Resources for Helping Abused or Neglected Rabbits
Sadly HRS often gets inquiries regarding domestic rabbit neglect and abuse. All too often we hear of rabbits being given as prizes at fairs, rabbits being kept in unsanitary conditions at pet stores, and breeding programs run amok.
Unfortunately House Rabbit Society does not have animal control capabilities; that is a function of local animal control programs. We encourage you to work with your local humane society to report and prosecute abuse and neglect. The following sites have useful resources to help with abuse and neglect cases.
Animal Protection Institute
The Animal Protection Institute has an amazing set of resources about laws dealing with companion animals, specifically a state by state list of every law dealing with pet stores, breeders, dealers,and more. It even lists which state laws deal with which animal, so it’s easy to see if your state’s cruelty laws cover rabbits. They also provide a summary of pet store laws.
Humane Society of the United States
The Humane Society has some good advice:”If you witness animal abuse or neglect, please contact your local humane society, animal shelter, or animal control agency immediately. In most areas, those agencies have the jurisdiction and capability to investigate and resolve these situations. They rely on concerned citizens to be their eyes and ears in the community and to report animal suffering. You can choose to remain anonymous, although giving your name to your humane agency will enable that group to follow up with you when necessary.
You can find the name and number of your local humane society or animal control agency by looking in the Yellow Pages under “animal shelter,” “humane society,” or “animal control,” or by calling Information. If there is not a shelter or animal control agency in your community, please report any incident to your police department immediately.”
Check out the full article, “Reporting Animal Abuse or Neglect” at the HSUS website.
US Federal Regulations
The government has a website detailing the US Animal Welfare Act Regulations. This is probably the most useful of the lot, especially when going up against bad pet stores. There are also USDA laws pertaining to commercial rabbit care requirements.