An animal matters hearing board will decide in about 10 days if an Elkridge man can reclaim the dozens of rabbits he's accused of raising in abandoned cars, said Brenda Purvis, director of the Howard County Animal Control facility.
The seven-member panel listened to testimony for almost six hours Tuesday from the animals' owner, William H. Wilson, and from Animal Control workers who seized the rabbits from a farm off Mayfield Road near Deep Run in Elkridge Aug. 31.
The workers found most of the 115 animals living in old cages, but some were in five feces-filled cars. They discovered the rabbits -- some of which were unhealthy -- after being called to a small fire on a nearby pig farm on the same land.
Mr. Wilson, who operated the rabbit farm on rented land for four years, said he sold some of the animals to pet stores.
"I took care of the rabbits every night and every day. I loved them and would never hurt them," Mr. Wilson said.
He said the cars -- filled with dirt and straw -- helped the rabbits produce better. "They liked settling under the seat and the --board and in the trunk," Mr. Wilson said.