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Tuesday, August 11, 2020

How rabbits helped transform one student’s life

When one normally thinks of a animal shelter, rabbits are not usually the first thing that comes to mind. Yet, being the third most popular pet in the United States, many rabbits end up in shelters or in other undesirable situations.

Animal lover Anatt Adi, a CSUN graduate and animal science major at Pierce College, has dedicated a majority of her time to rescuing and spreading awareness on the proper care of rabbits.

“They’re the most misunderstood pet, and most of that is due to the fact that there isn’t a lot of information out there,” Adi said. “You go out and get a pet and you don’t think about it too much. Most just think, I want this one today, and then they get home and its freaking out. After time you find out your pets just happy to be with you, but it just chewed up your 80 dollar Macbook cable.”

Adi’s passion for animals have always been a part of her life. She knew she wanted to be in a field helping animals, but it wasn’t until she moved to New York she began to discover what she wanted to do.

Originally a Los Angeles native, Adi and her family moved to New York when she was in high school. While living there, her younger sister received a rabbit as a gift but lost interest in it shortly after. Adi couldn’t help but feel bad for their pet.

“I felt bad so I started taking care of it, and before I knew it I became fascinated with it,” Adi said. “She was a riot, she would happily sit on your lap, or watch TV with you.”

When she graduated high school, she came back to LA by herself and started to attend college. When Adi began to feel homesick after a year, her mother encouraged her to get a pet. After some time searching online, she found a rabbit at the West Valley Animal Shelter that caught her eye and decided to adopt it.

“When I got to the shelter, I asked to pick her up, and it took about twenty minutes for someone to genuinely help me. I think because they thought rabbits? Thats a joke,” Adi said.

Soon after she got her rabbit, Missy, Adi’s life began to change. She took Missy with her everywhere, whether it was grocery shopping, the bank, and even class, which helped make Missy a social pet.

“Even when seasoned rescuers meet Missy, they freak out. They ask me how did you do this? Where can i get one? And when they learn that I babied her since day one they understood,” Adi said.

Adi eventually took her love for rabbits to the next level and decided to volunteer at a rescue center.

“I realized I could sit here and hate life, or I could be proactive about it. So I made the effort to volunteer at Bunnyluv,” Adi said.

After joining BunnyLuv, a non-profit, no-kill rabbit rescue, Adi soon became involved with rescuing a group of rabbits on the street. Due to some complications in finding them homes she is currently caring for ten baby rabbits.

Adi and volunteers go to schools and other functions to help spread awareness about proper treatment of these pets and how crucial it is to spay and neuter them.

“I didn’t know that people overbred rabbits around easter as holiday gifts until I became friends with Anatt,” Vince Ginsberg said, Adi’s colleague said. “People get tired of them and just abandon them. They’re often inbred and mistreated. Its just bad.”

Adi’s passion for rabbits have not only changed her perspective on animals but for her colleagues as well.

“Adi has really opened my eyes when it came to rabbits and I try to help now whenever i can. I mean, when you go to a shelter everyone wants the cats or the dogs, but no one thinks of the rabbits or the smaller animals,” Rosemary Dominguez, one of Adi’s colleagues said.

Adi’s involvement with rabbits only continue to increase, as she currently fosters rabbits for the rescue as well as several bunnies.

“Bunnies were always her thing. Some people are dog people, or cat people, but she has always been a bunny person,” Ginsberg said.

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