“We don’t want people to abandon their pets here, but we don’t want them dumped in the park, either.”
Krista Shaw, BC SPCA’s Richmond Animal Centre’s manager, had mixed emotions after chasing a vehicle through the shelter’s parking lot last Friday.
Shaw had just witnessed the driver of the “brand new Mercedes” dropping off four boxes on a bench in the parking lot of the No. 5 Road centre, before the vehicle “peeled away” as she shouted after it.
In the boxes were 12 baby bunnies, not more than five to six weeks old.
“I witnessed the entire thing…Thankfully I got their licence plate so we are on it,” Shaw told the Richmond News.
“They were in OK condition. There was a note left for us. They told us they had gotten what they thought were three female rabbits, but it ‘turns out one of them was a male and now we have 12. The male is no longer with us.’
“At the beginning of January, the exact same thing happened, eight rabbits were left in the parking lot; they looked very similar, with very similar handwriting on that note as well.”
Shaw said they can’t be absolutely certain it was the same people, but the “circumstances are very, very similar.”
BC SPCA investigating the bunny dump
She reiterated that the abandonment of animals is a criminal offence and that the BC SPCA is “actively investigating this.”
Shaw said they’ve had to rearrange the centre to accommodate their new tenants and is now appealing for fresh, sealed supplies for their unexpected visitors.
“We need lots of rabbit supplies, such as hay and food but we are still dealing with RHD (rabbit hemorrhagic disease) so it needs to be packaged and unopened, purchased from a store,” she added, noting that the likes of packaged alfalfa hay, fresh uncut vegetables and greens are best, but no iceberg lettuce.
And if people find themselves in a similar situation as the ones who “dumped and dashed” last week, just reach out to the BC SPCA first.
“It is an offence (to abandon animals), but I don’t want to scare people…just give us a call and we will work with you. We don’t want them being dumped in a park.
“And even if you think (your new rabbits) are the same sex, get them spayed or neutered, get them up to date on their vaccines, get them microchipped.”