SPCA New Zealand

Maggie’s journey with the SPCA

14 June 2018
Maggie’s journey with the SPCA

When an animal ends up at the SPCA, they have often experienced some sort of suffering in their short life.

Whether they were abused, neglected, lost, or their family just didn’t want them any longer, it is never easy when we welcome them into our care. So when an animal is welcomed into the SPCA not just once, but four times, it is truly heartbreaking. Maggie, the agouti and white rabbit, first arrived at the SPCA after she was handed into an after-hours vet clinic in 2014.

She was then picked up by an SPCA staff member, and so her SPCA history began. The team instantly knew that Maggie was special. She was unlike any other rabbit who had arrived at the SPCA. Maggie was hilarious and strong-willed. She knew what she wanted, and there was no way she would accept anything less. It was exciting to wonder who would be lucky enough to become her new family.

A month later, Maggie was adopted to be bonded with a male rabbit called Couscous, and her future was looking bright. But despite her owner’s best efforts, Maggie decided she appreciated her independence far too much, and didn’t feel like making friends. As a result, she ended up at the SPCA a second time.

Second, third, fourth families

Maggie waited another two months before she was adopted by her second family. They taught her to walk on her hind legs and turn in a full circle for treats, but sadly, due to unforeseen circumstances, Maggie was forced to pack her bags and seek refuge at the SPCA for a third time. Six months later, and just a few months after being adopted into her third home, Maggie’s SPCA bedroom had to be made up for her again for her fourth return to the SPCA. Justine, SPCA’s small-animal attendant, was determined to make sure Maggie wasn’t disheartened by this series of unfortunate events.

She was allocated time to run around in a large space every day, and was given many enrichment items for her to dig and destroy. It was no comparison to a real home with a family who loved her, but the perfect home had not yet surfaced. During another six months at the SPCA, Maggie watched 103 other small animals depart with families of their own.

Fifth and final forever home

Then in October 2017, a lovely couple walked through the doors and decided they wanted to give Maggie everything she deserved. It was a memorable moment for SPCA staff when they watched with crossed fingers and hopeful smiles as Maggie was carried out the door. They had a feeling Maggie’s luck had changed, and she had finally found her fifth and final forever home.

Jessica and Robbie, Maggie’s new parents, say that as soon as they met Maggie they instantly knew that Maggie was the rabbit for them. Just like everyone at the SPCA, they loved how she was feisty and clever. These two qualities made her special. “Our friend, who was working at the SPCA, told us about Maggie, as she knew our previous rabbit had sadly passed away,” says Jessica. “Our last bunny, Nibbles, who also didn’t love cuddles or human interaction very much, was just like Maggie – a little bit sassy, but very much still loved by us.”

Maggie has since made friends with Jessica and Robbie’s cat, Shiro. She is loving her life as a solo bunny, but with a part-time feline friend. “We let Maggie out into the garden for an hour when we get home from work, and Shiro will often go and lie down in front of Maggie,” says Jessica.

Maggie also likes to sit next to Shiro after her adventures in the garden. “They have touched noses a few times which is pretty cute,” Jessica laughs.

Time outside

In her new home, Maggie’s favourite things to do are to play in the garden, dig, eat the herbs, rearrange the fallen cabbage tree leaves, and zoom around at crazy speeds. Jessica says that having to let Maggie out in the afternoons means she and Robbie have also started spending a lot more time outside. “It is nice to have some time outside relaxing each afternoon to watch her bounce around,” says Jessica. “It’s like a type of mindfulness.” Thanks to her wonderful new family who understand Maggie for who she is, Maggie won’t ever be coming back to the SPCA again. It really is fifth time lucky for Maggie – and the SPCA couldn’t be happier for her!

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