Rabbits rescued from factory farm!

Meet Olivia. She is one of 300 lucky rabbits who were recently rescued from a rabbit factory farm in Tasmania.

LAST UPDATED: 19 August 2015

Now Olivia and her friends are free to roam at Big Ears Sanctuary, doing what rabbits do — hop around, socialise with other rabbits, dig, eat fresh grass and generally be inquisitive. But their lives weren't always so rosy.

Olivia has taken to exploring the nooks and crannies of the sanctuary.Tommy has discovered the joys of burrowing and rolling around in dirt.Goofy, living up to his name, as he plays with a turkey feather.Roger is a friendly and inquisitive bunny, eager to meet visitors to the sanctuary.Free at last! Relaxing in the sun and enjoying grass under their feet for the first time.Sweetie needed to have an abscess removed from her head, but is recovering well.Apple: Her leg abscess has kept her indoors. But not for long.Like all rabbits in factory farms, Olivia was not able to enjoy the simple pleasures of rabbit life such as burrowing and was forced to toilet in the same space that she lived.Respiratory diseases have been reported to kill as many as 30-50% of rabbits in factory farms in Australia.

Before her rescue Olivia was locked in a crowded wire cage, similar to those used to confine battery hens. If she'd remained in this cramped and unnatural environment she could have become one of the many rabbits who suffer abscesses and other injuries and illness as a result of this harsh and unnatural environment. If Olivia hadn't been rescued, she eventually would have been slaughtered.

When news spread earlier this year that a rabbit farm in Tasmania was for sale, Big Ears Animal Sanctuary, Radical Rabbit and Freedom for Farmed Rabbits hatched a plan to save the rabbits from slaughter or being sold onto another farm. They teamed up to purchase Olivia and her 300 rabbit friends. So began the huge task of rehabilitating and rehoming 300 rabbits to Big Ears Animal Sanctuary.

Olivia and her rescued rabbit pals.

Olivia and her friends are now experiencing the great freedom of the outdoors, and more will soon join them once they recover from the respiratory problems, abscesses and injuries they suffered at the factory farm. For now the recovering rabbits are resting indoors and enjoying nestling on the laps of anyone who visits Big Ears Sanctuary.

Rabbit Factory Farming Exposed

Animals Australia's colleague group, Compassion in World Farming (in the UK), recently conducted an investigation into factory farming of rabbits in Europe, exposing many of the same problems that are faced by rabbits in Australia.

Information about the scale of rabbit farming in Australia is not easily found, but we do know that it is increasing. Last year in Victoria alone over 54,000 rabbits were slaughtered for consumption. Rabbit meat from rabbits shot in the wild (game meat) is also sold.


You can help!

While we can't all buy up old rabbit farms, we can make a difference in the lives of rabbits. Factory farms exist because consumers unwittingly buy their products. By being kind to rabbits, rejecting factory-farmed, and choosing cruelty-free alternatives you can help ensure rabbits, like Olivia live a natural, happy and full life.

If you wish to find out more about this story or about Big Ears Animal Sanctuary visit: www.bigearsanimalsanctuary.com/rabbit-rescue.php

Love animals? Subscribe and help end animal abuse:
I've read and accept the privacy policy
Like Animals Australia On Facebook
Lyn White, Campaign Director at Animals Australia, spoke to audiences across the country — and asked one simple question: 'Does history have to repeat itself or is it possible to have a kinder, more peace... Watch now » »

What began as a basic love for animals led Ian to find a passion for rescuing roos and other beloved Aussie natives. Read more » »

Investigations have revealed widespread puppy factory cruelty in Australia. Discover the truth, and what you can do to help. Read more » »

Despite the nightly news doing its best to depress, from Australia to Brazil, China to Norway, there is one trait that unites humankind all over the world — kindness. Read on to discover some of the best animal... Be inspired » »

For the first time, an Australian organisation has been selected as a “standout charity” by U.S.-based Animal Charity Evaluators! Animals Australia has been awarded this evaluation in recognition of our efforts... Read more » »

What contributes more to climate change than all the world’s planes, trains and automobiles combined? Hint: it’s not coal and it’s not good for humanity! Read more » »

Our appetite for beef, dairy and fish is wiping out wild animals, and even threatening our own survival. Discover why » »

The sun on their faces. The grass under their feet. A spring in their step. All animals deserve freedom. Watch the heartwarming video now. Watch the heart-warming video » »

Love a documentary that opens your eyes and expands your mind? These are definitely for you ... Expand your mind » »

We all know that eating vegan is better for your health, animals and the planet. But sometimes you just want a big bowl of the hearty, familiar foods you know and love. These recipes are for you. Dig in » »