Thursday, March 29, 2012

Happy Easter, Bunny Killer!

So last night I let Lily outside... and suddenly I hear her barking. I figure our neighbor has come outside and startled her because she stops before I can get to the back door.

Then I look out and she's licking something ferociously.

I go out to investigate and it looks like she's got a brown version of a naked mole rat. It's too big for a mole, because it's clearly just been born. (It's eyes are still shut, but it's relatively hairless.) I go inside to get a paper towel to pick it up and throw it away. But X-man notices the commotion and asks what's going on. I explain that Lily had killed an animal and that I'm going to throw it away.

Then I pick it up and the damn thing squeaks. Shit.

"Mom, it's still alive! We have to save it." (Yeah, the apple falls so close that it actually hits the apple tree.) I go inside and google baby bunnies and see a photo of what I've got in the paper towel. There are no puncture wounds but I have really no idea what Lily has done to it except lick it like a popsicle. It's still breathing. I go to the U of I Wildlife rescue page, which really needs to be updated. Because they had no useful information on it. Just a phone number. So I call it, but, of course, it's 7 p.m. and no one is there and they just tell me to call the small animal emergency clinic. I do that and the receptionist (no lie) says, let me connect you and sends me back to the recording that sends me back to the receptionist. Nice, right? The recording did say that they take animals 24 hours a day and to bring them in... X-man, hearing this news insists we go right away, but first I scope out the yard to find  out if there are any more.

Turns out the mama bunny dug her nest in my elevated garden boxes. There was one other baby bunny. It was taken out of the nest by Lily, but left on the ground. It was breathing, too. So I put it with its sibling and off we went. (I want to note that had I found them on my own, I would have taken them out to the field behind my house and let nature take it's course. But my child was with me, and well, he's the kind that would never get over Bambi...)

We got to the animal hospital and the Wildlife person who was there and also doing an intake on another baby bunny with puncture wounds, said the best thing to do was to take it back to our house. I explained that we couldn't safely reconstruct the nest in the same place. So she said to try to put it close but not too far. X-man argued with her. Seriously. "We can't put it outside of the fence. There are wild dogs out there!" (wild dog = coyotes and he's right). She explained that it was the best thing in case the mama bunny came back for them. On the way home, he asked me what would happen if the mama bunny was already dead? I did the circle of life story, which made him feel not at all good about nature, but is true. His reply. "Mom, I know the doctor lady said to do it. But I can't support this. I am not going to help you." And he didn't.

I settled for making a nest 12 feet away on the other side of the gate. I dug down 4 inches and lined the nest with the bunny fir and some garden materials that were in the old nest. Then I laid some softer items on top of them and went to put X-man to bed way too late. He had so politely stuck his head outside in the dark and ask if I was okay out there by myself before I went in.

And even though all the information that was actually useful that I found from a Wildlife Rescue Group in Toronto (go figure, gotta love those helpful Canadians) later, told me not to check on them... I had MacTroll do it when he got home.

The babies were dead, so he took them out to the field. But I couldn't tell X-man that when he got off the bus. "The Mama got them. They're okay."

Yeah, that makes me a big, dirty liar.

No comments: