Having read through BunnyHugga’s guides on How to Train Humans, I swear that our Miss Tigger was the ghost writer for the one on Vet Visits. One of the first suggestions, one rabbit to another, is to make as much mess as possible. This had been Tigger’s hugely successful MO.
In the carrier on the way to the vet, she lets loose with absolutely everything she’s got. We always arrive at the vet with the wettest, stinkiest, messiest rabbit you could possibly imagine. If they didn’t know us well, they would think we weren’t keeping her clean at all. We have started to travel with the carrier bottom filled with litter, multiple towels and at least part of a roll of paper towels. We know once we get to the vet, there is going to be a huge clean up needed to make Tigger even remotely touchable. I would like to say that I am able to accomplish this clean up without any transfer of substances or smell. However, Tigger makes sure that I get a good sample of everything. Its guaranteed that by the time we reach home between my clothing and the bunny towels I take, there is going to be a washer load needing to be done.
The second thing suggested for rabbits is to let loose on fur, so much so that everyone thinks an Angora rabbit is in the room. We have never been able to figure out how Tigger manages to open up all her fur follicles, but she does. There will be fluffy floating clouds of fur in the room by the end of any vet visit and everyone is has a runny nose and is coughing and sneezing whether they have allergies or not.
Then there’s the aftermath, where the rabbit must observe a grievance period against humans. Tigger always comes out of her carrier and thumps, does that little head toss with the look and then turns around and does the flicky feet thing as she hops off with that aggrieved hare air. It takes awhile before she forgives us and we are allowed to approach HRH Tigger again.
There are a couple of things unique to Tigger’s vet visits that weren’t in the article. So if she ghost wrote it, she held a few things back for her use only. On one visit while we were waiting, after I cleaned her up, I gave her the cardboard roll from the now used abused and discarded paper towels. I thought she would play with it or chew it and keep herself occupied. She definitely kept herself busy. She retreated to the back corner of her carrier and used the towel roll like a baseball bat to blast the sides of the carrier. Thwack, thwack, thwack was repeated on and off the whole time we were waiting. We were in an exam room at the end of a hall with the door closed, but she was making so much noise, the vet techs kept coming in every five minutes or so to check that we were okay. Yeah, no problem, just a Tigger tantrum going on. Thank goodness she isn’t a biter!
The other thing Tigger does is a huge guilt trip before we even get home. Tigger hates to be picked up and held. So at the vet, I would always get her out of the carrier, put her on the scale for the techs to weigh her and then try to put her back in the carrier until the vet would come in. Tigger fastens herself to my shirt and makes it quite clear that I am not to put her down. One time, I didn’t pick her back up fast enough and she leapt up into my arms. Now I don’t flatter myself on this, she has clearly decided that I am the lesser of two evils. However, it is a huge guilt trip having those big brown eyes looking at me as paws and claws cling. Putting her down for the vet makes me feel like a hard-hearted beast of a human.
Good luck fellow humans. House rabbits think it’s a bunny world, and we just live in it!