Author Topic: Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!  (Read 6337 times)

Offline DorseyClairebelle

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Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!
« on: March 16, 2008, 06:47:43 PM »
I just got back from working at an orphanage in Kenya.  They are trying to become self-sufficient, which is pretty neat, but part of their plan is breeding rabbits and selling them. I know this isn't ideal, but there's nothing to be done, so that's not the topic of discussion. The orphanage basically went out and got 6 rabbits (one of which just had a litter of 6) and have no idea how to take care of them. I need this info so I can share it with the people caring for these poor animals so they can have better lives.  Just so you know, I know absolutely nothing about the care of rabbits.

First off, they're basically being fed grass, and that's it. I have no idea what kind, or if this is a good thing or not. They also get potato peels and some cabbage leaves, or maybe banana peels every once in a while. I'm guessing this isn't an ok diet. Also, there isn't an endless supply of this grass, so there's no conception of what the poor things will be fed once they cut it all down.

Second, they're not getting ENOUGH food-- they are terrified of humans, but still rush up to the door anytime you start to open it because they hope you're bringing food. You can feel their spines really clearly through their coat, and their ribs as well. How much (in weight) approximately does a 4-pound-ish rabbit need to eat every day?

Third, I need a really threatening explanation of all the bad things that can happen to rabbits when their cages aren't cleaned-- like, how sick they can get, or what happens to their feet if they walk around in their own muck for ages-- so that they'll understand that if they don't treat these animals right, they could probably die, and are much less likely to breed, and they'll just be a big loss of money rather than a gain. Basically the hutch is never cleaned, and there's probably a solid inch of waste on the bottom.

Thank you so much in advance, for any responses! They're not meaning to be cruel, they just didn't do the research, but I'm sure if the consequences are outlined clearly enough the rabbits will be taken care of better soon.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2008, 12:13:47 AM by DorseyClairebelle »
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Offline nancycccslp

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Re: Rabbits not being taken care of-- I need info please!!
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2008, 08:17:26 PM »
I'm going out on a limb here; if they are breeding them for food then they don't have much to feed them.  While I sympathize with your concerns, I can't in good conscience correct people who have much, MUCH bigger problems to deal with.  Hay would of course be best; rabbit pellets too, but I doubt there's a big supply of either of those in Kenya.  And yes, they need clean surroundings and clean water, but so do the people.............................
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Offline DorseyClairebelle

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Re: Rabbits not being taken care of-- I need info please!!
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2008, 11:10:59 PM »
They're not breeding them for food, just to sell. Maybe other people will eat them, but not the orphanage; the money from the sale of a rabbit can buy a lot more food than a rabbit itself would be.
While it is an impoverished area, the orphanage and the kids there are doing quite well. It was founded by an investment banker from Nairobi, so it's not like the kids aren't getting three meals a day.  They're all actually in a far better situation than probably the majority of the surrounding residents.
The point is that taking good care of the rabbits would not only be good for the rabbits, but good for the orphanage as well: as I said before, the will not reproduce or gain weight if they are underfed and dirty. So we will have happy rabbits and a slightly wealthier orphanage if Simon can be taught how to properly care for them.
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Offline DorseyClairebelle

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Re: Rabbits not being taken care of-- I need info please!!
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2008, 12:13:15 AM »
PLEASE guys, these animals really need to be helped out!
Owned by Astrid  :duckie: Ro(a)ry :happy7:  Nolan :toothy11:  LuLu :binkybaby: and Scallion :snorting:  and Alba :director:.
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Offline ratzluver

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Re: Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2008, 11:48:16 AM »
Ok this forum isn't very active but try http://www.binkybunny.com/Default.aspx?tabid=36! It is an awsome site. PM me for my username if you want!
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Offline DorseyClairebelle

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Re: Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2008, 01:04:07 PM »
Thanks ratzluver! I registered and posted there under "Diet and Care".
Owned by Astrid  :duckie: Ro(a)ry :happy7:  Nolan :toothy11:  LuLu :binkybaby: and Scallion :snorting:  and Alba :director:.
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Offline ratzluver

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Re: Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2008, 01:30:53 PM »
Ok great!
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Offline Rose

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Re: Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!
« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2008, 04:20:30 AM »
This is such a bad idea all around.  Chickens would do better on the scratch stuff you describe.   But I don't see why they have to have an animal project.  Teaches the wrong things to the kids IMHO. 

The garbage could be used for compost and they could grow plants and learn about cultivation instead.  By the way, the rabbit pellets make good fertilizer if composted properly.   If they are just left there you'll get flies.  If botflies are native there, they can get on humans, too.

These kids would do better making and selling crafts that are indigenous to Kenya.  I remember seeing lots of stuff like that in a UNICEF store.   Inspires creativity too.    Maybe you can contact UNICEF and see if they have suggestions.   If you can find a replacement project maybe they'll abandon this inhumane notion.

Good luck and good on you for caring.
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Offline bloodraven

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Re: Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2008, 11:16:42 AM »
http://www.rabbit.org/care/index.html

There is a great site on rabbit care. Timothy hay is probably available over there, but if not, then I'm sure there is some way to find a natural enough diet for them...

This is such a bad idea all around.  Chickens would do better on the scratch stuff you describe.   But I don't see why they have to have an animal project.  Teaches the wrong things to the kids IMHO. 

The garbage could be used for compost and they could grow plants and learn about cultivation instead.  By the way, the rabbit pellets make good fertilizer if composted properly.   If they are just left there you'll get flies.  If botflies are native there, they can get on humans, too.

These kids would do better making and selling crafts that are indigenous to Kenya.  I remember seeing lots of stuff like that in a UNICEF store.   Inspires creativity too.    Maybe you can contact UNICEF and see if they have suggestions.   If you can find a replacement project maybe they'll abandon this inhumane notion.

Good luck and good on you for caring.

Now, the main reason I am posting. I don't care what happens to me, this HAS to be said...who the hell do you think you are? Where do you get off being so pretentious as to think of the rabbits before the humans. You know who buys those crafts? Pretentious, stuck up rich people who try to make themselves feel better by "helping out" the poor children. People who sound, well, a LOT like you. Now how many of those crafts do you suppose they are going to sell? Enough to raise the money they are trying to raise? Have you ever been hungry? Have you ever been starving? Do you know what its like to live in an orphanage, one that is in a country that is impoverished, one that is having trouble with money? How in the blue hell do you think cultivating plants or selling crafts is going to make more money than selling rabbits?

Look at this way. If they sell the rabbits as pets, maybe by supplying her with the right information, those pets will be taken care of properly. If they get sold and the buyer wants to use them for food, it happens. Over there, thats life. You obviously, have never had the problem of wondering where the next meal was coming from. Anyway, either way, telling her that they should be making crafts is not at all going to help. Giving her the information she is looking for is. Get off your high horse, get the carrot out of your ass, and help instead of tear down.

You seem like the type of person that would see a hungry animal and a starving child side by side and feel bad for the animal. What about the children? I'm sorry if I believe that the lives of rabbits, which are pretty inhumanely treated over here, are worth the lives of these children.

You want to know what's inhumane? Being so stuck up as to not realize the harm you would be doing in trying to help in a situation you could never understand. I've been there. I've been in an orphanage. I've lived on the streets. And because of my experiences, I say...the link at the top of the page will tell you how to take care of the rabbits. I hope they are able to keep the rabbits in good health and breed them. I also hope their project is a success.
   

Offline DorseyClairebelle

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Re: Filthy, starving rabbits-- help me to help them!
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2008, 08:57:54 PM »
Thanks for the link, and the support. Maybe a little harsh, but I agree with the sentiment  :)
Owned by Astrid  :duckie: Ro(a)ry :happy7:  Nolan :toothy11:  LuLu :binkybaby: and Scallion :snorting:  and Alba :director:.
                                                RIP darlings Clairebelle :love10: Guin :cat:  Dorsey :book1:  Alba :director: and Abdi :icon_cat: