Lola & Friends Bunny Rescue needs adoptions to get hopping

Lola & Friends Bunny Rescue of South Mississippi has been rescuing abandoned pet bunnies for 10 years.
Published: Feb. 5, 2023 at 9:18 PM CST
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SAUCIER, Miss. (WLOX) - Lola & Friends Bunny Rescue of South Mississippi has been rescuing abandoned pet bunnies for 10 years.

Owners James and Sherri Johnson have found them everywhere on the Coast from retail shopping areas to neighborhoods, and their temporary home is in Johnson’s converted garage, affectionately called “Bunny Land.”

However, Lola & Friends Bunny Rescue is getting crowded. Very crowded. In fact, they now have more than 50 pet bunnies under their care, the largest number since they started.

“They were all found running loose,” James said. “They were discarded. Abandoned. They were injured. Pregnant.”

He believes many could have been Easter gifts let go by overwhelmed owners.

“They think they can live on its own and they can throw it out in the woods and it’s going to be okay,” Sherri said. “No, it’s not. They don’t know how to survive. They don’t know how to hunt.”

The more bunnies out in the wild, the more hours the Johnsons work in between their jobs to rescue them and have them checked out by a veterinarian.

“If we’re not working, we’re rescuing,” Sherri said. “If we’re not rescuing, I’m in this garage cleaning.”

The Johnsons are hoping to find homes for the bunnies, but prospective owners will be vetted and educated.

“They’ll stay here with us and be safe before we let them go with somebody that we think will harm them again,” James said. “They’ve already been through a rough time in their life, and the whole idea for us is to find somebody to take care of them, that will love them, and they won’t put them back out on the street like they were.”

Bunnies aren’t for everyone.

“These are not a starter pet,” James said. “These are cheap animals to take care of. One bunny may cost you $1,000 a year.”

But, hey, they are cute. And quiet.

“You know, they do chew a little bit, but if you know how to take care of them, they are a great pet,” he added.

But a recent rescue just west of Highway 49 isn’t for sale. Sherri said Coco is a gift from Lola, their first rescue and the namesake of their organization.

“I let her out, she got in the middle of the console, jumped in my lap, and I looked at her and I said, ‘Lola sent you, didn’t she?’”

As Easter approaches, the Johnsons implore people not to give bunnies as pets, unless they are fully prepared to take care of them.

If you’d like to know more about adoption and care of bunnies through Lola & Friends Bunny Rescue of South Mississippi, check out its Facebook page.

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