I’ve worked a lot on the Rabbittude Pinterest boards. There are now several dozen boards dedicated to bunny rabbits and things that bunny rabbit lovers might enjoy. When you get a chance check it out. I just cannot resist collecting and surrounding myself with bunny rabbits! The Pinterest account provides another way to do that and then to share all the lovely finds with others who love big eared fuzzy tailed friends too.
A few months back, there was a comment that putting our marching dust bunnies on a bumper sticker would be a great idea. I missed that when it was first posted, but found it recently. It was one of those that is a terrific idea, why didn’t I think of it moments. Today I had the opportunity to create the bumper sticker and the Dust Bunny Bumper sticker is now available in our CafePress shop as a single, a 10 pack or a 50 pack of bumper stickers.
It is wonderful when people contact us through the website or our shops and ask if we can do something based on other things that we have. Many times those are good ideas for things that we can easily do, we just didn’t think of it. So we really appreciate suggestions and questions about whether something is possible.
Some new products we create and occasionally a whole line begins with a suggestion or question from a follower or potential customer. We really appreciate hearing what people think or would like. Sometimes I’ve had beads hiding in a drawer waiting for an idea and someone’s question or comment about what they would like to see for jewelry or an accessory helps me to realize how the beads were meant to be used.
So thank you all for being so wonderful asking questions, providing feedback and suggestions. We appreciate that so much!
This past month while I have waited out the fall allergy season a bit, I have had some fun getting back to Pinterest. It is easy to pin things when dealing with allergy or antihistamine brain fog compared to projects or tasks requiring a higher level of thinking ability. I started pinning again to our Rabbittude Pinterest boards and now have hundreds of bunny rabbit images and hundreds more bunny rabbit inspired products. I’ve started another board that only has a few dozen items now. I will work to grow it with products that we have used or would like to check for rabbit care / care homes with house rabbits in residence.
Then there is a board of garden dreams and all the wonderful things that would be in an ideal garden retreat if time, space or money were no object. Since they are, these wonderful images are great to have a visual retreat to green spaces. I’ve heard that looking at images of green spaces are beneficial for stress relief. So I wanted to create a feast for myself there and for anyone else who wants to follow the board.
In addition to the bunny boards, there are ones for some favorite colors, styles, wonderful animals, animal inspired items, the seasons, nature photography, things for laughs, quotes to live by or laugh by and an ideas and tutorials board. There are also three boards that are all items from Zibbet.com a real handmade marketplace:
- Have You Heard of Zibbet?
- BROWN on Zibbet
- Shop Local Georgia
We opened a couple of shops on Zibbet this past month: Rabbittude Buntique and Birdsong Supplies. Zibbet.com is a growing marketplace of real handmade, vintage and supply items. One of the reasons we decided try out Zibbet is the plan to have a feature in a coming upgrade that will allow some integration of the shops with our website to bring some shopping ability right to the Rabbittude website. That is a very attractive option possibility, so we wanted to expand to Zibbet. We also have a shop on Etsy, Buntique and are looking at how we will divide inventory between the venues. We’ll talk more about what is in our shops at another time and what is coming from the studio.
The Brown on Zibbet and Shop Local Georgia boards are Zibbet Picks boards that I am helping out with volunteer pinning. Pinning items from Zibbet for the brown board makes me feel so hungry. Have you ever noticed just how many brown colors are food and beverage names? There is cappuccino, caramel, cashew, chocolate, cocoa, coffee, cognac, dark honey, espresso, fudge, gingerbread, hazelnut, java, latte, maple, mocha, molasses, toffee and whiskey. I should be gaining weight just looking at the colors!
Seeing how the Zibbet Picks boards are set up inspired me to get back involved with our Pinterest account. I really considered how to better set our boards up to have some great bunny rabbit boards to start building for people to enjoy. The opportunity to begin to volunteer on the Zibbet boards gave me something to do during a rough patch in the allergy season that helped me feel energized and active which was great towards feeling I was accomplishing something useful on a few days when doing much more than clicking seemed to need way too much thinking power. So it really helped me out and then was doubly sweet to receive a very special thank you this week from Zibbet. Each week they have a blog piece called the Fantastic Five and pick five items to showcase. This week they picked five items from shops of volunteers. It was so incredibly sweet to have the bookmark with the artwork piece I did of Shadow and Tigger be one of the five items chosen.
If you like Pinterest, check out the Rabbittude boards. I will be looking to add lots more bunny rabbit things there and build more of a following and look for other boards and people to follow.
Stayed tuned … bunny fun to come …
Here it is the first day of October and I wanted to get back in gear again with the Rabbittude blog. I’m looking ahead this month and planning to post a new blog post each day sharing bunny stories or photos, along with what we are up to in our studio here and things we have found on the web of interest to bunny lovers.
When Tigger would sit up on her hind legs to clean herself or roll over on her side or back, it really showed off the white and black coloring of her underside. The way the fur was colored and separated by her hind legs always looked like she had on a bunny rabbit version of baby onesie jammies.
Tigger was so very particular and precise in her movements, it was like watching a ballerina moving from ballet pose to pose. So it was especially cute to always see what looked like an infant bodysuit on a little rabbit ballerina. It was fun to watch her meticulously clean herself head to toe to tail and move from one ballet like pose to another with such grace and such cuteness.With Tigger, there were just so many sides to her with both her coloring and fur and her personality. I think that is what was so engaging about her. Everyone who met Tigger just had to fuss over her. It was a blessing and a curse for our little baby girl. She just loved being fussed over verbally, but like many small children, she would have preferred not to get those hugs!
Next week will wrap up the stories that are all about Tigger. Stories of Shadow begin July 1st. For a full final celebration of Tigger, there will be a story each day Monday through Thursday. On Friday I will post a gallery of images of Tigger. Stories of Tigger as she was with Shadow will be coming in September.
Watching rabbits run is incredible. Tigger ran like the wind. She was just so fast and so light. No one could catch her until she would tire out. When she ran up the stairs, it looked like she was sailing over some steps, not touching them all as she flew up or down them. Looking at a rabbit sitting still, it is hard to imagine them so fast. The build of front legs to back legs looks so out of sync and balance. It would seem that a funny hopping motion would be all you might expect.
But when I watched Tigger sitting as she is in this first picture, I noticed how very long and straight her front legs were. They were so light and slim in comparison to the rest of her body. It made me think of race horses with the very slender legs that look like they shouldn’t be able to support all the body weight and yet the horses are pure poetry in motion. I realized watching Tigger that she would often have the same way of holding her head and front legs as I had seen in horses right before they would leap into a full run. She also had the same way of straightening her head out level with her body that you see in horses when they race.
Tigger’s Bunny 500 racing was so regulated, we would say that the Tigger Train was running. We tried to make sure that there were always easy open running areas around the full perimeter of rooms, because she would run around and around just like a horse running a racetrack.
We also kept those running areas clear of things. Tigger like a horse was also easily freaked. A weird sound or movement and she would be off like a shot. We often said her motto was, “Run first, look later”. Sometimes her freakazoid runs would start Shadow running and we would have an out of control bunny stampede with them banging into things and each other at high-speed. Their cage at one point was six feet long with a door at each end. They stampeded into opposite ends of the cage meeting head on in the middle. They stunned each other a bit, but fortunately were not hurt. As time went on though, when something would send Tigger into stampede mode, Shadow learned to be in sync with her. You would see the two of them running full speed side by side as close together as two race horses running in tandem shoulder to shoulder to make that finish line first.
There was one time that her mini horse racer speed saved her. We would always look at any sofa or chair before sitting down and look for where the rabbits were too as a safety measure. One evening, Tigger wasn’t as far away as I had judged. I started to sit down and Tigger decided to jump up and race across the sofa as I was coming down. I had no ability to catch myself and literally felt her brush underneath across my lower back as she raced through. I am not sure who was more scared with that one.
We had a couple open-ended boxes with a sheet draped over them as a tunnel for the bunnies. Something set Tigger off once while she was in the tunnel and she took off top speed. Somehow, she got wrapped up in the sheet, pulling the boxes down so that she couldn’t run through them. She kept running pulling everything with her as she then barreled sideways into a hay bowl overturning that, before she ran free of everything and then sat there blinking all the hay dust out of her eyes. We were sitting there within four feet and this took about 30 seconds. We couldn’t even stand up to help her before it was all over. Well, except for the call to the vet to find out what we should look for if the hay in the eyes had caused a problem. Fortunately, she was fine again within 24 hours.
Like a race horse that would become agitated, at the vet we often helped to calm Tigger a bit during exams by covering her eyes. There was one time the vet told us that the rabbit digestive system was closest to that of a horse. Watching Tigger, I thought there were many similarities and that we often had a high-spirited mini race horse in our home.
The one regret I have is that we didn’t have an opportunity to catch lots of Tigger and Shadow on video. With my first family bunny Thumper, I was just learning how to take photos with point and shoot cameras. So there aren’t many photos of him. With Tigger and Shadow, we were making the switch from film to digital cameras. So we got a lot of images (lots of bad ones during the learning), but never had the chance to really start learning how to capture them on video. Something to learn with bunnies of the future …
On Friday, Ballerina in Jammies …
So what on earth do I mean by calling Tigger a baseball bunny? Well, she liked to pitch and she liked to bat. In the picture above, you can see she had lots of different chew toys to choose from and she did like all of them. But her absolute favorite things to play with were the ones she could throw. Tigger liked to pitch things. It really was not so safe to be too close to Tigger if she decided to play, because she could really throw.
I took the first picture here as she approached her toys and was taken completely by surprise when she picked up her Bounce Back Bunny treat holder, whirled around and heaved it at me like a bunny shot put champion. Fortunately, I wasn’t hit. I was amazed she could pick it up and throw it. The toy had a weighted base to help it bounce back up as a rabbit would try to pull a treat out of the slots in the body. The size of it was easily equal to the size of her head. This was the first time she tossed it and I was lucky enough to catch it on camera. Through out her life, she loved to pick up and throw that bunny and any other cat style throw toys we gave her. We would hear bells ring and knew she was pitching, but when the bell sound was followed by a thump, we knew she was shot putting the Bounce Back Bunny.
Tigger loved to pick up empty paper towel holders and swat things with them. I discovered how actively she would put that to use in one vet visit. I took her in and put a paper towel holder in the carrier with her to keep her occupied while we were waiting. She wasn’t happy about being in the carrier and at the vets, so she picked up the paper towel holder and starting smacking it around and hitting all the sides of her carrier. We were in an exam room at the end of the hall with the door closed, but she was making such a racket that the vet techs kept coming in every few minutes to make sure everything was okay. Uh, yeah, just my little rabbit batter doing her practice training and taking a physical means of stress relief.
Her love of throwing things extended also to sometimes tossing the plastic salad plates of greens that we would put down on the floor and flipping over large round bowls of hay. She had a middle of the night habit sometimes of picking up the corner of her litter box with her teeth and dropping it, repeatedly. Even up a flight of stairs, behind a closed bedroom door, we would hear thump, whump, thump … pause … repeat … Sometimes I would get up to go see what she wanted. Tigger would be sitting at ease in her cage looking at me with that questioning look on her face, “Hey, what are you doing up?”
On Wednesday, Tigger the mini race horse …
We thought we had the space all figured out when we got that nifty window ledge arrangement set up that I detailed on Wednesday. Then Tigger decided she wanted to show us some bungineer skills and change things up, big time. She started sinking her teeth into the wall around the window and pulling the drywall out through the plaster. When we heard and saw her do it, we couldn’t easily get to her with the way things were arranged. We had to disassemble the whole set up to get to Tigger and stop her.
We knew Tigger was not going to leave it alone and now had to figure out what to do. Chewing the plaster and drywall up was really bad for our apartment security deposit. It was also potentially extremely harmful to the rabbits. I had contact in later years with a woman who had a rabbit chew up some plaster and become poisoned from it. It required an emergency visit to the vet and fortunately the rabbit did pull through. I didn’t know about the poison potential at the time we were rethinking this, but just did not want either rabbit chewing the walls. It seemed like a really bad idea all the way around.
There was a resin patio storage bench we had purchased for the room that was on the opposite wall. So we swapped the room around putting all the shelf and storage bin units where the bench had been. The bench was a beautiful fit for the window space and the openings in the back allowed the bunnies to easily crawl back and forth through from the bench to the window and back. We extended cardboard up the side of the wall to discourage Tigger from chewing the plaster.
The openness of the bench was not only loved by the bunnies, but it allowed us to get to them easily if we needed to relocate a misbehaving rabbit. It was a wonderful hang out spot. We had a carpet runner on it that was held in place with some elastic sheet straps with the alligator clip ends. We had one set of straps in front holding the rug in place and another set that looped back through the outermost holes in the back. We tied a couple bright purple cotton scarves over the sheet straps in the back to discourage the rabbits from chewing through the elastic.
Once Tigger and Shadow were fixed and bonded, they would often nap side by side on the window sill in the afternoon soaking up the sunshine. We had a second floor apartment. I often wondered if anyone walking by and looking up or in backyards near by realized it was rabbits in the window and not cats.
Next week Tigger toys …
We decided when we were looking towards the future bonding of Tigger and Shadow to rearrange our living space a bit and dedicate our smallest bedroom to them. The bedroom was off a hallway enclosed on three sides right across from a bathroom. So, it provided easy access to two very good neutral territory spaces. We set them up in side by side cages in their new room and let them settle in, getting used to each other during the two months until they would be old enough to be fixed. We thought we had a really good plan to keep them and the room safe.
We were living in an apartment, so couldn’t make permanent changes. We didn’t think we could make the window ledge in the room a safe enough place for them, so we started with the intent to block access to it. We put a black plastic shelving unit in front with bins fully fitting the shelves holding some of their food and hay. On either side of the shelf unit, we had a set of plastic rolling units with drawers, storing more bunny stuff. On either side of those we had a covered corner litter box.
Well we should have known that Tigger would find a way to wiggle through everything we had in place and get up on to the window ledge. You can see her in the first picture sitting on top of the corner litter box formulating the plan. I didn’t think she could manage it and found myself out maneuvered once again. We had to quickly move things to get her safely back down and work on plan B since it was clear she was going to insist on getting up there.
We took the storage bin off the second shelf that was almost level with the window ledge. We put it on the floor in front of the shelving unit with a throw rug on top to make it a little less slippery. Then we put another throw rug on the now empty second shelf. The bin on the floor and empty shelf now made a stairway to the window. We wedged some cardboard into the window space that was folded to fit and fill all the open areas. With the shelf and bins in front, the cardboard was held firmly in place. We put another throw rug on that to provide a comfy hangout spot.
You can see Tigger in the pictures checking things out, running through and flopped on the window sill. We actually made the cardboard ramp through to the litter boxes on each end, so the rabbits could hop up, run across the window ledge and out on to the litter box on the other side and hop down again on the opposite side of the room.
It became a bunny version of a jungle gym for a time. They would hop up and down the steps, run through side to side from the litterboxes and just hang out on the window ledge during the day and evening. It was fun to sit on the floor and watch them on their alternating run times zoom around and take different pathways up down and around to hang out surveying things going on outside the window. This shelf is also where Tigger would commando crawl around underneath the lowest shelf of the shelving unit. So she just really had a blast with this set up.
You knew it couldn’t possibly last, right? Tigger was never a rabbit to leave things alone. She was always trying to push the limits further and further. She decided to become a bungineer and wanted to re-engineer the window entirely. She just loved to test our ability to bunny proof. With a pet security deposit on the line, and a deep concern for her safety and well being, we always kept pretty close tabs on what Tigger was up to when she was roaming around.
Coming Friday, the window seat area changes again …
So this picture shows what we had to do to keep Tigger safe from her crazy daredevil stunt bunny desire. You see her up on top of a couple of cushion bolsters usually used to turn a regular mattress bed into a daybed. Behind that is an enormous approximately 4 foot by 6 foot piece of cardboard. Hidden behind the cardboard are the sliding track doors to a closet.
The closet is where the story begins. It had sliding doors that were in a track at the top and hung free at the bottom. The closet was about six feet wide and the doors went up to almost ceiling height. Each door was the size and weight of a regular room entry door, so they were quite large and heavy. We didn’t see any problem with those doors in relation to the rabbits. Then Tigger showed us the error in our thinking.
Even though large and heavy, since the doors hung free at the bottom, there was some movement to them and somehow Tigger discovered that. We were horrified one day as we watched her run around the room to see her run up to the closet doors and stop right where the doors met and overlapped by a couple of inches. She positioned her body beside the door on the inner track. Tigger gave the door a sideways body blow which swung the door in a few inches, creating a brief space between the two doors. Tigger immediately zoomed into that space and into the closet. The door fell heavily back into place just a second later.
Trying to prevent this stunt took some thinking, because we could not allow her to try it again. We pictured her misjudging the timing by just a split second and then being crushed or smashed between the those doors. The sheer size and weight of them compared to Tigger was staggering. So we got the huge piece of cardboard and blocked the doors and then took some book ends to hold the cardboard upright at the base and then placed the cushion bolsters in front to keep everything in place and give Tigger a new hang out to remove the memories of the closet temptation.
On Wednesday, Tigger requests a window seat …
Good morning ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Air Bunny. There are no flight plans, take offs are unscheduled and landings are often sudden and sloppy. Enjoy the flight!
That is what I thought I should be regularly announcing as a warning to unsuspecting folks. Unfortunately, the most unsuspecting folks were Blaine and I, because Tigger liked to launch with little thought and less warning. We lost count over the years of crash landings and the number of times we would find her hanging by her paws from something because she didn’t quite make it. It amazed us how little fear she had for her own safety and how indestructible she seemed to be. There really was no stopping her. We just tried as much as we could to make sure that as many landings as possible were soft. Breakables and sharp objects were removed from all surfaces along with things that fell over or were knocked over easily. Plants and anything dangerous if chewed got removed too.
The one time she would give warning is when she was being particularly ambitious. As a baby bunny at just two and half pounds, she wanted up on the guest bed with a feverish intensity. We would see her at the complete opposite side of the room (15 feet away) looking at the bed with a glint in her eye and a tense posture. Think of what a race horse looks like right before they leap into full speed racing. We would see that look and know that an airborne assault on the bed was about to commence. She would race top speed a little past half the length of the room and then would launch herself flying through the air, usually landing on the bed where she would take off running around on the newly conquered high ground.
The most memorable time I missed seeing but laughed myself to tears when Blaine told me about it. He was laying on the guest bed relaxing and watching Tigger playing when he saw her stop and stand completely still at the opposite side of the room looking at the bed. He knew what was coming. He had just enough time to holler, “NO!” and seconds later baby Tigger was landing on his face. She was so fast, he hadn’t even had time to close his mouth, so there he was with a mouthful of furry bunny tummy until they could sort themselves out. Picturing the reactions of both of them with that landing had me in stitches.
Another time, I was sleeping in one weekend morning when Blaine was suddenly shaking my shoulders and yelling, “She’s lose, she got out, she’s running all around and I can’t catch her!” We had been putting a 27″ baby gate in the doorway of her room so that we could step in and out over it while Tigger stayed contained in her bunny proofed space. That morning Blaine had gotten up early and let her out to play when she suddenly leaped straight up at the top of the baby gate, balanced on it for a second and leaped down into the next room and took off top speed racing around. We had a little bunny race around round-up and after that we got her back in her space, we continued to use the baby gate in the doorway, but we kept the door closed until we needed to come and go. Then we always looked to see where she was to prevent her deciding to accompany us over the gate. We tried to make our exits when she was too far away to successfully make an attempt or when she was really occupied with something that had her full attention.
Tigger was teaching us from an early age that dealing with a rabbit required the ability to strategize. She was always thinking, plotting and planning which kept us thinking, plotting and planning how to keep ahead of her to keep her safe.
Coming Monday, death-defying daredevil stunt bunny Tigger…
Tigger the commando bunny rabbit came as a surprise. My previous rabbit experience led me to expect hopping, running like the wind, leaping onto things. I didn’t remember my family’s house rabbit, Thumper, crawling under things. I also didn’t really expect it because it seemed out of character for Tigger. She was so dainty ladylike in how she positioned and moved that she was very Princessy and prissy at times. So getting down on her belly and crawling into tight spaces didn’t seem like her thing.
First she belly crawled under the kiddie stepstools we had in her space. Then she commando crawled under a plastic shelving unit. I didn’t think she could since the lowest shelf was just a couple of inches off the floor, but you can see from the pictures she was easily able to crawl in and out. We put a whole bunch of empty paper towel rolls under the shelf to discourage the crawling. We didn’t want her hanging out under there chewing the carpet. First she would pull the rolls out and then go crawling under anyway. You could tell by the way Tigger would throw the rolls that our slowing her down really annoyed her.
The cute picture of her resting on the newspapers was one of those before the near disaster shots. The rolling file rack was under a desk. The arrow in the picture points to the privacy screen at the back. I left the room for just a couple of minutes. When I returned, I looked over at the desk and gasped to see just the tips of two bunny ears peaking above the desktop while one bunny foot was hanging down below the privacy screen. Tigger had commando crawled up the wall in the two inches of space between the desk and wall.
I didn’t have a clue what to do to safely help Tigger and she was high enough up that the idea of a fall scared me. I was bouncing up and down looking at the situation from the top and then from the bottom and desperately trying to think. Gravity quickly decided the matter and Tigger slipped back down to the floor. I was terrified she was going to be hurt, but she took off top speed racing around. I folded up into a bit of a heap on the floor feeling that after the adrenaline rush shakiness. Blaine arrived home at that moment and thought something had happened to me since Tigger was running and playing quite happily without a care. After I explained what had happened, we blocked the back of the desk to prevent further upwardly mobile excursions.
After Shadow came along, we had side by side cages. When cooler weather approached, we read it was a good idea to have cages a few inches off the floor to protect from floor level drafts. We had boxes just a couple of inches high that were just a bit smaller than the cage widths that we used to raise them. There was a space between the two boxes running the length of the cages at the middle that was just two by three inches. We felt it was too small for the bunnies to get into. Well it was for Shadow, but Tigger proved she could fit and went wiggling in. As soon as she came safely out the other side, we put the cages back down to floor level and just draped a sheet over them at night for warmth.
A few days later I realized she hadn’t come through that commando crawl safely. I saw Tigger going nuts scratching her side with her back leg. When I parted her fur, I saw a scab and a big black spot. So, off to the vet we went. Tigger got her fur clipped back along her side, because the vet couldn’t tell what she was looking at either. Turns out Tigger had scraped two inches of skin off her side. One end was healing and the black spot was actually fur growing back in that was just barely poking out of the skin, creating the dark coloring. The other end of the scrape was scabbed and obviously itching causing the scratching that had alerted me to the injury. We were given an antibiotic ointment to help prevent infection and aid quicker healing.
You know that niggling little feeling you get sometimes? Well I had that one time when I was walking up the stairs and turned around to see Tigger disappearing underneath the sofa. Our sofa has dual recliners built into each end which we never opened up with the rabbits out. The front and sides went all the way to the floor. About two inches from the back, the sides curved up leaving a small space where the back and side met that was just two by three inches. We knew the very young Tigger could fit in that space, but we wrongly thought she had grown too big to make it anymore. If I hadn’t turned around, I have no idea how long it might have taken to figure out where she had gone.
The sofa back had a two inch opening at the base that was divided in two by a metal support bar running the full width of the back. We had boxes blocking the full back so the rabbits could not even see the opening. We removed those boxes so we could see Tigger in the crawl space under the sofa and she could see us, but the metal bar didn’t allow her to exit that way. We could tell she had forgotten how she had wiggled in and were trying to coax her back to the opening, but Tigger was getting nervous and starting to bulldoze the insides of the sofa. It made us really nervous to do it, because we weren’t sure how the mechanism was going to move, but we ended up having to open one of the recliners allowing an opening for her to run out. After that, we plugged that space on either side of the sofa with pieces of wood.
Tigger taught us to never underestimate the ability of an active, determined rabbit to wiggle and squirm into seemingly impossible spaces.
Coming on Friday, Air Bunny …