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Last Post by mocha200 at 8/15/2012 3:01 PM (29 Replies)
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User is Offline mocha200
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6/25/2012 12:16 PM

So at the camp my sister works at and the camp I go to, they have a petting zoo every year for the kids. Last year they got two bunnies and one died from poopy butt ( I think because of a bad diet) and the other one came home with me at the end of the summer so he wouldn't be eaten. I fostered him for a rabbit shelter until they found another foster home closer by. He ended up being adopted out to a very nice family and he has free range of their house at times!

This year they got two more baby bunnies. My sister says they both seem healthier then the one who died last year, so that's good. They only feed them hay besides some clover and grass they give them when they feel like it. They do not give them pellets though. Last year they didn't give them pellets either and I think that may have been part of the problem. When I went to camp last year I gave them a 10lb bag oxbow alfalfa pellets, some toys and an old hidey hut that my bunnies didn't play.

Anyway, my question is, what should I give the bunnies this year? I am planing on getting them some alfalfa pellets again but what else? The living situation isn't the best as they are in a hutch with wire on the ground but I would like to make them as healthy and happy as possible. I am not sure what they will do at the end of the summer. I am not allowed to take them unless I give them to a shelter right away and I am not sure if the shelters around where I live are pro house rabbits. 

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User is Offline Roberta
Wanneroo, Western Australia
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6/25/2012 3:44 PM
Firstly, Tell the idiots running this camp that animals are not a disposable commodity and to stop bringing in little furries babies for a short term event if they are not prepared to make arrangements for safe permanent rehoming at the end of the event.
Take some rabbit fact sheets and care guide with you and give it to the camp organisers. Point out what they are doing is cruel and inhumane and should stop. Politely of course, we are trying to educate not alienate.
Check around before you go and see if you can line up a home before you leave. Good on you for looking out for these little ones...
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User is Offline LittlePuffyTail
New Brunswick, Canada
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6/26/2012 1:36 AM
What kind of camp is this? I remember your ordeal with the foster bunny last year. My first concern is that they may be male and female. That would create even more problems.

I would just be polite but firm. Tell them you are a very experienced rabbit lover and that you don't want to see a repeat of last year. Tell them the proper diet for a baby bunny (if you can bring them the stuff your talking about, then great) and that the wire floors can cause painful infections on their feet. Ask what their plans are with the babies at the end of the summer.
Proud to be a Bunny Hugger and a voice for the voiceless
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User is Offline mocha200
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6/26/2012 4:34 AM
It is a Christian camp that has a program for ranch kids. They know I know a lot on rabbits and they know that Sebastian ( the bunny last year) ended up being a house rabbit. They are open to me doing changes in the cage and buying him pellets, they are pretty laid back about that. They asked me to check the rabbits sex's when I come but they might still be to little to tell. They only have one hutch so if they are boy and girl they won't be able to be separated (and they may not want them to) so if they are little enough, will they not "mate" before the end of the summer?
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User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
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6/26/2012 4:37 AM
Can you suggest that they do not have rabbits at all?

User is Offline Roberta
Wanneroo, Western Australia
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6/26/2012 4:45 AM
Sweet Goddess this just keeps getting worse........Hopefully they will be young enough not to breed but not so young they should not be away from their Mother....I am so glad the camp organizers are happy for YOU to buy the rabbit food etc... Obviously it was too big a task for the responsible adults running the camp to take on, I mean actually caring and feeding small animals is obviously just too much for them... And parents trust these idiots with their children for a whole Summer. I wouldn't let them watch a goldfish for 5 minutes.
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User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
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6/26/2012 5:07 AM
I think it will be better to offer some suggestions to help Mocha help the rabbits and perhaps persuade the camp not to have rabbits next year.

Mocha, have you ever spoken to the camp manager and perhaps suggest that having the rabbits is probably not the best idea and that as Christians you have a responsibility to be good stewards to animals. Maybe if you suggest it in this way and maybe offer some alternatives to have any animals at the camp it might be good. Maybe some other activities to help the camp kids learn how to care for animals - maybe suggest they have a wildlife rehabber come in with some wildlife and discuss something applicable to the wildlife in the area. Maybe have some rescues come in and bring some of their animals and talk about pet care....

User is Offline mocha200
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6/26/2012 5:52 AM
The program is horses and the person in charge of them is not the head of the camp. You learn about them and how to train and ride. They are very good at that. But they also have a petting zoo with cats, a goat, a baby cow, and rabbits. I have no idea on how to go about asking them to not have rabbits next year. I would feel totally awkward and pushy! I don't know how to go about doing this? Also for these rabbits should I ask if I can rehome them at the end of the summer? Otherwise they give them to any camper who wants them or..... you know....
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User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
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6/26/2012 6:05 AM
I understand Mocha, I think it would be difficult for me at your age as well. It probably would be better coming from an adult.

Surely they must make arrangements for the animals...the other animals don't go home with the campers do they? The goat and the baby cow.

I think you need to ask your parents about helping find the rabbits homes since that could make you responsible to take them home and I'm not sure if your parents would want that.

User is Offline mocha200
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6/26/2012 7:40 AM
They get different animals every year, so I thnk in stead of a cow they are getting some sort of baby lama or something. Last year though the cow went back to thepplace they got it from and the cats and goat stay there, they have had them for years.

My mom said that she does not want the bunnies staying at our house but if I find a good animal shelter I could drop them off there immediately. I am not sure if the shelter I gave the bunny to last year would meet me half way because other wise its like a 6 hour drive. I am going to ask some people on the WHRS to see if they know of any good rabbit shelters near me (ones that would adopt out to house rabbit people) or if any of them are will to help me in any way.
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User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
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6/26/2012 7:45 AM
That might be a good idea Mocha - perhaps WHRS can talk with the person in charge of the rabbits as well and see if they can convince them in the future not to do this that way you will not be put in any position that you don't feel comfortable with.

User is Offline Roberta
Wanneroo, Western Australia
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6/26/2012 2:30 PM
Is it possible to bring this up with some of the parents so that you get some support. Once again gently so as to educate not alienate. If enough parents show concern that they are keeping and bringing in animals without preparation to maintain their health and well being you may be able to stop them doing this or atleast ensuring that they have the correct food and a proper home at the end of the camp.
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User is Offline RexEnabler
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6/27/2012 7:53 AM
Would it be possible to maybe have someone from the WHRS do a presentation for the kids about proper care for pet rabbits? Make it educational for everyone (rather than a "poke the bunny" experience for the kids with the petting area) and maybe even use it as a chance to find homes for these bunns after camp ends if a kid is more prepared to have one of their own or even find homes for other rabbits in need (if there are kids who are properly prepared)...just thinking...

User is Offline mocha200
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6/27/2012 11:36 AM
I forgot to add the camp is in Upper MI. which is 5 hours away from Madison (where the WHRS people are)
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User is Offline Roberta
Wanneroo, Western Australia
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6/27/2012 3:15 PM
I am pretty sure there is a Bunny Rescue up there. Maybe you could contact them and they could come to the camp and do a presentation as RexEnabler suggested.
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User is Offline mocha200
4507 posts Send Private Message
6/27/2012 3:26 PM
i really dont think they would. these kids signed up to learn about horses, not rabbits. the camp has already started and they have the schedule. If you know of a rabbit shelter up there PLEASE let me know so i can maybe bring those bunnies there at the end of the summer.
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User is Offline Roberta
Wanneroo, Western Australia
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6/27/2012 3:38 PM
OK, Lets start looking... Whats the nearest town or community, there may not be a shelter in the immediate vicinity but there may be a fosterer, possibly even a WHRS one.
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User is Offline tobyluv
South Carolina
589 posts Send Private Message
6/28/2012 10:13 AM
Great Lakes Rabbit Sanctuary is in Whittaker, MI. Is that anywhere near the camp? That's the only rescue I'm familar with in Michigan.

User is Offline Roberta
Wanneroo, Western Australia
3069 posts Send Private Message
6/28/2012 5:32 PM
Good place to start, even if they are not nearby they may still have foster homes in the general area.
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User is Offline mocha200
4507 posts Send Private Message
6/30/2012 6:25 AM
Are they in Upper MI thOugh? I am in the town of Rhinelander WI and my camp is knd of by cristal falls UP MI.
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