Sunday, 20 March 2016

Rabbit Peril

As I write this my 3 year old rabbit is sitting in her hutch looking absolutely fine. I know she's fine because she spent the morning trying to eat the sucker off Tilly's arrow and eating hosepipe.

Two weeks ago things were different. Two weeks ago I thought she'd died. I refer you to this blog entry where I discussed how bad I am with dead animals. Or even animals that look like they are dead. Well Petal looked dead from the two metres away where I stood and squealed at Paul. It turns out she was just extremely poorly.

It was a Sunday evening. Of course it was. No-one's rabbit gets perilously close to death on a week day when the vets are open. Oh no it had to be a Sunday and hence an emergency trip to the pet hospital in Attercliffe. Who knew there was a pet hospital so near a large number of brothels.

I am, of course, exaggerating about how easy it was to ascertain that Petal was near to death. She looked dead, then when we lifted her into the pet carrier she hopped out of it like there was nothing flipping wrong with her. We drove across Sheffield well aware that the appointment alone was going to cost £125 and thinking she looked a lot better really. We didn't have long in the waiting room during which we very nearly decided to go home to avoid the cost. The short consideration time turned out to be a good thing.

Apparently because rabbits are prey animals they will do anything other than show they are poorly, because then something might eat them. So with her last ounce of willpower she tried to leap off the examination table and gave the vet the run around. Then she flopped over and looked, well, nearly dead.

I won't go into details about the examination. Sufficed to say there was more flopping over, some scurrying, the insertion of a thermometer somewhere unpleasant and a blood test which confirmed that she was very nearly dead. At one point there was even talk of diabetes. Had I not had pet insurance i might very well have flopped onto my side panting too. The expected cost was £450.

£450 to keep her overnight, give her medicine and fluids and try and get her to eat.

In the morning I had to drive back to Attercliffe and pick her up, terrorising her further by driving her back across town. If rabbits hate having thermometers stuck up their bottoms it's nothing compared to how much they hate car journeys. I then left her at our vets for the additional sum of £120.

To say my flabber was ghasted would be an understatement.


I mean I do like her but £580 would be enough to fly her to Amsterdam first class to visit her ancestors (she's a Dutch rabbit). You'd at least expect five star treatment. The hospital she was in was nice I'm sure but she didn't mention anything about chocolate coins on the pillow.

Just as a point of note, three weeks ago we called our pet insurance to cancel it because £12 per month per bunny seemed expensive. It was a Saturday and they were shut. Thanks be to the god of pets. Otherwise Petal would have been joining the great rabbit warren in the sky.

So now we are back to normal. Two rabbits who can't seem to stand each other and eat anything and everything they lay their teeth into. And one rabbit who isn't keen on us going anywhere near her bottom...

Wednesday, 9 March 2016


Everything seems to shift in importance when someone you love is in intensive care. Small things don’t matter at all yet at the same time sit enormous and unmanageable.

For the last ten days the only thing I really wanted was to hear the news that he was improving and that he was going to be ok. That was the only thing that mattered. Sometimes I simply sat on the sofa, watching TV. Because what is the point? Just waiting. In other moments I’ve been fired up and determined to live life to it’s fullest. Stop pissing about and just get on with stuff including everything from planning to travel the world and cleaning out that kitchen cupboard. Because after all there is no bigger eye opener than this. He is only 42. Anything could happen to any of us any time. Grasp life by the horns and shake it. Oh and sit there doing nothing. Because what actually is the point? We just have to wait until he’s better then we can get on with life. It’s a somewhat contradictory and confusing way my brain is processing things.

So it’s evident from my blog silence that I haven’t quite known what to write about all this. It felt as if I couldn’t write anything down in case I wrote something wrong, confused somebody, or didn’t get everything absolutely spot on. In case I didn’t adequately get across how big this is and how very much I care. It felt like if I wrote anything he wouldn’t get better. I’m not superstitious at all but it felt wrong. If there was little sign of improvement I wasn’t writing anything.

But after 12 days he seems to be improving and I’m on my way to see him on a train. I saw him last week and it broke my heart. Today will be more positive, I hope. I want to offer what support I can to him and his family. Even though it can’t be enough. 

I won’t go into detail. This isn’t my story to tell. What I will say is, at the risk of becoming overly sentimental, this has shown me how important family and friendships are. Sometimes we don’t prioritise those relationships. It’s no-one’s fault but it needs some thought and some action. 

I’m writing this on my way home. Today was hard. This will be a long journey. It’s already been the hardest thing in the world and it may continue that way.

I love him. I certainly never have told him that enough.

So just take the time to tell those you care about how much they mean to you. Thanks.

Updated to add
Things are getting much much better. Sod off Jeremy Hunt you know nothing.