I know I have said before that kittens, baby raccoons and those little feather tail gliders that I held in Sydney are pretty much the cutest things in the world – that was before I had held a week old Cotton Tail rabbit. Or Bunny, as it were.
My friend Bennett was trying to make me look like a bad daughter this past weekend by helping my mom with her weeding (I hands down refuse to participate in gardening activities of any variety). While she was out in the garden, she discovered that our youngest dog had found a nest of baby bunnies. Long story short, two of them didn’t make it through play time with Jasper but the other two were rescued to the safety of a cardboard box and a few old towels.
Over the course of the weekend we contacted several animal rescue and wildlife centers – mostly to me met with the statement that they didn’t have the capacity to take in bunnies. One women who seemed to understand the peril of putting the babies back where we found them offered the best advice she could and wished us the best of luck.
While understanding that the wild was where our babies belonged, we hoped to nurse them until they were old enough to survive on their own – when Jasper found then they hadn’t even opened their eyes yet. We took to the task and stocked up on kitten formula and goat milk and started the adventure of bottle feeding bunnies.
The experience was both heart warming and gut wrenching. One of the little guys didn’t seem to be doing well right from the start – so we nicknamed him Slanty because he was, well, a bit slanted in stature. Thumper, however, seemed to be a strong young protégée and both opened his eyes and started hopping on Saturday night.
Bennett took on the biggest task by taking our babies home and kept up the process of feeding (and sometimes chasing) the little guys – Thumper remaining the stronger and more adventurous of the pair.
Sadly, though, we have experienced the circle of life first hand – as both of our bunny siblings have given up their fight. As much as we would have loved to watch them grow and then Bounce off into a grassy abyss, their fragile little bunny selves just weren’t cut out for their unusual upbringing.
R.I.P. Slanty and Thumper, officially the cutest things on the planet for their entire, albeit brief, existence. May you find endless grassy fields and bottomless supplies of carrots in your future.