Thursday, March 26, 2009

Two Boxes of Bunnies

I went to the local animal shelter this past Monday, to pick up a bunny to bring into the rescue agency with which I volunteer, Brambley Hedge Rabbit Rescue. BHRR is a non-profit organization which rescues, shelters, rehabilitates and finds homes for unwanted domestic rabbits. I have been a volunteer since January 2001 and my affiliation with them continues to be one of the best experiences of my entire life. We get the majority of our shelter bunnies from other agencies, where owners surrender them and we take the ones which may not be immediately adoptable and require some additional care. The rabbit I picked up that day is a white bunny with long hair, that was labeled as difficult to handle and cage protective. I picked it up and was able to carry it around with no problem. I think he will be okay.

However when I was picking that bunny up, two women were there filling out paperwork for surrendering some rabbits. I overheard one of them say that they just found a couple of boxes of rabbits on their property. Really? That has never happened to me. One of the shelter workers walked by with a large, beat-up looking cardboard box and I was able to look inside. More than a dozen young rabbits, all sizes and colors, were just piled on top of one another, looking around in fear and confusion. They bumped and jostled into each other, struggling to maintain balance and get air. I learned later that there was one small rabbit on the bottom of the pile that was overheated from the car ride and crushed from the weight of the other rabbits on top of him, and was near death. Luckily he survived.

I've been in animal rescue long enough to have a clear understanding of the level of evil in this world, and the capacity of humans to inflict misery and cruelty on innocent and defenseless animals seems limitless. What kind of vile, twisted excuse for a person first of all allows the uncontrolled breeding of rabbits, and then when the problem gets to be too much for their walnut-sized brains to deal with, they merely package their problem up in a box like so much trash, dump it on someone else's doorstep and then walk away with complete impunity. Where is the justice in the world when people can commit acts of such swinish ignorance (apologies to the swine of the world) and are not required to take any responsibility for their stupidity?

Two boxes of bunnies. 30 rabbits. 30 beautiful little faces. 60 wide, trusting eyes. 60 ears which swivel to hear any sound. 30 wiggling noses and 30 cottonball-tails. 30 innocent lives brought into this world by some moron too stupid to be even dimly aware of the consequences of their actions. 30 innocent lives thrown into an already overworked, stretched-beyond-capacity system. 30 very uncertain futures. Still, organizations like BHRR continue to do everything they can to help stem the tide of grotesque ignorance and inhumanity which seems to get worse all the time. Sometimes I get so discouraged. Until I realize we are there to help in any way we can.

The bunnies need us.

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