who see it as a hobby or a bit of fun, or who think they can make a fast buck by flogging them on the free ads or on Facebook.

There are too many being bred by club or ‘fancy’ members who want to ‘improve their line’ or win at competition, discarding or ‘getting rid’ of the little ones that don’t make the grade.

And what happens to them all?

Rescues and private individuals who work in welfare arenas do their very best to try and help. They will try and educate, improve the welfare for the ones who are uncared for, they will try and neuter/vaccinate and rehome responsibly the ones who got lucky and found a rescue space. They will try and build networks of people who will attempt to do all they can to save as many as can be helped.

So why would you buy?

Well we can all be forgiven for buying our first bunny can't we, if we didn’t know that there was a problem. But when we have learned more from family, friends, fellow bunny owners, the media and from rescue and veterinary workers about the tens of thousands of rabbits who are sitting waiting for a good and caring home, wouldn’t it be nice if your next bunny came from a rescue or a private individual who can no longer care for their rabbit?

Rabbits can sit in rescue for months if not years because they aren’t the right colour, or the right shape, or the right age. But unless more people adopt and give these deserving bunnies a chance, the rescues cannot help anyone else. Many rescues can help fewer rabbits than ever before as the demand on space increases but the desire to adopt doesn’t keep up. Most rescues now have log jams and are facing terrible decisions about euthanising those who are costing huge amounts in vets fees, or those who are becoming old and frail because they have never been chosen.

More are being bred, but still fewer homes that want to adopt, or if they do, that don’t want to work with the rescue to ensure that they are actually offering what any bunny, be it rescued or bought, needs.

This last 48 hours alone I have been asked to help with 7 rabbits. I don’t have a website and am very low key but still I get requests daily to take in bunnies. I am lucky as my rescue colleagues up and down the country have even higher numbers of requests and also get bunnies dumped on their doorsteps.

What can you do to help? You can help! Even if you can’t adopt a bunny…………….you can spread the word.

Don’t breed or buy when rabbits in need……………in need of rescue space, or in need of adoption die.