City of Lawrence Launches Investigation as the MSPCA Settles the Animals into its Adoption Centers
BOSTON, Methuen and Centerville, Mass., April 1, 2021 – The Easter holiday arrived early for 32 rabbits who were living in conditions described as “unsanitary” before being surrendered to the MSPCA-Angell on March 29. The rabbits, mostly adults with some as young as five weeks of age, will be distributed among the MSPCA’s adoption centers in Methuen, Boston and Centerville on Cape Cod.
The rabbits include one mom nursing eight babies, were joined by seven chickens who were also surrendered from the same home in Lawrence, Mass. The chickens—who officials believe to be about one year in age—will live alongside 24 other homeless chickens at Nevins Farm before they can be placed into new homes.
An Overwhelmed Owner Leads to Animals in Need
The animals involved were owned by someone who was overwhelmed by their numbers, and who became unable to provide for their basic care. The rabbits, New Zealand and Dutch mixes, were living in conditions that had become unsanitary, and their dietary requirements were not being met.
MSPCA at Nevins Farm Director Meaghan O’Leary hopes that adopters will step up to take one, or a pair, home. “This is a large surrender for us and has doubled our rabbit population in just one day,” she said. “My message to anyone considering a new pet is that now is the time to visit one of our adoption centers to bring home a new best friend.”
O’Leary said that the MSPCA does not discourage rabbit adoption so close to the Easter holiday because, despite rampant speculation, there is no evidence that rabbits adopted near the holiday are returned at higher rates. “Our adoption counselors are very skilled at making excellent matches for people that are thoughtful about adding [a rabbit] to their family,” said O’Leary.
The MSPCA’s three adoption centers remain closed to the public during the pandemic, but adoptions by appointment have proceeded apace. Anyone interested in adopting the rabbits can fill out an online adoption inquiry here.