We are entering 2016 with a newly expanded sanctuary in South Surrey, a big new shed, and a rescue project about to wrap!
We now have space for all the rabbits at our Richmond shelter who don’t get adopted, and thankfully there are hardly any more loose outside. We also have space for storage. HUGE thanks (as always) to Joe Stefanich for his construction assistance and to Kathy Lucier for so ably managing all the volunteers and rabbit care.
We’re extremely happy with the sanctuary template implemented at the South Surrey location. The sanctuary set-up is proving to be as low maintenance as we hoped, and it was built within our very tight budget.
Roughly 100 rabbits will ultimately reside there living a happy, stress-free life in a safe, natural environment. At the moment we have 80 rabbits and more to come in the spring. The space includes one barn area and a large, now-covered outside area divided into temporary sections until the rest of the Richmond rabbits are added in the spring.
Altogether Rabbitats has taken in and rehomed over 200 rescued rabbits over the last two years, some in the main sanctuary, some in smaller, self-sustaining colonies elsewhere, and yet others in private homes.
Thank you to all who helped in 2015, we couldn’t have done this without you!
We have a number of options for the future based on the success of this project, so please stay with us!
Rabbitats volunteers have been busy this past summer putting a roof on our outdoor South Surrey sanctuary. The rabbits had their warm and dry houses (courtesy of ‘Uncle Joe’ Stefanich) but now the volunteers will be more comfortable, too. Thanks so much to Dawn Hurwitz for buying us the roofing sheets, Uncle Joe and Robb for heading up the project, and Kathy and Ed Lucier, Hans, Dave and Jeremy for lending a hand!
Rabbitats will be at the huge Pet Lover Show in Abbotsford, BC, February 15th and 16th with a full `rabbitat`set up and a load of cute bunnies. We will also be selling items including some sweet rabbit furniture and other pet supplies as well as cards, jewellery and treats.
The Pet Lover Show is the biggest and likely the only major pet trade show in the Vancouver area this year. The 2013 event was jam-packed and this year its expanded to twice the space with even more animal attractions.
We are looking for volunteers including rabbit wranglers to keep an eye on the bunnies and people to man our tables. (Unfortunately people can’t bring their personal pets).
Please respond to email@example.com.
We’ve been working hard and long on helping the Precious Life Animal Sanctuary find a way to repair their netting (a difficult task especially when travel involves a border, a bridge and a ferry making it a 4 to 5 hour trek). Many thanks to those who offered their assistance for our scheduled work parties, but we didn’t need the help after all. We had an AMAZING offer from a United States Navy and Marine volunteer platoon (30 soldiers!!) out of Bangor, WA, to come out and pitch in!
However, during our advance trips down there it was determined that the existing netting is at the end of its lifespan, it needs to be replaced, not repaired, including ideally much of the support structure, an expensive undertaking. We have researched and found a stronger, more resistant and less expensive style of netting (thanks so much to Kit and Pete at the Rivers Wish sanctuary in Spokane and Gina Matthews here in Richmond, BC, for the great tips!). This brings the costs down, but we have a ways to go.
Even with funding in place, the netting required special-order materials that could not arrive before the cold weather. We won’t send our garage bunnies outside without a chance to acclimatize, and PLAS won’t take the rabbit village and its inhabitants without the netting in place, so we’ll use the time to do additional fundraising, approach sponsors and make capital grant applications.
We will be asking the Ministry for a permit to continue holding the rabbits at their current location in the Auto Mall garage, and/or at one of the other holding areas offered to us, until the PLAS netting issue is resolved, or the government gives us permission to relocate them elsewhere.
If anybody can donate to the sanctuary’s Broken Netting Fund, thank you, the link is here:
As we type, our advance crew (Gail, Scott and Josh) are gathering in Sequim, Washington at the Precious Life Animal Sanctuary to clear the area for the Rabbit Village with a bobcat and assess the netting requirements.
A sizeable work crew is needed next weekend — October 26/27 — save the date(s)! Another crew will be needed two weeks later for the final step.
After much consultation and research, we’ve decided the netting needs to be replaced, not repaired, and we’re working to make that happen. Rabbitats and the Richmond Auto Mall is spearheading the project hopefully with fundraising assistance from the supporters of the UVic and Seattle bunnies currently housed there.
The project is now expected to cost closer to $4000, substantially higher than our initial estimate, but the new netting will last for many years and it will be far easier to maintain than the current netting.
Thanks so much to Kit at River’s Wish for all the advice!
This flyer was directed at the staff at the Richmond Auto Mall, but anybody who lives or works in the Vancouver/Richmond area or elsewhere on the Lower Mainland of BC should take note and help out too if you can!