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(928) 532-1602

Dede

Dede: May 2007

DeDe and Duncan are two purebred Flemish Giant rabbits. Flemish are giant bunnies who make excellent pets, and are the size of small dogs! Yes, they weigh from 14-18 lbs.

Their owner left them in the care of a breeder who tried but didn't have a lot of time for them. They spent their lives in large rabbit cages. Their owner recently decided that she was ready to have them placed with loving homes. Pet Allies and Brambley Hedge Rabbit Rescue (www.bhrabbitrescue.org) were able to work together to find both rabbits wonderful loving homes.

DeDe's adopters have a wonderful sense of humor and very good rabbit raising skills. Here are excerpts from the adoption contract for DeDe:

What are the occupations of the adults in the household? I'm a psychologist, my husband's an engineer, and our daughter is a student. Since age 10, she no longer thinks that she is a rabbit, although we both occasionally still converse in public in lagomorph. At her age, however, I get more butt than forward ears.

Do you foresee any situation in the future that would cause you to give up your rabbit? No. If yes, what would you do with the rabbit? Ask what would I do with my husband. He would go first...No. Come to think of it, my daughter would go first. My husband cleans up after himself and helps do dishes.

Needless to say we thought this adopter had a wonderful sense of humor! Always important when adopting any pet.

Here's the family journal of integrating DeDe, who had no idea what life was like outside a cage, into freedom and love:

Last night, Dede slept in the atrium for the first time. Needless to say, Juliana and I also put futons down and slept there, too. Now, you need to realize that the atrium is not gigantic, and we divided it in half to begin with. The picture is missing about two feet or so one the left, and the sliding glass doors to the master bedroom.

So by the time Juliana and I put our futons down along side Dede's carrier (her security blanket inside), we were side by side. That meant, if Dede wanted to go anywhere, she was going over us to get there.

I also like to read in bed, so I plugged in my light on top of her carrier, and used it as a night stand. We got out comforters and pillows and settled in for the night.

When we initially began this venture, the stacking boxes had lids on them, and the boxes were atop each other, to form a play area. There were no towels clothes pinned to the folder pen, either. So let me give you a run-down on how our evening went.

10:00PM. To bed. Juliana brings the carrier out and puts it next to our futons. Dede stays in her cage. I turn off the lights in the atrium, and leave only my reading lamp on.

10:05PM Dede noses out of her carrier and comes to the foreground where her litter box is. Tobi and she sniff each other. Not pleased. Lights on as a potential nip fest is averted. Lights off.

10:07PM Henry crawls up on the ladder, sits there and watches the whole thing. Lightfoot humps Tobi. She lets him know that this is not what she wants. These two start running around, knocking over the metal food and water bowls. Lights on. I move the bowls. Dede watches them. Honey goes to her house. Tobi and Lightfoot see Honey head for her house and race after her. They push her out of the house. She goes over by Dede.

10:15PM Honey is still by Dede. Lights off. Tobi and Lightfoot leave Honey's house and begin to chase her. Lights on. While they do this, Henry leaves the ladder, and moves into Honey's house. Get the picture? It's musical chairs, bunny style. They finally calm down. Lights off.

10:20PM I get Dede and Juliana and I snuggle with her. It's only marginally chaotic.

11:00PM I can't sleep. I roll over. Dede has moved, and I bump her. She nips my knee. Lights on. I get up and go to the bathroom. I return. Lights off.

12:00AM Henry is chasing Tobi. They both start chasing Lightfoot. Then they all start chasing Honey Bunny. Lights on. I take Honey Bunny ot the other side of the barrier. Now Dede is between Juliana and me, and Honey is asleep next to the wire fence.

12:15AM The skunks show up in our yard. The aroma is overwhelming. Lights on. I start reading again. Dede can't settle down. (No skunks in Arizona???)

1:00AM I put Honey back on the other side of the portable pen. Lights off. I give up on the skunks leaving, and will just try to sleep.

2:30AM Something triggers the bunnies to start up. They are now playing checkers with the metal bowls. Lights on. I move the bowls on top of the plastic houses. Dede is pacing along the portable pen fence. Lights off.

2:45AM Tobi and Lightfoot demolish the cardboard box play houses, and go racing around. Dede is out from under the covers going nuts trying to see what's going on. Lights on. I get up and go find some of the bunny towels, and clip them over the portable pen. At last! Peace and quiet. Here's the great part: Dede decides she wants to go to bed. On her own, she burrows under the blanket between Juliana and me, and goes into deep bunny complete with tooth purring as I massage her!!! We both fall asleep.

3:00AM Juliana gets up. She needs to go to the bathroom. Dede stays asleep, but not me. (No lights!!!) I fall back asleep almost immediately.

3:05AM Juliana returns. She steps on me, but carefully avoids Dede. After all, the rabbit needs her rest.

5:00AM I wake up. Can't sleep. It's quiet. I just put on my slippers and see if the newspaper is here. Lights on.

5:01AM. Dede has shown how much she loves me. She has peed in my left slipper and has filled it with pellets. I'm hers.

5:05AM No newspaper. Back to the futon.

7:30AM Juliana's alarm goes off in her bedroom. I get up and shut it off. She sleeps through until 9:00AM, then gets up and tells me what a great night's sleep she had, and how peaceful it is sleeping with the bunnies.

My day begins.

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