CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- When people think of the animal shelter, they typically think of dogs and cats, but sometimes there are other animals to be found. One such animal at the Kanawha/Charleston Humane Association in June 2005 was Bruno, a mini lop rabbit adopted by Tabitha Lair and her family.
"I just saw him, saw that he had been there for 17 days, and I was like, 'They can't kill a bunny,'" said Lair, of Charleston.
Bruno, whose full name is Bruno Bernard Lair (and whose first name comes from the Lairs' favorite taxi driver on their first trip to Anegada in the British Virgin Islands), weighs 8 pounds and will be 9 years old in May.
When she adopted him, Tabitha had never had a rabbit. "I'm from Lincoln County originally. We had various farm animals and pets growing up, but I don't remember having a rabbit," she said.
According to the shelter staff, Bruno was an ill-considered Easter purchase.
"A girl had gotten him for Easter and didn't understand at her apartment that 'no pets' meant no pets," Lair said. "She bought him, then the landlord wouldn't let her have him, so she brought him to the shelter."
Bruno was 3 months old when Lair came across him on the shelter's website.
"I have a habit of browsing," she said. "I had a tendency at the time to look at the 'Other' pets tab. They have 'Dogs,' 'Cats' and then 'Other' pets. People tend to not think about the other pets; they think of the shelter as just dogs and cats."