Bunny dance!

Posted in Sanctuary Spotlight at 2:40 am by ACR&S

Knowing that you’ve made an animal’s life better, is the one thing that makes all the other crap in rescue bearable. A couple weeks back I had the pleasure of introducing one of our Sanctuary bunnies, Noelle, to a new potential partner.

First a little backstory:

Noelle came to us from our friends at the Cape Fear Rabbit Rescue in 2005. A elderly but gorgeous little grey agouti dutch, she was supposed to be bonded to one of ACR&S’ bunnies and then adopted, but she didn’t get along with either her new boyfriend or her foster mom. CFRR wanted us to keep working with her to find a bunny friend, and asked if we could keep her at ACR&S, rather than sending her back – she never left!


Noelle was probably about 6 years old when CFRR got her, and had been living alone in an outdoor hutch her whole life. She was incredibly fiesty, and didn’t really get along well with other rabbits. However, social interaction and companionship of their own kind is crucial to the health and well-being of rabbits. No matter how much we love our bunnies, humans just cannot take the place of having a bunny friend who sleeps, eats, and plays with them 24-7. So despite the fact that rabbit introductions can be dangerous and time-consuming, and despite the fact that we tried Noelle with partner after partner, with no luck, we were committed to continuing to try to find her a friend to live with.

In early 2007, we did an introduction with another older Sanctuary bunny named Flax. Their first date didn’t go as poorly as Noelle’s previous ones had, so we settled in for the long haul. After nearly seven months of living side-by-side and having supervised meetings, Noelle and Flax bonded!

Sadly, Flax passed away after just a few short months with Noelle. After allowing her toNoelle & CB grieve for a short period, we once again started looking for a friend for her. We introduced her to CB, a 10-year-old chocolate dutch belonging to one of our volunteers.

They didn’t merely “get along”. Noelle’s reaction to her new friend was stunning:

She binkied and danced for a good 20 minutes solid, interspersed with the occasionally flop-and-roll, displaying her adorable fuzzy belly.Look at mah belly! The honeymoon didn’t last (CB, once he recovered from the shock of meeting a whirlwind, tried demonstrating his dominance, and they are still working out who’s the boss), but the two bunnies live happily side by side and enjoy daily playtime together.

Was Noelle perhaps afraid of being left alone for another 6 years, and demonstrating her relief? Did she just really like the change in scenery? We can only speculate, but it’s hardly even anthropomorphizing to say that she reacted with joy to meeting a new friend. It clearly demonstrates that providing companionship for these gregarious animals is critical to their happiness.

Adopters – do you have video of your adopted pets? Send them over and we’d love to feature them on the blog or on our YouTube channel!

Next Tuesday: Advice for adopters on how to be picky about selecting a rescue!

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