Rabbit Advocacy Animal Matters


Rabbit Bylaws

By admin | November 26, 2008

On November 25, 2008, Council approved several bylaw changes that will:

  • Prohibit the feeding of rabbits (or other animals) in parks or public spaces;
  • Prohibit the sale or adoption of rabbits that have not been spayed or neutered;
  • Prohibit uncontained feral or pet rabbits from occurring on private property; and
  • Require property owners to clean up problem breeding sites (e.g. wood piles).
Comment: The Rabbit Advocacy Group of BC has been a driving force in stopping the sale and adoption of unaltered rabbits.  The impulse buy of baby rabbits has led to immeasurable suffering for millions of these creatures.  Kelowna has made the right decision, and we will continue to lobby all municipalities to adopt similar bylaws.
Note: While Petcetera has stopped sales in all Lower Mainland stores, rabbits are still being sold in Victoria, Nanaimo, Kamloops, Prince George, and Penticton.  This, despite President and CEO, Mr. Urbani, agreeing stop their sale in all BC stores by September 1, 2007.  This is why we need bylaws.  Breeders and pet store owners put profits before lives.  And people, be responsible and think carefully before bringing a pet into your home.  They are lifetime commitments!! 

The City of Kelowna: Bylaw No. 5421-82

Animal and Poultry Regulation and Animal Pound Bylaw 
Revised November 24, 2008 and approved by Council on November 25, 2008.
The newly elected City Council is sworn in on December 1, 2008.   

November 30, 2008

From: Rabbit Advocacy Group of BC
To: Mayor Shepherd and Council
Cc:  City Clerk, The Province, Kelowna Daily Courier, Kelowna Capital News, Castanet, Craig Daniell, SPCA BoD
Re: Petcetera selling intact baby rabbits despite new bylaw
Dear Mayor and Council,
Two of us drove from Vancouver to Kelowna today, Sunday, November 30th, to pick up ten of the captured rabbits from EBB, that were being held for us at the Kelowna SPCA.  These are domestic rabbits and their offspring that have been purchased through pet stores like Petcetera, and which were destined for death unless rescue groups stepped in. 
We thank Council for approving a bylaw on November 25, 2008 that would "prohibit the sale or adoption of rabbits that have not been spayed or neutered."
Imagine our shock when we visited Petcetera at its new location in the Capri Mall and saw two baby bunnies for sale!  There was much media hype when Petcetera and the BC SPCA announced in March, 2007 that beginning April 2nd, Petcetera would no longer sell rabbits, but instead serve as a satellite adoption centre for rabbits from SPCA branches.  The program was to be fully implemented by September 1, 2007.  It never happened.  To this day stores in Victoria, Nanaimo, Penticton, Prince George, and Kamloops still sell unsterilized rabbits.  Now that the Kelowna store has reopened it appears as if it's business as usual.  This, despite claims by Mr. Urbani, President and CEO of Petcetera, that they "strive to be a socially responsible business with a strong commitment to the welfare of animals." (North Shore News, April 1, 2007)  Mr Urbani has reneged on his promise, and now it seems as though he's prepared to violate Kelowna's new bylaws that would help protect rabbits from being abandoned and exterminated once they become unwanted.
We ask that the City investigate this matter and ensure that the new bylaw will be enforced.  Attached are two pictures.
A response is requested.
Carmina Gooch, President
Rabbit Advocacy Group of BC
North Vancouver



Dec. 2/08 A phone call was made to Petcetera this morning, and it was learned that the two rabbits we saw on Sunday were gone, and that more baby bunnies were expected on Friday.  Price is $44.00.  We contacted the City of Kelowna with this information.  Letters are needed to Kelowna Council, and Petcetera.  Please help us by spreading the word and crossposting our information to other sites.

Update: No more rabbits arrived at the store. The two that were reported as "gone," were 'rescued' and sent to sanctuary.

A letter to Petcetera:

Mr. Dan Urbani,


We are wondering when you are going to stop selling rabbits in all your stores in BC, as you said you announced in March, 2007.  It's over a year later and stores outside the Lower Mainland still have unsterilized baby rabbits for sale, including the newly reopened outlet in Kelowna.  A city bylaw prohibits the sale or adoption of unsterilized rabbits. 


Petco will be adopting sterilized rabbits from rescue groups all across the USA beginning in January, 2009.  They've made the socially responsible decision. When can we expect you to do the same in Canada?

The rabbits need your help! Contact rabbitadbc@shaw.ca

Dec.5/08  We received a call from the City of Kelowna (bylaws), saying our service request has been dealt with.  However, we need people like you to keep Petcetera from trying to bring baby rabbits back into their stores.

Read More about Petcetera

The BC SPCA and Petcetera's rabbit program

Petcetera still selling rabbits in BC stores despite promise to end sales
Petcetera files for creditor protection in 2009, again in 2014, & now out of business!