Initially my girls spent their pocket money on buying the rabbits, rabbit toys from the local pet shop. They were regularly bathed and brought in the house and played with, much to my consternation.
They also invested in rabbit leads. However these were not very successful as the rabbits managed to chew through them.
In fact the rabbits managed to chew through quite a lot of things including the flowers and the back of an old sofa which we kept in our family room. Even so I found myself becoming quite fond of these little rogues.
Woody had quite a temper on him and would enjoy picking up his china bowl with his mouth and throwing it around. Whether it was this particular occupation – or his diet – I don’t know, but I seemed forever to be taking him to the vets to have his nails and teeth clipped. Apparently it is not uncommon for rabbits teeth to become dangerously long. (Fortunately Jessie was not suffering with this particular affliction – just the continuing gammy eye).
One time I had noticed not only were Woody’s teeth very long but he seemed to be getting rather thin.
To summarise the prognosis, Woody had an abscess on his gum and our local vet told me that any operation to remove this (as it was in the rabbits jaw) would be unsuccessful and lead to a lot of suffering for the rabbit. I was told that Woody should be put to sleep.
Now as I said – I am not a great fan of rabbits, but this little chap seemed in quite good spirits jumping round the garden, despite being a bit on the thin side. So Woody had his teeth cut short yet again and I went away to have a think about what was the best thing to do.
Well thank goodness for the internet. I did hours of research and finally found a famous rabbit vet, just twelve miles from where we lived. This vet had written books on veterinary rabbit stuff, and even had a rabbit operating table at her practice.
Woody was seen and given a quite different prognosis. She told me that she would not be able to remove all of the abscess, but she could lance it. Rabbits she told me live very successfully in the wild with abscesses in their mouths. She also suggested we had Woody’s front teeth removed.
That was three years ago. My old vet was sceptical about the whole thing and just refers to him as the miracle rabbit. Woody does need his food or special treats like carrots to be cut up or even pureed -but apart from that seems quite happy. He often comes up and gives us a lick or sometimes you can see him sucking on the odd plant, but apart from that being toothless has not affected him one bit.
As for the girls – well they have long since lost interest in Jessie and Woody and regard them as a bit of a chore. So now most of the time there is 50/50 split of me and the girls looking after them. Yes I know I should be stricter and have made them take responsibility for them but sometimes you just have to stick to fighting the big battles and lose a few of the small furry ones.
So if rabbits are not really your thing – I would steer well clear of getting one. They are cute, cuddly and adorable but also in our case have been very expensive, time-consuming and they live quite a long time! And sadly if you are like me you will grow very attached to them even if rabbits are not quite your thing.
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