We enjoyed our weekend with Russ' sister Renee and her family. Andy helped fix a few electrical issues in the upstairs for which we are most appreciative (the closet pull chain light in Nicolas and Seth's room was somehow attached to the hallway light switch). We made cupcakes this morning to celebrate Kristina turning 13 today. Renee wanted some good Michigan apples so Russ took her to the orchard this morning.
But about the rabbit...Sunday, after church, Renee and I started to take a walk after morning church to the 7/11 to pick up a paper. We got as far as the neighbor's driveway when Jasmine (Renee's dog) alerted us to a rabbit on the pavement. I could tell by the way it was lying that is was injured. As I moved closer it tried to hop away, but could only drag its back end. The neighbor's driveway/garage is under the house so there is a pretty big drop off from the lawn on the side of the house to the driveway in front. So we are not sure if the rabbit injured itself by falling off the drop-off onto the cement, or if it was actually hit by a car. At any rate, we didn't feel like we could leave it on the driveway for Jasmine to attack or for a car to run over so we scooped it up into a box. Then we were stuck...now what? Of course, the kids fed it carrots and lettuce and gave it a bowl of water (which it ate and drank and made a big mess in the box). We figured we would just take care of it on Monday.
So, Monday morning I get on the phone and call the humane society. I knew they wouldn't want the rabbit, but thought they could direct me to someone who might. They gave me the number for the DNR who gave me the number to four wildlife rehab centers. One was a vet who was no longer licensed for wildlife, one only took reptiles and birds, and two I left messages with. Since I really wanted to take care of this I went online to find rehab centers in Kent County and found the name of another vet. That clinic directed me to another one and that one was reluctant to do anything because, frankly, I think they thought it was silly. Therefore, I was feeling a little stupid as well. But then I would see its alert little eyes and pointy ears and I couldn't just get rid of it by the side of the road either. Finally, I made contact with one I had called previously and she asked me to drop it off. I packed the box and rabbit in the van and took off for the Lowell Wildlife Center about 25 minutes away. The windows stayed open the entire way because box and rabbit were not smelling so good right now. I never met the lady who actually runs the place, but a 67 year old gentleman volunteer helped me. He looked at the rabbit and thought she would probably euthanize it. I needed to fill out an intake form, but the office was locked. While waiting for him to get the keys this huge white duck came over and started pecking, nipping my toes (I had flip-flops on). I was trying to avoid the duck without hurting it because I didn't think that would look good at a wildlife rehab center. While I'm trying not to kick the duck he returns. "Oh, that's just Aflac. He's always nipping at something." Nice. Up to this point, the gentleman has been reassuring me that I did the right thing, not to feel bad, and this is the best place for the rabbit. I am feeling a little less silly about driving 25 minutes to get rid of a paralyzed wild rabbit. But I felt a lot better when I looked at the in-take sheet right before mine--a field mouse. Seriously? An injured field mouse? Hey, I have two of those you can have (see previous posts). I would like to bring those and see how good these guys really are; I'm not sure they can rehab them at this point, though.
Anyway, I donated my $5 to the cause and had a nice visit with this gentleman. "Are you interested in volunteering at the rehab center? We need volunteers and all we require is a rabies shot." "We've had 20-some fawns this year, 20-some rabbits, 30-some squirrels, and I don't remember how many raccoons that we've rehabbed." "We need money and are going after grants. You don't happen to know how to write a grant, do you?" Nope. "Do you have boys? I teach woodcarving and love to teach boys as young as eight how to carve wood." He gave me his card and told me just to give him a call and he would get us all set up to volunteer. When I told the kids about it later, Nicolas thought is sounded like a dream job.
That is the rabbit story. Not sure on the moral of the story. Maybe you can just make your own...