By Nelson Groom
A bald rabbit destined for death because of an ultra-rare genetic disorder leaving him completely hairless has become an unlikely social media star.
The two-month-old bunny, named Mr Bigglesworth after Dr. Evil’s bald cat in the Austin Powers films, has picked up legions of online followers after getting a second lease of life.
Mother-of-two Cassandra Hall, from Wodonga, Victoria, Australia, was given the two-month-old rex rabbit last week by a breeder who planned to have him put down because nobody wanted him.
But the mobile phone-sized bunny, who was born with an elusive hairless gene, has no shortage of support online and has quickly racked up 6,700 Instagram followers – who even send him fan art.
Graphic designer Cassandra, 40, said: “I think people like how unique Mr Bigglesworth is. Nobody has seen a rabbit without hair, and it shows hew delicate they are.
“Some online commenters call him ‘really ugly’ and say things like ‘imagine waking up to that crawling on your face’ and I’m upset by that.
‘I had to write ‘no negativity’ on his account. But there are other people coming to his defence and even drawing pictures of him.”
Cassandra adopted Mr Bigglesworth after she spotted a photo of the rabbits a local breeder had available for sale.
But when she spotted the bald bunny she noticed there was a sign next to him which stated ‘hairless rabbit, not for sale’.
And after messaging to enquire about Mr Bigglesworth the mum-of-two discovered the rabbit was set to be put to sleep because his rare disorder meant no one wanted him.
Cassandra then found out the last rabbit born with the same illness had sadly not made it and so was determined to save her new pet’s life.
She said she had only heard of a handful of cases worldwide of the undiagnosed condition, which makes him vulnerable but does not impact his health.
Cassandra said: “The breeder said ‘do you want him? and I thought ‘no way can he die, he’s too adorable’ so we took him home.
“He has very soft, velvety skin, but It hasn’t impacted his health otherwise. He eats a lot and he’s really hypo and always flipping around the lounge.
“He has to live indoors because he could get hurt playing on rocks of gravel. He has a hutch in our laundry.
“But our other bunny, Loafy, is not a fan. He has stolen all his thunder.”