This is the annual report for CottonTails, registered charity, detailing how the charity performed during the previous year.

CottonTails® Rabbit and Guinea Pig Rescue Annual Report 2023

Charity Number 1078850, Established in 1993

 Main Name:  CottonTails®

Working Name:  CottonTails® Rescue 

Charitable Objects:  To relieve the suffering of rabbits and other animals who are in need of care and attention in particular by providing and maintaining suitable accommodation for the reception and care of unwanted rabbits and other animals. 

To advance the education of the public in the care and ownership of animals.


CottonTails® has continued with the Direct Rehoming Service throughout 2023, and it successfully fulfils our aims.  This service utilises our website and Facebook pages to facilitate the efficient placement of rabbits and guinea pigs into suitable new homes, and whilst the service is free, many satisfied owners donate to CottonTails® in gratitude for our services.

We have also continued with the neutering grant scheme, the new owner of any unneutered rabbit or single male guinea pig adopted through the Direct Rehoming Service being offered a £60 grant towards neutering and £40 towards vaccination, payable to the veterinary practice that will carry out the procedure.

The advantage of animals being rehomed directly from their owners is self-evident – enabling assistance to every animal rehome enquiry without having to address accommodation limitations.  Most rabbits and guinea pigs were successfully placed in suitable new homes within a month.

I continue to respond to many emails and messages daily regarding advice about rabbit and guinea pig welfare issues, and the claw clipping, grooming and general check-up services are well used. Slightly more owners contacted me via our Facebook page for rehoming requests compared to using our website email facility (56% compared to 44% for email).

We are very pleased to be joining forces with Bristol Animal Rescue Centre (Bristol A.R.C.) to improve rabbit welfare in Bristol and the surrounding area. We will be providing funding to Bristol A.R.C. to cover the cost of neutering rabbits through Bristol A.R.C.’s outreach services. Eligible rabbit owners seeking support with neutering and vaccinating their rabbits can find out more on Bristol A.R.C.’s website here: Outreach Clinics 


During 2023, 98 rabbits were rehomed, a decrease of 42% compared to 2022.


Of our total “intake”, 56% were male, and 44% female. This is quite unusual as generally there is no significant difference between the genders regarding rehoming requests, but this could be explained by the relatively low numbers so is not likely to be significant.


Of the rabbits rehomed during 2023, 51% were upright eared, 49% lops.  Upright-eared rabbits included dwarfs, lionheads, rexes and crossbred rabbits.


For the first time since we started in 1993, the age category with the highest intake was 3 years or more (39%), but all three categories were similar, with 32% for 1-3 years, and 29% under 1 year old, meaning the differences are not likely to be significant.

Neutering Status

A comparison of the number of rabbits that had been neutered by their owners before their registration onto the Direct Rehoming Service with those that had not, showed that only 29% had already been neutered.  CottonTails® offered a grant towards the neutering of every rabbit rehomed through the service, payable to the vet, and many owners accepted this offer, often stating that this was a big factor in deciding whether to adopt the rabbit or not.

Guinea Pigs

During 2023, 67 guinea pigs were rehomed.


There was no difference in numbers between males and females regarding guinea pigs rehomed, in common with previous years.  Only 3% of males rehomed were neutered at the time of registration into the rehoming service. Most of the guinea pigs during 2023 were registered with the rehoming service as bonded pairs (over 90%).


As in previous years, the majority (78%) of guinea pigs for rehoming were short-haired, the remaining 22% being either long-haired or semi-long-haired. This reflects the preference of owners not wanting to take on a long-haired pet that is perceived (rightly) to be harder to keep clean and healthy, and undoubtedly also influences the decision of an owner to put their pet up for adoption. We had 2 Skinny pigs to rehome, which is very unusual as they are a specialised breed and usually very expensive to purchase.


In common with previous years, most guinea pigs put up for adoption were aged between 1-3 years (57%). 12% were under 1 year and 31% over 3 years old, a significant increase from previous years, so there appears to be a shift towards older guinea pigs being rehomed than before.



Total income for 2023 was £6276.  PayPal and Direct Bank Payments comprised the bulk of the income at 59%.

Several individuals and organisations have been invaluable to the continuation of CottonTails® financially.  I would like to give a very big thank you to each one who helped even in a small way, and my sincere apologies if I have accidentally omitted anyone from the list.


ANIMAL AFFAIRS                                                £400

EASY FUNDRAISING                                          £18.22

AMAZON CORE                                                  £11.54

Individuals (no particular order)

Jane Merrick

M Loughlin

James Arrowsmith-Brown

J Holmes

Lesley Smith

Barbara Coe

H Lambert and B Moth

Richard Forster

Nicola White

Lauren Miles

Kate Buckrell

Siriol Jenkins-Hill

Konstantinos Varnakiotis

Claire Jenkins

Caroline Milnes

Sharon Sheppard

Kate Solomon

Thomas Thwaites

Christine Muddiman

John Farrell

Charlotte Taylor

Debi Barry

Cathy Burton

Petra Lawson

Adam Taylor

Tracy Benford

Catherine Blacklock

Susan Goddard


The total expenditure for 2023 was £11,868 with individual category values represented in the chart above as percentage of total expenditure.

Total Income £6276

Total Expenditure £11,868

Loss at end of 2023 = £5592

Our bank account remains healthy and will see us through the next year comfortably.


CottonTails® could not continue its valuable work if it was not for the excellent support from some wonderful people who have given help in various ways.  Sincere apologies for any omissions:

The Trustees for their continued support.

Francis for tolerating the inconvenience of living with an animal charity in the home.

Jon Humphrey (of “Random Precision”) for his support with issues relating to the website.

My sons Fraser and Ben for providing essential holiday cover.

You, our loyal friends, for continuing to support the charity financially and in other practical ways.

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