Anyone familiar with our family knows how much we adore our two male bunnies, Velluto and Prince Oreo Pants. We realized that our younger Dutch bunny was longing for a new female friend and began the process of searching for a spayed rescued bunny to adopt that would be around the same age and size as Prince Oreo Pants and have a compatible temperament to his exuberant personality. After many months of discussion and research, we settled upon a sweet little spayed female who had been rescued and cared for by the small non-profit Binky On! Rabbit Rescue in Hahira, Georgia. In honor of the spirit of Christmas and in celebration of a brand New Year, this month I have chosen to introduce her to SomeBunny fans, not dwelling upon the sorrow she must have experienced from having originally been abandoned with hundreds of other domestic rabbits in Las Vegas, Nevada but upon our joy of offering this sweet little bunny a new home filled with creature comforts and love!
Above is a photo of baby Amelia Bunhart at Binky On! Rabbit Rescue after she traveled by airplane from Las Vegas, Nevada to Hahira, Georgia, which is how she received her name. Also, if you look closely at her right eye patch, you will see that it resembles a heart. The second photo was taken when we drove to Georgia pick her up and bring her home. She was a little bit nervous but such a darling bunny to snuggle with for the first time before she rode home in the travel hutch! Believed to be an English Spot mix, this sweet little bunny has a permanent scar on her mouth, possibly from an injury or altercation with another animal after being abandoned in a public park in Las Vegas. Thankfully, it has not caused her any issues with eating or drinking. She is still a bit on the thin side, and we have been working with knowledge from her caregivers at Binky On! Rabbit Rescue and our rabbit-savvy veterinarian at Downtown Greensboro Animal Hospital to encourage her to put on a little bit more weight. For the past two months we have been providing her with a variety of fresh salad greens and herbs in addition to her pellets and Timothy hay. We also make sure she has fresh filtered water daily that she can access by bottle or bowl. In the evenings during family playtime, she likes to take a few nibbles from a banana as a special treat as she learns to trust us. She has begun to eagerly eat everything we offer her and as a result, her lovely fur coat has begun to have a silky-soft lustrous sheen to it!
Once we returned home with Amelia in Greensboro, North Carolina, she began to explore her living area, which for now, is a spacious side-by-side exercise pen adjacent to Prince Oreo Pants. He seems very interested in her and she is also curious about him. Currently, we are ensuring a little safe separation between the pens by using empty water bottles as dividers until she has a chance to settle in and we are certain that they will get along. Realistically, a happy bonding of rabbits takes as long as it takes, meaning that the time frame is very different for all pairs, and we intend to opt for a lengthy slow-date method, even if it takes months before they are ready to share a space together. There is also the possibility that they might prefer to retain their own personal spaces, and if so, we shall accept that as the ideal living situation for our little darlings. The last thing we wish to do is to force co-habitation and create any permanent grudges. For now, each bunny seems content to flop and lounge near the other, so that is a good sign so far, and we plan to let them take all the time they need.
We thought that Amelia might feel more comfortable with a little hiding spot in her area but quickly realized that the purple castle we already had from when our male bunnies were babies was too small for her. Since there are not too many rabbit play products available locally, we improvised with decorative cute cat playhouse boxes purchased from the seasonal pet section at Target and gave Amelia a camper and Oreo a ski lodge. With the addition of their little bunny beds, these provide ideal nesting spots in which they can hide and nap. They love their new play dwellings and we love that they can chew on them instead of our home’s furniture!
After Thanksgiving, we brought in a freshly cut Christmas tree for our family room, which we set into a large galvanized tub to keep the rabbits away from the sap-infused tree water and the electrical lighting cords. This year, we added a flexible cat tunnel around the rear base of the tub that they can safely zoom around during their individual play times. After Amelia has been here for four weeks and is starting to feel more comfortable with us, her surroundings, and the daily rhythm of our home life, we bring her into the family room for her first play experience. Initially, she is cautious and choses to remain within a cozy fabric pet play hut. Gradually, she inches her way out to sniff around the Christmas tree and the other bunny playthings. As her confidence grows, she begins to chin the various objects and her curiosity wins out. Each visit finds her exploring more and more areas within our family room, and she delights us with numerous little happy hops and binkies!
Two months after Princess Amelia Bunhart has joined our family Christmas morning has arrived! Keeping in mind that we have three consecutive individual bunny play times, we take our time opening stockings and packages so that each bunny can join in the excitement and fun! The bunnies seem to sense that today is extra special, and each rabbit appears happy to chin the wrappings, explore the little stockings filled with toys and treats, and romp gleefully amid the pile of colorful tissue paper. We can only imagine what each rabbit must think of the sights and sounds of this special holiday. While we love to spoil them with plenty of treats, toys and other bunny sensory delights, we know that our greatest gift to each of them is our love and the plentiful time we spend interacting with them every day!
From all of us at SomeBunny, we wish you and your loved ones a very Merry Christmas and a Hoppy New Year!