Friday, February 24, 2012

Rabbit Stories No One Wants To Hear

So a colleague came into my office and said "Now don't be mad at me...."

I'm a known rabbit mother, for a lack of a better word, in my small office.
I mean news of some crazed person spending almost 2K on a sick rabbit is unheard of especially in my recent neighbourhood. (The same slightly north of Toronto neighbourhood I am still getting accustomed to. Very non city, very white, middle class, ....but I digress......

He went on to tell me about his childhood how his father used to bring a 'bag of rabbits some alive some dead" and they would have dinner. He then said he never liked it, rather he didn't even think there was anything special about rabbit meat, let alone enough meat on the body. He went on to say that his mother in law and wife seem to still love rabbit meat and eat it to this day.....

This got me thinking. When Wayne was found his nails were sharp, like he had not run around a lot on his own....which made me think he might MIGHT have been a rabbit meant for meat. I don't know, this is mere speculation. However, whenever we make something on the stove, like just at this very moment, he FREAKS OUT! And its not even meat.

Wayne has ALWAYS been scared anytime we cooked anything. Could this be because he was meant to be food? Was he in a bag? Waiting to be cooked? Was he traumatized in a kitchen somewhere? My other two rabbits do not fear such smells. Neither have my previous rabbits, so what gives?

I understand rabbits are unfairly classified as both meat and pet animals (Which is BEYOND insane in my woods) but thats how things are right now. They are loving creatures. Anyone ANYONE who I have met who have been around rabbits knows this. Those that chose to eat rabbits IGNORE the fact that they are sentient, smart, loving beings NOT MEANT FOR FOOD!

To colleagues who scolded me for spending so much on a 'mere rabbit' I said "Well, wouldn't you do the same for your dog or cat?"
The majority who 'think' about that question, are not on the same playing field.

To me a rabbit, cat, dog, who has become part of a family is family. The same creatures who lick your tears away, snuggle up against you, who you comfort when they have a bobo (or a bite from another rabbit), who get scared because unfamiliar frightening smells are emanating from a kitchen, are the ones I want to be around. These are the living creatures that matter to me. The ones that care, the ones that support and stand up for you. Call me crazy, but that is the wonderful world I live in.

So, where does this leave us?

Rabbits are still meat and they are still pets. I on the other hand, chose to think I am lucky enough to have garnered the trust of three wonderful bunnies who I am fortunate to share my home with. The same rabbits who today binkied in joy after seeing the dandelions they were getting for lunch, the same rabbits who got themselves set up in 'pet position' when they saw me approach, the same rabbits who are still thrilling, binking, jumping for joy at the new area rugs in their room because they now have traction. These are the rabbits I live with. The ones who lick my nose after petting them. The ones that follow me into the laundry room because I have not paid enough attention to them that day. The rabbits that jump up on my bed early in the morning because they want my attention. The same rabbits who greet me at the door, come when they are called, the ones that poke me with their noses when they hop by, the same rabbits that people eat, possibly across the street, these are the rabbits whom I call family.

Call me crazy, but these same creatures won't abandon me like 'family'. These animals make you show how much you are trustworthy. You need to earn your trust with them. These are the same creatures who love you unconditionally like a dog or cat; non judgemental, loyal, caring, happy to be with you .YOU!!! Because to them, you are their world.

In only wish we chose friend and family as carefully as rabbits pick the people they want to be with.

But I digress.

So, why eat rabbits? Why eat your cat or dog then? Where do we draw the line? On a logical standpoint, rabbits have very little meat. On a more emotional one, they are really sweet hearted and deserve better treatment. But then again, don't we all?

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