Kristen Doherty writes, November 24, 2002

I am sorry to tell you that Lorenzo passed away today. He underwent invasive bulla (middle ear) surgery on Thurs, which was his only chance for any kind of recovery from his severe ear infections and head tilt. I was providing basic post-operative care since his return home on Fri, and he quickly began to decline until he could no longer fight. The infection was extremely aggressive and was putting severe pressure on his brain and nerves. He was suffering horribly, couldn’t eat, and was struggling to breathe, so Paul and I drove him to the vet. Lorenzo’s vet assured us that we were doing the right thing by ending his pain. Paul and I can say we did everything we possibly could to give him a chance. In just seven weeks, he stole our hearts, and we will miss him terribly.


Lorenzo has severe head tilt. He was abandoned with 16 other rabbits by a 19 yr old girl who was “rescuing” rabbits. Apparently she had a drug problem and left home one day, and left the rabbits in her family’s garage to fend for themselves. The girl’s family was going to euthanize Lorenzo, so I took him home.

Lorenzo is currently undergoing aggressive ear treatment since both ears are badly infected. We’re convinced that his feisty personality is what’s keeping him fighting this horrible infection. He was put under anesthesia twice to clean/debride abscesses deep inside both ears. A few days after the very first ear cleaning, Lorenzo was able to stand, whereas he could not before.

More recently, Lorenzo underwent a complicated and costly surgical procedure called a bulla osteotomy to remove more infected tissue and debris from the middle ear. It is his only hope of achieving a near-normal quality of life. We are hoping that the surgery, along with follow-up treatment, will enable him to stand at will and to someday walk and hop. As long as he continues to receive treatment, Lorenzo will remain a Sanctuary rabbit.


Lorenzo’s treatment will require long-term use of medications and possibly ongoing surgeries and ear flushings. This means several trips to the vet.

Lorenzo is roughly 8 yrs old and currently lives in a 25″x16″x15″ cage with a top-opening lid. The cage is lined with towels and fleece.  — Kristen Doherty



Goodbye our little bi-polar girl. We miss your batting, grunting, lunging, ankle-biting and general moodiness. We miss your relentless begging for a baby carrot, your running across the top of the leather sofa at top speed, your graceful leaps high in the air, and your dramatic flops in the middle of the room. We miss you sitting under the chair next to the tree while we opened our Christmas presents. You always wanted to be close to people, whether a group of four or forty, as long as no one got too close. You were the Queen of Drama, the Queen of Mean, the Queen of Sheba, our Emma Jean. Thank heaven you didn’t suffer. We miss you every day.

Kristen and Paul

Emma was rescued in May 1999 when her “person” wanted a veterinarian to euthanize her because of her bad behavior. The vet instead asked the lady to call the Buckeye House Rabbit Society. We took Emma in as a foster bunny and when it became clear to us that she would never be adopted because of her behavior, Emma became a Sanctuary rabbit. Because she could not co-exist peacefully with other rabbits, Paul and I brought her up to our first floor where we could give her special attention and work on behavior issues. She was roughly 10 years old when she passed away from a congenital heart problem. Emma was one of the rabbits helped by the Sponsor A Sanctuary Rabbit program, so thank you to Emma’s sponsors.


We jokingly refer to Emma as our “bipolar” Sanctuary rabbit. She is moody and can scare people (including us) with her batting, grunting, lunging, and occasional biting. We are only able to give her pets on her nose, usually first thing in the morning, and she will not let us touch her anywhere else on her body. Emma is unusually territorial and makes her displeasure known if we try to enter her large pen area.

Another odd thing about Emma is that she loves to be around people, especially kids – as long as you don’t touch her. She typically bounds out of her pen to greet house guests. Many times she will plop herself in front of the fireplace when people are sitting in the family room or kitchen talking. She loves to run, dance, leap, and flop.

Emma is otherwise very healthy. Although she has no current medical expenses, she does need a steady supply of hay, fresh greens, pellets, and an occasional visit to the vet. 

— Kristen Doherty



It is with much sadness that I write of Malcolm’s passing. He died May 15, 2004, due to an abscess that had developed in his pelvic area. Because of the location of the abscess, nothing could be done for him without causing him much pain and suffering. Malcolm’s passing was very peaceful. He was roughly 5 years old.

Malcolm had been a Sanctuary rabbit since the summer of 2000 when a lady who found him wandering in her yard brought him to me. He was the first Buckeye HRS foster rabbit to become a Buckeye HRS Sanctuary bunny. His favorite food was cilantro, which he inhaled every night. His favorite thing to do (besides eat!) was to lay his head flat on the ground for pets. He will be missed.

Thank you to all those who sponsored Malcolm. The medical care he received throughout his life would not have been possible if not for your generous financial contributions.

Malcolm was abandoned in a wooded area and found by 2 good Samaritans roughly four years ago. His back legs are deformed due (most likely) to a genetic defect, but he can still run and hop. He has use of both back legs. Because he can’t completely stand up, his back end is always in contact with the floor and as a result, he frequently gets a messy bottom, requiring a bath about once a week.

Since he can’t use his back legs to clean out his ears, Malcolm gets chronic ear infections. He is now on a regular maintenance program of ear flushings and medications to control and prevent any future ear infections.  — Kristen Doherty


Goodbye, dear Malcolm — you have left a void in our lives that will never be filled. The day you came to our home, our lives changed for the better. You showed us that adversity could be overcome with a little patience and lot of caring. Things are just not the same without you scooting about, twitching your behind uncontrollably every time you got something good to eat. We will never forget your rushing up to greet us when we walked toward you, head mushed down flat, ready in the petting position. You remain with us always and forever — we love you.

Kristen and Paul Doherty






It’s with great sadness that we say goodbye to Lazlo, a Buckeye HRS Sanctuary rabbit in our care for over six years. Lazlo was our little Dutch head-tilt bunny who had been living with Calvin, another head-tilt Sanctuary bunny, for all of those six years. Here’s Lazzie’s story:

Back in May 2003, I received a call from a local animal shelter about a very sick bunny who would be euthanized if someone did not pick him up within 24 hours. When I went to retrieve him, there he was – all skinny and matted — with runny eyes, a runny nose, and a slight head-tilt. I scooped him up and brought him home, and although we treated him immediately with antibiotics and ear cleanings, his head-tilt began to get worse, not better. By the time we found a more effective antibiotic, however, the infection had spread to his inner ear and his head-tilt had worsened to a 45% angle. We continued with the antibiotic and the ear cleanings for several weeks and finally the infection was gone. His severe head-tilt was permanent, but he remained healthy for several years.

We introduced him to Calvin right away and they bonded instantly. There was no aggression between them whatsoever. It seemed as if they both knew they had something in common from the start and became best buddies for life. At mealtimes, they would run circles around each other at top speeds, twirling in opposite directions, and would inevitably crash into each other — or to avoid collision, one would jump over the other, landing on sure footing – a miraculous feat for head-tilt bunnies who learned to right themselves after weeks of falling over sideways. Lazlo, with eartips pointing to his right, and Calvin, eartips pointing to his left, were inseparable. They jumped, ran, ate, played, and snuggled together every day of those six years. (Calvin, by the way, is doing well — he’s now best friends with Puff, another Sanctuary rabbit.)

You brought us hours and hours of entertainment, laughter, and love for six-plus wonderful years. We will miss you terribly, little Lazzie.

Kristen and Paul Doherty





Lazlo, another Sanctuary rabbit with major head-tilt, has made a successful recovery; however, he will always be tilted like Calvin. He went through a rough period of rolling, as Calvin did during the worst phase of his ear infection. An infection had traveled to Lazlo’s middle ear and he eventually started to roll, uncontrollably at times.

After about four months of therapy, Lazlo is off all meds at this time. He underwent the same treatment as Calvin, and his exercise routine and physical therapy were the same as Calvin’s. Lazlo is also able to catch himself on a roll, but he hardly ever rolls anymore.

lazlo_02 lazlo_03

Lazlo now shares a pen with Calvin, our first Sanctuary rabbit with head-tilt. They bonded instantly and are best buddies. They’re both neutered and very healthy, but both are permanently tilted. Calvin tilts left and Lazlo tilts right, like mirror images of one another. They are hilarious when they both start running in circles around their pen.  — Kristen Doherty