She got her head stuck!

Today’s rant about rectangles is in honor of my new rabbit. I have two brand new rabbits – so new they don’t have names yet. One is a Californian doe, about 2 years old. The other is probably an American Chinchilla Rabbit doe, also aged about 2 years. They are accustomed to being together, so when I brought them home I put them together into a super-large dog crate in the middle of the yard. This serves the dual purpose of letting the new rabbits enjoy their surroundings (and all the fresh grass that comes up through the bottom of the crate) as well as keeping them away from my other rabbits in case the new ones are carrying some germs that haven’t shown themselves yet.

The Californian rabbit is crazy for fresh grass. Cra-a-zy for fresh grass! I have plenty of it – I don’t mow my backyard, prefering to keep it long so I can grab handfuls for the rabbits’ enjoyment.

Well this Californian and her friend had eaten down all the fresh grass they could reach in the crate, and the Californian wanted more. So she stuck her head through the grating and nibbled some more. Then she wiggled her head around to get it further out and reach some more. Then she squeezed a little further, and got her ears out. Ahh, that’s better! She could reach grass a whole inch further away. Now to pull her head back in and do the same thing in the next section of the crate…

Oops. Now that her ears were out, she couldn’t pull her head back in! Rabbit ears fold backward very easily, but they don’t fold forward at all…

Thankfully my husband went outside to peek at our new chickens right about then, and saw her. He pushed and pulled at her for a bit, but she couldn’t budge. He called me, and I crawled into the dog crate and pushed and pulled from the inside. Then we worked together from the outside and inside at the same time. We tried pushing the ears in backwards. We tried turning her to the right, then the left. No dice. She was stuck fast.

With nothing left to try, we went to Jerry’s home improvement store for bolt cutters. The nice salesman asked what we needed to cut, and was rather dumbfounded when he heard the story – but quite quickly pointed us to the type of bolt cutter he thought would work. We bought it and headed home. We worked a washcloth in between the rabbit and the wires, and my husband cut the wires. Success! I was able to lift the rabbit out and put her in a different area of the crate. After a few tentative movements of her head and ears, she started moving around and even nibbled some hay.

We blocked up the new hole, and left the bun to herself and her friend’s company. With rabbits, sometimes peace and quiet relieve their stress more than anything humans can do.  A new tool in the toolbox, and another rectangle removed. If only I could remove rectangles from my animals’ lives as well as mine!

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