Pet Sounds: There’s a rabbit in my house

I’ve been a little bit quiet lately, which has been mainly caused by a series of Manchester Girl Geeks events, partly also by my new flatmate. Little Gethin is 18 months old, black, furry, and goes absolutely crazy for coriander*. This may sound weird to some of you who have been growing up with cats, dogs, and plenty of other animals surrounding them, but I am genuinely excited, almost ecstatic, to welcome my first ever pet to my house.

I adopted the rabbit from a friend who was going to move house and couldn’t take him with her; and to say I was a little worried about doing everything right would be understated. I spent hours bunnyproofing our flat, sticking cables into plastic tubes, removing books from the bottom shelves, reading up on ‘how to look after your rabbit’, their diet, how to keep them entertained, and generally panicking about coming home one day, finding the rabbit had rioted in our flat, turned his cage upside down, peed in my flatmate’s bed, pulled apart his 1st edition copy of Robinson Crusoe, chewed through our £200 solid wood coffee table, eaten several bars of chocolate before attempting to electrocute himself with the Playstation 3 cable and eventually drowning in the loo.

When Geth moved in, I made sure I spent a lot of time just sitting on the floor, talking to him (trying very hard to avoid babyspeak) and resisting the urge to go all ‘ooooh cuuuuteeee bunnyyyyyyyy, wanna  cuuuuudddlle’ on him. Having previously looked after him for a couple of days, I expected the rabbit to be quite timid, ignore me and go about his own business. I was surprised to find that the excitement about his new environment had made him rather inquisitive and bold, overlooking my cage cleaning activities, hopping over my legs, following me into the kitchen, and even jumping onto the sofa next to me a few times. In fact, while I’m writing this blog post, he’s on a tour across the front room, squeezing through a tunnel, trampling over  jars with candles and jumping onto his cardboard box (I’ve called it ‘the bunny fort’). My flatmate, who is mildly allergic to rabbits and can’t touch them, has figured out that Geth seems fine being stroked by his feet, as he proudly demonstrated one night – while I appreciate his attempts to show the bunny some affection, I’m not sure if I  agree with the whole foot stroking thing yet.

After a week at our place, the rabbit is still in good health, the furniture looks okay(ish), the cables and wires haven’t been touched yet, the litter tray is in use (well, including the general area around it), he eats and drinks like a champion, and he’s accepted us as his new friends. I do very much hope he doesn’t start hating me once he finds out that I’m going to have him neutered…

Oh, and while we’re at it: the RSPCA Manchester and Salford have lots of rescue bunnies that are waiting for a nice person to adopt them. Have a look at the adorable little furballs on the RSPCA website.

*  I’m keeping a list of things he does and doesn’t like to eat. So far I’ve found that he’s into coriander, bananas, carrots, sugar snaps, parsley and pak choy, but only the green bits. Fussy eater.

[Photo by Matt Orlinski, model: the beautiful Mr Gethin himself]