Bunnyopolis, home to Iona, Jura and Aaran our three continental giant rabbits gets its winter protection added now the days are getting shorter and colder. Basically frames of clear Perspex protect the run side whilst the low level heating is turned on in the living quarters.
They don't really like change though and prefer a routine, to clean out the run we had to move various toys around much to their disapproval. Here Jura is rather concerned that the wooden bridge is temporarily at a new eye level, something she tells us through her expression and a concerned leg nudge she gives us. Equally all three are very tactile and communicate best they can through the use of body stances, nudges and head pushing. If they want a stroke the will push their nose into the palm of your hand and push up, if you are perceived to ignore them you will get several hard nudges until you look down. Get in the way and a few paw punches will get you to move, if they are bored with a particular toy then that will be thrown about in your presence until changed.
Rabbits, like people, also have grumpy days. Yesterday after several days of rain we had a keeness to be left alone to do all the rabbity things they hadn't be able to do for a while, chewing, running, eating grass, so we humans had to take a back seat until they were rabbited out.
Best thing though with the shorter days is that we get chance to spend a lot more time with them indoors. They pretty much use us as climbing frames especially when home dried carrot and apple is available. The sensation of having a three foot long, 25lb rabbit balancing on your back is something to experience, Aaran in particular has a new habit of running at me and seeing how far he can run up my chest and face whenever I sit down. Nice as it is last night he reached my bald patch (it's not that hard to reach as it pretty much covers my whole head so from above I look like an egg wearing a fur lined skirt) which now has a nice red, difficult to explain scratch mark.
We have had our three fur kids for quite a while but still discover more and more about them everyday. Iona is slightly plumper, away with the fairies and quite often gets into trouble, two weeks ago we found her in the turn up of the curtain that stops draughts coming through the door. She has a habit of licking fabric only this time decided to nibble at the cotton which inevitably made a hole for her to explore. Her shear weight nearly bought the whole thing crashing down. Aaran is a little scaredy cat and delightfully simple and cuddly, he will sit for hours being stroked. Jura is boss bunny, always first on the scene and very quick to work things out, she also worries a lot which she reveals through her typical continental giant eyes. A little V on her bottom means her five inch long tail can fit perfectly and she also uses her tail as an indicator when she turns a corner and can wag it like a dog.
So Bunnyopolis is ready for the winter, let's hope it's not as bad as they are predicting although there is one benefit...