EFA: Etsy For Animals Etsy For Animals: Rabbit and Guinea Pig Welfare in Rugby, England

Etsy for Animals (EFA) aka Artists Helping Animals,

is a team of independent artists, craftspeople,

vintage sellers and craft suppliers on Etsy.com

who are dedicated to providing charitable relief to animals

by donating a portion of the profits from their shops

to an animal charity of their choosing,

and/or to EFA's featured Charity of the Month.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Rabbit and Guinea Pig Welfare in Rugby, England

Rabbit and Guinea Pig Welfare in Rugby, England
EFA Charity of the Month for June
by Annette of http://thedragonhouseofyuen.etsy.com

This month my chosen charity The Rabbit and Guinea Pig Welfare
http://www.rngp.org/index.shtml in Rugby, Enlgand, was picked. Tracy Wadsworth runs the rescue and this is where I adopted Wesley from in November 2007.

Tracy took over this rescue when the original founder moved away. It concentrates on rescuing and rehoming rabbits and guinea pigs. Tracy said that at present she has lots of rabbits and guinea pigs still waiting for their forever homes. Currently there are no females left, only mature males and she would greatly love to find homes for them so that they may have a loving and happy life for the rest of their remaining years. The benefit of getting an older rabbit is that you give a forever home to a furry who would normally be overlooked and they have reached their full size. Rabbits live up to 14 years in properly cared for environments.

Tracy would like to encourage anyone with a single rabbit to consider adopting a bonded pair from her.  Tracy will assess your rabbit for suitability with the ones in her rescue and bonding can also be done. This would be an ideal time to add two boys to your household and would free up two valuable places in the rescue to take in more needy rabbits. All single rabbits are adopted out a dedicated house-rabbits only. Any rabbits that are kept outdoors in legally sized quarters are adopted out as bonded pairs or bonded trios, but it is psychologically more preferable to house your rabbit indoors as they benefit tremendously from companionship and contact.

All rabbits love to play with toys that can be picked up and thrown around. Here is Andrew taking his toy with him!! Tracy has a very informative page all about rabbits
http://www.rngp.org/index-rabbit-facts.shtml that is a must read for any prospective rabbit owner and current owner.

Rabbits are not suitable for children and parents are often turned away from rescues because they want to get their child a 'pet' and see rabbits as 'the easy option'. Nothing could be further from the truth as they are very demanding, sometimes destructive beings and need to be accommodated suitably with enough daily attention and stimulation.

Baby rabbits reach full size within six months to a year and some rabbits can reach the size of small dogs. Unfortunately baby rabbits are usually always impulse purchases from pet shops. By this time many people have already abandoned them due to the lack of interest once the novelty wears off and the animal increases in size and decreases in cuteness. Hard work, expensive vet bills and general lack of interest mean rescues are bursting at the seams with ‘impulse purchase rabbits’ so the chances of adopting a baby are very slim.

When you are assessed for suitability to adopt a rabbit that has already had a traumatic start to life, sometimes with great psychological problems, then you have taken the first step to giving a very special being a second chance and also helping another rabbit get a place at the rescue centre.

It is best not go to the rescue with preconceived notions about what breed, colour, age and even sex of rabbit you want - in many cases you will meet the right rabbit – or rabbits - just waiting there for you!

All rabbits are great house bunnies and the rabbits at RNGP are neutered and spayed. For does this is life saving necessity as over 80% of unspayed does will die of uterine cancer. Rabbits are very inquisitive and mark their territories. They have a scent gland under their chin and rub it on everything they can reach. In most cases you will know that your rabbit loves - and owns you - because he will 'chin' you when you are at his level on the floor!

Running a rescue is hard and never ending work. There is always a demand for supplies that are used regularly such as hay, pellets, fresh vegetables and kitty litter supplies as well as donations of items and monetary donations (irrespective of size - any amount is GREATLY accepted). Tracy gladly welcomes  donations of any amount by paypal.

When rabbits and guinea pigs are adopted out there is an adoption fee to pay which covers their neutering or spaying costs and vaccinations and shows your committment to giving this small being a permanent place in your life. If you can afford it any amount extra is very welcome.

Tracy has many guinea pigs waiting for their forever homes and like the rabbits, they are also all males just now.

Guinea pigs and rabbits should never be kept together. They have different dietary habits and rabbits usually become dominant and aggressive resulting in the piggie being bullied and injured. But more importantly is the fact that rabbits carry Bordetella bronchiseptica commonly found in their respiratory tract (but which rarely causes them respiratory infections).  It happens to be the most common bacterial respiratory infection in guinea pigs and because of this rabbits which are not infected themselves are able to infect guinea pigs with always fatal consequences. The piggies die of pneumonia or an upper respiratory infection. There is a very informative page on the RNGP website about guinea pig care.

If you have either piggies or rabbits then you can buy mail order treats from online shop Pampered Piggies run by Sally. Please quote RNGP so that Tracy may receive 10% from your orders.
http://www.pamperedpiggies.co.uk/ To receive 10% off as a new customer first order, and with 10% also going to Tracy, please contact Tracy to get the correct discount code. I only buy my treats from Sally, I like her products and service and she is a lovely person helping the animals.

Maybe you don't have a suitable home at present to take in a lifelong companion but have some spare time to donate? RNGP would gladly welcome assistance.  Worried that volunteering at a rescue would break your heart? .... then please read this article ....

I donate 10% from the sale of my one of a kind handmade rabbit bags to RNGP as well as 10% from my shop sales this month.

I want to thank the Etsy For Animals team for supporting and helping the rabbits and cavies at the RNGP. I know that your support is invaluable to Tracy and this will be a great boost to her rescue in this difficult time.


  1. What a wonderful blog post ~ thank you for sharing this ~ I was lucky enough to be able to donate to this great charity this month and after reading the post feel even more proud that I could help in my own little way :)


  2. thanks Lily, and thanks Haley for taking the time to post this.
    I spoke to Tracy today and she is delighted to have received some funds already and she is also delighted that many people are chatting about RNGP and efa in the rabbit forums.
    Thanks to everyone at efa - spreading hope and happiness to every being!

  3. Great charity choice Annette and EFA, good luck to all of the bunnies out there :)

  4. I am SO happy to be supporting this wonderful cause, suggested by a talented, giving, great EFA member!!!!!:0) Beautiful photos of adorable animals!! Thank you to all who speak for the voiceless and help our animal friends!!!!

  5. Very informative article and I sure hope we are able to make a substantial contribution through our combined efforts this month,Thanks for all your hard work Annette, Faeriegood


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