Friday, 15 June 2012


For most folks, the fact that rabbits have well-defined characters is an amazing revelation. The customary notion of bunnies is that they are dim-witted and boring pets, fit only for children.

Otto and Pandora, two rabbits I looked after in 1999, amply proved the public's stereotypical view of rabbits wrong. From my When a Man Loves a Rabbit: Learning and Living With Bunnies memoir, here is an excerpt demonstrating this fact.


My new responsibilities were totally different in character as well as looks. Otto was a timid Dutch rabbit with a thin blaze on his forehead. The poor bunny had been badly abused at his previous home and had never quite gotten over it. He was frightened by any sudden moves.

Pandora was a mixed breed and considerably larger than Otto. She had lovely white and caramel fur, and her left ear drooped, making her look comical. Pandora was adventurous and full of mischief, living up to her name.

Later that evening, I let Gideon out for his exercise, but I kept the other bunnies caged for their protection. I had heard that rabbits could fight so violently that combatants sometimes killed each other.

Initially, Gideon was extremely inquisitive. He hopped from one cage to the other, first sniffing Pandora and then Otto. True to her nature, Pandora became very interested in Gideon. In fact, it seemed like she was brazenly flirting with The Earl of Hurl. Otto just loafed in his cage for the most part, only sniffing a few times at my bunny boy's inquiring face. Meanwhile, I taped the bunnies and their cute reactions to each other.

Once the introductions were over, Gideon wasn't happy at all that his house had been invaded by two strange rabbits. He thumped almost continuously when his access to the foreigners from Calgary was denied.

I couldn't help laughing. It was as if he were a bar patron challenging new rivals to "step outside?.

When I locked Gideon up for the night, he kept rattling the cage door at me and stomping angrily. I brushed my teeth and headed for bed, but I could still hear him thumping his defiance. The poor guy yearned to mix it up with the two new strangers. I suspect he was eager to establish his dominance over them. And Gideon might have been pleased to find some of his own species in the house. It must have seemed like being an exile in a foreign land and suddenly finding a crowd of people who spoke his language.


When a Man Loves a Rabbit is filled with many more fascinating stories of life with house bunnies. These vignettes range from the tragic to the hilarious. Please click on the link to my books for details about both of my paperbacks. You're also welcome to contact me directly for more information. Please visit The House Rabbit Society for all your questions regarding bunny care.

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