The Warren Peace Bunny Sanctuary will have a late opening date this year due to a deadly rabbit virus. - Credit: Facebook/Christina Bombaek

Okanagan bunny sanctuary missing Easter again due to deadly virus

A deadly bunny virus on the West Coast is causing Warren Peace to take precautions

For the second year in a row, a Lake Country rabbit sanctuary will not be open for Easter due to the threat of a deadly bunny virus.

The Warren Peace Bunny Sanctuary, located on Pelmewash Parkway, was closed for last year’s season to protect the non-profit’s roughly 300 rabbits and this year is following the same trend.

Four rabbits were found dead on Vancouver Island and the province is warning rabbit owners to be cautious after a rabbit hemorrhagic disease, which is an extremely infectious and lethal disease exclusive to rabbits.

READ MORE: Four rabbits dead as ‘extremely infectious’ virus returns to Vancouver Island

“A lot of the people that come at Easter come from the coast, and they could be carrying it,” said owner Antoinette Monod.

The non-profit usually has a bunny station at Vernon’s Village Green Shopping Centre for Easter, but this year they’re taking extra cautions.

The bunnies have to be vaccinated each year against the disease and with the help of the community, enough funds were raised from last year to be able to buy the vaccinations for 2019, Monod said.

But as the vaccinations are coming from France, the rabbits won’t be vaccinated in time for Easter weekend.

READ MORE: Lake Country bunny sanctuary closed due to deadly virus threat

“What we’re going to try and do, when we get to be open, we’re thinking of doing an Easter in May and then we’ll do some things of what we would have done for this Easter, except for the mall of course,” she said.

She isn’t sure when an opening date for the sanctuary, but is asking patrons to stay updated with the sanctuary’s Facebook page, where all the opening events will be posted.

“It should be (open) a lot faster than last year,” she said. “We’re just going to have to play it by ear.”

A donation box will be out at the end of the sanctuary’s driveway and the sanitary is always accepting animal food donations.

READ MORE: Lake Country bunny sanctuary overwhelmed with community support

For 2019, the number of rabbits brought to the non-profit has been lower than in recent years, when a batch of 20 rabbits from Keremeos had babies.

“This year we’ve had a lot of babies, but not as bad as when (they were from Keremeos). We have people calling us up and saying ‘there’s a bunny, or two bunnies hopping through our yard.’”

For more information visit the Warren Peace Facebook page.

READ MORE: Make all your Easter bunnies chocolate this year

@carliberry_
carli.berry@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

United Way celebrates seven decades of impact in Southern Interior

Organization sees issues with poverty, mental health and addictions, heighten during the pandemic

Two new COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health

The total number of Interior Health cases since the beginning of the pandemic is now at 522

New signs in the works for Victoria Rd. and traffic circle

Revelstoke City Council moves forward with Phase 2 of wayfinding project

Glimpses of Revelstoke’s past for Sept. 24

A look at our local history, gathered by Revelstoke Museum & Archives staff

B.C. records 98 more COVID-19 cases, most in Lower Mainland

One new senior home outbreak, Surrey Memorial outbreak over

Kelowna man injured during arrest sues RCMP

Supreme Court civil claim alleges Dustin Blondin was the victim of an ‘unprovoked attack’

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

Parks Canada not responsible for Mount Kobau blockade

Nearby residents have been vocal about plans to turn the area into a national park

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

$250K reward offered as investigation continues into Sea to Sky Gondola vandalism

Police also asking for specific footage of Sea to Sky highway around time of incident

Trudeau ‘disappointed’ by RCMP treatment of Sikh officers over mask issue

World Sikh Organization of Canada said taking Sikh officers off the front lines constitutes discrimination

Liberals reach deal with NDP on COVID-19 aid bill, likely averting election

NDP and the Liberals have reached an agreement on COVID-19 sick-leave

Most Read