A Blog all about House Rabbit Pets & More
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March 29th - 9:30 p.m. - Easter & Bunnies Don't Mix - With Easter almost here, the national House Rabbit Society has several flyers available online you can print out to spread this important message. Just visit the link above for online printable flyers.
Give a "Wild" Plush Bunny as a Spring Gift - The Defenders of Wildlife organization has a new program to "adopt" a wild cottontail. New England cottontail rabbits seem to be disappearing over the last 50 years and are on the brink of extinction. It's been a decade since a New Cottontail has been seen in Vermont! You can make an adoption donation to help protect this species. You will receive a certificate of adoption and a plush cottontail. This would be a great gift. Read all about it at their website link at Adopt a Cottontail
Torn Paper Bunny This is a fun activity for the kids and hey, recycle some colorful "junk mail" envelopes while your at it. The website at the link above gives you full instructions on how to do a torn paper collage of a bunny.
Hedge - A bunny blog reader sent me this photo of the hedge on
the left. I have seen some interesting rabbit topiary, but
this leafy sculpture is pretty "hare"raising in size. Some gardener
went nuts with a hedge trimmer. For the rest of us who
want something on a smaller scale, try this link for a
for sale on the National Gardening Association website.
What's Up Doc? - Not much in some places...like it was pointed out in a wonderful Honolulu Advertiser article this weekend about house rabbit pets. Not all communities have rabbit savvy vets available. The article noted that are few vets in the islands who will sterilize rabbits "because of unfamiliarity with the animal." (Wow, I would have thought there would have been vets waiting in line to live the "aloha.") For help finding rabbit vets in your area there are two excellent and updated resources on the internet for rabbit veterinarians:
Bunnies with Bling - For a long time I have cautioned people who want to get a pet rabbit that they are not "cheap" pets. I came upon an amazing tidbit on the internet about how much they can cost from the LA Times. Apparently, in 2002 when Lisa Bonder Kerkorian sued her ex-husband asking for $320,000 a month in child support, she also asked for "$436 a month for the care of her pet bunny." Cage, toys, neutering or spaying, food, x-pens, & medical can add up, but that's $5,232 a year.
March 22nd - 8:30 p.m. - Honey Bunny Safe in Kauai's Ark - A Hawaiian humane society learned a few things from Hurricane Iniki several years ago. The Kauai Humane Society built a building "designed as a Noah's Ark" after Iniki. It is certified as the only emergency pet shelter in Hawaii and can house animals plus up to 300 people in it's basement in the event of a disaster. During the heavy rains last week that caused a reservoir dam to break on Kauai, the humane society housed 4 cats, 20 dogs and the rabbit Honey Bunny pictured above when their humans were evacuated. The humane society workers went out to homes to help rescue animals and bring them to the shelter. That's a lot of Aloha!
"Fluff 'n' Stuff" - the Lancaster, PA Intelligencer-Journal reported on a very special therapy rabbit this past week. Fluffy pictured to the left is a 3 year old English Angora rabbit who is a Red Cross Certified therapy animal. His owner takes him to the local nursing homes, hospitals, etc. for visits with the residents. Apparently, Fluffy is a good listener especially for the older folks he visits. They "remember things about their own lives" and enjoy holding the relaxed rabbit. At 9 pounds he looks like a bundle of bunny fun for anyone.
On the Wild Side: In Japan there is a unique rabbit, the Amami Rabbit. It has been isolated on a couple of islands near Okinowa for a millennia. The rabbit pictured to the right is densely furred in dark brown and sometimes black. Their ears are small with short legs and they have long claw like nails on their paws. The Japanese are trying to conserve this treasure of lagomorphs! See a
In Laos there is a striped brown and black rabbit discovered "hopping around in the forests of Southeast Asia." It lives in the rugged mountains of Laos and its closest relatives are another species of endangered rabbit found in Sumatra 2,000 miles away. It is black and has an amazing striped pattern even on its face as you can see to the left. See BBC Article on Striped Rabbit in Laos
Hare - I couldn't let March go by without this about hares.
Most of us know the March Hare from the tea party in Lewis Carroll's
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. As Carroll wrote "The March
Hare will be much the most interesting, and perhaps as this is May
it won't be raving mad -- at least not so mad as it was in March."
The "mad as a March Hare" phrase comes from the behavior of hares in
the UK during the February through September breeding season.
March 20th - 8:00 p.m. Great Kick-off to Easter Season for Rabbit Rescue Group - The mid-Atlantic rescue group Friends of Rabbits & House Rabbit Sanctuary announced the creation of a Spay & Neuter All Rabbits fund. A anonymous donor is going to match funds up to $5,000 for a total fund of $10,000! Donate to match the generous donation. What a wonderful gift! Visit their website for more information.
Miss Luca Crosses the Rainbow Bridge. My sister Bonnie's beautiful 15 year old female cat passed away over the weekend. Luca was not only a wonderful human companion, but she was an unexpected bunny loving cat. Before she became an indoor cat, Luca was a huntress. So I was worried about introducing my baby lop rabbit, Groucho, to her. Luca jumped up and licked the bunny's head. I thought either Luca was tasting him or had made him her kitten. It turns out Groucho Bunny as well as all of the rabbits we have rescued over the years became Luca's kittens. Luca and Groucho were the inspiration for "The Cabbit" kid's story on Hopperhome. She was an amazing cat and we have lost a gentle, sweet feline friend!
"A Hoppin Fine Rescue by Cop..." That's the way the Rocky Mountain news describes a Longmont police officer who saw something that didn't look right. It was a group of 11 rabbits near a torn up box off of a highway shoulder. The rabbits were badly hurt and it has been determined they were thrown from a car. Now just a couple of months after finding them, the rabbits are with the Colorado House Rabbit Society and Longmont Humane Society. The good news is that some of these rescued rabbits have already been adopted.
March 18th - 8:00 a.m. Stop Hare Coursing in California I wrote about Hare Coursing in California a couple of weeks ago. Assembly-woman Loni Hancock is moving fast to get this "sport" banned in California. If you live in California, please write to the contact she has provided.
Letter from Loni Hancock:
Hay is the Best Bunny Bite - Yesterday I received an email from someone whose rabbit was fed only pellets and soft human cereals for 3 years. A malocclusion had developed. I explained to her that rabbits are like horses and need to graze many hours a day to on tough grasses like timothy hay for both dental and digestive health. Some rabbits are born with an over or under bite or break a tooth and develop problems. This rabbit did not and is going to the vet to correct the problem. Plus, it will get hay from now on! For more info on dental health in rabbits see:
Pet Care Sheets This website provides customized pet care
sheets for all types of pets including rabbits.
Marzipan Rabbit - Put this sweet thing on a cake or have the kids make them out of modeling clay for fun. Detailed instructions (including step by step photos on how to model this marzipan or clay bunny holding a carrot are available online. Just click on the link above.
March 15th - 8:30 p.m. "Love is in the Hare" as the House Rabbit Network begins their adoption program to promote adoptions of bonded pairs like Taco and Chalupa pictured on the left. They are also encouraging adoption of single bunnies to be bonded with an adopter's current pet rabbit. The House Rabbit Network is located in Massachusetts and you can visit their website for more information. Their rabbits are all spayed or neutered and litter box trained. Click on this link for HRS article - Should I get a Second Rabbit? Well, of course you should, but read the article if you have a bunny bachelor or bachelorette who would enjoy a companion.
Rabbit Constellaton, Lepus, is visible in the northern hemisphere in winter. The Greeks were aware of this constellation and it's mythology is still a mystery. It is west of Canis Major and Minor and below Orion. It contains a globular cluster located about 40,000 light years from Earth. Most of us rabbit fans already know rabbits are stars!
Things are Hopping at Wisconsin HRS They have several events coming up in the next couple of months starting with "Living with your House Rabbit" on Sunday, March 19th from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm at the Humane Animal Welfare Society, 701 Northview Rd., Waukesha. This Free session will cover dietary issues, handling methods, body language and dealing with common behavior problems. For a complete listing of their events go to: Wisconsin House Rabbit Society - Events
North Georgia HRS is Jumping, too! They are looking for volunteers for the March 25th Macy's Shop for a Cause Event. Contact: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org if you can help. Also, they have a booth a the Conyers Cherry Blossom Festival that same weekend on both Saturday & Sunday and need people who can talk to people about rabbit care. Contact at email@example.com That is "Karina" pictured above. She is just one of many beautiful rabbits available for adoption at the North Georgia HRS.
Hare Heroes - the next time you see a firefighter say "thanks." I receive a lot of news on pet rabbits saved from house fires. Just a few days ago in San Antonio a blaze ripped through two duplexes. Everyone got out okay including a pet rabbit thanks to the firefighters' efforts. Unfortunately, the homes were destroyed.
Out for Blood - Important Medical Test for Rabbits - I got an email today about a rabbit with medical problems and suggested the writer take their bunny to the vet and get a blood test. I got an email back asking me "why" the blood test. If you have ever wondered what a vet can tell from a blood test drawn out of your rabbit and why it is so important, see this informative article Why your Vet is Out for Blood
Say "Hay" - My rabbits enjoy grazing on timothy hay and they never seem to tire of it. In fact, given the choice, Rosemary Rabbit will head right to her hay box instead of eating pellets or vegetables (a bit of apple is a different story). There are several types of hay, but the mainstay of their diet should be timothy hay. However, brome, grass and oat can be given in a handful for variety on occasion. Here are 3 articles on hay and online resources to purchase it. It is more readily available in pet stores now than it was a couple of years ago and feed stores will sell you a whole bale if you need it.
Online Sources for Hay:
March 11th - 3:30 p.m. A Fair Share for Rabbits A shelter outreach program - This is what can happen when a dedicated group of people from the House Rabbit Society decide to do something about rabbits running out of time at shelters in the San Francisco Bay area. The HRS group created a new shelter outreach program, called A Fair Share for Rabbits. Visit their website to see how they are trying to help with eleventh hour rescue of rabbits facing euthanasia. With 27 shelters in the San Francisco Bay Area, things are hopping! That's Alfred, a beautiful California Rabbit pictured above. See Rabbits
In the UK a very different housing solution called the "eglu" for rabbits combines a house and a secure run. It seems fairly simple and straightforward to maintain and it could certainly be put inside your house. I'm not sure if they are shipping to the U.S. yet, but you can see them at their website link above. I used a currency converter and had a little "sticker shock" afterwards.
Handmade Rabbits by Natasha Fadeeva My sister, Bonnie, found this website after I reported on the knit rabbit blog last week. These handmade rabbits (mohair) are sold out! The website is in Russian and English. Yes, that is a handmade rabbit to the right and not the real thing.
Carrot Crunch Game Help the bunny "Sunny" eat her way through the maze. Earn points for the carrots eaten and lose a chance for every onion the rabbit chomps. Very cute!
March 9th - 8:30 p.m. Rabbit Round-up Continues in Seattle's Woodland Park - The Seattle PI Newspaper published a great article on the plight of rescuers rounding up the feral rabbits. The rescuers are working against time because the rabbits are breeding fast. According to the organizers there are "200 to 300 rabbits out there, and every female we are picking up is pregnant." Nonetheless, the Washington House Rabbit Society Chapter is making sure every rabbit is given a physical, neutered or spayed and cleaned up. Most will go to a sanctuary in Redmond, WA. For more information or if you want to help with this effort visit Woodland Park Rabbits
Rabbit Pining for a Treat? - Try pine cones since they are excellent for chewing and make a healthy treat, too. If you want to gather pine cones yourself, you need to be sure to wash and dry them before giving them to your rabbit. You can let them cure for 4 months or speed up the process by putting the pine cones in the oven on a cookie sheet at 200 degrees for 1 hour. Be sure all the dirt, sap, and bugs are removed. Several of the online rabbit stores also sell pine cones. Apple twigs are another great chew treat for your rabbit. If you don't have a tree to prune, you can buy them online at Cats and Rabbits and More
Bunny Along There is a blog that is dedicated to knit rabbits. There are some "ear"risitable creations pictured on the website in all shapes, sizes and colors. They are almost as adorable as the real thing.
Giant Rabbit Fad ... According to UK Pets Online Wallace and Gromit: Curse Of The Were Rabbit may have started a trend in pet rabbits that looms large for rabbit rescue organizations. People seem to want big bunnies as their "must have" pet. The Rabbit Welfare Association is warning the public that giant rabbits can have big problems. Sure those big rabbits look cuddly, but they have special needs for their care - everything is more expensive from food to all kinds of supplies, plus they need a whole lotta room! A couple of weeks ago I featured a giant rabbit rescue group in the UK on this blog. Go to Giant Rabbit Rescue UK to see what they are doing to help the bigger bunnies.
The photo to the left is a very large paper mache rabbit by artist Steve Hansen.
March 7th - 9:00 p.m. Spring Brings a Flying Health Threat - Warm weather is on its way and the problem of flies can threaten your rabbit's health. Even house flies can lay eggs on your rabbit's fur and hatch into maggots (Yuck!). I have first hand experience with flystrike and especially Cuterebra in rabbits abandoned outdoors. Those flies that find their way into our homes can harm your rabbits. A rabbit who is elderly or ill and has trouble cleaning himself is particularly in danger from flies. Here are some great links on these pests and how to handle this serious problem.
Fort Myers' Bunny - The News Press in Ft. Meyers published a story this week about the kind people who found a tame brown rabbit hopping around in their yard. They have been providing food and shelter for "Trix" hoping to find the owners. I was glad to see they are open to finding the rabbit a good home with an animal lover. Most of these tame domestic rabbits hopping around outside are not "lost," but left behind. This one was very fortunate!
Second "Chance" for a Tampa Bay
Rabbit - A brown and white rabbit was found abandoned in yet
another Florida yard and is getting a second chance. The Tampa
News Online reported that the members of the
Tampa Bay House Rabbit Society are caring for the rabbit. It will have to have an operation
to amputate a "mangled back leg," but is expected to make a good
recovery. Rabbits with 3 legs can find their balance and get around
very well after this type of operation.
Pink Bunny Keeps going...going...going - The "Energizer" Bunny has starred in 107 commercials and is beginning another $68 Million campaign. The first bunny to sell batteries on TV was the Duracell Bunny beginning in 1974.
Two Big Thumps for Animal Cruelty - From Sidney Australia it was reported an Auckland-born financier accused of mutilating and killing 17 rabbits and a guinea pig has lost a second bid to have the charges dismissed on mental health grounds. He will now face charges. Also, WKBW TV in Buffalo, NY reported the case against 2 Buffalo men, accused of brutally killing a pet rabbit is now headed for a grand jury.
Life of Mimi - Allyn Harad is an artist in New Mexico who creates watercolor paintings of "Mimi." All of her paintings are done in graphite with watercolor backgrounds to create simple yet beautiful paintings. Go to the website at the link above to see "a day in the life of Mimi."
March 5th - 9:30 p.m. Leaping Lagomorphs - Rabbit Hopping is becoming popular with 4H groups and other rabbit organizations. My older rabbits wouldn't be interested in this kind of exercise (even though Rosemary Rabbit can still jump up on a bed and couch for more relaxing). I first read about it in an article a couple of years ago: National Geographic Article on Rabbit Hopping. In that article someone said "A lot of people have a misconception that [rabbits] need a lot of exercise ... That is not true. They can stay in a small, enclosed area for most of their life and be just fine." I disagree with that since domesticated rabbits of all types are born athletes and their hind legs are very strong and made for jumping. Even my big Californian rabbit can get some "air" and loves to dance and run down long hallways. If you interested in rabbit hopping, here is a resource online from Scandinavia where rabbit hopping started: Rabbit Hopping They make it clear this is for fun and time spent enjoying your rabbit.
If you are interested in articles on rabbits and exercise go to these links below:
Robot Jumping Rabbit Kit Someone invented a robot rabbit that kicks the ground with both legs and hops around. If you know anyone who is mechanical, this is for them. By the way, I read last week that MGA (a toymaker) is coming out with palm-size "Petz" - in a rabbit shape (and other animal shapes, too)that can be hooked to an iPod and respond to the music by moving and lighting up.
By the way, Wallace and Gromit: The
Curse of the Were-Rabbit won an Oscar Sunday Night for Best Animated
Feature film! Congratulations to the "furry things" on
March 2nd - 10:00 p.m. - 1,000 Rabbits, Yes, that's 1,000 Rabbits - When a Bunny Blog reader sent me a link to this story today, I couldn't believe it. The amazing folks at the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, UT are asking for help with this unbelievable rescue operation. What Best Friends found when they got to Reno, Nevada were a 1,000 rabbits hopping around in a woman's backyard. According to Best Friend's website there are tons of warren tunnels and does having babies on the lawn since there is no more room underground. Why did this happen? Apparently a woman who rescued rabbits successfully for 28 years closed down and people just kept dumping rabbits over her fence. (And, people think post Easter rabbit dumping isn't a problem!) Best Friends needs help and they deserve all the help they can get with this rescue! They have posted adoption information, a wish list, etc. on their website. Please do whatever you can. They expect this to be a 4 month campaign. Best Friends is organizing emergency care, neuter and spaying, adoptions, care for baby bunnies and a way to identify does with kits in the tunnels. Best Friends Bunny House Manager, staff and volunteers are truly wonderful for taking on this huge rescue effort. Visit their website for more information: Best Friends
See Fibonacci’s Rabbits if you're a math fan to see how Fibonacci investigated how fast rabbits breed. He did this in the year 1202. One breeding pair can multiply really, really fast! That's a lesson for people who don't neuter and spay their rabbits in 2006.
On the lighter side visit the following link for directions on how to create this Bunny Fold Napkin Anyone who has rabbits to care for may not have the time, but it is quite the rabbit origami for the table.
March 1st, 8:00 p.m. Make Mine Chocolate Campaign by the House Rabbit Society is for anyone considering buying a rabbit for Easter. Click on the link above for information on the annual campaign! Every year "Easter Bunnies" end up in shelters or worse yet abandoned to a certain death outdoors. Cute bunnies become adult rabbits, the kids get bored with them and the rabbits are a "throwaway" pet just a few months later. Almost every rabbit my sister and I have rescued are former Easter bunnies.
Glamour Shots "offers Live Easter Bunny photos,' according to the House Rabbit Society. So I went to the Glamour Shots website and sure enough "The Bunnies are Here." "Some stores raffle the rabbits away after the promotion." The House Rabbit Society is asking those with concerns to contact Glamour Shots at 800-336-4550 ext. 802. My concerns include:
1) rabbits who are tired, scared and no longer docile after handling by strangers, 2) inexperienced "bunny wranglers," 3) rabbit teeth that can bite through twigs a lot tougher than a kid's finger 4) tired, cranky kids or curious children who want to poke the bunny 5) "Raffled away rabbits" to people who aren't given proper rabbit care instructions or may not even want a pet rabbit. The parents of a 20-month old boy lost part of his finger during a past Easter photo session in Durango, CO (not Glamour Shots). Glamour Shots won't think those photos are such a great promotion if a child gets bit. Plush toy bunnies, Easter eggs or spring flowers would be safer props!
See House Rabbit Society Bunnies & Children Information
is having a pub crawl this Saturday for rabbit fans over 21. Go to the website link www.hairofthedog.org for more information. I'd call that "Hare of the Dog" like Will Bullas' work of art to the right.
Pet Rabbits Rescued from Fire Wow! again firemen come to the rescue for several pet rabbits in a Sunday house fire according to the Ann Arbor News. The paper said the "reports state that the fire started with heating equipment that was used for the rabbits" in a garage. Fortunately bunnies, kids and the babysitter are all safe.
In the United Kingdom "Vets Sound Rabbit Plague Alert" reported by Luton Today online. This is a horrendous disease that "threatens to kill 9 out of 10 rabbits in Bedfordshire and Hetfordshire this spring." Rabbits can be vaccinated to prevent the spread of the disease according to a vet in Luton. She also said "Those rabbits most at risk are rural rabbits near open countryside." The disease spreads through insects like mosquitoes. We have been very lucky here in the United States so far. For more on this terrible Disease see: Myxomatosis Information
February 27th, 7:30 p.m. Raging "Hare"mones - It's definitely spring! I saw my first small cottontail hop across a 4 lane boulevard this weekend and the "wild baby rabbit" emails are starting to arrive in Hopperhome's email box. Cottontails breed early in the Pacific Northwest. A lot of people think these distant cousins of domesticated rabbits are the same. They're not. The wild cottontails have around three to four litters of four or five young each year. Born helpless in a shallow depression lined with grass and fur, they grow fast and are weaned when less than half the size of the adult. Hazards are everywhere including the roads. I keep thinking I should make up bumper stickers that say "I brake for Bunnies." For the best web page on orphaned baby bunnies try the HRS: FAQ: Orphaned Baby Bunnies For another good website with information try Rabbit Rehab.
Lapakis (Rabbits) in Hawaii - Most people don't think about rabbits when they think about beaches in Hawaii, but occasionally I have read news stories about rabbits abandoned in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island or on Haleakala on Maui. They were rounded up quickly. Hawaii has lost many other species of native plants and animals to "foreign" invaders. There is an island known as Rabbit Island (or Manana in Hawaiian) located just off of Oahu. The tourist brochures mistakenly say it got it's name from it's rabbit shape. So where is the bunny in the picture to the left. The island actually had rabbits introduced in the late 1880s by John Cummins, the owner of Waimanalo Plantation as a food source. A colony of those rabbits survived for many years. The last survivors were taken off of the island in the 70's. Rabbit Island’s Hawaiian name, Manana, means “to stretch out.' Sounds like a few rabbits I know. A rabbit from the Hawaiian Humane Society is featured this week as the "Adoptable Rabbit of the Week."
February 25, 8:00 p.m.Rabbit Postage Stamps Rabbit themed postage stamps were readily available especially from China for The Year of the Rabbit a few years ago. However, there are many more stamps from around the world with rabbit designs. Here are two links to see them: Rabbit Stamp Collection, Rabbit Stamps
Bunnies by the Bay they have it all: the Bunnies By The Bay Cuddle Coat worn by Angelina Jolie's Baby, Zahara, bunny slippers, carrot writing pens and of course, the most amazing plush bunnies ever. Their website also contains their story and why they started making their beautiful plush rabbits.
"HareChoo" Humans and allergies to rabbits When rabbits lick their fur to clean themselves they deposit saliva on their fur that dries, flakes off and circulates as an airborne allergen. At least that's what someone told me when I mentioned I had rabbits. They said they immediately start sneezing when they get in a room with bunnies. Below are two great articles from the House Rabbit Society: Living with Rabbit Allergies Minimizing allergies living with rabbits. A Fosterer's Allergy Experience How one rabbit fosterer was able to work around her allergies.
February 22, 2006 8:30 p.m. Bunnies at College - A couple of students in Butler at Columbia want to have "Bunny City" as a distraction according to the Columbia Daily Spectator. The young people think it would make it a "more livable environment" to have pet rabbits in residence. Apparently, administration isn't too keen on the idea. However, a year or so ago there was an article in the Christian Science Monitor about a college student who was mugged at knife-point near her dormitory and how her two Netherland dwarf rabbits gave her a lot of comfort. The CS article said that "some college administrators are pondering a new role for companion animals on campus." I like the idea, but a rabbit like Mr. Hops (above) would eat his way through several textbooks in one semester.
Things are Hopping at the Pittsburgh House Rabbit Club The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published an excellent article on "Get the Facts About Bunnies before you Buy" discussing house rabbits and the Pittsburgh House Rabbit Club activities. For a club that formed in 2005, this group is really getting the word out about house rabbits! The rabbit pictured to the left is a spayed, New Zealand named Gracie who weighs around 9 lbs. A lot to love! She is with the Western Pennsylvania Humane Society They have several beautiful white rabbits and lops plus many other types of pet rabbits. Here are a two upcoming rabbit events in Pittsburgh:
Wednesday, April 19 – 6:30 to 8:30
February 19, 2006 2:00 p.m. Therapy Rabbits If you have a calm pet rabbit who doesn't mind being around people (including car rides), then you and your rabbit might be good therapy! The Delta Society is one of the best known organizations that promotes a mission of "Improving human health through service and therapy animals" with visits to hospitals and other care facilities. See this article on Sharianna and Angel Bunny or this article about halfway down the following web page on Karen and her rabbit Calypso Most organizations like the Delta Society require training for both yourself and your pet.
Update on Mr. Hops My cat, Pele, just loves those long bunny ears and Mr. Hops enjoys the benefits. Pele is a rescued Snowshoe male cat and has been around rabbits since he was 2 1/2 months old. Mr. Hops is very good at putting Pele in his place when the grooming stops to play cat games. For a good article on cats and other pets see Amy Shapiro's article at the HRS website on Cats and Rabbits
On the Wild Side: I used to see jack rabbits in Nevada when I hiked though the sage brush covered hills. I found them fascinating and still do. I was reminded of them the other day when a blog reader sent me a link to a book called simply: The Hare I love the cover photo pictured right. The hare looks like a streamed lined, elongated version of my domestic rabbits. Unlike cottontail rabbits, jack rabbits are true hares in that they do not build nests and their young are born fully furred with open eyes. Jack rabbits can move along at about 35 miles per hour. When they need to they jump, they can go as high as 5 feet. I remember them jumping well above the 3 ft. high sage brush when I would startle one. Go to Amazon to see the book: The Hare
Best Friends Animal Sanctuary Bunny House This amazing sanctuary is located in Angel Canyon, Utah near Kanab. You can sponsor one of their wonderful rabbits. Many people visit and volunteer at Best Friends as a vacation to this beautiful area of the country. Visit their Bunny House at the link above.
February 16, 2006, 9:30 p.m. Participate in Web-Based Survey about Pet Rabbit Behavior! It covers the effects of Neutering and Spaying on Rabbit Behavior. This survey is being conducted by the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. Results will be published and it will be the first published scientific study of pet rabbit behavior. There are 3 separate surveys, depending on the your rabbit's spay/neuter status Go to Survey Link It takes a bit of time to do the survey, but it is worth it! I encourage everyone to participate. I have completed surveys for all of my rabbits. Rosemary rabbit thought it was a little personal since she remembers her behavior after spaying very well. It was all those stitches she tried to pull out!
Stinky Rabbits - an email today reminded me to share a link from the Ontario Rabbit Education Organization about Scent Glands
Sometimes a rabbit can start to have a strong odor and it's difficult to locate the scent glands. The link above has photos that show exactly where to locate and how to clean them. Sometimes that thorough cleaning rabbits give themselves five times a day isn't enough.
No Such Thing as a Mean Rabbit!
Miss Sage, aka "The Raptor," taught my sister and me about aggressive rabbits about 5 years ago. Another email I received today described "a monster rabbit," "a mean, horrible bunny," and asked "should I have my Netherland Dwarf put down or get rid of her." I was aghast! The Netherland Dwarf was a show rabbit. Miss Sage pictured to the left with her long time bonded mate, Mr. Basil, are my sister's dwarf rabbits. Miss Sage was spayed shortly after Bonnie took Sage home from the Humane Society. Sage was a terror and even I was afraid to approach her without gloves. It took Bonnie a lot of patience, kindness and some bandaids to eliminate the biting behavior with Sage. Last year Sage was so non-aggressive that she posed sitting on a stranger's shoulder for Hopperhome's Easter campaign. See Sage and Basil's Story.
Needless to say, I did answer the email about the "monster rabbit" and was adamant the problem was with the human and not the rabbit. Four great links on aggressive behavior in rabbits:
February 13, 2006, 11:30 p.m. "Proud Owner Saves Giant Rabbit From the Pot" [Good thing... Yuck!] - That headline and others like "Biggest Rabbit in the World" were all over the UK papers this past week including a few newspapers here in the U.S. A big German Giant Rabbit ("Rudi") started it all and pretty soon there was another big rabbit (Roberto) weighing in on the competition from a pet shop in Worcester. So Rudi, the original German Giant in the news may not be the biggest. A blog reader sent in the photo above and I'm not sure which big bunny he might be, but he is adorable. Maybe I should weigh Mr. Hops, but fortunately his diet is working wonders. The last record holder was Dancer from Kent who measured 3 ft. and weighted almost 30 lbs. I have personally known a big grey chinchilla Flemish Giant. He was very calm and sweet. I'm not so sure about this "battle of the bunnies" because their diets might be geared toward helping them gain weight. Go to Giant Rabbit Rescue UK to see photos of these gentle giants and what this group is doing to help them.
Emergency Preparedness for Pet Rabbits - With the snow storms back East this week and all the hurricanes the southern states have suffered, pet preparedness is something to consider. During Katrina there were innumerable pets tragically separated from their owners. Many of these pets including rabbits are still waiting for homes especially with rabbit rescue groups in southern states like the Alabama Ears (HRS Chapter). This link shows just a few of the rabbits available for adoption from the Katrina disaster. Two of these rabbits are pictured with this entry, Claire (right above) and Slidelle (left).
I have included links below on how to prepare your pet for an emergency plus sources for decals that let people know pet rabbits are inside your home or you have rabbiits that need to be cared for if you are injured. Going to Ground in Kansas City, ASPCA Emergency Pet Preparedness, Pets Need Disaster Plan Too - Hurricane Season is Here from HRS and Include Your Pets in Fire Safety Programs Sources for alert stickers and cards are: Please Save Our Bunnies Sticker - Chicago HRS and Animals Inside! Sticker and Carry a Pet Alert Card.
February 11, 2006 10:00 p.m. Rabbit Gardening. You may not have a giant rabbit with a tractor to help you out, but gardening for your rabbits is easy. The vegetables rabbits love to eat are easy to grow like carrot tops, radish tops, romaine lettuce, cilantro, dandelion greens, turnip greens, etc. Don't forget edible flowers and herbs like nasturtiums, mints, borage leaves, basil, rosemary, etc. Apartment dwelling rabbits can have a container garden out on the patio or lanai. Here are two articles that have information on gardening this spring to give your rabbit fresh food: A Rabbit's Garden from the San Diego HRS, and Gardening for Bunnies by Karla Ortman with the Buckeye HRS.
Thinking Outside the Cage If your rabbit lives in a cage, you should know there are some great alternatives with exercise pens normally purchased for dogs (x-pens. Holly O'Meara with the HRS has written an excellent article about this at The Possibilities of Pen Living. This article will get you thinking about why cage-free living is possible and advantageous for your rabbit. Also, Kristen Doherty wrote about The Advantages of Exercise Pens with helpful photos included. Setting Up the X-Pen by Zooh Corner Rabbit Rescue has very practical information about setting up the pen with photos, too. I have alternative housing ideas on my web page Bunny Digs on Hopperhome. The photo above is a 16 ft. long x-pen along a wall in my living room. It was a great run for the rabbits, too.
February 9, 2006 9:30 p.m. Firemen Resuscitate Rabbit - It was all over the news a couple of days ago about how a women performed mouth to mouth resuscitation on a chicken and saved its life. Maybe it wasn't mouth to mouth, but Firemen with Snohomish County Fire District 1 from Washington State saved a pet rabbit over this past weekend. According to the Everett Herald Online, the bunny was "having trouble breathing. A medic put an oxygen mask over the rabbit's face, and a firefighter took it to a veterinarian for treatment." They saved the rabbit's life. The photo above was sent to me by a blog reader showing firemen holding a cute pair of (fire) rescued rabbits from North Dakota a while back. Lucky lagomorphs!
Rocking Rabbit - I found this "rocking ebony rabbit" at a website called Rockimals it is wood construction, designed by Bjorn Dahlstrom and made in Sweden. They have a "designer price" of around $200.
Tube Tunnel Toys for Rabbits - Speaking of toys ... this one is for your rabbit. My rabbits, especially my Harlequin rabbit, Rosemary, enjoy 3 to 6 foot lengths of circular cement forms found at building supply stores like Home Depot or Lowes. They come in different diameters. (My sister bought smaller ones for her dwarf rabbits.) They can be easily cut to different lengths. I put them on the floor, prop them with wood chew blocks so they don't roll and then watch the rabbits run in and out of them. Some brands have coatings on them so find the forms that are untreated. Inexpensive fun for your rabbits.
I have one (claustrophobic) rabbit, Mr. Hops, that won't go near them let alone go in the tubes.
February 7, 2006 9:30 p.m. - Hare Coursing in California - In a disturbing investigative report on February 5th, Greg Noyes, reporter with KGO uncovered this terrible "sport" in California taking place in fields right off of Interstate 80. Greyhound dogs were being used. Greyhound racing originated with coursing and this "sport" was recently banned in England. It is ironic to me that "live lure" training is banned by the greyhound racing industry and coursing can exist at all in this country. My parents raced greyhounds and as a girl I witnessed "live lure field training" which is similar to coursing and they both have the same results. It is very inhumane. According to the KGO report, California State Assembly member Loni Hancock "promised to sponsor a new law banning it" after she saw the pictures. Also, see my webpage on greyhound racing - it is a bad bet for both dogs and rabbits.
Laura Frankel, the photographer who produced the book Funny Bunnies has her own photography website and it displays some of her rabbit photos available in her portfolio. Her portfolio also includes her professional photography with children, etc. Visit her website and see her stylish creativity. Just click on her link above. You can also go to Rabbit Reader to find a link to her book on Amazon.
Bad Bunny List This is a long list created by humans who have witnessed bad bunny behavior. In fact, there is more than one list. It proves that you are not alone and you can still love your rabbit even if he or she is "Bad to Bun" like Will Bullas' watercolor shown left.
A giant pink bunny has been installed on a hillside in Italy's Piedmont region as "modern art." It is going to stay there until 2025. The pink rabbit is over 200 ft. long. The artist's group who installed it want people to climb up the bunny's sides and fall asleep on it according to one report.
February 5, 2006 7:00 p.m., Abandoned Rabbit Mystery in Palo Alto - The Palo Alto News Online reported yesterday that there has been a "wave of rabbit dumpings in its community gardens and baylands in the last six months." "Since August 1st, 65 abandoned rabbits have been picked up by animal services officers...the most recent January 28." The animal services officers think it is all the same person(s) and they are appealing to the public to find out who is doing this. You can call the Palo Alto Animal Services Superintendent Sandi Stadler at 650-496-5955. This is one mystery that needs to be solved very soon for the sake of these rabbits. Pictured above is just one of the wonderful rabbits they have available for adoption. The French Lop above is a male named Andy who looks like he would be a sweet pet for a kind human being in Palo Alto area.
Mr. Hops Comes Home A big (now much bigger) Californian rabbit that I adopted out last year came home this weekend. I know the people who adopted him loved him very much. However, sometimes circumstances such as illness, etc. require a rescuer to take back an adopted rabbit. I will happily do this. Now he has his forever home back with me. Lisa (who founded Basically Bunnies in Reno) and her husband John picked up Hops for me and kept him for a few days before expertly packing up Hops to ship in Alaska's cargo hold. Many thanks to Lisa & John!!! Other than going on a diet now, Hops, managed to fly okay and is doing very well! Much thanks to Alaska Airlines who got him right off the plane & directly to me within 15 minutes of landing. Wow! Below are links to airlines that I know currently fly pets. There are always rules and regulations plus times of the year when some airlines won't accept pets at all. See Hops Story & a big thank you and Hoppy Flying to Alaska Airlines
Nabaztag is an Odd Name for a Rabbit, but this is a Wi-Fi enabled toy rabbit from France. It changes color, moves it's ears, is an alarm clock, gives its owner real-time info on stocks, traffic, weather, incoming e-mail, will play a favorite song, etc. An Armenian in Paris developed this little guy and he can hardly keep up with the demand. They call him the "First Smart Rabbit" and Ms. Rosemary Rabbit (one of mine) takes issue with that since she is a first rate alarm clock and very smart. See them at www.nabaztag.com. Now if only people would buy them instead of live rabbits at Easter.
February is Adopt A Rabbit Month and the New York Post (online edition) writer Julia Sazbo wrote a very nice piece on rabbits. Writers who publish articles on rabbits keep them in the news to let the public know how great rabbits are as pets and where to adopt. Pictured to the right is another New York City rabbit from the Animal Care & Control shelter. That is Darcy, a one year old neutered male and he has a very cute moustache. Speaking of NYC rabbits, am I the only one who didn't know comedienne Amy Sedaris has a bunny "Dusty." I also read Dusty is a mini-rex and was an adopted rescue rabbit. Amy had a Netherland Dwarf prior to this called Tattletail.
February 1, 2006 6:30 p.m. - Exotic DVM, a website for veterinarians has full color brochures on rabbit care they sell to vet offices at $15 for 50 brochures. You can order them, too, even if you aren't a vet and leave them for your vet to give out in their office. This organization also sponsors education on rabbit veterinary medicine. In May 2006 at their annual conference they will present lectures on subjects such as: Clinical Application of Analgesics in Rabbits, Diagnostic Bronchoscopy in Rabbits, Mandibulectomy for Treatment of Oral Tumors in Two Rabbits and Rabbit Serology and Microbiology in Exotic Practice. Okay, I probably won't attend, but I can recommend their website and conference to my rabbit veterinarian and so can you. The more our vets know the better they can successfully treat our rabbits!
Bunny Clouds - After awhile some of us rabbit fanatics start to see rabbits in everything. One Bunny Blog reader found this photo of a rabbit in a fluffy cloudy sky and sent it to me. I can see it, too. I hope the rest of you can see the white rabbit in the clouds pictured to the right or I need a vacation in a sunny climate for the rest of the winter.
Camilla (the Duchess of Cornwall) has made a lot of people hopping mad according to the United International Press article yesterday in England. A rabbit fur scarf adorned the Duchess as she toured a school in Tetbury. The fur is flying!
by Sally Logue are just fantastic. Go to her link above to see her beautiful artwork. She is located in the UK and is painting pet portraits full-time. Sally also paints other pets and it is fun to just look around her website at her art! I really enjoy her style and how she captures the individual rabbit personalities in each painting.
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