Saturday, October 29, 2011

buster the bunny

all day at work yesterday i was thinking about bunnies. sometimes i think it's the next kind of pet i want. i showed my co-worker a whole bunch of pictures of these breeds of giant bunnies that really do exist. have you seen them? they're as big as dogs sometimes! go google them. you know you want too.

on our way home from work craig saw a bunny on the side of the road. we always slow down and look at road-side wildlife, especially raccoons, if any animal is exciting and in the wild we call them "creatures." so craig spotted a bunny creature and swung back around to get a good look. it was almost midnight and raining a bit, we were only going to look at the bunny until he ran off. but then he didn't, even when we got closer and shined our lights on him. so i did what every smart kid should do when they see a wild animal outside, i left the safety of the car and went to it. i just got worried about him, if he wasn't going to run away from us how was he going to run away from real danger? i wanted to spook him so he'd run back home and away from the road. but he never ran. and before i knew it i was holding a bunny in my lap and petting him.

he was small but not a baby, just not a grown up, and so soft and sweet. we thought maybe he wasn't wild because he wasn't thrashing around or freaking out, but then we thought maybe he was just in shock. he had one leg clung to his chest and i thought for a second it was missing, it was there but still covered in blood. in the dark it looked like he had hurt his paw and was going to have trouble getting away from anything he needed to run from [like meddling humans...] craig made some phone calls but the only animal control we could get a hold of told us they "don't do rabbits." it may just have been the prego hormones, but i just couldn't leave him. if we did he'd die. i know everything goes home someday, but i'd hate to feel like it was my fault when something died. besides, i love bunnies, i had been thinking about them all day, it wasn't just a random find. so i wrapped him up in my shirt and carried him to the car and we took him home with us [it was only a little illegal, as we found out later]. on the way we named him buster, because we had just gotten to the episode in arrested development that buster had lost his hand to a loose seal, and our new little friend had a hurt little hand.

he never bit or scratched me and craig made sure i washed my hands frequently and changed my clothes after handling him. even if he was a lost domestic bunny he still could've picked up some unpleasantries. the first this i did was give him a quick bath to get his paw clean. after i got all the blood off of it i couldn't find a wound and we realized the blood was coming from his nose. which was not a happy sign. but we bundled him up and gave him some apple chunks to snack on and called it a night. i felt like even if he didn't make it to the morning at least he'd be somewhere warm where he was loved. craig said if he was a domestic bunny we'd make sure we'd have his shots and then we'd keep him forever. if he was wild we'd make sure he'd get better enough to go back home.

this morning we drove him to an animal rescue/care clinic in portland. he was quite a bit more active and jumpy in the morning, which was good because he wasn't in shock but still bad because now he was getting stressed out. when we got him there they told us he was definitely a brush rabbit and that they could take care of him until he was better. i was sad that we couldn't keep him but glad that he would be cared for, she said he didn't seem in great shape but gave me a number to check on him later. i never called. i don't think i want to know. i just want to think he turned out just fine, made a full recovery, started a family, and told all his little bunny children about the night he was rescued by giants.

it might seem like a lot of effort for one tiny creature. but i know even small things that don't make a difference still make some difference. i can't end world hunger, but i can do little things to help, i can pay my tithing, i can help people i come across, i can do what i am can. likewise i can take a hurt bunny home and keep him safe, so why wouldn't i? and Heavenly Father cares about all of His little creatures. it also made me so glad to have a husband like craig, who is willing to do crazy things to comfort me and make me happy, who has compassion when i'm crying in the rain on the side of the road holding a bleeding bunny even when we both knew how silly we were being. we both had a moment where we realized that this was a scenario that we had only been through as children who wanted to bring home stray animals and we both found ourselves in the role of the parent/adult for the first time, and got to choose what kind of parent we were going to be in the face of "can i keep it?" it turns out we're the pushover type of parent, and that's just fine with us. i also realized for the first time while i watched buster huddle in the little tote we gave him that i would never want to keep a pet bunny in a cage, something better to realize sooner as opposed to later. craig promised me that when we have a house someday with a fenced back yard i can have all kinds bunnies running around out there. that's something sweet to look forward to.

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