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Rescues and breeders is the focus of this weeks ABC blogging post.
Breeding rabbits often sets you at odds with the local rabbit rescue groups. I can understand their point of view… they don’t want people
- taking away their business (selling rabbits)
- bringing rabbits into the world that they might have to care for.
Most rescues, it is next to impossible to dialogue with them. They have their mantra, and their classification of what they think breeders are, and really aren’t interested in changing their minds. Occasionally though, you meet a rescue that goes against the grain. These are a joy to work with.
Why would a breeder connect with a rescue?
It’s an odd thing you know. Why would a breeder, knowing that rescues tend to be very anti-breeder, want to connect with one? Well, for the simple fact that sometimes people contact me wanting me to take in their rabbit. After I breed rabbits so that must mean that I would happily take in their rabbit. Um.. NO. I cannot take in every rabbit. 🙂
Knowing who is out there and how they handle intake, rehoming, bonding rabbits, and so forth helps me know who to direct people to.
Closed Minded Rescues
I have to admit, I used to take their attitudes to heart but I stopped doing that once I realized how unreasonable they were being. Trying to engage in conversation quickly becomes “You are a breeder, how can you possibly care about your animals?”
Some of the things these types of rescues might do.
- Email you about a rabbit you have for sale berating you for selling an older animal just because she was past her prime. I now just say, make me an offer over X amount and give her a home then if it matters so much to you. You know what? They never follow through.
- Send a person out to scope out your place. Had this happen once. People don’t buy rabbits on-site any more. I don’t need to deal with people criticizing my life choices over a little rabbit.
- Buying a rabbit from you for a low price, lying because they told me their child can’t afford an expensive rabbit. Then turning around and selling it as an animal rescued from a breeder for a MUCH higher price.
- Sell sick animals. This drives me crazy to be honest. Selling rabbits with chronic illness to pet people who generally have no clue how to handle a chronically ill rabbit. I do not understand why they do that. You have access to a good vet, put the sick ones to sleep leaving you room to rehome healthy, good-natured rabbits.
I have dealt with two reputable rescues over the years. Two out of 10 that I have contacted. Rabbit rescues tend not to last long most lasting two years max. We do have one in the area that has been around for six years, I am not sure if they are still active as I haven’t seen them post on kijiji lately.
Rabbit rescues often end up being overloaded on sick rabbits fairly quickly so it’s often too expensive for them to stay in business long.
BUT the reputable rescues, they know how to work with breeders.
- Able to express concerns without bashing the breeder. For instance, one rescue pointed out the research on pro-active spay/neuter and urged me to change my position. Another that pointed out the new way to deal with malocclusion.
- Commends the breeder for what they are doing well. For instance I have a strong health policy.
- Don’t sell rabbits that are ill. They make sure to vet the rabbits that come under their care well. This way the new owner knows precisely the needs of their new animal.
- Willing to work with a breeder when there is need to do so, because frankly sometimes they have resources a breeder might not. For instance: occasionally a momma rabbit will over-clean a baby and they’ll end up missing a foot, a tail, an ear. One time a baby slipped past my scrutiny (YES, I know.. horrible!!!). She had a missing foot, she got around really well, nicely tempered, rock solid little animal who needed accommodations I couldn’t manage. They happily helped me find the perfect home for her. Advising me and the new owner about potential future care.
It’s a tenuous relationship between rescues and breeders. One MUST proceed cautiously. Could a rescue find me if they really wanted to? Sure. Ask around my hometown for the bunny lady and someone will be able to point my way. BUT I don’t let people on my property who inquire about rabbits. When dealing with a rescue, I don’t give my address. I don’t want PETA types on my property as they can do some rather stupid things.
At the same time, I do want them to see responsible breeders in action. I want them to know what to look for even if we don’t agree on everything. My desire is the poor quality rescues learn to consider what they are doing when they rehome a rabbit in less than stellar condition. I want to commend the good rescues for what they do well. Helping bunnies find new forever homes. Encouraging breeders in what they are doing well. And hopefully a better middle ground can be found. Less us vs them mentality. That’s the goal! 🙂
Others in this Series
- American Fuzzy Lop.
- Baby Bunnies.
- Culling well.
- Discussing Death.
- Errors in Judgement.
- Feeding Rabbits.
- The G’s of rabbits.
- Holland Lops.
- Interesting facts about rabbits.
- The Joy of Bunnies.
- Choosing Rabbits to Keep.
- Leaping Lagomorphs.
- The Scoop on Poop.
- Not Wanted Rabbits.
- Over the Hill.
- Educating Pet Rabbit Buyers.
- Rescues and Breeders.
Letter R Link Up
Each week we will be linking up with the hosts of Blogging Through the Alphabet. Please visit some of these other blogs to get things like book lists, vegan recipes, and wonderful places to visit, just to name the topics I can think of off the top of my head.