Seven sick rabbits were found dumped in woodland in Peterborough by a man out blackberry picking.
The rabbits, which were all young females, had been abandoned in a wooded area by a river on the edge of a car park off Potters Way.
The man, who spotted the rabbits on Saturday morning (13 August), called the RSPCA and inspector Carrie O Riordan went along.
I m very grateful to the gentleman who reported the rabbits to us, waited for me to arrive, and also helped me catch five of the bunnies, inspector O Riordan said.
So far, we ve not been able to catch the other two and, despite a thorough search of the area, we can t be sure there aren t other rabbits who were dumped alongside these ones.
The five rabbits who were captured – estimated to be aged under six-months-old – were very poorly with serious symptoms (pictured left and below) of myxomatosis and had to be put to sleep by a vet to end to their suffering. The RSPCA returned the following day to try to catch the remaining rabbits but could not locate them.
This is a very serious act of cruelty, inspector O Riordan said. Myxomatosis is an horrific viral disease which causes an awful amount of pain and suffering for rabbits who contract it.
We always advise rabbit owners have their pet vaccinated to lower their chances of contracting the disease.
For someone to abandon these bunnies, who were obviously in pain and distress, and fail to seek proper veterinary care for them is just despicable.
They were extremely lucky to have been found in the remote and overgrown spot they had been dumped. Although it was a very sad ending for these bunnies, the slow, agonising death they faced in the wild doesn t bear thinking about.