Rabbits. My dad used to raise them before I was born. Apparently, they were rather tasty creatures. But that's his story not mine.
My story begins on a cloudy day late in the fall. I was tromping around my back yard when I spotted a black rabbit. This would normally not be a big deal, but black rabbits are not native to my area, therefore, this meant it was tame and I set out to be its master. Over the next couple of weeks I tried my very hardest to sweet talk that rabbit into the vacated chicken yard. After much patience, my efforts paid off and I captured my prize. She was gorgeous!
Snow soon set in, but I made sure that my new little charge had plenty of food, water, and shelter. One morning when I came out to check on her, I was shocked to find a bloody pile in the snow. My first thought was, I didn't know rabbits were carnivorous. Then I saw them. The bloody mangled bodies of two little bunnies. Their mother had slaughtered them. I was horrified with her. How could she have killed her own young? I did some research and found out that it is very common for young rabbits to kill their first litter of young especially if they know they can't take care of them. Since she had just been taken into captivity, she probably thought it was better just to put her little babies out of their misery. I don't think I even buried them. The ground was too hard beneath the snow.
`The rest of the winter was uneventful. There were no other unexpected pregnancies and my little charge grew to like her new home. Come spring I had a new adventure waiting for me. I spotted another rabbit. To my surprise, this rabbit was also tame. I began to wonder who was letting all these rabbits go. I didn't ponder too much on the question however. At twelve, catching and raising rabbits was a fine task for me. I soon captured the new rabbit and placed it in the newly acquired rabbit hutch that I had gotten from some friends.
I began to notice strange behavior between my rabbits. I was not unaware of sex and there was definitely some sparks flying between my love bunnies. I quickly separated them into different pens, but the damage had already been done. About a month later, two others were added to my growing family of rabbits. This was my first experience with actually raising baby animals. After they had grown their fur and opened their eyes, I had great fun bringing the little ones into the house and letting them bounce around. One was black like its mother and the other a sunshine brown. They were little beauties.
Rabbits grow quickly and I was soon left with four adult rabbits. I began to realize that I needed to get rid of some of them or they would continue to multiply. I then decided that my rabbit days were over. It was time to move on to other adventures. I put my bunnies up for sale and soon they had a home. I'm hoping they didn't turn up in someone's stew.
For years afterwards, I would have nightmares that I hadn't fed or watered my rabbits in days. In my dreams I would run out to the back yard, and find my rabbits either dead from neglect or crazed from malnutrition. I never realized how stressed I was about their care. It was a good experience, but I don't wish to repeat it again......
unless I have children of my own.