Grand Opening of Bunny Bungalow in Murietta!

Our Pepsi grant money has been put to great use and we are pleased to announce that the Bunny Bungalow at Oak Grove in Murietta is ready! The Bungalow will house rabbits who are ready for adoption, and is overseen by our satellite group, Lucky Bunny Rabbit Rescue.

Come join us for the Grand Opening! Learn about the great things that Oak Grove does for children and animals.

  • Meet and pet our adorable Bungalow bunnies
  • Learn about our pet-assisted therapy program
  • Enjoy a slice of carrot cake and other goodies

Friday, December 10th, 3-5 pm
Bunny Bungalow at Oak Grove

24275 Jefferson Avenue, Murrieta, CA.

Oak Grove Center Open House
11 am – 4 pm
Enjoy holiday shopping, refreshments, and a very special musical performance by Oak Grove students, from 2-3 pm in the school cafeteria.
For more information, email

Let the (s)hopping begin!

Please note the following days in your calendar for shopping, adoptions, and fun

Holiday shopping season begins on Saturday, November 27th at the HRS Bunny Store. Stop by to purchase freshly packed hay, pellets, toys, and other supplies for your rabbit. HRS premiums (t-shirts, calendars, books, etc.) will also be available for purchase. Also, get your bunny’s nails clipped for a small fee.

Marley, a very happy house rabbit adopted from SDHRS

Here’s a complete list of holiday activities at the Bunny Store:

Saturday Shopping at the HRS Bunny Store, 4805 Mercury Street, Suite J, Kearny Mesa (corner of Mercury & Ronson Rd)

  • 11/27, Noon to 3 p.m.
  • 12/4, Noon to 3 p.m.
  • 12/11, Noon to 3 p.m.
  • 12/18, Noon to 3 p.m.
  • 12/25 – STORE CLOSED

San Diego HRS Annual Holiday Party, 4 to 8 p.m. (held at the Bunny Store)

Join us for our annual holiday party.  This event is a VEGETARIAN POTLUCK; please bring a dish to share.  We need main dishes and desserts that will feed about 6 to 8 people.  HRS will provide soft drinks; attendees may bring beer or wine.

The evening’s fun includes a holiday gift-inspired RAFFLE, holiday shopping, and a visit from Santa.  Bunnies are welcome on leash or in a stroller.

SDHRS Adoption Days: 11/28, 12/5, 12/19
Adoption Days are always held on Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Bunny Store

Our homeless bunnies have been such good boys and girls this year, and the best gift they could receive is a warm, loving, forever home. Please consider adopting a loving companion for your single bunny; or spread the word to friends, family, and colleagues about the joy and good cheer that house rabbits give all year long.

Let’s make it a bunderful year for homeless bunnies!

All potential adopters must be pre-screened well in advance of adoption days in order to best match them with rabbits appropriate for their home and family. Screening requires the completion of our adoption application and interview to determine your level of rabbit experience and your preferences and/or expectations of a rabbit. Our goal is to make the best match for the rabbit and the home, ensuring a life-long adoption for the rabbit.

Please complete our Adoption Application Form or email if you are interested in adopting.

PLEASE NOTE: All potential adopters are given appointment times at our adoption days so we can provide them with individual attention. It’s important to complete the screening prior to adoption day so you can get your appointment time.

Lauren McCall Workshops Coming This Fall

Lauren McCall, an internationally renowned TTouch practitioner and animal communicator, will be the guest of San Diego House Rabbit Society October 16-18 when she presents three days of workshops and private consultations.

Lauren gave us a quick preview of what to expect from her appearance in October:

Chandra: We’re excited about having you back in San Diego to share your talents with our supporters. Tell us more about to expect at the TTouch workshop.

Lauren: I’m excited, too! I just LOVE working with rabbits! They are very responsive to TTouch and we have had great success in helping shelter rabbits overcome some of their fears and reactive behaviors to interact better with people so that they can be adopted out faster. Of equal importance is that they can integrate into their new home and are not returned to the shelter.  So TTouch while works for behavior issues, it’s also great for health concerns too.

Chandra: You have quite a lot of experience with rabbits, don’t you? In fact, you have a bunny of your own.

Lauren: Yes, my bunny Zoë is 10 years old now!  I use TTouch on Zoe to help her with old age issues like stiffness.  I began teaching TTouch workshops at the HRS headquarters in Richmond, California in 2000. I’ve also worked at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Utah, and have worked with rabbits at various shelters all over the world.  I also recently created the world’s first TTouch Rabbit Associate Program, in Japan.  TTouch is excellent for reaching rabbits’ nervous systems and helping to calm them down. And as we all know, rabbits have a pretty sensitive nervous system.

Chandra: I imagine this will be great for people who live with bunnies or cats, but also for shelter workers or vet techs. What kinds of techniques will people learn?

Lauren: Expect lots of hands on fun. This is a very interactive class. I’ll teach the basic bodywork which is easy to learn; it just takes a little practice. We’ll discuss and demonstrate what can be done for specific health and behavior issues. I work very hard to tailor each class to the needs of the individual group and the animals that are there. Each participant should leave with a good feel for the basic TTouches.

Chandra: Then on October 17 you’ll offer an Introduction to Animal Communication class. Can anyone take that class?

Lauren: Absolutely! This is an ideal way to develop the ability to telepathically communicate, which we all have but have lost touch with over time. I have been teaching animal communication all over the world for almost 10 years now, and I am convinced that anyone can learn how to do it, if they practice.  We’ll work with photographs of animals and do exercises designed to help you make your own connections with animals. This is a small group workshop in a private home, the perfect setting for what will be a fun and interesting adventure.

Chandra: Then on Monday, October 18 you’ll be available for private consultations, whether people want to learn more about TTouch or animal communication, or have a one-on-one session with you and their animal friend.

Lauren: Yes, and those are open to rabbits, cats, dogs, any species.  If you can’t bring your animal, bring a photo.

Chandra: We know you are very busy, Lauren, traveling the world and spending a lot of time teaching in Japan. We’re grateful that you have the time to share your skills with the San Diego animal community. We’ll see you next month!

About Lauren’s Workshops:

On Saturday, October 16, Lauren presents TTouch for Small Animals. Rabbits and cats are welcome at this workshop taking place at the County of San Diego Animal Services North Shelter in Carlsbad. For more information and to register:

The following Sunday, October 17, Lauren offers her Introduction to Animal Communication workshop, in the intimate setting of a private home in Cardiff and a limited number of students. Participants work with photographs of living animals. For more information:

And on Monday, October 18, Lauren McCall will be available for private sessions in TTouch or Animal Communication, and rabbits, cats, and dogs are welcome to attend these. There are a very limited number of spaces left, so for more information and to register, visit:

About Lauren McCall:

Lauren McCall has spent years developing proven tools and techniques, in workshops around the world, to help you discover your innate ability to telepathically communicate with animals.  We all have this ability within us; it has just been lost over time due to our human reliance on speech.  She has an international client base for her animal communication work including the US, Europe, and Japan. Lauren travels and teaches both animal communication and TTouch and currently lives in Newberg, Oregon with her partner, 2 dogs, a cat, 2 guinea pigs and a very sweet rabbit named Zoë. Learn more about animal communication and

Lauren McCall at

Deadline Extended for Lauren McCall Workshops

We’ve extended the registration deadline for Lauren McCall’s workshops coming up in October, so if you’ve been thinking about signing up for one or more of her classes, now is your chance.

Learn techniques for deepening your bond with your bunny in this fall's workshops with Lauren McCall.

Lauren will be teaching TTouch for Rabbits and Cats on October 16 in Carlsbad. Learn hands-on techniques in this fun class for anyone who works with rabbits or cats.

Register for TTouch Workshop

On October 17 Lauren will present an Animal Communication Workshop in Cardiff-by-the-Sea. This is a great opportunity to learn with Lauren in a small, intimate environment:

Sign Up for Animal Communication Workshop

And on Monday, October 18 Lauren is offering Private One-on-One Sessions at our Adoption Center in Kearny Mesa. You can improve your TTouch techniques or work with Lauren to communicate with an animal. Dogs, cats, and rabbits are all welcome at the private sessions. (NOTE: We currently have just four slots available for the private sessions, mostly in the morning, so book now!)

Book a Private Session

Bunnyfest Photo Contest Online Voting Extended

The deadline for the Bunnyfest Photo Contest has been extended until September 17! So you have just one more week to get those cute photos submitted. (Please note the deadline is extended for digital photos only–no more mailed in photos accepted.) You can cast your votes online until September 25, and of course vote at Bunnyfest on September 26 between 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Get all the details on voting at

Vote for your favorites in the following categories:

  • Disabled Darlings: Special Needs bunnies are special indeed! Show us how your special needs bunny still has a great quality of life.
  • Dynamic Dewlaps: Is your bunny the proud owner of a fine “chin pillow” that’s always there when she needs it?
  • Happy Birthday Bunny: Does your bunny get lots if gifts, a special treat or extra attention?  Show us how you celebrate your bunny’s birthday.
  • My Castle Rules! Does your bunny live in style? Show us your bunny’s creative living structure.
  • On the Lam! When bunnies move, they move fast! Have you caught your bunny “on the run?”

This year’s event is sponsored by Amy Sommerville of AK Specialties.  Amy is providing some amazing prizes for all photo contest winners.  Stop by her booth at Bunnyfest to shop for beautiful, bunny-theme etched glass.

Amy Sommerville has donated beautiful prizes for the Photo Contest.

Bunnyfest Needs You!

Bunnyfest 2010 is just two weeks away and we’re getting very excited about this year’s event.

We could still use a few volunteers to help make this the best Bunnyfest ever, so if you can spare an hour or two and want to help out behind the scenes, here are a few opportunities:

  • Cottontail Cafe needs food donations (baked goods, sodas, bottled water or juice, etc.); the Cafe could also use a few more people to help with serving food. Shifts available all day.
  • Guatemalan Marketplace needs a few people who can help sell gently used goods. Shifts available throughout the day.
  • Photo Contest needs an extra person between 9:00-1:00 to oversee voting.
  • Transportation can always use extra hands and extra vehicles for transporting items to and from the park.

If you can help in any of these areas, please e-mail Heather Christian at to coordinate.

For an overview of this year’s Bunnyfest, visit

SDHRS Wins Pepsi $15,000 Grant!

Earlier this summer San Diego HRS entered the contest in a bid to win a grant of $15,000 to build a bunny cottage at the Chula Vista Animal Care Facility in Chula Vista, CA.

Well, your votes paid off because WE WON!!

San Diego HRS received the third highest number of votes and therefore was considered for a grant of $15K. Once the voting completed, Pepsi followed-up with the top contenders to check them out and ensure they were valid organizations with solid programs.  In other words, we had to go through a formal grant request process, including making a budget, a working timeline, and more.

Since that time, we have been working quietly behind-the-scenes to put together a working plan and get all necessary approvals.

Unfortunately, after our project was entered into the contest, Chula Vista Animal Care Facility changed its plans for the rabbit house.  The city came up with a more comprehensive plan for building a  combined cat/rabbit building.  Because our grant request was for a small, self-contained bunny “cottage,” the new plans no longer met the requirements of the contest.  When we won, we discussed the situation with the grant manager and learned that we could not simply give the funds to Chula Vista; they had to be used in the manner requested. San Diego HRS would have to use the funds exactly as stated or lose the grant.

A Partnership in Murrieta

When the plans changed at Chula Vista, we began thinking of how we could implement the same program in another location.

A year ago you’ll remember we began working with the shelter in southwest Riverside county, run by Animal Friends of the Valleys.  We installed a small garden shed for their housing and began an active rabbit adoption program through our satellite group, Lucky Bunny Rabbit Rescue (LBRR).  In the last year the shelter has taken in over 100 rabbits and the little shed and the shelter’s foster homes are overflowing with rabbits.

Animal Friends of the Valleys was moving to a new shelter, with no provisions to provide more space for the bunnies (in fact it may have less space) so we put our heads together to do some brainstorming. We had to find a way to use the grant, and to increase shelter housing for all the rabbits being relinquished or abandoned in the region.

Thanks to her connections in the region, volunteer and blogger Tamara Swanson came up with the thought of asking Tammy Wilson, CEO of the Oak Grove Center in Murrieta, if they might be interested in partnering with us to put a building onsite for housing rabbits, in exchange for SDHRS/LBRR putting together a pet-assisted therapy program with them.   They liked the idea and we began to work together to see if we could make it work.

We are so excited about this partnership.  Our plans include a pet-assisted therapy program, onsite adoption and fundraising events, plus community outreach programs to local Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs.  We also will be partnering with a local organic gardening group to make good use of the rabbits’ litter box waste.  That will go into local organic gardening co-ops (and a garden at Oak Grove), and used in gardening projects at other area schools.

In addition to having the support of Oak Grove Center CEO Tammy Wilson and her staff and board of directors, we’ve received the “go ahead” from Mayor Kelly Bennett, City Manager Rick Dudley, Maryann Edwards, CEO of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Southwest County, and of course Willa Bagwell, Executive Director, Animal Friends of the Valleys.

Look how much we will be doing with just $15,000.  Our partnership will be saving bunnies and helping kids!

As this project progresses, we will keep you updated.  Thanks to your support – we are making this happen for the rabbits in southwest Riverside County.

Be a Part of this Program

If you live in southwest Riverside County and are interested in helping with this program, we can use you!  The bunnies at Oak Grove will need caretakers to give them exercise, clean their cages, change their litterbox and provide fresh food, daily.  We’ll also need people who are comfortable working with children, to participate in the rabbit interactions with the center’s kids.

There are a variety of needs, including people to do the chores mentioned above, transporters to take rabbits to vet appointments in north SD County, and even people interested in gardening to help with the Center’s vegetable garden.

To volunteer, please contact Tamara Swanson at

Enter the 2010 Bunnyfest Photo Contest

You are invited to submit your favorite bunny photos to the San Diego House Rabbit Society  2010 Bunnyfest Photo Contest!

This year’s categories are:

• Disabled Darlings: Special needs bunnies are special indeed. Show us how yours still has a great quality of life.

• Dynamic Dewlaps: Is your bunny the proud owner of fine “chin pillow” that’s always there when she needs it?

• Happy Birthday Bunny: Does your bunny get lots of gifts, a special treat, or extra attention? Show us how you celebrate your bunny’s birthday.

• My Castle Rules!: Does your bunny live in style? Show us your bunny’s creative structure.

• On the Lam: When bunnies move, they move fast. Have you caught your bunny on the run?

How to Submit Your Photos:

You may submit printed photos or digital photo files.

If you submit digital photos, they should be in high resolution for optimal printing (200-300 dpi or 2100 x 1500 pixels minimum). Please limit your submissions to 2 photos per category. E-mail your photos to our photo contest coordinators, Alison & Noah, at

To submit printed photos, please mail them to:
The Rabbit Reader
P.O. Box 261553
San Diego, CA 92196-1553
Attn: Photo Contest

Please include the following with each photo you submit:
• Your name, phone number and/or email address (to notify you if you win)
• The category for which you are submitting your photo
• The names of any ‘subjects’ in your photo
•  A caption for your photo (optional)

There is no charge to submit your photos. (Funds are raised by a small fee for each vote.)

Deadline for submitting photos is Sept. 5, 2010.

Then, tell your friends and start voting online at for your favorite photos!

Anyone can enter, but prizes will only be mailed within the United States. Prizes provided by Amy Sommerville of AK Specialties, designer of beautiful etched glass art.

Dogs: The other white meat

Sunset magazine, July 2010


 Opinion: Sunset Magazine 

Imagine how people would react to an article in a popular magazine or newspaper that sang the virtues of dog meat.  Or horse meat. With recipes, no less.    

Most people – including me – would be outraged.  Dogs will always be treasured in most Western cultures as “man’s best friend,” and horses are a beloved and intrinsic part of American culture.    

Rabbits are beloved companions for people around the world, but they are still considered livestock and a key ingredient in a new cooking trend.  

Recent media reports describe how some “localvores” embrace rabbit meat, and relish the prospect of raising rabbits in their own backyards as part of their commitment to sustainability.  

While I will always support locally grown, organic, healthy produce, I prefer the advice given to Alice by the Red Queen in Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland when Alice tries to offer the two Queens a slice of mutton: “it isn’t etiquette to cut anyone you’ve been introduced to.”    

July’s issue of Sunset magazine is the latest offender with a feature that promotes rabbits as “the other white meat” served by trendy restaurants in Seattle and San Francisco.     

In March the New York Times published, “Don’t Tell the Kids,” a feature article that described a weekend rabbit butchering workshop at a Brooklyn restaurant.  The article included were recipes and graphic, disturbing photos of butchered rabbits hanging on racks.      

In my experience, trends described as “artisan” and “sustainable” often shift from something that appeals to the epicurean élite to the mainstream. started selling rabbit meat last year.   

Let’s hope we don’t see TV commercials with Bugs Bunny hawking Bunny Burgers as an item on Burger King’s “Value Menu” anytime soon.      

Make a difference. Please use your voice to help voiceless: our gentle, sweet, beloved rabbit friends.       

Help rabbits that are less fortunate by contacting Sunset magazine with polite letters and/or emails.    

Educate the magazine and its readers about why rabbits are our beloved companions and should no more be considered “white meat” than dogs, cats, horses, and other animals considered delicacies by people outside of the U.S.      

Email Sunset magazine or send a written letter to:       

Sunset Reader Letters
80 Willow Road
Menlo Park, CA 94025  

Please include your full name and street address.      

By Phone

By Fax

Also visit Sunset magazine’s Facebook page. Indicate that you “like” their page (“thumbs up” icon at the top of the page) and you will be able to make comments. People who applaud the magazine’s decision to promote rabbit meat have already left comments.

San Diego HRS Bunny Store is Bigger and Better!

This weekend, June 5-6, will find us moved into an even bigger suite at our Mercury Street location in Kearny Mesa, San Diego. Our Bunny Store is now expanded and open in Suite J on the street side of the Mercury Street complex. Our adoption center and classes will still be held in our other space in Suite C.

Stop by to purchase freshly packed hay, pellets, toys, and other supplies for your rabbit. HRS premiums (t-shirts, calendars, books, etc.) will also be available for purchase. Also, get your bunny’s nails clipped for a small fee.

The Bunny Store is open this weekend, and the first four Saturdays of every month:

Noon to 3 p.m.
4805 Mercury Street, Suite J (on the Ronson Road side of the complex)
Corner of Mercury & Ronson Road
See a map to our location

And on the same day…

If you’re thinking of adopting or recently brought a bunny into your family, this class is for you!

Bunny 101

11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
4805 Mercury Street, Suite C

Fee: $15 – includes one-year subscription to our newsletter, The Rabbit Reader
RSVP by June 3 to

We’ll cover diet, litter box training, housing ideas, basic health issues and more. Get your questions answered and learn great tips for caring for your rabbit as an indoor family companion. Supplies available for purchase: fresh hay, pelleted foods, housing supplies, toys, treats, and more. If you’re ready to move on to adoption screening after the class, this is a good chance to set up an appointment.