Thirteen rabbits abandoned in cardboard box on Co Armagh roadside

The USPCA said the animals were found by a member of the public in Camlough
Suzanne McGonagle

THIRTEEN rabbits abandoned in a cardboard box in Co Armagh were "left to die at the roadside", an animal welfare charity has said.

The USPCA said the animals were found by a member of the public out walking their dog in the Green Road area of Camlough on Wednesday.

The rabbits were made up of a mother, father and 11 babies - five of which were furred kits and the other six are furless, which denotes they are less than seven days old.

The charity said they were "in a state of sheer distress and freezing, without any intervention the bunnies would have inevitably perished".

Colleen Tinnelly from the USPCA said: "We horrified and appalled that someone abandoned these poor defenceless animals. They were essentially left to die at the roadside. The USPCA condemns the actions of the individual responsible for the abandonment.

"Once again, we have been reminded that there are cruel, heartless individuals out there who do not care for the welfare of their animals."

Ms Tinnelly appealed to the public "to do their research before getting a pet to prevent cases like this happening".

"Each animal be it a dog, bunny or cat has its own set of needs and unless you are able to meet these needs and give the animal the best life possible, do not consider getting a pet.

"Thankfully, following examination from our veterinary team, the bunnies are in good health. However, this could have been a very different story if they had not been found and brought into our care.

"We commend and thank the member of the public for bringing them into our care, rather than leaving them to a slow and agonising death at the side of the road."