|Colour||Smoke Pearl Martin|
|Breed||Smoke Pearl Martin|
Flump came from a rescue near Evesham. We got him after our first house rabbit, Snoopy, had to be put to sleep due to severe mallocluded molars. We had already chosen another male rabbit called Tigger (a tortoise shell and white lop), but we could not resist Flump when we saw him.
Tigger was very nervous and stayed in his hutch bedroom pretty much constantly for the first week. Flump on the other hand took approx thirty seconds to recover from the car journey home and then set out to explore the kitchen thoroughly and eventually settle down to chew his way through a plastic bag and the juicy peach that he liberated.
Although very nosey, Flump was pretty nervous about being touched, especially on his head. This made us wonder whether he had been mistreated in the past or had had young children pulling him about. Nowerdays he is a changed bun, and loves nothing more than settling down to receive a good fuss.
Once Tigger also grew in confidence, we started sessions to try and bond them, so that Tigger could have the run of the house too. Unfortunately by this time Flump had got it into his head that the house belonged to him, so the bonding sessions had to take place in the back bedroom, or even the bath. Even then Flump took grave exception to having another rabbit about the place, and had no qualms in biting and chasing poor Tigger.
Eventually, after the fights were getting worse rather than better, we reluctantly decided that we would have to find Tigger another home where he could have more room and attention, rather than being stuck in a hutch most of the day. Luckily a previous work college of mine was after a house rabbit, and had kept them before so Tigger found a great home of his own.
Flump meanwhile decided that as he now owned the house, he'd better make his mark, so he set about systematically destroying it! This came as a bit of a shock to us as we had never had a "chewer" before. Our previous rabbit had been good as gold and never damaged anything. Flump was obviously making up for this lack of effort from his predecessor. Eventually we got him to pretty much stop all the chewing by providing him with a hayball in the lounge, and a big cardboard box for him to hide in and chew to his heart's content in the kitchen. We also gave him newspapers and Yellow pages books to rip up which he loved.
We were still concerned about him being bored when we weren't there, and got several female bunny companions from the RSPCA over the months to try and bond him, without any luck. We had just resigned ourselves to the fact that he was a bachelor through and through, when he went to stay at Guardian Angels whilst we went on holiday....
Sparkle and Mishka are sisters who were rescued from very poor conditions by our subsequent friend Lany, and then they went to Guardian Angels to be rehomed. This was just as Flump went to stay for three weeks whilst we were away on holiday. Adele who runs the sanctuary kindly volantered to try and bond them with Flump whilst they were all on neutral territory, and due to her skill the rest is history.
The three buns initially lived inside the house in a large (6 foot) condo that I built. This was to keep on eye on them while they settled in, and to give them a sense of security. It was also to try and litter train the two new ladies as they were not particularly tidy in that department! Despite attempted training, they just didn't seem to get the message and the mess was getting out of control. Adele suggested a smaller hutch while they were establishing themselves so I made a more traditional 3'x3' hutch which was raised off the floor. This helped a great deal as it kept the mess off the kitchen floor, and the buns actually seemed to prefer it for sleeping in at night, as long as they were let out during the day. We felt bad for locking Flump up when he was used to the run of the house, but he was now so happy with his new lady friends that he would sit and look depressed underneath the hutch if we left him out!
After two months the litter problem was much better but still not perfect. Also one of the buns (we suspect Mishka) was leaving her cecotropes without eating them and they were making the house smelly. After much thought we decided they would have to live outside of the house. This was a real shame as we wanted them as house bunnies, but it just wasn't to be.
Sparkle is definately the most bossy and nosey of our three, and given an inch open cupboard or door, she will rush through and start clambouring over whatever is inside. She also has no qualms in giving your leg or bum a nip if you happen to be in the way of her explorations, although it is only a "get out of the way!" and she is not an aggressive bun in any way.
|Colour||Rusty brown with black|
Flump and Sparkle seemed to have the strongest bond at first, with Mishka being a bit more independant and bossy. These roles seem to have reversed completely now, with Mishka being the one spending most time with Flump and grooming him most. Although in good health when we got her, Mishka has had a lot of bad luck in the health department. She started with getting ear mites, and had just been treated successfully for that before hurting her spine somehow, which affected the use of her back legs. She still has problems with them now, but can hop about well enough. The biggest problem she has had is with her liver. She lost weight rapidly over a week or so and we thought we would lose her. However, she seems to have pulled through into some sort of stability after major doses of steroids, and has even gained a little weight. She is far from a healthy weight though, so it is possible she has more serious problems.
Despite her problems, she remains a happy and interested rabbit, and still gets on with her sister very well despite them both being "intact" (Flump is neutered).
We had been allowing Mishka unlimited feed to try and get her weight up a bit. Unfortunately Flump decided that the extra food was for his benefit, and now needs to go on a diet!