Email:

info@rabbitrescueofmn.com

Registered Non-Profit:

EIN# 81-2332430

Board of Directors

Vivian Backmann

Delaney Berrini

"Back in the 80s and early 90s, my siblings and I had bunnies that lived in a backyard hutch our dad made. We didn't know any better. We loved these bunnies but were clueless as to what they needed or why they were so unhappy. We were told they were bred to be out in the cold. We would play with them but they'd always go back in the hutch. I longed to have a closer relationship with my bunny but didn't know that hutch life was not just unsafe and unhealthy, but miserable for them. We didn't know that bunnies have very sweet personalities and hutch life prevents you from seeing that."

 

In college, Delaney adopted her first house bunny, Lloyd, advertised as 'free' in the newspaper. He lived with her in her dorm room, eating her books and furniture. Although Lloyd was a house bunny and living indoors, as a domestic bunny should, she still didn't didn't know what a lot of his needs were. "Back then, we didn't know that bunnies needed hay 24 hours a day, things to chew to keep their teeth intact, or how specific their diets are." 

 

"I think back and feel sadness for those bunnies, and for my own ignorance. It fuels my passion for helping unwanted or neglected rabbits, and makes me want to do better for my own rabbits and those we can help. Rabbits are such joyful, quirky animals when their emotional and physical needs are met." 

 

Delaney began transporting and fostering for RRMN in September of 2018. The more she got involved with the rescue, the more she wanted to do. "What is special about RRMN is of course its devotion to unwanted rabbits and its desire to educate the public, but also its heart for people. When I met DJ and Steph, although I had house rabbits, there was so much I didn't know and they didn't fault me for it; they just showed me. The closer I got to the people, the more I wanted to do."

Kimberly Joy Drake

I came upon Rabbit Rescue of Minnesota long before there even was such a thing. There were dumped rabbits who were in need of immediate help in Southern Minnesota. When I went to calls like this, it was most often me alone. And I’d leave with another rabbit. Or 2 or 3. Or 10 (Joking! Although it felt that way sometimes). But not this time. We got the rabbits and they were off to warmth, safety and good medical attention with people who cared about them as much as anyone could. It was odd to watch them leave as I left empty handed. That was a first. And I didn’t even worry! Prior to  RRMN, I knew of no other rescue who actively took in abandoned and neglected animals from the public. Not without someone to surrender them, anyway. These guys were all alone. We were all they had. And they were safe. I found my place (just like the rabbits did!).

That was about 200 rabbits ago. It’s been a long road, but through its trials, victories, hardships, joys and pains, I become more and more proud of this organization. RRMN is unique in the respect that there is no other place like it. From meat farm rabbits to rabbits dumped in fields and everything in between, the most ill-fated and seemingly hopeless always stand a chance with RRMN. There are no conditions on our rabbits; our main goal is to save as many as possible and treat them with the care, loyalty and compassion they’ve been denied. And that’s what will forever keep me attached to this rescue.

My mission is to ensure the most medically and behaviorally challenged rabbits receive the best life possible. I very sincerely believe in our vision, our process, our fosters, our veterinarians, our supporters, our future and above all, I believe in our rabbits. They’re why we are here, plain and simple

Nicole Oetjen

Nicole has cared for rabbits for most of her life.  She got her first rabbit, Tato, from the Robbinsdale Farm and Garden Store when she was about four.  Growing up, her parents couldn't say no to friends and neighbors that could no longer care for their rabbits, cats, or dogs.  This was how Nicole got another rabbit when she was about six.  Family friends developed allergies to their rabbits Dandy and Cocoa.  Dandy became Nicole's responsibility because she was the only one that could pet him.  She cared for him the best she knew how, but was uneducated about dietary, exercise, and health needs for companion rabbits. 

 

It wasn't until adopting Juliette, a dwarf hotot rescued from a foreclosed home where she had been abandoned, that she learned how to properly care for a rabbit.  She also learned how to identify the symptoms of stasis, a condition that ended the life of Cocoa because the she and her parents didn't know it existed.  This learning reinforced the need to educate rabbit owners about the proper care, needs, and symptoms of illness.    

Nicole is a part of Rabbit Rescue of Minnesota because it meets a previously unmet need; a place where medical, special needs, or under socialized rabbits can be directly surrendered with the knowledge that the rescue will do everything in its power to help them heal.  Nicole enjoys using her time and abilities (for example, maintaining the website) to ensure the success of RRMN.  She is also a bunny foster. 

Angie Schilling

Supporting animal rescues has been apart of my family’s lives since I was a kid.  We still reminisce over my childhood dog, Rosie, who we adopted when I was in the 4th grade and live until she was nearly 19 years old (I was already teaching at the time).  As an adult, I continued to be involved with various rescues, supporting the ones my parents adopted from. 

 

It wasn’t until about 2013 when my love of having rabbits started.  I had always wanted one as a kid and the opportunity to adopt one came up when I spotted a little netherland on Petfinder who had been dumped outside of a shelter.  Holly was the first little one I adopted. I fell in love with having a rabbit but sadly she did not make it through spay surgery 4 months later. Merida entered my life a month later after spending 9 months in rescue.  She was sassy and had a big personality, but was hesitant to connect with me as her previous family had neglected to socialize with her until surrending her at the age of 3. During our 4 years together, I began connecting with different rescues as a volunteer to help meet people in the towns I was teaching or to just be more active in the community.

 

In the winter of 2017, my journey as a foster started.  Never planning to foster rabbits in the first place, I happened to come across a plea on Facebook for help wrangling a couple of young bunnies in Owatonna.  The weird thing was they looked familiar. The previous spring, a friend had called me asking me to check out a couple of rabbits on the loose near the Somali temple.  Nine months later, Balto and Eira were just trying to survive the frigid winter temperatures and were believed to be the offspring of the two I had been called about. Feeling guilty about not being able to help their parents so many months before as I had just been laid off from the Owatonna district the week before, I offered to foster the two little ones as consolidation.  Seeing the passion and support of this rescue’s leaders and volunteers has kept me volunteering and supporting RRMN’s mission.

 

Since that day, I have welcomed many foster rabbits into my home and into my heart.  Two even stole my heart and I am so happy to have Nigel and Rosalind as a permanent part of my life.  The people who are involved with RRMN have not only help support so many homeless, neglected, and abused rabbits, they have provided education about how rabbit make such wonderful pets and family members. We are sad to see a foster move forward with a family yet are cheering for them when that adoption application comes through.  We mourn the ones that come to us so sick that they don’t make it. We go out of our way to make even the smallest amount of room for a neglected bunny, full of mats and needing some TLC. It takes a village to help rescue animals and RRMN has given me the opportunity to learn more about rabbit care and to grow a fundraising business to help provide funding for supplies and veterinary care.  To feel welcomed to be able to continue this fundraising project for RRMN for over a year has been rewarding and My Best Friend Has 4 Paws will keep working to help our intakes. 

Cara Williams

"I first became involved with Rabbit Rescue of MN after relocating to Minnesota from Buffalo, NY.  My husband and I had our first companion bunny for eight wonderful years, but after he passed, our lives felt incomplete. 

 

We adopted a bonded pair through RRMN in November 2018.  The bunnies' stories all stuck with us, but this particular pair just felt 'right.'

 

After that, we began attending Romp and Spa events to continue socializing our new buns.  We realized immediately just how warm, welcoming, and amazing the people of RRMN are!  We wanted to do more to help bunnies in need, so we started to volunteer at events.  

 

Soon after that, we decided to open our home to bunnies in need of fostering.  We knew we could provide the love, stability, and kindness so desperately needed before they transitioned to their furever homes. 

 

RRMN is truly a one-of-a-kind rescue!  We take in so many unique bunnies - many with significant medical or behavioral needs.  Regardless of each bun's past, we are dedicated to giving them the best care and best quality of life possible.  We believe that every bunny deserves unconditional love, a safe home, and the opportunity to just be themselves!  We're always looking for ways to help more bunnies, and I'm truly honored to be part of this organization!"