peter three

Page Fifty


The grey and white rabbit is the Peter; the guinea pig is his pal, Tony. Peter was brought to us on Saturday 26 October 1996, being at that time about four years old. We had him for two years and one week, as he died on Sunday 1 November 1998. To this day I have no idea what he died of. In 2001 another rabbit I had would die of the same thing, as far as I could tell, and I have never encountered it any other time, don’t know what it is. And as both rabbits came down with this thing on weekends, when getting a vet is an emergency thing and you have to call and wait and wait some more, they never got to doctors. Whatever it is, it shows no symptoms until the rabbit is only hours away from dying. I’ve had fourteen rabbits in my life thus far, and have only seen this condition twice.

Peter was yet another of the many animals I’ve taken in in my life after someone else rejected them. His owner heard about me from a neighbor.  The woman — a flaming yuppie me-me girl — was looking to get rid of Peter, and the neighbor told her I liked rabbits. Ya-da, ya-da, it’s an old story. Peter had been obtained for the woman’s son when the son was fairly young, with the stipulation that the son had to care for the rabbit. But, when it became clear that Peter had been born with a serious malocclusion of his two top front teeth, mother had to have the job of cutting them once a month, since this is no job for a child. So, in her phrase, Peter was a “special needs” rabbit. When son got into the pre-teens and had no further interest in rabbits, mother was determined the rabbit must go. She herself was not going to take over all of the rabbit care. Tooth-cutting was all she was willing to do. So she went looking for a “special”  home for a special needs rabbit. While not wanting to care for the animal herself, she didn’t want to put him into a home where no one would cut his teeth and he would die of starvation.

Me voilá. I’ve been the new mother of choice for more than one person trying to jettison a special needs animal, including my own mother and daughter. I in my typical fashion embraced both Peter and his faulty teeth with open arms and heart, with never a nanosecond’s regret at having done so. I cut his teeth every month for two years and one week, loved him to pieces, worried over him when things weren’t right, rejoiced when they got right again, and so on. Tried, of course, to save him when the awful, unknown sickness came. It was impossible for me to find rides on the weekends, so my hope was to keep him going until Monday, when I had a hope of getting him to a vet. But as I’ve said, this killer shows no symptoms until death is only hours away, and all my efforts were useless.


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all photos, graphics, poems and text copyright 2011 by anne nakis, unless otherwise stated. all rights reserved.

Published in: on December 7, 2011 at 2:28 pm  Comments (1)  
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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. gratias tibi ago, Kitty. (that’s a fancy thank-you)

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