1. Who is Eligible to Adopt: If you are 21 years or older, have the time and financial resources for a rabbit and everyone in your household wants to adopt a rabbit, we might have the right rabbit (or rabbits) for you.
We do not adopt rabbits out as pets for chidren. As with all pets, rabbits need love, attention and financial support from their primary caregiver. Adoptions to families with children will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
2. Indoor Housing: All rabbits adopted from EARS must live inside the house with their human companions. Why? A rabbit who lives inside with the family becomes a more meaningful part of the family. He will also provide entertainment as he plays with his toys and does his happy-bunny dance. In addition, a rabbit housed outside is at high risk for fleas, mites, ticks, heat exhaustion, and predators. If you would like us to help you prepare your house for a bunny we will be glad to help.
3. Homes with Dogs & Other Animals: Homes with dogs will be considered on a case-by-case basis. It takes a rabbit with a special personality to feel comfortable living in close proximity to a dog. It also takes a special dog! Although EARS does occasionally place rabbits in homes with dogs, we have few rabbits who have compatible personalities, and the dog always meets the potential rabbit first.
4. Social Requirements: If the rabbit is going to be alone for a majority of the time, then we recommend that the applicant adopt a second rabbit as a companion for the first. Alternatively, we recommend that the applicant consider a pair of rabbits.
5. Neutering: EARS only places spayed or neutered rabbits. This way, you will never have to find homes for a surprise litter of bunnies. If you are looking for a best friend for your rabbit, and your rabbit has been spayed or neutered, then we can begin the matchmaking process.(Check out this FAQ on altering rabbits.)
6. Allergies: The primary component of a rabbit's diet is hay. There are different kinds of hay, some with less dust than others, but PLEASE have all family members tested for hay allergies before getting a rabbit if you suspect their may be an issue.
7. Returns: If, after the adoption process has been completed, you find that you must return your bunny to EARS, we ask that you give us some advance notice if possible. Once a bunny is adopted from EARS, the space is usually filled with another rescued rabbit within a week. A return requires two preparations: a space must be opened by a new adoption, and another rabbit must be "bumped" from the rescue list at the animal shelter. All rabbits adopted from EARS must be returned to EARS if insurmountable problems exist.
If at ANY TIME after you adopt, you cannot or do not wish to care for your rabbit(s) any longer, we WILL ABSOLUTELY TAKE THEM BACK INTO OUR CARE! if for ANY reason an adoption does not work out, or you changes your mind, WE WILL TAKE THEM BACK INTO OUR CARE! If you have a bonded pair and only one rabbit was adopted from EARS, will will bring both rabbits into our care so the bonded couple is not separated.
8. Exchanges: EARS does not exchange animals. Exceptions may be made when: 1. The fosterer and adopter are working together on making a match between an adoptee and a rabbit AND 2. In the fosterer's judgement, a different match would be less stressful to the animals.
9. Christmas and Easter Adoptions: Alabama EARS does NOT adopt out rabbits during the Easter or Christmas holidays. However, we do continue to accept applications, conduct placement interviews, do home visits and educate adoption candidates about bunnies during these holiday times.
All rabbits need time to adjust to new sounds, smells and the new people in the household under normal circumstances and the chaos surrounding a holiday make it harder for a rabbit to adapt to their new household (and for the humans to adapt to the new rabbit!)
10. Adoption Fees: EARS adoption fees are donations that cannot be refunded.
1. You fill out an application. Because you provide your email address in your application, you should receive a copy of your adoption application and a short notification that your adoption application was received by EARS' server. If you do not receive an (almost) immediate confirmation, then we did not receive your application.
2. Potential adopters, who meet EARS and HRS adoption guidelines, will be invited to meet rabbits in one of our foster homes.
3. Upon meeting the bunnies, your "Adoption Counselor" will answer your questions about living with a rabbit. In a typical conversation, this may include questions about diet, exercise, health, behavior, how a rabbit would interact with your other pets, and how to bunny proof your home. Our goals are to inform you about what it is like to live with a house rabbit, and what you can expect by way of financial obligations before you adopt.
4. Your Adoption Counselor will also answer questions about each rabbit, or pair of rabbits, that you are interested in. This may include personality, medical history, age, sex, litter box habits, or special needs (if any). **Please understand that all of our foster bunnies have been rescued so we do not have a complete life history on most. We will however, fully disclose everything we know. All of our adoptable rabbits have undergone a physical examination by a qualified rabbit veterinarian.
5. If you are ready, and your Adoption Counselor agrees that a good match has been made, the adoption continues.
6. You get your home set up, rabbit proof the bunny area, acquire his living accommodations, litterbox, water bottle, food, hay, etc. We are always happy to share how we have done this in our homes if you are interested. After this, we will do a home visit to answer your questions about bunny proofing, litter training, and concerns that are specific to your bunny's set-up and home environment. This is a great time to have an experienced bunny-proofer in your home who might catch potential bunny "danger zones" like exposed cords that could easily be made less enticing to a bunny thus protecting your stuff and your rabbit.
7. We make arrangements for your new addition to come home with you. You sign the adoption contract and pay the adoption fee. The adoption contract basically states that if for any reason you can no longer care for the rabbit, you will return him/her to EARS The EARS adoption fee is $50 for one rabbit or (Special Pairs Promotion!) $50 for a pair. (the adoption fee is to help defray the cost of the spay or neuter, and initial medical examination.)
EARS will never rush an adoption and will never try to pressure you in any way to adopt a rabbit. You may change your mind about adopting one of our rabbits at any time during the process. After the adoption, EARS volunteers will always be available to answer your questions or to help adjusting to your new life with a house rabbit. If you agree, EARS may occasionally contact you to get feedback on your new life with your house rabbit.