Pet rabbits turned loose in parks often fall victim to predators or heat

Local News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Pet rabbits are being dumped in parks, at school campuses and along golf courses. It’s a problem we’ve reported before, but now it’s happening again.

An organization called Bunnies Matter Rescue tells us they see it happening every day.

“We are swamped,” said Sandy Hawkins.

The organization notices the trend every year after Easter.

“They don’t realize … bunnies are exotic animals,” Hawkins said. “They live between 10-12 years so they are a lifetime commitment.”

While many may know of Desert Shores as a beautiful neighborhood with water, grass and landscape, Bunnies Matter says the area is now one of many locations in the valley where people end up dropping off unwanted pet rabbits.

“Unfortunately, right now we are being inundated with surrenders. People that have bunnies currently in their possesion and for whatever reason they can’t take care of them,” Hawkins said.

Over the past several years, 8NewsNow has reported rabbits being dumped at places like Floyd Lamb Park and CSN’s West Charleston Campus near the mental health facility.

A Bunnies Matter volunteer recently trapped rabbits at Harold Brinley Middle School, near Jones Boulevard and Smoke Ranch Road in the northwest valley.

“We took in the mom,” Hawkins said. “She had nine babies. One was stillborn. And now we’ve been taking care of the mom and the babies.”

While grassy areas with a water source seem like a place rabbits will survive, extreme heat can harm them, too.

“You think you are setting them free but they are going to become food for a hawk or coyote,” Hawkins said.

A better solution? Contact the rescue group by email at LasVegasBunniesMatter@gmail.com or by texting (562) 373-5376. More information is available on their website.

Bunnies Matter Rescue hopes to work with other animal shelters in the future to take in more rabbits. This Saturday, the group is having a fundraiser for spay and neuter services, supplies and medicines.

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