Abandoned and Feral Rabbits in Greater Vancouver

Many people are aware of the abandoned rabbit problem in the Lower Mainland, particularly in Richmond, as well as at Jericho Beach in Vancouver. VRRA receives many calls from good samaritans asking that we help catch these rabbits, or that someone has caught one and would like us to take the bunny.

VRRA is concerned for the welfare and safety of all abandoned rabbits, it is why we exist. However the reality is that we do not have near enough shelter space, volunteers or finances required to take every one. Until municipalities care enough about abandoned rabbits to take responsibility for the problem, the sad fact is that these colonies of dumped bunnies will continue to exist. 

Please do NOT catch these rabbits and then call us to request that we take them. We do not have room. Currently we have 150 bunnies in our volunteer-run organization, some in our shelter and some in foster homes. Adding even one rabbit puts a strain on caring for the rabbits we already have.

If you catch an abandoned bunny, the reality is that municipal shelters will often not accept them, meaning that you must be prepared to pay for their care and provide space for them to live, until you can find them a committed, forever home. Many of these rabbits will have health problems. Do you have the funds to pay for their vet visit and follow-up treatments? Will you cover the cost of their spay/neuter to ensure they do not continue to perpetuate the overpopulation problem? These are the things that VRRA commits to for every single rabbit we accept, and that is why our resources are limited.


Please help us spread the word: 

Releasing domestic animals into the wild is animal abandonment and is a crime.
Abandoning a pet rabbit isn’t only illegal, It’s unethical. It’s ecologically destructive. It’s inhumane. It’s a burden on taxpayers, city services, humane organizations such as VRRA and Good Samaritans such as yourself.


What you can do:

  • Rehoming a bunny: If you have found yourself with a rabbit needing a new home, this PetFinder information page, Finding a Home for Your Rabbit, has excellent tips. You can also contact your local municipal shelter, but be prepared that many will refuse to take a rabbit.
  • Foster a rabbit: One of the best ways to help us is to be a foster parent to a shelter rabbit. This means a commitment to keep him or her until a home can be found or another foster. This means that, not only this rabbit can be saved, but others because they have a safe place to be. To be a foster parent fill out our Foster form. If you need equipment (pens, litter box, etc.) we can help with that. We can also outline all the feeding and care information you need.
  • Advocate for abandoned bunnies. If the welfare of abandoned rabbits is important to you, please contact your municipal representatives and let them know. Packs of abandoned dogs would never be allowed to exist in Greater Vancouver, yet because rabbits are quiet, they are considered disposable, not only by the cruel people who dump them but by the  local governments who allow these unwanted rabbits to reproduce, starve, become injured and sick, suffer and die in their city’s parks and industrial areas. If your municipal shelter turns bunnies away, let your elected representative know that you find that unacceptable!
  • Help organizations that are trying to make a difference. 
    • Every animal shelter is always in need of a helping hand and most groups exist only on donated funds and labour. More can be done if more people are willing to HELP. Consider investing some of your time or money.
    • If the plight of abandoned feral rabbits is of particular interest to you, please check out the work being done by Rabbitats, who need people to help with their project of building sanctuaries for feral bunnies: https://rabbitats.org/

Municipal Contacts

(If your city is not listed here, a quick Google search will bring it up!)

Vancouver Animal Shelter

Vancouver Mayor & Councillors

Richmond Animal Shelter

Richmond Mayor & Councillors

Surrey Animal Resource Centre

Surrey Mayor & Councillors

Delta Animal Shelter

Delta Mayor & Councillors