A Crazy Little Thing Called Love

Four months ago Honey, Mr. Bb and I travelled to the Toronto Humane Society for a bunny date! There were a few handsome males that peaked Honey’s interest while she browsed the online ads but none more-so than an adorable 3 year old Silver Marten Rex named Cupcake. Honey waited (im)patiently while we spoke with one of the Special Species staff about her potential suitors.

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When we heard little Cupcake’s story we were immediately in love! Adjacent pens were set up, Honey was placed in one and Cupcake in the other. The session went really well with neither displaying signs of aggression. Honey even flirted a little by flopping against the cage bars and having a bath! So we signed the paperwork and headed home with an extra little fuzzball in tow!

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From there we renamed Cupcake to Sebastian and Honey and Sebby began their courtship. For the first few weeks they got used to one another in adjacent pens. Honey was incredibly curious about her new friend and spent a lot of time at the cage bars. Sebastian was getting used to the sights and smells of his new surroundings and didn’t seem too interested in what Honey would do.

handsTheir first official date took place in the tub and it wasn’t long before they had moved on to snuggling and even some grooming! From there they advanced to a small area in the kitchen. It took them a few months to learn to trust one another, but that’s what dating is all about!

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Finally a few months after that first meet and greet, the fighting had stopped and the humping was settling down. Floor time no longer needed to be supervised and both seemed overly smitten with each other. It was time for their first sleepover!

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I set up a large pen within earshot of our bedroom with lots of space and places for them to hide so each had ample space to get away from the other if needed. Mr. Bb hooked up a security camera so I could check on them throughout the night through an app on my phone. That way I didn’t have to disturb them if it wasn’t needed and could still hear them if any scuffling or fighting happened. I woke the next morning and ran to their pen to catch them snuggling!

The sleepover was a success!

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And so a few weeks ago, it finally became official! Honey and Sebastian are now in marital bliss and living together in the Pet Room! We couldn’t be more ecstatic and it warms my heart to see two bunnies who deserve a life of love and happiness doing just that!

 

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Adopt A Special Species Pair & Pay 1/2 The Price!

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Looking to add a small furry companion to your home? Why not two…or even three?! Many small animals like guinea pigs, rats and rabbits are incredibly social and do best when kept in pairs or more of their own kind!

For the month of August, the Toronto Humane Society is offering a promotion in their Special Species department; adopt a bonded pair or trio and pay half the price! That’s right, not only are their adoption fees reasonable to begin with but now you can give a bonded pair or trio the second chance they’ve been waiting for even less!

For a list of the current small animals available click here.

For the latest news on promotional events and adoptables follow THS on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram!

So what are you waiting for? Contact the Toronto Humane Society today!

The Toronto Humane Society
11 River Street,
Toronto, Ontario, M5A 4C2
Phone: 416.392.2273
Fax: 416.392.9978

Shelter Hours:
Monday to Friday 11am – 6pm (animal viewing until 7pm)
Saturday and Sunday 10am – 5pm (animal viewing until 6pm)

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Bunday Sunday!

DumplingBundaySundaySubmitted By: Chloe

This darling 1 1/2 year old is Dumpling! Dumpling loves playing with her giant jingle ball, cuddling, giving nose rubs and licking her Mama’s nose! She puts up a fuss during nail clipping and sulks when Chloe leaves for work every day! Sounds like your typical Diva! ;)

Thanks Chloe!

For more sweet rabbit photos check us out on Facebook!

Want your rabbit to be Bunday Sunday’s featured Bun?  E-mail your pics to info@budgetbunny.ca!

Please read our disclaimer under Submissions before sending us your photos!

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Bunday Sunday!

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Submitted By: Coral

This 6 year old cutie is Honey! Honey rules the house but gives in to back and head rubs. She loves play time where she will run around for hours but is also incredibly sweet and if you give her a treat she will be your best friend. Her favourite game is hide and chase where Coral will look for her, find her and then Honey will proceed to chase her around!

Thanks Coral!

For more sweet rabbit photos check us out on Facebook!

Want your rabbit to be Bunday Sunday’s featured Bun?  E-mail your pics to info@budgetbunny.ca!

Please read our disclaimer under Submissions before sending us your photos!

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Bunday Sunday!

OllieBundaySunday

Submitted By: Jade

This adorable 1 1/2 year old mini-lop is Ollie! Ollie loves to run and play! His loves to toss things about and his favourite toy is a toilet paper tube which Jade likes to cut and fold in to different things to keep him entertained. Ollie loves his veggies – especially fresh lettuce and the occasional carrot.

Thanks Jade!

For more sweet rabbit photos check us out on Facebook!

Want your rabbit to be Bunday Sunday’s featured Bun?  E-mail your pics to info@budgetbunny.ca!

Please read our disclaimer under Submissions before sending us your photos!

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Bunday Sunday!

ShalomBundaySunday

Submitted By: Graciel

This 3 year old Hotot mix is Shalom! Despite his obvious bunnitude, Shalom is a very sweet and mellow boy who loves to give kisses, snuggle and be pet. He also loves to pose for the camera!

Thanks Graciel!

For more sweet rabbit photos check us out on Facebook!

Want your rabbit to be Bunday Sunday’s featured Bun?  E-mail your pics to info@budgetbunny.ca!

Please read our disclaimer under Submissions before sending us your photos!

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Welcome Home Sebastian!

After Rocky’s passing, Honey became a completely different rabbit. She lost her appetite, wasn’t moving much and seemed incredibly lonely and depressed. We set her up in an adjacent pen to Willow and Ollie which perked her up a bit and then attempted to bond all three to form a trio. After weeks of this however, it was clear that Willow did not want any part of it! So we turned to the Toronto Humane Society to find her an appropriate companion and to give a deserving rabbit a second chance at a loving forever home.

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After contacting THS, I completed the application form and sent in additional photos of our setups as well as some information on Honey so they had an idea of her personality. We only waited a week or two before being contacted – they had a rabbit they felt met our requirements! We set up a meet and greet and made the trip out with Honey in the hopes of adding to our fur family!

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When they told us Cupcakes’ story, we were immediately in love! This sweet 3 year old Silver Marten Dwarf Rex had been surrendered with teeth issues that had developed in to a large abscess under his chin. After having the abscess drained and treated, he was neutered and microchipped. From there he spent a few months in foster care to ensure he had properly healed and his teeth issues hadn’t returned before becoming available for adoption. This little bun was a true fighter and needed a home that could provide a lot of love and care!

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While conducting the interview, Honey and Cupcakes were set up in adjacent ex-pens so that we could observe their behaviour. Both exhibited positive signs of interaction – Honey even had a bath and flopped against the cage bars. She was ready for a friend! We signed the paperwork and YIPPEE, Cupcakes was ours!

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Cupcakes seemed completely at home from the moment he came through the front door. He excitedly hopped around his pen, chinning and observing his new surroundings. Although we provided many places for him to hide while he adjusted to his new home, we always found him sleeping out in the open. When our dogs or cats approached the pen he would hop up to them, excited to say hello.

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Next we had to find a new name for this little dude as Cupcakes just didn’t seem fitting. It was Grandma Bb that actually suggested Sebastian after I sent her a photo of him. Mr. Bb and I both liked the name and thought it suited him. A fresh name for a fresh start.

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We have now had Sebastian with us for 1 1/2 months and can’t imagine life without him! He comes when we call him and eagerly greets us every morning by running to the cage door! If you unlock it, he will grip the bottom of the door and pull it open, then run out to meet you! He loves a good snuggle with us and has really helped alleviate Honey’s loneliness. Although Honey and Sebastian are not fully bonded yet, they spend a large portion of their sessions snuggling and grooming one another.

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Sebastian loves to explore during floor time and although we have yet to see a binky, there have been some pretty excited hops and tail twitches! He also loves to snuggle with us on the couch while watching tv. He is a cheeky boy who adores his food! He gets so excited for pellet time that I have to be careful not to step on him as he does a dance and circles my legs! He loves his farm fresh hay and veggie time as well!

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If you are looking to add a rabbit to your family and live around the GTA, I highly recommend the Toronto Humane Society. The staff were extremely friendly and knowledgeable while helping us find the right rabbit. All rabbits are spayed/neutered, microchipped and health checked prior to being adopted out so you know your new companion is healthy! They also offer meet and greets so if you are looking for a bonding partner for a rabbit that is already part of your household, you are more likely to end up with a successful bond – which was something incredibly important to us! It was also incredibly refreshing walking in to a facility that promoted the proper housing and house rabbit welfare I strive to educate others on.

7Welcome to your new life Sebastian! We are very excited to have you as our newest member of the Bb Family!

You can see more of Sebastian here.

 

 

 

 

 

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Bunday Sunday!

RosieBundaySunday This gorgeous Mini-Satin Siamese is Rosie. Rosie is 1 1/2 years old, loves to explore, give kisses and enjoys a good snuggle! She is a big baby who also enjoys binkying around the house as well as floor time!

For more sweet rabbit photos check us out on Facebook!

Want your rabbit to be Bunday Sunday’s featured Bun?  E-mail your pics to info@budgetbunny.ca!

Please read our disclaimer under Submissions before sending us your photos!

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❤ Binky Free Rocky ❤

IMG_3839Sadly on March 18th, 2015 our sweet and beautiful rabbit Rocky passed peacefully in my arms. Rocky had begun to show signs of stasis so we force fed him critical care, administered some simethicone drops and gave stomach massages in the hopes that he would improve. As this all happened in the wee hours of the morning, we anxiously waited for our vet to open so that we could take him in. As we drove to our veterinarian’s office, Rocky began to fade in my arms. Our worst fears were confirmed when our vet told us that Rocky’s stomach had flipped and his temperature and heart rate had dropped so much that his body had begun shutting down. He assured us that we had done everything right but that the kindest thing to do was to put him to sleep. As I held him warm and safe against my chest with Mr. Bb hugging us both, I told him how special he was and how much we loved him. I told him that it was okay to let go and I promised to take good care of Honey. I thanked him for everything that he taught me and for choosing me.

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My love for rabbits began by doing everything wrong. I wasn’t prepared and my knowledge on them was limited. Like so many others, I was suckered in during the Easter Bunny madness at a pet shop and wanted one of my very own! I had a look at the dozens of tiny baby fluff balls but none called out to me. Then I noticed one rabbit sitting off by himself and twice the size of the others. He was mostly black with some white on one side of his neck, mouth and on his one paw. He had been there for a few months and was now being passed up for the younger, smaller babies that had come in. I asked the associate if I could hold him. She placed him in my arms and he nuzzled in to my neck. At that moment I knew he was coming home with me. I carried him around the store while I picked out all of the wrong things including a bag of muesli mix and a horrendously small rabbit cage. I laughed at her when she recommended a small rattle and told me that rabbits liked to throw things but I bought it anyways. Later, I was glad that I did because that became my new little rabbit’s favourite toy.BundaySundayRocky

On the way home my husband and I threw names back and forth but nothing fit. Then Mr. Bb, being a big Rocky fan, suggested the name Rocky. I didn’t like it at all but I looked down at our new bundle of joy and said ‘Shoot, he does look like a Rocky.’

When we got home I set up his cage in one of our spare bedrooms, which was later to become the Pet Room. I put in his food and water dishes, set up his hay rack, filled his litter box and threw in a few toys only to realize there wasn’t any room to put Rocky! From that moment I quickly became a Bunny Slave.

In the coming months Rocky taught me how incredible, intelligent, gentle and loving rabbits are. He taught me that rabbits love to run and play and that a binky meant he was happy (the first time I saw him kick up his heels I was frightened something was wrong)! He greeted me when I came home from work by running up to me making happy little grunts and looking for snuggles. Before being neutered he would pee on my foot. Most people would find that disgusting I’m sure, and it was a little, but it was also endearing that he was marking me as his. Years later and with a WifeyBun to keep him company, Rocky always remained a Mama’s Boy and would pout when he felt I wasn’t giving him enough attention!

IMG_1277As I learnt more about Rocky, I wanted to give him more. I wanted him to have more space and lots of fun toys to keep him busy. I wanted him to have a companion to share his life with so he would never be lonely when I wasn’t there. I learnt that rabbits were the third most abandoned animals in shelters and that many end up there because people didn’t know how to care for them properly. They didn’t know that pet shop cages weren’t big enough. They didn’t know that spaying/neutering was essential for the well-being of their rabbit and also curbed a lot of hormonally driven behaviours. They didn’t know that when given the chance to thrive and the patience and dedication to tame, these animals are just as amazing as a cat or dog. As my knowledge on rabbits expanded, so did our household – from one rabbit to four – and eventually inspired me to begin BudgetBunny so that I could educate others about how incredible these animals are too.IMG_0851

Rocky was more than just an incredible rabbit. He gave me a purpose and provided direction in my life at a time when I was struggling with where I was headed. If I had never brought that sweet little rabbit home that day in March 2008, Ollie, Willow and Honey wouldn’t be living the great lives they have now and BudgetBunny wouldn’t exist. Knowing that he not only touched my life but has inspired so many of you has been so comforting to me during such a difficult time.

I find peace in knowing that Rocky began his life with us safe in my arms and surrounded by love and took his last breaths in the same spot, safe and warm, with those who loved him most. There is a beautiful symmetry in that. We miss you dearly, sweet boy.

If you would like to know a little about this incredible rabbit you can watch his Rabbit Profile video here.

You can watch a special tribute to Rocky here.

Binky Free. 2008-2015

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Bringing Home Bunny: Tips For A Smooth Transition To Your Home

You’ve just adopted a rabbit from your local rescue/shelter and you’re excited to bring bunny home! Here are some tips for a smooth transition to home living.


Set Up Bunny’s Living Quarters Ahead Of Time, If Possible.

Bunny will need spacious housing – at least 6 times its out-stretched length and twice as tall in height, to hop abouIMG_9953t and live in. The more space the better! I recommend a condo or x-pen for rabbits which affords several advantages over other types of housing sold in pet stores. X-pens are spacious, sturdy, available in several heights and are cheaper. They are also portable, can be covered with binder-clipped sheets on top, and the 8 panels can be configured into whatever shape required.

Homemade custom-built condos made from wire shelving units also work well as housing.

You can learn how to build your very own rabbit condo here.

What I don’t recommend are most store bought rabbit cages which are far too small. Inside the x-pen or condo, place a litterbox with wood-stove pellets or other rabbit-safe litter as well as a large pile of hay to eat, a sturdy cardboard ‘hidey’ box with two openings and two heavy ceramic crocks: a smaller one for food and a larger one for fresh water. Provide sturdy, flooring such as vinyl/laminate flooring, foam or seagrass mats, fleece blankets/quilts/towels/rugs for traction. Toss in some toys for recreation and rotate chew toys frequently.

For more great and creative housing ideas make sure to check out our Facebook Album: House Rabbit Housing!

Don’t Fuss Over Bunny.

IMG_0430It’s tempting to hold and play with your new bunny straight away, but what it really needs is to be left alone for a while upon arrival. This will give it time to chin/scent and leave some territorial droppings in its new abode. This will make bunny feel more comfortable in your home, where nothing yet smells familiar. Try to leave bunny in its area without immediately forcing your attention on it. Sitting on the floor near the rabbit’s pen and quietly reading/ working is ideal. This allows your rabbit to observe you from a safe distance and encourages its natural sense of curiosity to investigate you and its new surroundings. Always allow your rabbit to exit/enter the pen on its own, rather than lifting/carrying the rabbit out of/into its enclosure.

 

Be Patient.

Building trust with your rabbit may take some time. As prey animals, rabbits are wary of anything larger than them,IMG_6020including people. Once bunny learns to associate you with positive things like food, toys, treats and playtime, bunny should gradually let down its guard. Every rabbit is unique, and has experienced different things during the course of its lifetime. Some may be quite confident, and some may be extremely fearful due to their nature and experience. However, even the most skittish rabbit can be made to feel more comfortable over time with patience and understanding on your part. Try placing a healthy treat just outside bunny’s enclosure to start, and then have it investigate a treat held in your hand or lap. Take it slowly at the bunny’s pace, and revel in the small successes when bunny approaches. You can learn more about taming your rabbit here.

Always Allow Bunny To Emerge From & Re-Enter Into Its Pen On Its Own.

IMG_2852Rabbits don’t like being handled as a general rule. Daily exercise time is very important and you want to aim for at least three hours of free run time daily. Be sure to rabbit-proof your home by hiding/blocking access to electrical cords and phone/computer rechargers etc., as bunny’s roaming space is enlarged. Anything left on the floor or elsewhere that your rabbit can reach may be nibbled. This includes clothing, shoes, briefcases/purses, books and furniture. Loud noises and quick movements will generally frighten your rabbit, so avoid them. If you have other animals at home, don’t introduce bunny to them right away. After bunny is feeling a bit more comfortable at home you can try meet and greets for short periods of time, slowly over a number of days/weeks — and always under close supervision. Always provide your rabbit with a designated space of its own and always remember that its safety and well-being is most important.

If Bunny Is Extremely Shy And Won’t Leave Its Pen, Try This:

‘Play dead’ on the floor near the rabbit by lying motionless until bunny approaches you. Expect bunny to nudge you
and perhaps even to hop up onto your back or stomach out of curiosity. When bunny is comfortable doing this, try to speak softly to your bunny and/or reward it with a healthy treat afterward. Positive reinforcement will help bunny associate you with good things!


Using these tips, even a very shy bunny should eventually feel more comfortable at home. Every rabbit is different, however, and some may take months to ‘settle in’ rather than a few days or weeks. Don’t give up on your rabbit! Be patient and bunny will reward your efforts. Feeling at an impasse in your relationship with bunny? Consult budgetbunny.ca and rabbit.org for ideas or ask to speak with a rabbit specialist from your local rabbit rescue organization/shelter. They’re happy to help!

Written By: The Bunderful Iris – Guest Blogger

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