Stop the Return of Rabbits to Carol Van Wie
  • Petitioned Calvert County District Court

This petition was delivered to:

Calvert County District Court

Stop the Return of Rabbits to Carol Van Wie

    1. Judith Lainer
    2. Petition by

      Judith Lainer

      Round Hill, VA

Carol Van Wie runs the Bunny Magic Wildlife and Rabbit Rescue, Inc., incorporate in the state of Maryland on 10/23/2000. Additionally, Bunny Magic is a registered IRS 501(c)(3) non-profit charity. This 501(C)(3) charity's purpose, according to the Internal Revenue Service, is for preventing cruelty to animals.

On August 8th, 2012, the Calvert County Sheriff's Office Animal Control Unit with assistance from the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigative Team (CIT) executed a search warrant at the residence where there were found 265 rabbits. 222 rabbits were seized due to poor living conditions and these rabbits would require further medical care. 43 rabbits were left on the scene. The Tri-County Animal Shelter in Hughesville, MD is caring for these rabbits at this time.

PETA stated on their website, "On August 20, Carole Van Wie, the operator of Bunny Magic Wildlife & Rabbit Rescue, Inc., was charged with 13 counts of cruelty to animals. The charges follow an August 8 raid on the facility—prompted by a PETA complaint—in which law-enforcement officers seized 222 rabbits. Officials reportedly had to don masks to rescue the flea-infested and sick rabbits from up to 4 inches of feces and urine. Investigators apparently found one rabbit dead in a cage and others denied food or water. According to news sources, seven of the rabbits rescued that day could not be saved."

On September 13th at 1:30 p.m., Ms. Van Wie is petitioning the Calvert County Court to have returned to her approximately 45 of the rabbits - mostly the fancy English Lops and Flemish Giants, giving Bunny Magic almost 90 rabbits back at her facility. On October 1, 2012 at 10:30 a.m., there will be a trial hearing on the animal cruelty charges at the Calvert County District Court.

Please tell the Calvert County District Court not to allow Carol Van Wie to collect any more rabbits.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. She Got The Rabbits Back

      Judith Lainer
      Petition Organizer

      I attended the hearing yesterday where Carole Van Wie wanted her 44 pet rabbits back. The update is that the judge awarded Ms. Van Wie all 44 back to her, so in addition to her 40 rabbits left after the seizure, she now has 84 rabbits. The judge didn't tell her not to take in any more rabbits. He didn't tell Animal Control to inspect her. He didn't care that the volunteers who will assist Ms. Van Wie can go away at any time. One volunteer who has been with her for a long time can barely walk, yet she is committed to helping care for 40 rabbits. I had to keep myself from laughing at the insanity of it all. The judge didn't care about the rabbits, really, just that they were so filthy that Ms. Van Wie's health was at risk. The hearing was appalling! The Assistant to the Calvert County State's Attorney, Michelle Saunders, was obviously not well enough qualified to give compelling enough evidence that would have let the rabbits go to rescue. I'm sad for the rabbits.

    2. Reached 500 signatures
    3. New Hearing About the Rabbits on October 4th

      Judith Lainer
      Petition Organizer

      It looks like the judge needs advice from 'people who know more about rabbits than' he does on whether to let her have her pet rabbits back.

      http://www.thebaynet.com/news/index.cfm/fa/viewstory/story_ID/29467

      The new hearing is October 4th. I think I will take that day off and go.

      They didn't mention any petitioners - that ticks me off. They didn't mention any of our letters, either.

      Please write and explain how you know a lot about rabbits and why she should not have any more than the ones she has! She has 43 now and she wants 45 more? That is just because they are the lovely English Lops and Flemish Giants.

      Honorable Robert B. Riddle
      Calvert County District Court
      200 Duke St.
      Room 2200
      Prince Frederick, MD 20678

      Refer to case 2O0051774 The second 'O' is the letter 'O', not a zero. So it reads '2 Oh zero zero 51774'. It is ludicrous that anyone even entering an Alford please should not be taking any more rabbits into her home.

    4. Stay Tuned! This Thursday at 1:30 P.M. is the Hearing!

      Judith Lainer
      Petition Organizer

      Believe me, your signatures count and I will be personally sending this petition to the judge presiding over the hearing this coming Thursday. He needs to know that Ms. Van Wie has all the rabbits she can handle right now (and 50 is still too many)! She doesn't need to be awarded any more bunnies back after having cared for them so recklessly. Please share this petition with your animal loving friends!

    5. Reached 250 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Laurie Kuhn PYLESVILLE, MD
      • almost 2 years ago

      I think the judge and the prosecuting attorney failed miserably from what everyone told me. I didn't go to the hearing because I felt like Carol seeing me there would be like rubbing salt in her wounds. After spending 5 hours grooming Carol's rabbits today and I wish Dr. Gold would have come examine them and see what kind of shape they are in rather than go to Carol's house. And I wish I would have gone to the hearing and poured alcohol mixed with Merthiolate into her wounds. And I guarantee you if they had been cats or dogs the judge would never have awarded her 85 animals especially after that kind of neglect. The PETA pics were just a few. They had hundreds of pictures. People are claiming that they got fleas at the shelter but the flea infestations I saw were not new and the animal control officer in charge or the case told me they were flea infested at Carol's house. I have flea bites all over me and although I am used to caring for neglected and sick animals I have never seen this level of neglect on this many animals. When I got home I took my clothes off outside (I live in a remote place :-) and immediately took a shower.

      Many of the rabbits had Carol Van Wie length LONG nails, and they were either morbidly obese or too skinny. I only got to groom about 8 of them because they were in bad shape and I ran out of time and energy.

      I saw 3 morbidly obese Flemish giants, 2 red and one chinchilla giant. I'm going to use the word he because I can't remember all of their genders.

      One red one had maloccluded incisors that were badly broken and uncared for that need to be removed. He also had dried urine soaked matting on his rear end and his genital area and back feet the kind that a long time in confinement and neglect to build up. He had a URI (white snot), fur mites and so much flea dirt on him that it must have taken a very long time to build up like that. If you have ever worked at a shelter sometimes kittens come in with that much flea dirt one them and they die of anemia from having their blood sucked out by fleas. The only thing I think saved this rabbit from anemia death is he is so obese. Also his nails were Carol Van Wie long.

      The other red Flemish Giant He also had dried urine soaked matting on his rear end and his genital area and back feet the kind that takes a very long time to build up to build up. He had a URI (white snot), fur mites and so much flea dirt on him that it must have taken a very long time to build up to build up like that. Also his nails were Carol Van Wie long. He also had bleeding quarter sized sore hocks on both back feet.

      The chinchilla colored Flemish giant also had dried urine soaked matting on his rear end and his genital area and back feet the kind that takes a very long time to build up. He had a URI (white snot), fur mites and so much flea dirt on him that it must have taken a very long time to build up like that. Also his nails were Carol Van Wie long. He also had a slight head tilt and appeared to be dizzy.

      One brown and white English lop and moderate matting Carol Van Wie long nails and she had trouble walking that I think is caused by long term confinement because when I took her out and groomed her she had no trouble running away form me but was sort of crawling around in her cage.

      Several of the seemingly younger English lops were moderately matted but were on the thin side and had long nails.

      One mini rex had an infected eye with severe tear stain burns on his face and was spinning in circles and falling over. He was being treated with Baytril

      She is getting 44 rabbits back and she already has 40

      Of the ones she signed over most of them were plain and obese and in pairs and trios. All that I saw had fleas even though I know first hand that they were treated once for fleas. Some had more severe flea infestations than others. One rabbit has a facial abscess about the size of 2 golf balls. Judi couldn't leave her there so even if she just gets euthanized at least she will have pain meds and good care for a few days. There is an albino lop who I wish I had taken for myself because I really think she is going to die. She looked very sick and had a lot of urine on her. One small mini-rex who was very thin, had a severe URI and was on baytril but went into severe respiratory distress while we were there and she seemed like she was dying (gasping for breath with her mouth open and eyes bugging out) so we recommended that they euthanize her. I think it would be fair to say that almost all of the rabbit have URIs.

      When Judi and Kim Stephens told me the judge awarded her all of the rabbits back I felt like I had to vomit. I told the assistant supervisor who has been overseeing their care and his face turned blood red and he lit up a cigarette.

      We took 3 dwarfs, a lion head mix, a lop and and obese white rabbit with red and black spots. It was hard to leave the others

      The shelter is doing a good job with the huge job placed on them. The have them in a clean new barn with a cement floor and ventilation. They also have ate least 3 fans and 2 HUGE ac units. When I got there after my 2 plus hour drive one way. The rabbits were clean and fed. Many of them are on Baytril because they have URIs, UTIs, urine scald and abscesses.

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    • Laurie Kuhn PYLESVILLE, MD
      • almost 2 years ago

      Although I believe Ms. Van Wie has good intentions, I don't believe she can properly care for over 80 rabbits which is how many she will have if the rabbits she is trying to get back are returned to her. I can also tell you that she signed over 120 plain and sick rabbits and is petitioning to keep only very fancy breeds of rabbits who could easily be placed in loving homes. I have been a rabbit rescuer for almost 20 years and I can tell you that I would set anyone's limit at 20 tops and even that would make it difficult to care for them properly. I hope and pray that these rabbits are allowed to go to good homes and reputable rescues to them be placed in good homes and be allowed to live great lives instead of being stuck in small cages with no exercise and dirty surroundings. Please put the rabbit's first. I can tell you first hand that Ms Van Wie actively and passionately sought out more rabbits even as she was overwhelmed with 275 rabbits living in squalor in her home, garage and barn. This means she has a hoarding problem and not only do you have the mess that the hoarder makes to clean up and pay for but the hoarders are very manipulative and get some in the community to think they are a poor person with a huge heart that the government is victimizing and so them you have people in the community supporting them and they lie and do and say what ever they need to to be able to continue to hoard. Hoarding is a disease just like any other addition and she will do what ever it takes to try to continue to hoard these animals.

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    • gina oliver BELLINGHAM, WA
      • almost 2 years ago

      Cruelty and neglect must be addressed.

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    • Regina Whitman QUEEN CREEK, AZ
      • almost 2 years ago

      I am a rabbit rescue and this sickens me. Returning these abused & neglected creatures to the place of neglect is A CRIME!

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    • Kevin Johnson MIAMI, FL
      • almost 2 years ago

      It's insanity to even consider returning any of these animals to this woman. She obviously is a hoarder, and needs help---but the rabbits need *far* more help. Please don't return them to this cycle of abuse.

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