Hong Kong pet rabbits enjoy bunny resort while owners away

HONG KONG (AP) — Rabbits scamper around a enjoy place in a local climate-controlled developing in suburban Hong Kong, some climbing a castle made of wooden when many others examine a cotton tunnel.

In a single of the world’s most densely populated towns, exactly where most residences selection from smaller to miniscule, rabbits are popular animals.

And when their owners are away, there are rabbit enthusiasts completely ready to appear just after their lonely animals at Bunny Design and style, a luxury rabbit vacation resort.

That is in particular obvious this thirty day period, as the lifting of COVID-19 constraints in Hong Kong is spurring a surge in journey for the Lunar New Calendar year to welcome the Calendar year of the Rabbit.

Donna Li, the owner of Bunny Design, reported she’s fully booked for the holiday and retains her costs joyful with normal exercising, parties, spa remedies and loads of carrots.

“We purpose to offer a secure atmosphere,” Li claimed.

Li, who has two pet rabbits of her very own, established up Bunny Design and style in June, starting with just a playroom featuring space to hop and reduction from Hong Kong’s very hot, humid climate.

“To start with, my idea was primarily about placing up a harmless indoor enjoy room with a acceptable temperature for rabbits,” Li mentioned.

As the authorities started lifting COVID-19 restrictions in September, Li sensed a need and swiftly set up boarding amenities. They ended up full over Xmas and Li has by now begun getting bookings for Easter.

With 15 rabbits, Li and her staff will be active around the vacation, the most essential in the Chinese calendar. Apart from feeding — some owners order special vegetable cakes in advance — there are hair-brushing, nail trimming and training to be managed.

“I consider rabbits fully grasp what men and women say. They can sense whether we are currently being pleasant to them and glimpse after them properly,” Li said. “And so when I appear following them, I discuss to them a good deal, telling them how stunning and lovable they are.”

A livestream and movie clips are also provided, “so we realized that our rabbit was out actively hopping and experiencing alone,” said Rainbow Li, who uncovered Bunny Design and style on the net and boarded her rabbit even though she and her associate traveled in excess of Xmas.

Bunny Model rates about $15 for every night, which include 50 percent an hour of supervised participate in time. Attractiveness solutions and specific menu things are further.

The animals’ level of popularity in Hong Kong has inevitably led to some proprietors discovering they have little bit off more than they can chew. For that, there are shelters these as Tolobunny, set up in 2015 and focused to acquiring new homes for abandoned rabbits, often at general public adoption activities.

Spokesperson Bridget Ng is currently anticipating a surge of phone calls to the shelter’s 24-hour rescue hotline in the months soon after the new 12 months. Now, its volunteers are briefly housing 42 rabbits presented up by their entrepreneurs.

“Our observation is that through the 12 months, specially at festive holiday seasons like Valentine’s Working day, Easter or Christmas, there are extra folks who want to keep rabbits, but right after a couple months, there will be much more abandoned rabbits,” Ng mentioned.

Homeless dogs and cats nevertheless get a lot more treatment, but “I hope there will be more interest and resources for all types of abandoned animals,” founder Winky Cheng said.