Thursday, January 07, 2010

A life short lived

At the beginning of August we welcomed a new family member, a gorgeous pet rabbit whom we called Flopsy.

He was such a delightful creature! Happy, sociable (especially with the cats - when he wasn't grazing my mother's plants he was chasing the poor harassed kitties!), cheeky and loved by everyone, especially my father.

Sadly, we lost him on Monday. On Sunday morning he managed to get out of the yard. Despite the "rabbit-proof fence" my father built.

We searched all afternoon for him and Dan searched for an hour and a half on Sunday night around the neighbourhood. I wish now that I'd searched more thoroughly but I was taken out virtually all day by a nasty bout of food poisoning which I do not wish to remember.

He made his way home on Monday - for all we know he could have been hiding out nearby or travelled the entire suburb. I don't know enough about bunnies to know if they do that. But my folks found him in their driveway, looking very tired and worn out. They brought him inside into his cage - he gave no resistance. And he just lay there, not wanting to eat, just flopped out and resting, but with his heart beating very hard and fast.

About four hours later my mother went to check on him and he had passed away. Unfortunately I was at work but Dante called us, very distraught and upset, and we rushed home. Thankfully the other two kids weren't quite as affected as the big boy, but Elora was full of questions.

We dug a hole in the backyard and buried him that afternoon. All the kids had a turn digging and shovelling and we gave him his favourite elephant toy and some hay and pellets, as is the Chinese custom (usually paper money though, I believe).

The cats seemed to know that something was up. They hung around when usually they'd flee from the children (home due to school holidays). Blackie even said her goodbye.

The plan now is to build a big raised garden bed in that corner of the yard (well, I've been wanting to do that for at least a year!) which we'll call "Flopsy's Garden". We'll plant his favourite foods (that we can grow): carrots, parsley, buk choy. And maybe we'll put up a little plaque or engraved stone there.

We're still considering whether or not to get another rabbit. Dante is very keen. He wants to call it "Cottontail". But we're still thinking about that. My parents are already missing him, since he used to keep them company when they were out in the garden and my father used to love feeding him weeds or veges every morning. I know that another rabbit won't replace him - he was such a character! - but boy I loved having that bunny around.

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