I have a friend who has a few pet rabbits in Youngsville and, over the weekend, dogs killed some of his rabbits. It's never easy to lose a pet, but to know that they were probably filled with terror makes it worse.

A neighbor mentioned that he saw 2 dogs that looked to be Boxers in the yard, but didn't hear any commotion.

The rabbits are kept in large cages in an open barn. The bottom of the cage is made of hardware cloth (think window screen material but on a larger scale) and, when the rabbits are standing, their toes hang through the squares at the bottom of the cage.

The dogs, from underneath the cage, attacked the rabbits, killing two and injuring several others. One of those injured is in serious condition and is not expected to survive.

The reason I mention this is to remind pet owners that they are responsible for the actions of their pets. If my rabbit gets into your yard and your dog injures or kills it, shame on me. If your dog gets out of your yard/home and injures my pets, shame on you.

My friend is heartbroken over the loss of his rabbits and is worried sick about the one that is seriously injured (he calls her "Red").

Pet owners, please check the perimeter of your yard. Check your fence for loose or rotting boards. Check the ground for signs that suggest your pet has been digging. Check the latches on the gates.

I understand that, sometimes, it's not so easy to control your pets: my Lil' Bit can climb our 6-foot fence.  When she does, she normally just sniffs the neighbor's yard and then comes around the house and scratches at the front door until we let her back inside. What I try to do is make sure that I stay outside with her until it's time for her to come back in.

I also understand that dogs are dogs and will be dogs: by nature they are hunters, and they will hunt/chase/kill rodents or other small animals. I totally get that.

I am hoping (against hope, probably) that Red makes a full recovery, but at this point that doesn't seem likely. Her feet are injured badly, she lost a lot of blood, and the stress/shock it taking its toll on her.

I am also hoping that the person who owns the dogs responsible for the deaths of the rabbits sees this story. At best: the owner can apologize for the actions of his dogs. At least: the owner will be more responsible in the future.



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