We have a new boss in our house.
He is quite small, white and deceptively fluffy. He is also very demanding.
We inherited an 8 month old white rabbit from friends whose daughter had tired of it. It has rapidly become a popular addition to the household.
With popularity however has come power, and the rabbit has become an expert in wielding it. While I suspect he was named “Thumper” in honour of the Bambi movie, it is quite appropriate in a thug sort of way.
Thumper lives in a hutch inside the house. When we are home he is allowed to roam the tiled area of the house. (He is house-trained but we aren’t taking any chances.) This has the added advantage of keeping him away from electrical cords, to which he is quite partial.
We also have two dogs in the house. Now dogs and rabbits are not natural friends. We were in fact quite nervous about how the rabbit and dogs would get along. We shouldn’t have worried.
The rabbit treats the dogs with utter disdain. He ignores them when they try and get him to move. He eats their dry food – often pushing them out the way to get at the bowl first. The dogs stand back with what looks suspiciously like respect.
But it is not just the dogs that the rabbit bosses around. First person up in the morning is treated to great thumping on the bottom of the hutch as he demands to be let out. On occasion these thumpings have occurred in the middle of the night when he decided he wanted some more green food. Who knew that rabbits were nocturnal eaters?
So the rabbits life seems to be that he does what he wants when he wants. He helps himself to whatever food he thinks he might like. In fact he eats so much, and then he collapses and has to sleep it off. Tough life.
Meanwhile, his human slaves have to clean his hutch very regularly, do regular runs to the green-grocers to dive through their bins and bring home the outer leaves cut from cabbages and cauliflowers.
Our reward however – he is as affectionate as a rabbit can be (unlike dogs, rabbits don’t really wag their tails or look like they are smiling. We assume his passivity indicates that he is happy being held.)
And he certainly is a personality, even if it is just us anthropomorphising!