Snowbelle the runaway bunny has found her forever home – just in time for Easter.
After multiple escapes and a marathon 129 days in the care of Tauranga SPCA, the mischievous, white rabbit has been adopted and is now living the high life on a lifestyle block in Pyes Pa.
Snowbelle first arrived at the SPCA in December 2017 as a stray. When no one claimed her, she was de-sexed, micro-chipped, vaccinated and put up for adoption.
By February she had a new home, but eight months later was found living underneath a church by some children who took her to the SPCA.
“It wasn’t until we scanned her that we worked out it was her,” says SPCA animal attendant Kristel Saul.
Snowbelle was re-homed, but less than a month later the escapologist was up to her old tricks again and returned to the SPCA by her new owner.
“Unfortunately she escaped from her hutch ... and she didn’t seem to like the other rabbits there. Thankfully in her new home apparently she’s giving off good signs to the other rabbits,” says Kristel.
Her new home is with Tracy Tucker, who lives on a lifestyle property with her mum, sister and niece and nephew.
Tracy adopted Snowbelle after seeing a post on Facebook by the SPCA.
“I just felt really bad for her because obviously she’d been re-homed twice and was looking for a forever home, and mum lives on a lifestyle block so we have the space,” says Tracy.
One of four rabbits on the property, she has her own luxurious hutch, with a secure base that she can’t dig her way through and 2m-long run.
“She hasn’t tried to escape – not that I’ve seen,” says Tracy.
“She’s a little bit shy, so trying to pick her up for cuddles is a bit hard. But once you get her she’s really cuddly. She likes her head being massaged.”
Having arrived right before Easter, niece Carley, 4, and nephew Leo, 3, think she just might be a bit more special than your average pet rabbit.
“They think she’s going to bring them Easter eggs, because she’s white.”
However, the SPCA reminds would-be bunny owners that pet rabbits are not just for Easter.
“Around Easter, bunnies are one of the main mascots. People think that rabbits are all cute and cuddly but they need a lot of attention, they need toys and they need space to stretch their legs,” says Kristel.
“They can live for over 10 years – and a lot of people don’t think about that. There’s a lot of work involved, but if you have a rabbit it can be rewarding and rabbits do become part of the family.”