The Georgia House Rabbit Society


Courtesy of Sarah Holbrook

The Georgia House Rabbit Society currently shelters rabbits in a building on Cherokee St NW, walking distance from Downtown Kennesaw. “So, the location we are in now, we purchased it in December of 2019. This whole year we’ve just been doing renovations and we moved in about a month and a half ago. Our previous shelter was 1,800 square feet and this new location is 6,500 square feet. So, it’s a substantial amount of space,” GHRS Shelter Manager, Jennifer McGee said.

Beth Hudson, Reporter

The Georgia House Rabbit Society, located near downtown Kennesaw, helps foster and adopt domesticated rabbits in Georgia. GHRS provides services such as education on how to properly take care of a rabbit, necessary supplies for rabbits available in their retail storefront, bunny boarding for vacations, grooming and nearly any type of pampering available for a rabbit. 

“[The Georgia House Rabbit Society] is a nonprofit and we are a rabbit rescue for domestic rabbits only. So, we rescue, rehabilitate, get them spattered, neutered, and then we get them available for adoption into loving homes,” Shelter Manager, Jennifer McGee said. 

In 1996 GHRS, first started sheltering bunnies from homes. Nine years later, they bought a building in Marietta to put bunnies up for adoption. The shelter moved to its current location on Cherokee St NW near downtown Kennesaw during late September 2020. The shelter grew 4,700 square feet from a size of 1,800 square feet to 6,500 square feet. This makes more space for the rabbits, volunteers and storage. GHRS currently shelters around 80 to 100 rabbits available for adoption. 

“[When considering] the new location, it’s not necessarily what I like about it, it’s what the rabbits like about it. It’s so much more open and brought much more sunlight, and more space in general which is great for volunteers…[it’s] just more space to create a better environment for the rabbits,” McGee said.

GHRS receives their bunnies from animal control from intake requests submitted by rabbit owners that need to give away their rabbits for special reasons and from calls reporting stray rabbits found all around Georgia. When the shelter receives a call, they find out the rabbit’s location and will either tell the caller to take the bunny to animal control or travel and pick up the bunny themselves. GHRS will also rescue rabbits on the euthanization list from animal facilities.

“We take back bunnies that have been adopted from us, it’s kind of a guarantee for adopters that can’t predict the future. If something happens, you’re not going to have to worry about finding a home for your bunny because they come right back here,” McGee said. 

When GHRS receives new rabbits, they implement a health intake on them. This includes checking the bunny’s ears, eyes, mouth, nose, incisors, teeth, body weight and deworming the bunny. Once the bunny heals, they become ready for adoption. 

If people become interested in adopting or fostering a bunny, they submit a foster or adoption application and receive information on everything they need to know about taking care of a rabbit. They then come to the shelter to show they can properly take care of a bunny. After that process, the adopters schedule an appointment to look at the bunnies. GHRS averages at adopting about 20 rabbits per month but adopted 73 rabbits in May due to quarantine and the nationwide stay-at-home effort. 

“Our procedure prior to [adopters] coming to help us weed through the people that are serious, and then generally if somebody has an appointment, 95% of the time they leave with a bunny,” McGee said. 

GHRS boards adopted bunnies with boarding requests available on their website. GHRS only accepts spattered or neutered rabbits for boarding. They provide grooming services as well, with requests on their website. Grooming can include nail trimmings, scent gland cleanings, shaving for certain rabbit breeds, and hygienic trims. 

The shelter accepts donations such as towels, blankets, and other supplies on their amazon wish list and website. They also need volunteers to do things such as clean rabbit pens, feed rabbits, do laundry, and various other housekeeping tasks. 

“There are lots of options out there as far as rescues for dogs and cats, but there aren’t the same options for rabbits. When dogs and cats are dumped outside, they’re predators, so they have a much better chance at survival than rabbits that are prey animals. So, if you’re looking to donate time, money, or supplies, maybe look past the big organizations that everybody knows about, and dig a little deeper,” McGee said.