Kowalski, the only brown one born, started having unexpected convulsions on July 4th. We found a pet clinic that could see him that night, the vet examined him, and--long story short--they put him to sleep that night.
Now, about the Seperis Warren!
I've gone through many many so many iterations of Bunny Housing, but there's actually a reason for that other than my search for new things.
Bunnies can eat through anything. Even zip ties. Even dozens of zip ties. Even all the zip ties. That is how I ended up with baby bunnies in the first place. They can also jump under duress three feet at a run and two feet just because they're assholes. (One of my tiny psychopaths can do three and a half feet, catch himself halfway over the top of the play area, and shimmy over.) Rabbits also like access to small, comforting, dark spaces to hide and cuddle (each other, not me.
So ideally, all housing has to start with primary "thing with walls and roof" (because jumping) and "within thing space for hiding" and "larger area to play". I have learned this by trying 'Open but confined space' and 'closed confined space'
Below is the current iteration. You'll notice signs of chewing. Rabbits chew on anything.
Three rabbits are visible; one is in the top floor under restriction because Gareth is a psychopathic asshole, and two escaped and are hiding in Child's room. There is going ot be so much poop vaccuming, God.
The yard is, in some ways, the hardest part to get right. It's very much a space issue as in, apartments don't have much, and free range rabbiting simply doesn't work well in an apartment even with litter boxes everywhere and rabbit-proofing with so little space is nearly impossible.
The days of giant salads at every meal have been suspended, as my precious bunny darlings do not understand nutrition and flat refused to eat half their required nutrients according to my meticulously documented rabbit meal spreadsheet and stressed the fuck out of me (AKA they would literally skip entire vast quantities of their meals to eat all their favorites which were all redundant for proper rabbit health). They'd also eat less hay, which was extremely concerning since rabbits need to eat hay pretty much all the time.
Switching to rabbit food + salads for extras has worked out much better if not nearly as much fun as the biweekly salad-creation and portioning (aerialiste was visiting one weekend and helped me do it by dint of me dropping the containers in front of her and saying 'help').
Believe it or not, this is not actually less expensive and may be slightly more, but now that all are fully grown, I am tentatively considering switching to half and half (one week food, one week salad, repeat). The biggest problem with rabbit food as opposed to salads is that yes, they love rabbit food but they don't have to work for it (aka chewing down broccoli or carrots or munching through dandelion and lettuces and kales) and so it's not as interesting. Healthy rabbits also need entertainment (or they will entertain themselves with really questionable results) and salad meals last longer and provide stimulation. Also, rabbit food can also easily lead to rabbit weight issues if I'm not very careful when feeding them.
Hay became my second great problem.
1.) My rabbits do not like just any hay. They like expensive, organic, small-batch hay and go through roughly twenty pounds of it a month, but at least the nice people send me cool bunny postcards for every ridiculous twenty pound box I buy (a month).
Note: If you're wondering why on earth I don't put a stop to it--they won't eat the cheaper hay. Literally. They hunger striked me during an emergency end of the month hay shortage where I had to use a bag from the pet store. Then they spread it on the floor of their enclosure and pooped all over it. This actually happened.
So yes, I have a hay budget.
2.) I am, as it turns out, somewhat allergic to Timothy Hay. Orchard Hay and Oat Hay--both of which my rabbits' provider of choice carry--are slightly more expensive alternatives so I variate to those but unfortunately in subscribe and save I hit "Timothy" this month so everything sucks.
The Seperis Warren include the following:
Original gift bunnies:
Augustus (male) - golden, zen
Charlemagne (female) - black (sometimes with grey mane), kind of high-strung
They are the parents of the below:
Gareth (male) - black, psychopath
Zenobia (female) - black, sociopath, smarter than me
Berenice (female) - black, tricky, smarter than everyone
Arsinoë (female) - black, a little shy, probably smarter than me
First note: rabbit warrens are matriarchal. There's a reason those three are named after powerful queens and one an emperor. In general, unless mating is involved, the women want nothing to do with the males and beat the shit out of them. As mating is no longer involved, it becomes a hierarchy thing and the males are generally at the bottom. Currently--I think--the hierarchy is Charlemagne-Zenobia (they trade), Berenice, Arsinoe, Augustus, and Gareth.
Charlemagne, Zenobia, and Berenice get along as a group; Arsinoë gets along best with Augustus.
Arsinoë is not popular with the Three; they don't really like her but will put up with her due to being female; Augustus is fine with Charlemagne, but Berenice and Zenobia don't trust him and try to fight him unless Charlemagne intervenes. Most hierarchical fights are fairly bloodless (I watch those); there's some stomping, chasing, a quick jump at someone's hindquarters, and they give their submission and everyone goes back to eating hay or throwing themselves dramatically onto rag rugs to pout (not kidding). Just with Augustus, it happens more often because they're assholes. In general--after a lot of reading on this--short of really trying to hurt each other, I leave them alone during weird-ass dominance battles
Gareth is another story.
Gareth gets along with no one, fights with everyone, and hates Augustus, and the feeling is mutual. As in, I have done the wild kingdom physically separating my rabbits and checking them for injuries more than once because what the fuck? but yeah, left to their own devices they'd kill each other. But for reasons (why?) Gareth does like me, and will on occasion crawl into my lap to see what my phone is doing or check my feet to see what they are. It's--IDEK. So he's pretty much always quarantined from the others since I have yet to work out what his problem is with pretty much everyone.
As rabbits do not do well without companionship, I try to spend personal time with him more than the others--as he is actually into that--but honestly, I feel like he may be just a solitary rabbit.
Rabbit Human Relations
If you come from a background of cats and dogs and animals not born sociopaths and also predators, not prey animals, it's like opposite day plus rampant hostility. But that is a whole other entry.
Living the rabbit life.
ETA: Augustus and Arsinoë have been returned to the Warren. Currently everything is in a sort-of armistice.
Posted at Dreamwidth: https://seperis.dreamwidth.org/1041231.html. | You can reply here or there. | comments