The operators of the Rabbit Run-Away Orphanage on the outskirts of Melbourne, Australia are hopping for joy after being nominated for a Pride of Australia Award. Judi and Bryce Inglis, in the Yarra Ranges Hills Township of Olinda have been looking after abandoned, ill and injured rabbits since 2005, and their shelter is one of the most successful rabbit re-homing operations in the Melbourne area. It was the first service devoted to rescuing and finding new homes for pet rabbits in the state of Victoria.
An online report about the orphanage stated:
Many of the rabbits that come to the shelter are found abandoned in homes after their owners move out.
Among the services Rabbit Run-Away provides is finding bond-mates, a bunny dating service they have dubbed the “rabbit run-devous.” It is well known that rabbits are very social animals, and as much as they enjoy human companionship, those who are bonded with another rabbit have the best of both worlds. Rabbit owners are encouraged to bring their long-eared friends to the shelter to see if there is a compatible bunny at the orphanage with whom they can be successfully bonded.
Mr Inglis said the bond between a male and female rabbit was a lifelong one and a pair must be chosen carefully because they were such territorial animals.
He said bonding could take a few days and the bunnies must be monitored to make sure they would not fight.
“Rabbits go through an elaborate courtship,” Mr Inglis said.
“It’s as complex as human dating.”
Mr Inglis said each rabbit at the shelter was de-sexed and most were micro-chipped.
“It can’t be the owners choosing which rabbits go together, it’s ultimately the bunnies’ choice.”
The Pride of Australia Award winners will be announced in October. Should Rabbit Run-Away be chosen, we predict there will be many binkies in Olinda.
Those who would like more information are encouraged to follow these links:
Jumping for joy for Yarra Ranges bunnies
Bunny love at Olinda shelter
Photo courtesy of House Rabbit Society