CHAPTER 84 – Santa Bun
Abigail watched Dad pack up the little red sleigh with gift bags and willow wreaths. “OK, Abigail,” said Dad, “Let’s play Santa Bun and deliver the Rabbit Haven’s gift bags to all the good little bunnies in the shelters.”
Their first stop was “The Barn” at the SPCA in Monterey, California. Monterey is a more rural area than the rest of the Bay Area. Here, rabbits share a barn with horses, roosters, cats, and other animals while they wait to be adopted. Santa Bun’s sleigh set down inside the barn. Greeting them were Jamie the Barn Manager, and Caitlin, the Small Animal Manager. Caitlin helped Santa Bun distribute the gift bags and treats to the fifty or so rabbits at this shelter.
Three siblings who shared a kennel excitedly tore at the bag, eager to get at the yummy treats inside. Other rabbits had fun pulling the Small Pet Select alfalfa and oat hay out of the hay tubes. It was so tasty! This was the most excitement the rabbits had seen in the barn in quite awhile!
Their next stop was the Peninsula Humane Society (PHS) in Burlingame, California. PHS is a modern facility, built expressly for this purpose, thanks to some generous donors. Santa Bun’s sleigh touched down inside an ex-pen occupied by a bonded pair of bunnies, Coke and Roko. They immediately hopped into the sleigh and began exploring. Amanda, an adoption counselor who specializes in small animals, introduced them to all the good little rabbits in their care. “Fortunately, we’ve had a lot of adoptions recently, so we don’t have too many rabbits here right now,” she explained.
A sign on the wall explained their facility’s philosophy, “No animal is ever turned away because of age, size, or breed. This policy makes the Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA different from “no-kill” shelters which turn away animals with questionable adoption potential. Maintaining this open-door approach brings our greatest rewards.”
Here, willow leaves proved to be the favorite amongst the bunnies. They munched on the willow wreaths first, before tossing and tearing at the gift bags.
Their last stop was the San Jose Animal Care Center. This shelter held a special meaning for Dad and Abigail because it’s where Bentley came from. Sarah, a rabbit advocate from The Rabbit Haven who looks in on all the rabbits at this shelter, met the sleigh as it landed inside the shelter.
In addition to the gift bags and willow wreaths, Dad and Abigail brought some fresh greens for Ginger, an extra special Ruby Eyed White (REW) rabbit who had been there for a long time. Ginger had a wonderful personality, and Santa Bun wanted her to know she was special. But happy news, Ginger was gone. She got the best gift ever—she found her forever home—so they shared the greens with another red-eyed bunny named Magnolia.
Abigail was proud to help Auntie Heather carry on this 18 year tradition. She discovered that the joy of sharing and giving was even better than receiving. Abigail was happy that she could bring a little cheer into the lives of the bunnies in the shelters. But more than anything, she wished they would find their forever homes soon.
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