What We Do!
Judi and Bryce Inglis of Rabbit Run-away Orphanage have been advocates for pet rabbit welfare since 2003 when two young giant stray rabbits arrived through a hole in their back fence. They became acutely aware of the all too commonplace neglect, cruelty and dumping of these intelligent, sensitive creatures. Currently, Judi and Bryce work tirelessly to have pet rabbits included under animal law and to educate the public on the needs and nature of this unique and exotic pet.
Rabbit Run-away Orphanage is set apart it is
Victoria's First Dedicated No Kill Pet Rabbit Rescue
The First and Only Official Chapter of the House Rabbit Society in Australia
Care for sick, unwanted, stray, or mistreated rabbits
Facilitate short-term care, medical treatment
Implement rehabilitation and long-term re-homing
Educate the public on rabbit ownership and care
Prevent unnecessary euthanasia of rabbits, and
Reduce cruelty to rabbit education and awareness.
Ongoing Support by providing equipment, training and on-going support to foster carers, new rabbit owners and those trialing rabbit ownership, and those introducing a second rabbit into their family.
Our special needs (VIB) foster program places rabbits with ongoing health needs into permanent foster homes that can provide the love and care needed, while the Orphanage meets all vet care costs and provides equipment, supplies and ongoing support.
Rehabilitation program We place rabbits that are difficult to re-home (often due to previous cruelty and neglect) into short-term foster homes so that they can be socialised, rehabilitated, and have one-on-one care.
Assist councils, pounds and shelters We respond to calls from Council pounds, shelters, vet clinics and the public to provide information and advise and to transfer lost, dumped and injured rabbits to our Orphanage to receive care and prevent unnecessary euthanasia.
Education We regularly participate in pet expos, adoption information days and many other events to educate the public on pet rabbit care and welfare, and to promote responsible and kind ownership.
Referral By default, we have become a nationwide referral/advice service. We received calls from all over Australia regarding care/bonding/problem behaviours, locating vets with rabbit expertise, and locating local services to help with lost/found/surrendered rabbits.
Perhaps our most significant difference to other rabbit welfare organisations is our special needs support program. We pay for the vet care of rabbits identified to have special needs, for the life of the rabbit (in 2019 the Orphanage supports 260 special needs rabbits in this program). We constantly review the care needs of the rabbits we place into foster and permanent care homes (and the needs of these foster carers and rabbit owners) and provide ongoing support to maximise the wellbeing of these rabbits throughout their lives. Further, if the health of a rabbit adopted from the Orphanage changes at any time, we offer support for its vet care. By providing this ongoing support, we reduce the likelihood of re- traumatising the rabbit through surrendering/dumping/neglect due to financial limitations.
By show-casing the Orphanage with its no-kill policy, we can demonstrate an alternative path for pet rabbit welfare, where supported care and placement into well-informed loving homes negates the need for unnecessary euthanasia.
In September 2013, Rabbit Run-away Orphanage was invited to become the first official Australian chapter of the esteemed House Rabbit Society (HRS). The House Rabbit Society has been established for 25 years and is the oldest and most respected animal welfare organisation for rabbits in the world.
Judi and Bryce care for many sick, unwanted and mistreated rabbits, and spend a significant amount of time:
Educating the public on rabbit care and welfare
being actively involved in campaigning to have the companion rabbit included under animal law in Australia.
How you can help!
Intersection Collections offsite
Shelter attendant onsite
Maintenance of Orphanage/grounds
Offsite adoption days and events
Volunteer your help for our trivia night
Volunteer your skills, marketing, fundraising,
sewing and other skills
Information is on our website
Assist with our intersection collections
Run your own fundraisers: market stalls, picnics, high teas, fun runs and other
If you have an idea and can organise and manage it, we can provide what is needed.