Large Backyard Rescue in Martinez
Update: June 25, 2014
Martinez Babies

Spotlight on Martinez rescued rabbits! We recently had a rescue of 150 rabbits in Martinez. Dedicated volunteers brought them into rescue, had them spayed and neutered and these beautiful rabbits are ready for adoption! 50 of them available now, all different colors, sizes.

Ten pens of bunnies will be shown this coming Saturday by the local rabbit rescue group, CCRR, a non profit rabbit rescue in Martinez.

Date/time: Rabbits will be shown on June 28th 2014 11AM to 2PM
Where: At Pet Food Express 1388 S California Street Walnut Creek 94596

Adoption counselors will be available to help you meet and adopt Sweet adorable spayed or neutered house rabbits from 11AM to 2 PM. Full rabbit care education packets are provided and helpful services. Plus you will receive a first free vet exam for your new bunny and valuable coupons for up to 20% off on your pet supply.

How to adopt: Email or or call 831 600-7479 to make an appointment to see these beautiful bunnies or just stop by this Saturday at Walnut Creek Pet Food Express! Come early! Note: We do same day adoptions and these rabbits are angel funded so their adoption donation is only $25.00 for a spayed or neutered rabbit. Bring your carrier.

Matchmaking and bonding services are available. Indoor housing and long term rabbit care commitment is required. For more information or to make a pre adopt appointment and see photos contact Brooke at Or Heather at

Update: June 5, 2014

Kits Have Opened Their Eyes, by foster mom Vicki

Despite our best efforts, some of the female rabbits at the Martinez rescue had new litters before they could be spayed. For one litter of 6, we determined there were 2 females in the cage that were nursing, so I took the litter and both moms. The babies were about 3 days old and very thin. The next day it was obvious neither mom had fed the babies. This was a very high risk situation.

I took one mom, Frances, cradled her on her back, and put the babies on her abdomen for feeding. The babies nursed on her but gained only a little weight. Later in the day I decided to try the other mom, Lilith. I know some moms might have milk but it takes awhile for it to come in fully. Distress can also prevent milk from coming in. So next it was Lilith's turn. When I put the babies on her abdomen, they nursed away and their tummies were round and warm! It was so nice to see. For the first time they actually had a decent meal. What a relief.

Over the days, I went from feeding 3 times a day to 2 times, and now once a day. They are really growing now. At 10 days old they opened their eyes. It's always exciting to see that happen. They were at such high risk; I didn't know if they would survive to this age. But they are growing and developing now so instead of just worry, I can now feel happy for them.

The moms had a tough time in Martinez. Frances has several holes in her ears from fighting. Lilith is totally covered in urine stains. But now they can relax and they have become BFF's. They sleep together and groom each other. It warms my heart to see how they have bonded.

Now the kits are growing and have their eyes open. And they have two mommies! After such a marginal beginning, things are now looking bright. I'm looking forward to them jumping out of the nest box and running all over the place.

Update: May 29, 2014

On Sunday several volunteers gathered at the Martinez site to clean, feed, medicate, photograph and socialize the rabbits. Volunteers also organized the rabbit structures to keep the rabbits safer and clean. Three high risk litters were moved into temporary foster care and one group of babies also at risk were moved off site.

Dr. Hilary Stern DVM

Dr. Brynie Kaplan-Dau DVM

Forty-nine rabbit spay/neuters will be completed this week. Thank you to Dr. Hilary Stern DVM of Animal Hospital of Soquel and Dr. Brynie Kaplan-Dau DVM of Toro Park Animal Hospital who offered her clinic in Salinas and to Humane Society of Silicon Valley spay neuter clinic. Now all females at the site or in foster that are old enough to reproduce have been spayed. Our deepest gratitude goes to these professionals who have donated their time to help The Haven and the Martinez bunnies. FOWAS also provided their spay/nueter clinic for 21 of Rabbit Haven's rescues from Santa Cruz County and FOSCCA provided much needed financial support. It has been a busy week.

We need to add to our volunteers who visit the site each day. Volunteers visit the site every day to provide food and water to the rabbits, clean pens, offer TLC, grooming and to care for rabbits. We can provide community service credit for volunteers who need it, and we welcome volunteer groups too like Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and local community groups. If you can volunteer a few hours of your time, please contact Heather Bechtel of The Rabbit Haven at 831-600-7479 or

We still need donations of supplies and cash to feed and care for these rabbits. Transport people are needed too, to take rabbits to vet appointments and foster homes. If you'd like to help with a cash donation, you can use our PayPal or send us a check.

You can also help by purchasing our special T-shirt from All proceeds from the sale of this shirt will go to helping pay for the medical needs of the Martinez bunnies.

Update: May 21, 2014


Martinez Rescue Volunteers Make it Happen!

Kudos to the volunteer teams from The Rabbit Haven and Contra Costa Rabbit Rescue. This rescue has been a labor of love resulting in the creation of a safe in place foster site for well over 100 rabbits. 20 have made it out to rescue so far.

All the rabbits are now secure, safe inside of finished enclosures, with plenty of food, hay, and water. Today they will be netted. Every bunny has been evaluated, received most urgent medical care and has been sexed, and given numbers to help us in the spay/neuter and rescue process. They are beautiful bunnies. We have a plan now and by Wednesday everyone will even have a name. Post spay/neuter all will be available for rescue or adoption.

Volunteers at the Martinez site

Volunteers for this rescue included: Raymond Okomoto, Deanna Fister, Amber Rankio, Vicki Pelton, Lisa Rockwell, Mary Lam, Sarah Lu, Alice Liang, Quinton Kermeen, Naho Kermeen, Robert Reiswig, James Wilson, and Chuck Paloka, our genius contractor. Thank you to Yvonne Le who is working tracking all photos taken at the site for the pending rescue appeal and to Ray Milkey who is managing the web posts. Rabbit Haven staff are coordinating spays / neuters as quickly as possible.

Special mention to our transport and foster people too: James Wilson of course, Robert from Livermore who will be picking up pens and doing general delivery tomorrow and to Sarah Camp who will be picking up spayed rabbits on Friday. Love to our first fosters Raymond Okomoto and Heather, Paul and David Mietz Egli who both took in the orphaned babies. They would not have survived otherwise. Lisa Rockwell also took in two to her rescue. Deanna took two so they could go the vet Tuesday! (Fly strike and abscesses)

Volunteers at the Martinez site

The building and rabbit care teams are on site again tonight gathering any newly located bunnies and building two more enclosures. What a incredibly positive and productive group. This weekend plans have been made for volunteers to gather once again to groom, check more closely for bunny stragglers and to provide any needed on site medical care. Contact Deanna of CCRR at if you want to volunteer to go out to help with caring for these bunnies while they wait for adoption.

Another special volunteer from the Rabbit Haven, Renee Perry designed a very special tee-shirt to raise funds for the Martinez rescue. It is a beautiful design on indigo blue. Order while you can. What a wonderful dedication to the Martinez rabbit rescue! Renee is considering the possibility of prints too! Limited edition. Order your new shirt design and raise money for the Martinez rescue.

Volunteers made a tremendous difference! Love to everyone and everybun.
Auntie Heather
Update: May 20, 2014
Bunnies at the Martinez site

The Martinez, CA rescue began on Sunday May 18th. Volunteers from The Rabbit Haven and Contra Costa Rabbit rescue came together to survey, make plans and begin the actual rescue of what we estimate to be 130-150 rabbits. We built enclosures, gathered and separated rabbits by sex, checked each rabbit for any injury, marked individuals with sex status and a number and then were photographed. So far we have 111 Rabbits. We could not get them all the first night. Staff stayed until 1 AM, however, staff finally decided to come back the next day.

After work on Monday May 19th, volunteers came again. The rabbit enclosures will be finished tonight, so more of the adults can be in the predator safe pens. In the meanwhile, the moms, babies and adolescents are in the abandoned house in X-pens. We will need to be persistent to gather the rest. Additional volunteers are on site now at 10PM finishing the structures and attempting to locate the remaining rabbits.

We met our initial objective of measuring space and managing housing then the space was secured (as much as possible). Volunteers gathered rabbit and babies, checked burrows for new litters, numbered, sexed and took photos of every rabbit we located. We made sure that all rabbits had plenty of hay, food, fresh water and shelter. Caregivers of the property were given instructions on how to care for the rabbits and CCRR volunteers will be checking on them until we can get them out.

Bunnies at the Martinez site

Raymond came up to help carry out the Rabbit Haven rescue plans. He arrived early to survey the situation. He then helped to organize work teams to accomplish our objectives for the day. He worked to secure the yard as much as possible and he searched for the burrowed litters. There were several very deep complex burrows.

Deanna of CCRR came on behalf of her rescue group. She had already done the groundwork with the property owners and took initial photos of the rescue area. Working together with all the volunteers so much was accomplished. All the teams worked well in a chaotic new environment filled with bunnies. Everyone stayed focused on helping secure and care for these rabbits.

Volunteers brought tons of supplies needed for this operation. Pens, medicines, building supplies, and all that was needed to secure and care for the rabbits we secured. What an incredible, amazing and dedicated group. Everyone with different talents created one cohesive and productive unit. Kudos to you!

Spay/neuter. All females of age are most likely pregnant. Therefore we are working on getting local low cost spay/neuter immediately. We need to spay any non nursing female ASAP. Multiple appointments were scheduled for this week. We need transport help from Martinez to Milpitas or to Santa Cruz. If you can help, call 831 600-7479 or Email Heather at the address below. Brooke and Deanna will be working with the Haven this week to secure spay services and more supply needed by these rabbits

Bunnies at the Martinez site

Fundraising/Match funding: Karen and Darrell of the Rabbit Haven just emailed $1,000 to use as matching funds. So the Match is ON!!! Rabbits are injured, babies need care, two with fly strike, another with a huge abscess that will require surgical intervention and several others will need medication. All will need spay/neuter. Spay/neuter will run about $ 2,500.00 and the Rabbit Haven receives significant discounts. Several people have started to donate. Help us help these rabbits please. You can use our PayPal site or donate by check if you want to contribute. You can also check out this gift of love, a beautiful tee shirt to help support the Martinez rescue.

We need to set up fosters, arrange for rescue and so much morel. We need 10-12 pens - 30" to start. If anyone can go to Go pets in Livermore (very inexpensive pens) to pick up will we pay for the xpens. We also need flat sheets any size, fleece holding blankets, baby blankets, powdered KMR, good quality pellets -50 pound bags and bales of hay. The following stores will accept donations for us or gift cards may be purchased from: for Other Living Things, Animal Hospital of Soquel, Pet Pals and Scotts Valley feed.

Bunnies at the Martinez site

Rescue to date: So far 20 of the group have been rescued and removed for the site. Watch for our post for photos on every rabbit. After we spay/neuter the females we will post for rescue to all major rescue groups for rescue and to the public for adoptions.

How you can help:
Volunteer: Help care for the rabbits on site, transport bunnies to spay neuter, move supplies to the location, or set up fosters.
Foster: If you can foster that will help, especially if you are in the Martinez and surrounding areas.
Bring in supplies. Or order supply and we will pick up and deliver to the rabbits.
Donate: If you would like to donate to help these rabbits please use our PayPal site or donate by check. Let us know it is for the Martinez rescue.

May 18, 2014

The Rabbit Haven of Santa Cruz California is beginning a rescue of 130-150 rabbits that are now surviving in an abandoned backyard in Martinez California. Will you join us in helping these Martinez rabbits get to safety? The family that once lived here moved due to an extensive house fire. They have been forced out for months. As you will see in the initial photos, the problem has gotten out of control. It will become much worse if we do not step in now.

There are rabbits of all ages and many types in this group. The rabbits desperately need help. Click this link to see their initial photos.

Contra Costa Rabbit Rescue (CCRR) is the local representative that is nearest this rescue site. The Rabbit Haven will direct the rescue and CCRR will work with Haven and all other volunteers on the site. CCRR is also applying for grant funds to help these rabbits get spayed /neutered. We welcome other non profits to join us in this effort. The rabbits are being picked off by predators, and the situation is unhealthy and unsafe for the rabbits. Of course massive breeding is occurring right now so we need to get busy sorting males and females tomorrow and work from there.

The people who once lived at this site come every day to provide food and water but they are over their heads from the sheer number of rabbits now in the yard. This situation got out of control due to lack of spay neuter funds, the fire which displaced the family and other rabbits being dumped into this yard. Much like Moreland, this group of rabbits is a mixture of many rabbits from who knows where. This site is known as a rabbit dumping site. CCRR agreed to be on the ground to help carry out the set up of the rescue along with Haven volunteers this Sunday. This will be Haven's first day on site. The rescue process will take at least a month to accomplish. Sunday is the day we need to move quickly to access and get moving on structures so we can sort bunnies and move them into safety right away. We need more hands to carry this off. Sadly there is no triage site and the local shelter is too small to assist. We need to use in place rescue plans. We need local support and volunteers to get this done.

For this to work successfully we need rescue community support (volunteers) vet care, supplies, connections to low cost spay/neuter ASAP. We need volunteers to sort, separate, build temporary pen enclosures, (rescue in place situation), provide urgent medical care, vet transport, photographers, connections to rescues statewide. We'll need transporters too to get rabbits off site and into rescue. Once we have the date for building structure we will post everyone. It will be done in 7-14 days.

The Rabbit Haven agreed to offer technical assistance, plans for enclosures, volunteer support and to manage the rescue, plus assist with a spay/neuter grant. So far $500.00 has been raised to purchase the needed supply for enclosures and Pet Food Express and local feed supply stores in the area have been contacted about supplies. The $500 is match funds to help gather the money we will need to create the safe place, provide needed medical care and spay neuter then place these animals.

The local shelter cannot offer a triage site. Local shelter has room for only 9 max. This shelter gives a limited time for rabbits to stay at the shelter anyway. This is a very small shelter and not able to manage triage for this large rescue group.

Non profit groups, contact us if you want to be a part of this large scale rescue. Your ideas are welcome. We look forward to hearing from you and to know if you can send volunteers or be a volunteer to assist tomorrow. We will maintain the schedule here at the Rabbit Haven and stay in contact with any new rescue groups that join this rescue. The Haven will obtain approval and waivers for your groups so you can go on site.

Have extra supply or want to donate new items? The Martinez bunnies need it:

  • Carriers
  • fresh towel top line carriers
  • Pop up canopies
  • tarps
  • Bales of hay
  • bedding
  • nest boxes
  • x-pens
  • large bags of food
  • cages 43" minimum
  • superset cages or larger
  • Leith cages if you have extra. (great for moms and litters)
  • low cost greens source
  • baby x-pens for foster set ups
  • flat sheets for foster set ups
  • food and water dishes

You may donate cash also, see how on our donations page.

Volunteers: In the next 7 days we need people that can sex rabbits, do nail trims, groom, sort, and feed babies. We also need enclosure building help, triage volunteer support, people to feed babies KMR, spay/neuter ideas. We need your help. Please come out to help these bunnies. There is something for every volunteer to do... Now and during the rescue process.

Fundraising we be key for this rescue. We need money for spay neuter, medications, vet care, and foster set ups. Even picking up donated supply and taking it to the site will be Very helpful Pet Food Express (warehouse space /Mike Murray) may donate.

Call/Email us right away. Working together we can manage this large rescue. The Rabbit Haven

Designed by James Farris