Our Wonderful New Gig Harbor Bunny Barn!
Our amazing new Bunny Barn is almost finished! The barn is full of happy, comfortable bunnies who each have nice large areas to live and hop around in. And we have a wonderful meet and greet room just waiting for you, so you can meet and get to know our bunnies.
On this page, you can read all about the construction of our 'dream barn'. It took a lot of work and many donations from our friends of time and money. Being able to provide a sanctuary for the bunnies as they wait for their forever homes makes it all worth it.
Diary of a new barn
Breaking Ground, November 2002
Groundbreaking for the barn began in November 2002! We are very fortunate in that our talented and committed founder, Sue, is also a licensed contractor and will do most of the barn construction. This will keep costs relatively low for a project of this magnitude, although the total budget for the barn will likely exceed $50K.
We are very excited about this! The new rabbit barn will be complete with a veterinary clinic and surgical facilities, recovery room, 24 new indoor/outdoor rabbit runs, exercise yard, kitchen and storage, and best of all, an old-folks home with both indoor and outdoor access where the older residents can live out their lives in a community setting.
We are also planning two feral rabbit enclosures. These predator-proof enclosures will house up to 30 rabbits each and will allow for grazing, burrow and tunnel digging, and all the heel-kicking room a rabbit could want!
Our immediate goal was to raise the funds necessary to continue construction of the rabbit barn. This will enable us to move our current rabbit residents to their new home as soon as possible and open up additional runs for more rescues. As you can see, we have our work cut out for us; however, we remain excited and committed to our goal of rescuing, adopting, and educating.
The Bunny Barn is taking shape!
The next step is to start framing in walls, windows and doors. We've a long way to go before this will be ready for the residents' move in, but hope to be able to settle them in before the hot temperatures of summer!
The siding is going on. Windows are being put in. The bunny clinic is starting to take shape! Progress is happening and we're that much closer to moving our gals and guys in! Everyone, buns and humans alike, are very much looking forward to the facility being operational! Sue has been working on it every moment she has and we plan to continue to put up pictures here along the way so we can share the progress and excitement with you!
Bunny runs are starting to take shape! Each run will have a window and an outside play area access door for nice days. The loft doors are also completed and the front of the building is now sided. We are moving forward and getting closer to completion each day!
Walls for both sides of the building are now framed in. The windows are installed and there are doorwayopenings for each of the runs in place. The second story floor is now beginning to take form. It is about a third of the way completed and Sue continues to work on it. Soon the years supply of hay will be able to be placed in its rightful spot up in the loft.
Almost all the windows are repaired and in, and doors are being restored and hung. Concrete has been poured and the bunny runs outside area is taking on more shape. Progress, progress, progress!
The front of the building is now starting to get closed in. It won't be long now before the entire building will be closed in and we can look forward to an electrician wiring the building! If you or someone you know is a licensed electrician and willing to help with this, please contact, Sue Brennan, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The front is almost completely sided and will be finished soon. Next will come the beautiful windows and vent at the top. We are getting that much closer to being able to have an electrician come in. We're still in need of a licensed electrician that would be willing to take on this task at reduced or possibly even no cost.
The doors have been refinished and hung on the back of the building. Sue still needs to close in the upper portion of the building and construct a cooler for veggies that will be built on the concrete slab to the right of the doors. If you know of anyone with a working cooling unit they would be willing to donate, please have them contact email@example.com.
Okay, most people don't get absolutely giddy over the look of piping, but Sue and the volunteers certainly did once the plumping for the building was completed! This is one major project off the "to-do" list and was done at a reduced cost by a local professional. Our sincere gratitude to this individual and to those of you who's donations helped make this possible! We are this much closer to the day when all the residents will be able to move into their new facility!
The front is completely sided and the windows are soon to follow! Though the vent at the peak of the roof presented its own challenges, it is now snuggly in place and all framed in. The building is closing in and getting that much closer to welcoming its new residents!
The future cooler that will be enormously helpful in enabling us to preserve the bunny greens and veggies as long as possible has taken shape! Sue began soliciting for a free or reduced cost cooling unit and has been successful. She has located an area business that is willing to donate the cooling unit. They have also agreed to offer installation, all the hardware and the initial charging for a very reasonable fee of only $1,200.00. This unit will most certainly pay for itself!
We surprised Sue with some veggies and I was able to grab updated pictures of the progress on the barn. It was almost dark, but with a little drastic lightening of the photo you can see that the windows are all in! Sue was working on the
roof to the front porch, which is now completed. She has also located an electrician who is willing to wire the building at a reduced price; though, it will still be one of the major expenses for this project.
The cooler is complete! How wonderful it is for Rabbit Haven to finally have a way to keep all the residents' greens, hard veggies and fruits fresher longer now. We'll now be able to stretch further
the fresh goodies that are donated and the ones that Sue purchases a lot further, especially during the warmer months. Once the cooling unit was installed and running, Sue set to designing and installing shelves so that we can get the most use out every inch of this wonderful giant refrigerator. This also means we are one step closer to moving our treasured friends into their new spacious living accommodations. We are so excited!
With framing, wiring, plumbing and the sheet rock completed, the next task at hand was to work on priming and then painting. We were very fortunate to have both the primer and paint donated. We ended up receiving several gallons of very high quality paint that was surplus from a Microsoft project. The paint is a yellow that takes on different hues depending on lighting; it's quite nice! After many a late nights for Sue and some help from
kind volunteers, we are very excited to now be able to pass along the great news that the inside of the building is completely painted and looks great! We are another step closer to the buns moving into their new place. :)
We received an offer for the bunny building to serve as a demonstration site for concrete floor covering. This new floor was therefore an investment of several hundred dollars opposed to the several thousand dollars (that would have bought something of considerably lower quality!).
Sue set to work on getting all the aluminum up on the walls around what will be bunny runs prior to the flooring people coming. It has been a labor of love to put it gently. It is done now though, looks wonderful and most importantly the absolute best option we could offer our furry friends.
I have mentioned several times how much a "resource guru" Sue is. This picture was a wonderful opportunity to show you just one example of this. The veggies, whether donated or purchase, often arrive at Rabbit Haven in a multitude of boxes. Sue, being absolutely determined to put to use any and all usable items, decided to turn several of these boxes into artwork for the new bunny building and it came out looking so sharp! This woman never ceases to amaze me.
We have been very blessed by our wonderful volunteer, Deidre. Not only does she foster and do outreach, she's also a very talented local artist! Deidre has been coming to Rabbit Haven for the past several weekends in order to donate her time and talents with painting adorable rabbit artwork on the aluminum siding for the runs. Many of these cuties are dear old friends of Rabbit Haven! :)