Protect Pet Rabbits From Malnutrition, Drowning, and Abuse

Target: Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the UK House of Commons

Goal: Support inclusion of rabbits into animal welfare standards.

They have been abandoned, with broken bones and bloodstains, in parks and gardens. Many remain alone in unkempt and dirty lodging, showing signs of severe neglect. Some are purchased only to be fed to snakes. And an unfortunate but rising few are trapped in cages and thrown into ponds and lakes, where they spend the last moments of their lives gasping for air and desperate for escape. These horrifying fates often await the pet rabbit in the United Kingdom (UK). During the pandemic, searches for pet rabbits doubled. Unfortunately, so did the rate of distressed rabbits, which numbered over 4,700 in just the past year.

Rabbits need a tremendous amount of care and should only be taken in by individuals with the resources and knowledge to give them a good home. Many people have learned this lesson the hard way after making an impulse purchase because the animals looked cute and cuddly. Once these would-be pet parents realize how much upkeep a rabbit requires, too often they neglect or abandon their pets.

Despite how much these animals suffer, they still receive little to no legal protection in the United Kingdom when compared to other pet animals like dogs and cats. A proposal that has not seen much movement since it was introduced in 2021 would change this imbalance. The proposal would amend the UK’s Animal Welfare Act to afford more protections to rabbits, such as a ban on a detrimental type of food, an expansion of hutch sizes, and new guidelines on caretaking.

Sign the petition below to urge Parliament to take up this important set of safeguards.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Sir Hoyle,

Over 4,700 rabbits were reported in distress last year, and less than half of these animals were successfully rehomed. On New Year’s Day, ten rabbits (including young animals) were found abandoned in Kent. And a troubling number of rabbit cages—with terrified animals still trapped inside—have been found in waterways. All of these tragedies demonstrate that the one million rabbits kept as pets in the United Kingdom are in desperate need of protections in line with the safeguards enjoyed by other animals such as cats and dogs.

The animal welfare parliamentary group has recognized this urgent need and proposed amendments to the Animal Welfare Act so that it covers rabbits. Please bring this proposal before Parliament and strengthen the requirements for purchasing and keeping these beautiful animals. Give rabbits the respect they deserve.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Mati Mango


21 Comments

  1. Maria Lavorato says:

    Utterly disgusting MAN!

    How did you let it come to this. Obviously you need people that are truly compassionate about animals to vet who would get a rabbit as a pet. Stop over breeding for a buck and then not give a tiny rats ass for their well being.

    UK amend the Animal Welfare Act to afford more protections to ALL rabbits. ANYTHING LESS WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT YOU! GET IT DONE NOW!

    • Maria Lavorato – I definately agree with your comment.

      “Utterly disgusting MAN!

      How did you let it come to this. Obviously you need people that are truly compassionate about animals to vet who would get a rabbit as a pet. Stop over breeding for a buck and then not give a tiny rats ass for their well being.

      UK amend the Animal Welfare Act to afford more protections to ALL rabbits. ANYTHING LESS WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT YOU! GET IT DONE NOW!

  2. Nadine brundage says:

    This is so terrible , why the hell do humans take on pets and then dispose of them in the horrific ways. People who commit such cruelty are subhuman heartless trash and I would hope they meet the same fate they gave to a helpless animal.

  3. Why don’t rabbits get the same protection as domestic pets and not domestic livestock. Time to end this distinction and cover all domestic animals under one law. A good strong one that will protect them all.

  4. Cathy McCormick says:

    House rabbits are sweet, loving, and smart pets. My house rabbits were litter-box trained. Please pass as many laws as needed so that these delightful little creatures are not the victims of cruelty, and being thrown away like garbage!

  5. Animals have done us no harm and they have no power of resistance…There is something so very dreadful…in any type of mistreatment, etc. to those who have never harmed us, who cannot defend themselves, who are utterly in our power. THEY ARE VOICELESS!

  6. Monica+Lee+Koski says:

    Definitely time for a change to improve the lives of domesticated rabbits. They deserve the same protections as any other domesticated dog or cat @ the very least. Shoppers intent on adopting a rabbit, should be educated as to how to meet the specific needs of a rabbit before being allowed to do so. Please take into serious consideration, and do the only right thing,by immediately amending the Animal Welfare Act to include the coverage of rabbits as they deserve.

  7. NO animal should be treated this way – domestic or livestock!

  8. Rhonda D. Wright MD says:

    I had 7 pet rabbits over the course of 40 years. All of them lived indoors with me and were given the specialized care they need, in addition to all the love I had. Each one had his or her own unique personality, preferences, and ways of interacting with our family. Each one was precious to us.

    There is no excuse for allowing people to abuse rabbits or to treat them as disposable pets. The Animal Welfare Act must be amended to cover rabbits as it does cats and dogs.

  9. STOP ALL ANIMAL CRUELTY TORTURE TO ALL RABBITS AND ALL OTHER ANIMALS IMMEDIATELY!!!!!!

  10. Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the UK House of Commons

    Support inclusion of rabbits into animal welfare standards.

    The precious and beautiful Rabbits must be protected from these vile and evil lowlife psychopathic filthy nonhuman species who
    deliberately and heinously torture and murder these precious and inocent Rabbits.

    Eradication from our Planet of these psychopathic monster lowlife filth on our Planet. Burn in hell you lowlife nonhuman filth on our Planet.

  11. Joseph Kenosky says:

    Protect them!

  12. For the life of me I can’t understand why some people have to have any kind of animals if they don’t want to accept responsibility for them.
    Taking an animal into your care is to take all package, love and affection, feeding, cleaning, keeping them safe …..
    I hope one day universal low for every country will come out that those people who take an animal on pet rabbit, mouse, rat, snake, cat or dog, Guinea pigs, take the responsibility for
    them. If they neglected them to get severe punished. I know it is wishful thinking. It breaks my hearth to know that many animals are neglected in the world because of many crazy so called human’s

  13. Vicki Rucker says:

    Please protect these rabbits!

  14. Good God! WTF is wrong with these horrible people in the UK?!?!

  15. Patricia Leigh Wicker says:

    These Rabbits NEED PROTECTION!!!! How can such Cruelty be allowed to happen?? DO SOMETHING TO STOP THIS CRUELTY!!!

  16. Julia Edinger says:

    I TOTALY AGREE WITH ….
    Bev Woodburn
    “ Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the UK House of Commons
    Support inclusion of rabbits into animal welfare standards.
    The precious and beautiful Rabbits must be protected from these vile and evil lowlife psychopathic filthy nonhuman species who
    deliberately and heinously torture and murder these precious and inocent Rabbits.
    Eradication from our Planet of these psychopathic monster lowlife filth on our Planet. Burn in hell you lowlife nonhuman filth on our Planet. “

  17. It does seem to be strange that Animal Welfare Laws do not include Rabbits. Rabbits are animals. When an animal is not protected under the Law, it only invites violent and cruel acts against them including death. Seems like common sense to protect living beings who have no voice.

  18. I’m signing this to address the actual neglect, torture, & abandonment. I don’t think rabbits being purchased to feed snakes is a problem, because that is the type of animal large snakes are evolved to eat & rabbits are among the few animals readily available for pet snakes to eat. This is feeding a pet, not cruelty. Reptiles & their owners already get undermined & stigmatized as it is, further judgment & unfair & biased legislation based on pearl clutching & sentimentalism, should not be encouraged.

  19. RABBITS need love, care and protections — we MUST ensure this.

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