At 10 a.m. on December 27, Chris and Dave, two Lake Murray runners, discovered five tame, domesticated rabbits wandering around the edge of the service road near the 2 ¼ mile marker of the trail.
Chris, who said she was one of the rangers at the Mission Trails Regional Park Visitors Center, was eager to try and capture the pets and find them homes; otherwise, they would certainly end up as prey for hawks or coyotes. Lake staff have rescued plenty of pets in the past.
On December 27, three of the five bunnies were captured by Chris and her partner, Dave. Chris said the rabbits were so tame that they hopped over to them as if they were asking for help. The bunnies were babies; they were put into a pet cage with rabbit food, lettuce and carrots.
According to Chris, other runners stopped to try and find the other two, larger rabbits: a black one and a brown one, who may have been the parents —the babies were either brown or black.
A small group of people searched in the nearby bushes and grass for the two rabbits. A lady on a bike, who had taken abandoned baby squirrels to the animal shelter in the past, stopped to help, too. Finally, the small group gave up.
Chris and Dave began asking everyone who passed if they were interested in having a cute pet. No one committed to an adoption arrangement, but phone numbers were exchanged in case there was a change of heart.
The park staff was alerted that two pet rabbits were still lost at Lake Murray.
Dave said that if no one wanted rabbits as pets, they should take them to the County Animal Shelter at 5480 Gaines Street.