Archive for the ‘play’ Category

The cover alone of a paperback (Malcolm Lowry's Under the Volcano), the left and bottom edges are very rabbit-bitten

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Picture of a timothy burrow below a bed - shot taken from rabbit pov, floor-level

Where we placed the burrow

Frank finally made use of his timothy burrow! We bought it many moons ago, but after some initial interest (blogged about here and here), Frank ignored it. Recently we slid it under our bed, close to one of his napping spots, and one night it happened: the long-awaited union of rabbit and expensive toy. Since then he’s put many hours into it, opening up the back and ripping out the floor. Now he uses it as a tunnel, just as I’d hoped! And he still sometimes works on the walls. I’m thinking I should place it over an edible mat of some kind so as to extend its use.

2 pictures of a timothy burrow, one depicting an opened up back, another a ripped up floor - shots taken from rabbit pov, floor-level

Frank's handiwork

Update 15 Jan: Frank’s really kept at this recently – the burrow is nearly totally destroyed now! I even got to capture some video of him in there – whatabun! =:)

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concrete forms, hooray!

Shot looking down a concrete pillar form that's lying horizontally on the ground, with a house rabbit looking through at the other end

I’d read that concrete forms are great for making rabbit-friendly play structures, but I didn’t really understand what a concrete form was until my dad pulled one out of his van the last time he visited. For Frank! Thanks, Dad. Frank loved it immediately, although I haven’t found a permanent way to work it into his habitat yet (being tubular, it rolls easily, and Frank does not like that at all). Since then I’ve happened upon this video and wow! The bulb above my head is sparking and flashing. Rona?

Shot looking down a concrete pillar form that's lying horizontally on the ground, with the back-sideof a house rabbit showing at the other end

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a new friend

Picture of a brown rabbit playing with a plush toy dog

The retirement of Benjamin (Frank’s old teddy bear, a good friend and aid in … tension release) left a void in our home, but a recent trip to Ikea fixed us right up. Meet Gilda the dog. After a run through the wash we introduced her to Frank, and admittedly she received an initial chilly reception. Still he’s not quite sure about her. Maybe her tail is getting in the way. But they are friends now and I’m sure this is only the beginning of a long, fulfilling friendship.

Picture of a brown house rabbit playing with a plush toy dog

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One of the greatest joys I’ve discovered in sharing a bedroom with Frank is that most mornings we get to enjoy a cuddle on the bed. (Well, a cuddle intermittently interrupted by scrabbling amongst the sheets – that’s cool, it’s cute to watch, plus good exercise for Frank.) The other week I took a series of photos from one of these morning sessions, and while most turned out too blurry, enough good ones came out of it that I made a new scrapbook page.

(I’d like to say that, with his increased familiarity with the area, Frank has stopped trying to pee on our bed. That isn’t quite the case, although I do believe he tries less frequently. And, thankfully, with our increased familiarity with Frank, his attempts are very rarely successful – that I’m-backing-into-the-pillow-so-as-to-pee-on-it pose is so very distinctive … all the same, I’m sincerely grateful for the existence of Nature’s Miracle Orange-Oxy.)

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The brushes I buy for Frank don’t work on his fur. The toys I buy don’t interest him. The new greens I buy are left to wilt in his bowl. At times I’ve felt overwhelmed by the money I’ve wasted on Frank. Other times, I know it’s not a waste to learn what should be avoided in the future.

Admittedly, that line of reasoning doesn’t soothe my nerves at the time, but it does pan out because after three years of having Frank around, I’ve learned a lot about him and rarely waste money anymore. We’ve found the brush that works. We know what kinds of toys excite him. And we only give him new greens to try when they’re a part of our dinner, too.

a plain, natural cardboard bankers box with holes cut to make way for rabbitsThe box I wrote about on 16 January collapsed a month ago, so last week we trekked over to Staples Business Depot and bought a new pack of bankers boxes. I set one up immediately – this time oriented in the opposite direction, which I think will keep it stronger for longer – and Frank didn’t take long to claim it. He hasn’t been spending much time on top of this one, but as you can see from the destruction on the porch, he’s been enjoying it tons.

One afternoon I found him flopped-out inside, his white belly and under-chin right up against one of the doorways. I had never seen him so relaxed: although we often see him bunny-flopping/ed, he usually soon shifts so that his chin is resting against the floor. This was one fast-asleep bun, and he didn’t stir as I watched him. Of course, the camera was out of batteries then…

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Frank is recovering well, but he’s been misbehaving overnight by nibbling at bunny-proofs that used to deter him, like the plastic tubes we put around electrical cords, and packing tape affixed backwards over baseboards and such. We were up and down all night, wrapping towels around things and offering him hay. He is now still in an adventurous mood, jumping on things, etc. I hope he’ll retire for the day soon.

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A few months ago, we draped a sheet beneath the slats on our bed so that Frank couldn’t nibble on them when he came to visit. Yesterday he caught us in the middle of a bedroom rearrange when one end of the sheet was loose. Remember the game with the parachute, Cat and Mouse? I think this is Frank’s version. Did you catch his impertinent flip of the ears near the beginning? What a naughty bun.

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We had Frank in our room over the past weekend to accommodate a house guest. Thankfully his recent energies didn’t carry over to his nights with us … it probably helped that I pulled various furnishings away from the walls (to make Frank-sized pathways around the room) and generally made some temporary changes with him in mind. I think he is rather used to our room at this point … apparently, endless noisy explorations and mass territory markings are no longer necessary. He did jump up on the bed twice … well, once, successfully. (I do worry about that, about broken backs and legs, but I don’t think crating him overnight is a good solution. Hmm.)

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