We don’t have a lucky rabbit’s foot, we have a lucky rabbit. It is a mutual type of luck. He is lucky that we saved him from what was likely a sure demise and we are lucky that we found him. His name is Roger and he is our wild cotton tail rabbit. If you can’t tell already by the previous posts, I am very fond of animals. Roger was not something we planned. We did not set out to catch a wild rabbit for a pet. He is the result of compassion and risking the possibility of tularemia to save a life.
His story begins a year and a half ago, before we were living in the camper. Dustin and I were out to eat at a restaurant in Greeley. We were leaving the restaurant, driving through the Wells Fargo parking lot, and Dustin noticed something very small hopping around in one of the parking spaces. Upon closer inspection we realized it was a little itty bitty baby bunny. The bunny could not have been more than a month old. We jumped out of the truck to get a closer to the bunny and noticed one of his eyes was badly wounded. It looked like something had gotten ahold of him by the eye and possibly ripped it out. The eye was closed shut and slightly bloody. He was disoriented, but once he noticed we were there he did not flee. Instead, he started hopping towards me. A little startled I jumped out of the way and the bunny continued to come towards me. After a minute of watching him we decided we could not leave him in the parking lot. He would likely not survive. So Dustin took his shirt off (it was summer time) and I captured the bunny, wrapping him up in the shirt. We got back in the truck and drove home.
Once we were home I got the dish soap and washed him in warm, soapy water. I did this a total of three times for good measure. After the baths I wrapped him in a towel and he was a little skittish, but seemed to understand that we were not going to harm him. We found a large storage container and punched holes in the lid. We gave him some water as well as salad greens and carrots for food. We put him in the container and put the container in our bedroom. After a few days of him living in the container, we decided we needed a proper rabbit house. After searching pet smart and a few other pet stores we decided it would be cheaper and of better quality to build our own rabbit hutch. So after a trip to Home Depot we set out to do just that.
The rabbit hutch took us (mostly Dustin) about half a day to build. The hutch is made of red wood, expanded steel, plywood, and galvanized tin. There is an insulated shelter on one side to keep Roger warm with a aluminum shelf that can be removed for easy cleaning (rabbits poop a lot). The other side is open to the outside and is made of a thick expanded steel. There is a lid with hinges that makes it easy to open. It also sits up on thick wood legs to keep Roger at a safe level above the ground. We have a light that we built into the ceiling of the insulated portion for very cold nights so that Roger can stay warm.
Several weeks after we saved him he was able to open his eye, but has lost most of the vision in it. Sometimes I feel that he should be free and frolicking around with all the other wild bunnies. But due to the blindness in his eye and friendliness towards people he would probably not survive.
When we moved into the camper there was no question that Roger was coming with us. So now he lives in his Rabbit hutch right outside the camper. We take him inside with us often and he loves to snuggle. He eats domestic rabbit food, but we give him all sorts of fruits and veggies including carrots, greens, cucumber, strawberries, apples, and celery. We have to be careful with him around the cats, but I am pretty sure he could do some serious damage if they got a little too friendly. Roger is now a part of the family and there is no double about it, he is a lucky rabbit.