2 Pairs Becoming 1 Warren

Published July 13, 2012 by minilophop

Background: I have been trying to bond my two pairs of rabbits since March of this year. I moved Becky and Gary to live in the same room as Sophie and Houdini. The room is split into two halves with a small “no-buns land” in the middle so they can’t fight through the bars. I alternate who gets let out to run with both couples getting run time each evening. At first they would take every opportunity to fight in passing, but if they fought they would forfeit their run time. Soon they learned to hop by the other pen without stopping. Sometimes they still fuss with each other at the bars. Gary managed to pull out one of Sophie’s whiskers last month, but that has been the only injury and she’s fine now. I was starting to lose hope that they could ever tolerate each other. My goal is to be able to let them all out at the same time.

I just have to share, I’m so proud of the kids! Last night I was cleaning in the living room with Sophie and Houdini out running. When I vacuumed in the bun room it got Becky and Gary all riled up, so they opened their gate and came out to attack the poop thief. I was so happy to see Becky attacking with her normal gusto! I’m probably the only one to praise their rabbit for going nuts on the vacuum. :P

 Then, even better, Gary and Becky decided to go out to the living room to check things out. I watched closely. When Gary went over to the little table Sophie and Houdini were lounging under I was right there and coached them. “Be nice, good bunny, Sophie nice, Gary nice”. And they were!

 :party0002::pinkelepht::party0002: 

There was some sniffing, then Gary and Becky went back to their room. Sophie followed, but went to her room! I was so proud of them that everyone got treats!

It has been a long haul but I think I see a light at the end of the tunnel! Now lets hope it is not a train. :biggrin2:

Bunderground Railroad Transport

Published July 9, 2012 by minilophop

I know, I’m a sucker for a hard luck story. I just can’t help myself when an animal is in desperate need because humans are idiots and irresponsible. There were 11 rabbits in Florida that had a death date of today. I found out on Friday that the clock was ticking very quickly because the shelter didn’t have any room. I really didn’t want any more animals, but the tiny little faces!

It was so hard to narrow the choices, but we are taking in two:

The Dutch is a female about 1 yr old very sweet easy to pick up and loves to run around owner turned in moving. The Large black and white (black around eyes) super easy-going male is a big cuddle bug also turned in by owner due to moving he is 4 yrs old.

I named the female Bunnicula and the male Panda.

My wonderful friend Anne has agreed to take this pair:

Our bonded pair, Mojo(all brown) and Puma (white and brown) they are brothers 1yr 8mos turned in due to the owner having cancer.

Ok, cancer is a pretty good excuse to have to give up an animal. A rescue would have been preferable, but the person clearly has their hands full and was trying to do the right thing. Moving? That is a stupid reason! Would you consider leaving a child behind when you move? How about your TV? I hate ignorant people!

So, these poor rabbits are in Florida and I’m in Pennsylvania. It’s a wee bit of a problem. Luckily there are some wonderfully dedicated animal people out there that are willing to run the bundergound railroad transport. One person will go from Florida to Georgia, then another from Georgia to North Carolina. Then someone who is on business in North Carolina lives in Delaware, so I can get them there. They are also going to take one of the buns and one was rescued from another source.

This is the cutie the family in Delaware will be adopting, Pogo.

Out of the 11, 4 are going to die today without a miracle.

This little brown rabbit was dumped in the night box covered in bites. He’s now happy and healthy, but out of time. His name is Brownie.

These are the three amigos, brothers. Mini rex/Lionhead mixes. They are small bunnies with big hearts, but they are going to die because their owner was an irresponsible breeder. They ended up with too many animals and turned these into the shelter.

How can people be so heartless and cruel?  As humans, who domesticated these animals, we bear the responsibility to care for these tiny souls. They didn’t ask to be born. They can’t fend for themselves. How can a person look into their eyes and tell them they have to die because of someone else’s selfishness?

The more bunnies I meet, the less I like people.

UPDATE: Everyone has been saved!!! The three amigos have found a kind person who will take in all three. I will be fostering Brownie for about a month until his new mom is ready.

All of the transport drivers are in place and will be delivering the rabbits to their new homes starting next weekend. They are all getting spayed/neutered this week and preparing for travel. Thank you so very much to everyone involved in saving these wonderful rabbits! The generosity of strangers working together to save everyone has renewed my faith in people.

If a Shelter Bunny Could Talk

Published July 8, 2012 by minilophop

I found this on fosterbunnies.com  You might want a tissue.

If a Shelter Bunny Could Talk

Hello, I am a little bunny that is sitting in a shelter now and I don’t know what I did to end up here. Or maybe I do. I don’t want to give my real name as I am ashamed of my situation. Though it must be my own fault I guess. So call me Joe. Joe the bunny.

Me and my friends that sit here everyday want to share our stories so that other bunny rabbits out there know to be good so they don’t end up here with us. We sit in our little cages now and know our time is coming. You see we suffer from a terrible terminal illness. Its as deadly as cancer and sometimes even faster moving. Our terminal illness is called Unloved and Unwanted. I know I’m dying and I know its soon. There is only a very very small chance that someone will ever come to see me and want to take me home and save me from my terrible fate. But I stopped hoping for that a long time ago. Now I just sit quietly and wait… my suffering will end. One way or another.

Oh but if I ever get that chance I will know to be the bestest behaved bunny ever! I really will, I SWEAR I WILL! I know now that its my own fault I was brought here. I know now that I never should have gotten so excited about my food that I would accidentally bite my peoples hands. I know I was wrong. And it doesn’t matter that my people sometimes forgot to feed me for days. I should have behaved better. Maybe if I was a good bunny they would have fed me more often? It was my fault I know. And I really did try my best to ration my water and make it last until it was filled again sometime next week but I was sooo hungry I put whatever was available in my tummy. I was greedy and I’m so sorry for that. And it doesn’t matter if I was confused about where my litter box was because my whole cage was always dirty. I should have held it in and not gone to the bathroom in my cage. Maybe if I had done that they wouldn’t have been so disgusted by me and my house when they came to clean it once a month? I wish I had been better about that too. My own fault. And who was I to be upset about not ever coming out to play? Really I asked to much. I guess to need just a little exercise. After all my owner was only 8 yrs old and not her fault she didn’t want to let me out to play. Really, it was all my fault. I was selfish.

And though I pray someone will some day soon save me from my fate I don’t think anyone is coming for a badly behaved bunny like me. I’ll get what I deserve soon. The clock on the wall beside is always ticking at me. Tomorrow…. then next day…. soon, I know I’m dying.

So I can only hope to try to save other bunnies from my fate. I hope that all the bunnies in the land read my letter and remember “You are the bunny. You must behave right or else.” But alas I know most bunnies simply cant help themselves. We are just bunnies after all. So to the humans that may read my story I ask that if you ever should decide to come to our rescue we will ask for little but I guess more than we deserve…

We ask for just a small area to call our own. Look around you now. There may just be a corner you could squeeze a cage in. We don’t need a whole room or house, just a little room. And I know it may be a lot to ask but we do so love to stretch our legs. So maybe if you could find it in your heart to let us out to play for just a little bit everyday… It doesn’t have to be hours and hours. We’ve been in these little cages so long anything would be heaven. Some of us have never had play time. We ask if it isn’t too much trouble for just a little food everyday. We don’t eat much. And if you felt so inclined to let us try some hay that too would be heaven. I’ve heard talk of this “hay” thing but I’ve never tried it. It sounds delicious. And most of all, though we obviously don’t deserve it, or we wouldn’t be here … it would mean the world to little ones like us to know the feeling of a kind and gentle hand touching us. An affectionate head pat … a soft cheek rub and maybe, just maybe, a kind word or two. Maybe if we try really hard you may just some day say “I love you”… that would be heaven … and I would be good.

 

Rosalind Glousher
Rabbit Rescue Inc,
Ontario, Canada

Becky has EC: Her battle to get healthy again

Published July 7, 2012 by minilophop

Encephalitozoon Cuniculi (E.Cuniculi), Head-tilt, or Wry Neck in Rabbits

What is it?

From the Ontario Rabbit Education Organization :  http://www.ontariorabbits.org/health/healthinfo10.html

 

Encephalitozoon cuniculi (EC) is a parasite that causes lesions (called “granulomas”) in such organs as the kidneys, liver and brain. Even today, EC is still not well understood in the rabbit community. Theories and opinions regarding transmission, treatment and the severity of the problems caused by this parasite vary widely. To date, none of the theories have really been proven or not proven by a definitive study. Because EC is a protozoon, it is difficult to find this organism in the live rabbit, and often, the protozoan is not even found during a post-mortem exam.

Some experts feel that the majority of rabbits who have been exposed to EC do not suffer any health consequences as a result of this exposure. Others feel that EC is responsible for a whole host of health problems, including renal failure, convulsions, torticollis (head tilt or wry neck), hind limb weakness or loss of balance, nystagmus (eye twitching) and incontinence. Rabbits affected by EC before they are born (via the placenta) may develop lesions around the eyes, which sometimes cause visible white spots in the eye.



Becky has been fighting EC since May 25. I am posting this in hopes that it might help other rabbits that are also suffering.

There is a movie here: http://s1108.photobucket.com/albums/h409/MiniLopHop/?action=view&current=Videoofbunstuff128.mp4 

May 25: Last night this started about 7:30 and went to the ER. After 4 hours there they said ear infection. She has acted fine until tonight again. She’s on subq fluids, injected batryl, injected benidryl, and antibiotic eye drops.  I added drammamine to help with the dizziness.

May 26: ok, checked in with the vet again and we decided panacur (20 mg/kg of fenbendazole) wouldn’t hurt anything but can help. Since all the kids came from rough starts and have never been wormed we are dosing everyone to cover the bases.

Becky isn’t twirling much this morning. She’s such a trooper and mixing the meds with baby food she will lick it off a spoon. She is eating, peeing, and pooping like a trooper. Since she’s more in control I let her out of the basket this morning to change the wet bedding. She went right to her litter box and seems much more comfortable going potty there. Since she was able to get in and out ok on her own I’m not going to put her back in the basket for now.

I am having flashbacks to Cinderella and I don’t think I’m the only one. When I put Becky in the laundry basket Houdini seemed upset and kept hopping back and forth watching her. Luckily she hasn’t needed the basket today.

I have spent most of the day in the bun room, never being gone for more than 30 minutes at a time. I gave it a really good clean so I wouldn’t be hovering but still close. I would lay next to her and read out loud on my breaks. I think it makes her more comfortable. Gary also stretched out next to her so she never feels alone.

May 27: I feel like the panecur is a miracle. She is almost completely back to normal! She’s able to control her movements and not circling. She came hopping right over for breakfast and chowed down as normal.

I have to be careful not to pick her up too much because that makes her dizzy, but it’s a relief to see her feeling so much better. :)

May 28: Well, it is two hops forward and one hop back. *sigh* Becky isn’t doing so well this morning. Her eyes are really darting again and her head is sideways again. Last night her head was back up right and I was so excited.

I’m going to continue her meds for two weeks minimum. Depending on how she’s doing it may get extended.

I so want to snuggle her but it makes her dizzy, so I sit next to her and we chat.

May 29: I am happy to report that Becky is doing really well this morning. She was able to sit up to clean her face properly with both paws! As soon as I put the pellets down for breakfast she came right over and dug in, granted oats is quite the attractant.

Gary is being a wonderful husbunny, he is laying right next to her and keeping her face clean. His hocks are doing much better so he doesn’t need to have socks on while in his normal space anymore because I have several blankets padding the floor. I do put his socks on when he runs around, but he is so sweet he hasn’t wanted to leave Becky to play.

The vet says it is impossible to tell if it is the baytril or panacur that’s working, but we are covering our bases and doing both for two weeks. I’m thrilled that her fever is gone so she doesn’t have to have the sub q fluids since she is drinking well on her own. At this point she doesn’t seem to get dizzy unless I pick her up, so I administer her meds from the ground. I also have been giving her fresh lavender to eat because it is soothing and I think she sleeps better after snacking on it. At least I have a good supply of fresh this time of year that is in perfect bloom.

I hate leaving her home while I’m at work today, but Joshua promised to call if she starts to act unwell. He also promised to talk to her and give her pets a couple of times during the day so she knows she wasn’t abandoned. What a brave little girl, I’m sure she will pull through now.

*hugs and nose bonks to all our friends*

May 30: Becky had a good night and was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed this morning. As soon as I came in to say good morning she hopped right over to her breakfast dish and dug in with her normal gusto. I saw my first binky out of Sophie too! I guess she was extra excited for breakfast this morning heheheee

I really think it is EC, but I will finish the course of antibiotics just in case. I’m giving her the panacur daily for two weeks then we will see. She sucks it right down from the syringe because it’s mixed with yummy baby food and perfect food powder (it has lots of good things like wheat grass, probiotic, antioxidants etc. to stimulate her immune system). I normally put the perfect food powder on their breakfast, but adding an extra dose since she’s not feeling well is good too. She also chows down on the fresh lavender in the evenings. I have a lovely clump growing in my garden and it’s blooming now.

The boys are taking excellent care of her and makes me love them all the more. They are so devoted. I’m sure it is a comfort to her to have them snuggling when I can’t be home during the day.

It is such a relief to see her feeling so much better. :)

I went home at lunch and I wouldn’t believe that she is the same bun that was so sick less than a week ago. She hopped right up for her scratches like nothing was ever wrong. I will finish up the meds to make sure it is gone, but she is super.

I’m going to give her another week or so to make sure she’s all better than we can start dating again. I’m hoping to have all four of them living together by the end of the summer. Houdini and Gary have gotten along so well through all this since they were both helping Becky. Now if we can get Sophie and Becky to decide who the big boss is, that’s the last hold out.

May 31: *sigh* looks like I celebrated too soon. This morning her fever is back and she’s not as bad as she originally was, but still not good. Her breakfast consumption was lack luster, but when I put it in front of her face she did eat some. I gave her some metacam in case she was in pain because she looked so uncomfortable. I also gave her fluids to bring down her temperature. My poor baby. I can’t even get home at lunch today because of big meetings at work. Joshua promised to give her the dramamine later this morning and to keep an eye on her.

June 2: She’s doing better. When I give her the medicine it always gets her dizzy again for a little while, but it’s getting better each time. I have the gate open for Gary to run around and Becky just hopped out to see us in the livingroom! It’s the first time in over a week she has felt good enough to come out of her house. :)

She really likes nomming the lavender, luckily her appetite has been great the whole time.

June 7: Andre is doing his part by chasing Gary around and working out all his energy. Gary had a serious case of the zoomies tonight. A circle around their house, down the stairs, through the kitchen to our bedroom, lap around the room, back through the kitchen, up the stairs, around the living room, back to his house. All at top speeds over and over again for 45 minutes. They took turns with who was in the lead, so it was mutual participation. They both should sleep well tonight.

June 11: Two hops forward one hop back. She came out to the livingroom a couple of times over the weekend and is starting to fuss about the medicine. I take these as good signs. I make the pancur taste as good as possible, mixing it with baby food, but now she is still thumping after I dose her. I can’t pick her up or she gets dizzy again, but as long as she keeps all four feet on the ground she’s looking pretty good. She’s back to demanding oats to eat her pellets, but that is her normal so that’s good. She can be very stubborn and hold out all day if she doesn’t get her oats on top.

June 13: Well, with hindsight I think we lost Cinderella to EC. I had even asked the vet about it at the time, but the vet felt the symptoms were too severe to be EC. She was rolling and in the end she went into seizures. Even with medication she would only stop seizing for a few seconds at a time. After holding her all day and the medicine not working I ended up deciding to end her suffering, because I truly believe she was suffering.

I am happy to report though that Becky is doing much better. She was able to periscope last night for a cheerio! I gave her four cheerios just to see her able to balance herself  :)
She’s starting to venture out to the living room and moving around more. She’s getting her happy personality back. I’m going to finish the panacur and then give the ivomec just to be sure all bases are covered. I’m going to dose everyone with the ivomec just as a preventative measure.

She still gets a little dizzy when picked up, but that is getting better and she recovers more quickly each day. Now it only takes about 5 minutes until she’s fine again.

I think the difference is that Becky has never given up on eating and drinking. She has maintained a sweet disposition and she still interacts with me and her husbunny. When I was cleaning the bird cages over the weekend a couple of weeks ago she hoped onto my foot and just sat with me, her little head swaying but clearly happy with the contact. I see improvement, with set backs but each one less, so I truly feel Becky will be able to recover. Cinderella didn’t want to eat and the last day was totally unresponsive, there just was no quality of life. I couldn’t let her suffer. It’s a difficult line to draw, but it would have been selfish for me to hold onto her longer. At least her husbunny was with her to the very end and she died peacefully in my arms.

June 22: So Becky has been on the panacur for 27 days, almost done with the course. She’s still tilting a little and dizzy when I pick her up. I am going to get some ivomec tomorrow at the feed store when I pick up hay and give that a try. *sigh* I feel so bad for her.

She’s eating great and will stretch out to relax. I hope she is not in pain since she’s not giving any indications that she is. I took a nap on the floor with her yesterday, the blankets covering the floor smelled like lavender since I have been giving it to her daily for three weeks. It was a great nap for us both!

June 29: She is doing really well. There’s no indication unless I pick her up. Unfortunately that still makes her so dizzy. I hope her ears heal over time. I think her career as a therapy rabbit may be over though, I don’t want to stress her out. Gary can still go and be a clown for everyone.

She’s still eating the lavender and eating great in general. She has started to run up to the food dish in the morning for her pellets again. It’s reassuring to see the old enthusiasm return. I’m going to give her the panacur for one more week just to make sure she is stable and we got everything.

July 7: Becky is still on the panacur because she still gets dizzy if I pick her up. I’m starting to wonder if her ears were permanently damaged. Hopefully things will get better with time.

   

Socks on Hocks

Published July 2, 2012 by minilophop

Ghirardelli has a new nickname, socks on hocks. The poor boy is struggling to hold on to his dignity. He has always had little bald spots on his heels from poor breeding. From running like a maniac on the carpet he irritated the spots and made them all red. I was concerned they might get infected so I started to research how to help. I put layers of blankets down in his room with soft fleece on top. He gets bag balm, an intense moisturizer to the spots daily to keep them soft and protected a bit. When they are red I put Neosporin and A&D cream on them then cover with socks. I use newborn baby socks and lightly hold in place with vet wrap. The key is to make sure it is not too tight and impeding circulation. At first he was not thrilled with the process, but he has learned that socks equal freedom and a cheerio, so he puts up with it. His feet have healed up so now he just has to wear his socks when he’s ripping around the house, usually with Andre.

Getting cream and socks on:

Cheerio!

What have you done to my feet?

Time to RUN!!!!!

Now I’m used to my socks.

I’m melting… I’m melting… and loving it!

Published July 1, 2012 by minilophop

I hated how I looked so much that I would make goofy faces for the camera if I couldn’t avoid them all together.

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In 2010 I hit my highest recorded weight of 339. There are very few pictures of my from the past several years. I was too ashamed and embarrassed by how I looked to want to have any pictures. My pain levels were constantly high and I didn’t like to exercise. The more active I was the more pain I had, what fun is that? I can see in my face in the picture below that even just giving the cat a bath wore me out.

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I was in Paris for work for a week. Only one picture of me to prove I was there.

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Visiting Collin on his first birthday when he had back surgery.

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Joshua had a chess tournament in the city.

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Working on bonding Cinderella and Rebecca.

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The last Cephalon Christmas party, 2011.

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I started the process to have gastric bypass in November 2011. I weighed in at 322.

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Flower show 2012.

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Therapy rabbit visits 2012.

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I had gastric bypass on March 28, 2012. Five little marks that changed my life. After three weeks of an all liquid diet I weighed 295. The surgery went well and I was up walking the same day. I spent two nights at the hospital before I could safely drink liquids and go home. It was three weeks of recovery before I went back to work. I spent my days healing and starting to exercise again. I had to start off walking just 100 yards at a time then getting a little longer each day. I slowly built up my activity levels.

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Here I am setting up the new turtle tank in April. Joshua put all the rocks and dirt in because I couldn’t lift them yet.

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By May, I was able to walk around the park with the rabbits. Activity became so much easier as my pain levels went down. I was shocked that surgery didn’t create a fibromyalgia flare. Instead, I started to lose weight and was able to move joyfully. I expanded into water aerobics and strength training. I began walking during my lunch break since I didn’t feel like sitting around talking and shoveling food into my mouth. Now if I don’t get my mid-day walk I get irritable and can’t sit still. I still don’t feel like I”m a big exercise fan, but more of a person who enjoys activities.

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