By Naomi Weissman, Adoption Counselor
Nearly every day, our rabbit residents spend quality time outside of their kennels at BunRuns – an activity that takes place in one of our multipurpose rooms with several enrichment stations. These sessions are great opportunities for rabbits to stretch their legs and exercise, running and hopping around to their heart’s content.
Just as we recommend to potential adopters, rabbits need time outside of their enclosures each day to experience new sights, sounds and smells. This helps to not only alleviate boredom and stress, but it is also a positive outlet for both their mental and physical energy. While regular walks are essential for the well-being of dogs, BunRuns provide an opportunity for activities and socialization that are essential for the happiness of rabbits, too.
Engaging in enrichment enhances overall quality of life, especially for animals living in a shelter setting. Many of the enrichment activities provided at BunRuns are homemade and include items like cardboard, paper, wood and hay. These items are also safe and stimulating for rabbits to chew. There are also plenty of tunnels and cubbies for the rabbits to explore. Offering a variety of enrichment activities provides them with healthy stimulation and good old-fashioned fun!
The freedom to explore and engage in different activities at BunRuns also helps our rabbits gain confidence and just enjoy being a bunny. And, we get to see their true personalities shine! It is a great time for the rabbits to socialize both with people as well as other rabbits. While the rabbits get to learn what it’s like to be around other bunnies, our staff and volunteers get to observe how each one interacts with others. This provides us with valuable information that can help us find an ideal adoption match.
Exposure to other rabbits also helps make bonding go smoother when a family with another rabbit at home is interested in adopting. Occasionally, bunny bonding sessions will be scheduled during BunRuns for what we like to call “bunny speed dating.” This is when a potential adopter brings their rabbit to a BunRun and we introduce them to a few different rabbits to see who is most compatible. The BunRun setting simplifies these introductions and typically leads to a more efficient and successful bonding session.
In general, our BunRuns are great opportunities for potential adopters to meet multiple rabbits and see them in an environment where they thrive. Particularly for first time rabbit owners, BunRuns are an ideal setting for us to provide education to potential adopters and answer questions about having rabbits as pets. These are held nearly every Saturday from 2:30-4 p.m. – we hope to see you there!