Family shocked after bear breaks into 'bunny barn' three times, kills prized rabbits

NORTH CENTRE TOWNSHIP, Pennsylvania (WNEP) -- A family in Columbia County is shocked after three bear attacks since last week left 16 of their prized rabbits dead.

Tony Shiner showed Newswatch 16 the damage inside what he calls ‘the bunny barn’ outside his North Centre Township home.

Twice last week, a bear broke in, attacked and killed the family's prize-winning rabbits.

"I mean they could do a lot of damage. I thought it was maybe a sow and her cubs playing that's why it was so, but bears are bears, so, “ said Shiner.

The Shiners say last week, the game commission set a trap and caught a bear, then released it near Millville, about 20 miles away.

This happened again -- a bear smashed through the window and killed more rabbits.

In all, after 3 attacks, 16 of the family's nearly 30 award-winning rabbits were dead.

Madison Shiner, 15, has been breeding and showing rabbits for 4 years now.

They are her pride and joy.

She lost her favorites in the attacks.

"A lot of these guys have won many trophies, so much money, I deal with them every single day. I've known most of these guys since they were born so to have them just come and die all of a sudden it really upsetting and disappointing,” said she said.

"She's got names for them all, they're yeah, every rabbit has a name. When we're taking cages apart, she's out in the driveway crying. It's Neptune, it's Jupiter, it's whoever, whoever,” said Tony Shiner.

The Shiners say friends have stepped up, offering to give them other rabbits.

The family is reinforcing the bunny barn by adding bars to the window and clearing out the mangled cages and mess inside.

Until all that's done, the rabbits will be moved.

"Some are going up to my dad's barn up in Nescopeck and I think the other ones are headed inside for a little bit until we get all the bars situated,” said Tony Shiner.

The game commission will be setting another bear trap this week at the Shiner’s home.

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