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Unforgettable: A Rabbit Comes Home to Roost(er)

In November 2010, Sweet Binks Rabbit Rescue assisted Burrillville Animal Control and the Rhode Island SPCA in a nasty cruelty case involving about 22 rabbits and some chickens and ducks. Amazingly enough, the offender got the highest fine—$4,000—ever handed down in Rhode Island for animal cruelty, quite surprising for a case involving rabbits and poultry.

Sweet Binks took all the animals, and many of the rabbits were spayed/neutered, socialized, and placed. However, one the biggest rabbits was just absolutely terrified of people, especially men. He was so scared of people, I couldn’t even put him in a foster home, so he just lived at Sweet Binks. Eventually he started to trust me, but only me. So after two years in the shelter, Scanley now resides in my home.

He loves grapes and blueberries and his nightly greens (parsley, chicory, romaine). He would be a pellet-hound but we limit the amount of pelleted food he gets, for his own good. He is a great hay eater (which is so important for buns) and has two huge litter boxes filled daily with quality hay. Lounging under my computer desk at my feet is his favorite spot. He is completely free-roaming in my old 1790 home, but he stays in the “keeping room” (a room attached to the kitchen/front door). He is very well-behaved, no bad chewing habits, great with his litter box. (All of the cruelty-case buns are like that. One who has been adopted, probably a relative of Scanley, has been nicknamed “Steve McClean.” Very tidy buns who once lived in total filth.)

Scanley hangs out in the same room with Rodney, our indoor rooster. I believe Rodney was an “Easter chick” and was abandoned when he became a rooster and started crowing, but I think he was raised in a house. I have many rescued chickens, but Rodney wants no part of them, being outside, or doing most other chicken things. He also has a shoe fetish and has his own collection of shoes. Seriously, he goes nuts for shoes and especially boots! He sleeps in a dog crate in the house, and I had some “Rodney pants” made for him (he hates them), so he doesn’t poop all over the house. He does great with my cats, dogs, and Scanley. He is my feathered dog. He is unlike any chicken I have ever known, and I have had many chickens in my life. He’s a bit of a celebrity around here. He and Scanley drink from the same bowl.

Scanley is still scared of most people but will accept a grape from my husband. He let me repeatedly pet his head just the other day, which was huge! We are making great progress, but it is really just Scanley and me. It appears I am the only human he will trust. He is usually lying at my feet when I am on the computer, and will sometimes nudge me for some attention.

−Pamela Hood
Sweet Binks Rabbit Rescue
Foster, R.I.

Read the rest of this issue from Animal Sheltering magazine

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