Monday, June 15, 2009
Taz Turns 10!
"What do you want?"
"Mmmm. This backpack is SO tasty."
Ten years old. That's basically 100 for a rabbit. He's my first rabbit. I got him when he was only 4 weeks old. From a petstore. An impulse buy. Exactly the opposite of how you're supposed to acquire a pet. I was tired of fish. They always died on me and weren't very cuddly. I'm allergic to cats, and dogs aren't good for an apartment. I saw the bunnies at the pet store, and they, of course, were ridiculously adoreable. All of them but Taz were Dutch bunnies (black-and-white; they look like they're wearing a tuxedo). Taz sat quietly in the corner and looked up at me with his large brown eyes. He's a mini-Rex, with luxuriously, soft brown fur that feels like a combination of down and velvet. I picked him up and held him, and that was it. He was coming home with me.
I knew nothing about rabbits. Taz was a great teacher. He taught me that he craved playtime. He could leap up on the table like it was nothing. His legs were like little springs. Nothing in the apartment was out of reach. He ran circles around the kitchen and living room, making endless loops. He circled my feet in tight, little spirals. He leaped in the air, kicked out his legs, and did 180s and 360s around the living room. His energy was endless. He was also extremely mischievous. He grabbed all sorts of precious trinkets off my desk and carried them off to his "burrow" under the couch where he could chew them into smithereens in private. He chewed through electrical wires (never once getting elecrocuted, luckily; I learned to cover them with plastic tubing), blankets, upholstered furntiture, table legs. Nothing in our apartment remained without teeth marks. His devilish-like energy earned his name, after the Tasmanian Devil (the Loony Tunes character).
Taz was bonded with Babs when he was 2-years-old. She bosses him around a lot, but he enjoys her protection, especially on car trips to the vet (she lays on top of him, and he hides underneath). The two are inseparable and are often found licking, snuggling, and grooming each other. Taz has moved from Wisconsin, to St. Louis, and now, San Diego. He is a well-traveled bun. He licks more than any other bunny I've known. He also has no clue how to bite. He loves to take turns "grooming". Basically, I pet, then he stops me with a nudge and licks me--wherever he can reach: my hand, nose, or eyelids. At 10, he's doing fantastic. The vet said he was could stand to gain a little weight (no problem! Eating is his favorite pasttime) but other than that, he's in great shape. He still lives with Babs; they have the entire upstairs to themselves where they roam free. When he's not eating or getting petted, he can be found sleeping under the bed. That's where he spends his afternoons, and he grunts annoyingly at me if I try to disturb him (even for food!). At night, he coos contentedly and LOUDLY. It's so loud, we have a hard time falling asleep but neither one of us have the heart to tell him to stop.
Taz--you've taught me everything I know about bunnies, and then some. I will never tire of your coos or your licks or running my cheek along your impossibly soft fur. Here's to many more wonderful years!