Tuesday, April 1, 2014

A crazy year

So obviously I've been neglecting to update, but I feel I have a good excuse. I am about to graduate from college and I am planning my wedding which will take place exactly 3 days after my last class. Needless to say, my life is very busy.

The good news is that my fiance and I have found a nice little apartment which Umbra can run around. We move in in a couple of weeks which will be exciting but also time consuming.

I hope that once all of these major life changes have passed that I can again begin blogging frequently.

Until then I will give you an update on Umbra. She recently had her yearly check up and is in good health, although she could still stand to loose a few ounces. Umbra has also began to warm up to my fiance after nearly 3 years that I have had her. She now lets him pet her, but she also tries to eat his hair so he is scared of her now which is the silliest thing for a grown man to be afraid of.

Hope all is going well for all of you, and I hope that we can talk more again soon!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

A belated Christmas/New Year's post

So it seems that all my recent posts come with an appolgy for lack of activity... so sorry... again.

I hope this post makes up for it. I thought I would share a little project I had been working on as a Christmas present to my grandparents and Regina (who still goes by Roger).

I made them a custom bunny condo. This was the first I have ever made so, it isn't perfect, but I'm proud nonetheless. Building a condo can be pricy (although not as much as some larger store-bought
cages) but it helped that many of the supplies I already had: plywood (which was left over from previous project and may have even originated from a dumpster), zip ties, power tools, screws, brackets and 1X1 wood strips. I used linoleum for the 1st floor and carpet squares for the second and for the ramp. I got these from Habitat for Humanity Restore, which like the thrift store for home improvement supplies. The only things I had to purchase full price were some additional brackets, wheels (so that my grandparents can move the condo easily) and spray adhesive for the linoleum. I scavenged some grids from Umbra's condo (since she doesn't stay in it) and purchased some more from Sears which happened to be on sale. I should mention that I had originally bought grids at target, but returned them on account that the spaces were too wide.

I made the condo 2 by 3 grids (I believe each grid is about 24 inches long). You may notice from the image about that I miscalculated  the length of the sides: they should have been a little bit longer so that they over lapped. For this reason I used brackets for added stability.

Wheels allow the condo to be moved with ease.
Unfortunately, at this point I began to slack off on documenting my process so the next image will be the finished product.

Regina/Roger investigate her new digs.

Ave you can see that I created a private room for Regina to hide in. The ramp was made by cutting down some closet shelving which we were not using. I zip-tied a strip of carpet to it for better traction. The second floor sits atop two 1x1 wood strips. Not visible in the photo, the strips have notches are cut into the underside at each end so that they sit snugly over the grid wires.

Although Regina seemed wary of the new cage (she is a shy bunny), my grandparents liked it, although they were shocked at its size. I do have a feeling however, that like Umbra, Regina will not end up being confined in the new condo. She spends most of her time having free run of a spare bedroom. A screen allows her to see what is going on in the house. She does like to climb up on a bookcase in the room where she likes to sample some literature.

After the final assembly Regina retired to her favorite corner and remained in bun-loaf mode the remainder of our visit. She was tired of all the hustle and bustle, and even refused treats from my grandma, which is just as well because she certainly has not lost any weight despite having more room for exercise.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Good News/ Bad News

On Thursday I took the next step in the Umbra/Roger saga. I took Roger to the vet and my grandpa tagged along. There, we received some mixed results.

Bad News: Roger is a full pound overweight! Grandma was told to cut out the cheerios and corn and limit pellets and treats.

Good News: Despite being neglected he is in relatively good health: clean ears, no parasites, good teeth. Plus the vet thought he was very easy to handle.

More Bad News: Roger is in fact, not neutered.

Even More Bad New: Roger has been renamed Regina, because he is a she. And my grandpa is reluctant to shell out $200 for to have her spayed. The vet didn't stress having Regina fixed anyhow, noting the health and behavior benefits, but also seeing it as not essential as Regina is of an unknown age.

Also, there was some misunderstanding on my part, of what is known of recently redubbed Regina's past. She actually belonged to my step-uncle (not step great uncle). He was the 3rd or 4th owner of the rabbit. He also didn't have cats which former-Roger was friends with, but other rabbits (who I now feel are also in need of rescuing) who did not get along with him/her which is why he/she was passed off on my grandparents.

Some more good news would be that, although I have decided to forgo bonding, Regina is in a better home now. I even convinced my grandpa to allow her to move from the mudroom between the house and the garage into the spare bedroom.

I have also begun gathering supplies to make Regina a nice multi-level condo so that she can work some of that weight off.

So overall, yes I am disappointed that I will not be bonding Umbra anytime soon, but I am glad that Regina will stay with my grandma, who seems to have grown attached to her (she complained that my grandpa wont let her have a dog or lizards so I think she is happy to have a new animal in the house).

Despite this unexpected turn of events, I'm sure I will continue to update you on Regina.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Finally, an Update on Roger

So here I have been waiting for weeks for my grandpa to call me when he got that rabbit and he never did. I had all but forgotten when I visited my grandparent yesterday, and there was Roger right when we walked in. My grandpa was worried that the Roger and Umbra wouldn't get along so he decided not to tell me, but of course I found out.

They don't know much about him. Supposedly he is neutered, but since my grandparents are his 3rd or 4th owners, no one knows even how old he is or what breed. I thought that he is a Netherland Dwarf mix on account of short ears but medium size.

There is concern about Roger suffering some neglect. When my grandparents got him, his nails were way over grown. Also, he hasn't had the most nutritious diet. My grandparents have been feeding him hay, but also maybe a little too much pellets and treats. My grandma even gives him corn and cheerios! 

So maybe his living conditions are not ideal, but my grandparents are trying their best. I am going to make an appointment for Roger with my vet on Monday and then I will begin planning a bunny play date if Roger gets a clean bill of health.

More to come soon!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Humane Society Volunteering Update

So once upon a time I express interest in volunteering for the Humane Society again. I had for a while when I lived in Indianapolis, but they didn't have bunnies, and my hometown shelter does. I put in an application back in August (maybe?) but I was told the next training session was not until September.

Well September and October came and went and I never got a call. I was beginning to think maybe I should re-apply, but finally I was invited to the volunteer orientation last weekend.

They only had three buns when I was there, and they were still being housed with cats across from the noisy dog kennel. The manager who led our tour did say that plans were in the works for building a new shelter with separate facilities for treating incoming dogs and cats and more rooms for meet-and-greats AND a room just for small critters like bunnies and rodents and such.

I can't wait to get started, but I do dread the extra disapproval Umbra will give me when I come home smelling of different bunnies. It will be worth it though, not only does the shelter get an influx of buns after Easter, but our county is known for it's 4H fair, and their are an even greater number of abandoned rabbits that come in then.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Jeez! I need to update more often!!

Sorry again for the lengthy hiatus =[.

Here are some videos of Umbra being a turd to make up for it!!!

This first one is Umbra making a mess. I finally caught her in the act! I keep finding piles of poops on the bed, and one night she had the audacity to do this in my presence! Does anyone else's bunny do this? She acts like she is going for a cecotrope but instead leaves a mess of half-munched bunny-berries. Sometimes she sits on the pile for a while like she's trying to hatch an egg. Sometimes I just don't understand her...


Okay, the next video is another peculiar habit of Umbra's. I noticed long ago that she has a strange attraction to fresh nail polish. Usually, I paint my nails in the living room, but I thought I could get away with painting them while watching Netflix in bed... I was wrong. I have never seen Umbra get so violent trying to get to my nails, before I started filming she was pulling on my shirt and she bit my finger twice! Again I have no explanation for this behavior, is this something that all bunnies do?

Also, just an update on Umbra's possible bonding to Roger... there is no update, my grandpa never got back to me.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Fosters needed

It seems like Indiana rescues have been flooded with confiscated rabbits the past year. The latest batch of 16 buns were taken from a snake breeder along with various other animals. However, IHRS fosters are still at capacity from the 300+ rabbits rescued from the former VP of the Rex Rabbit Breeders Association.

IHRS is concerned that the 16 buns will soon multiply since they were not caged separately: many of the rabbits are likely pregnant.

If you live in Indiana, or can transport some bunnies to other rescues or your own home, I know IHRS would greatly appreciate it. Unfortunately, my current living situation keeps me from fostering myself, but I will pass the news along.

You can contact IHRS on Facebook or via their website.