Monday, December 24, 2018

A Mini-Rex That IS NOT a Mini-Rex

As you may or may not know my daughter Clarissa is starting a Mini-Rex black and orange tri-color breeding project because these are the colors of mini rex that she wants to focus on.  Well when you are breeding for tri-color that best thing to do is to start with tri-color and harlequin colored rabbits.  So we have been in the market for some show quality pedigreed rabbits of both types in black and orange.

So one afternoon I see a post on Facebook for a mini-rex harlequin buck that comes with his cage and all his supplies.  My daughter is beyond excited because she has the money saved up for just this very thing and we make arrangements to go out and pick up the rabbit.  So we drove one and a half hours together while listening to Pollyanna on Audible in the car and chit-chatting.  It was a fun mother daughter afternoon.

I had told my daughter before we rang the bell to observe and listen carefully and to everything and ask as many questions as she needed to before we ran through our buying checklist.

When we arrive we can both immediately tell that this rabbit is not mini-rex.  Then we learn that it doesn't have a pedigree.  Then we learn that she doesn't even know how old it is or anything at all about the rabbit because her uncle gave it to her as a gift.  And it desperately needs a new home because it doesn't get along with her dogs and she is worried about it getting hurt.  His name is Twix.

Her only question:  "Are you sure this is a mini-rex?"

We looked at each other and I gave Clarissa a nod and a look that said this bunny is coming home with us regardless and we went through our checklist to make sure he was healthy.  He was super mellow and friendly and looked healthy.  We definitely had a buck.  He also seemed to handle the cats she had without a second thought.

Twix's Deluxe Housing
So we paid her for him loaded him up and headed home.  He might be a mystery bunny as far as breed goes, but he fit right in at our house.  He is nestled into our front room that we use for school and living life and he loves the busy-ness of it all.  Watching our cats and dogs go by, seeing the kids working on schoolwork, playing and going in and out the back door.  He loves it all.  And everyday when the dogs go out he gets to hop around the house for his playtime.

I am writing this post not because I dislike what happened when we went to pick up our newest rabbit, but because it seems to be a common thing that happens and one I was not prepared to deal with before we arrived.  Many people get a rabbit as a gift or buy one without reading or knowing anything about rabbits.  Then the rabbit grows up and gets past the cute, little ball of fluff stage or doesn't get along with other pets and it finds itself in need of a new home.

I am hoping this story will encourage future rabbit owners to do a couple of things:
  • First if you are going to own a rabbit or if you receive one as a gift, learn about it basic things, like it's birth date, it's breed and how big it is going to get.  Learn about it's housing requirements and nutritional needs.  I do have to say that in regards to his housing needs this rabbit was spoiled.  A nice big cage with a good sized litter box, treats, toys and even a hideaway he can duck into when he wants.  As you can see from the picture of his cage above.
  • Second if you are buying a rabbit, be prepared to say no this is not what I expected or at least be aware of what you are getting into when you buy the bunny anyway.  I was completely unprepared to see a rabbit that was not the breed we had come to purchase.  I could have changed my mind right then.  So if you are set on something and the seller doesn't provide that be brave enough to stick to your guns and walk away.
  • Third recognize that sometimes you can be a sucker for a well told story.  If the rabbit in question had not been in a home with dogs.  If the owner hadn't been worried about the rabbit's safety I would have walked away.  So yes, even I am a sucker sometimes for a a well told story, whether it is true or not.
I am proud of my daughter.  She came in she watched, she listened to all the questions I asked trying to learn the rabbits history, she checked the rabbit over very carefully to make sure he was healthy and she paid the gal for a bunny that I had told her with a look we were taking home without complaint even though he didn't fit into her breeding program.  Now don't get me wrong it was my decision and I paid her back the money she spent when we got home, because of that.  And while I swore when we started with rabbits I would never have an indoor house bunny, I admit that we have all come to enjoy his company in the house.

I have my suspicions that Twix is a poorly marked Harlequin breed of rabbit.  His size and fur and coloring lead me to believe this but we will never know for sure.  I plan to give him a good 8 months to grow up before I try to narrow it down based on how big he gets when he is done growing.

It is a spoiled pet life for this little mixed mystery.  And yes if there is someone out there looking for a fantastic pet rabbit that likes to have the run of a dog free house and explore everything then he would be the bunny for you and I would be willing to consider selling him.  If not then he will be spoiled and loved all of his days by my own children.

No bunny could ask for anything more. 

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