Meet Fluffy....full name Fluffy Peter Cottontail. Now, before you get all upset that I've captured this cutie little bunny and tried to keep it....I'm gonna say right up front, that after being certain that Fluffy could take care of himself....I let him go. But.....I cannot resist trying to give you a mental picture of what that experience was like.
So, with five girls who love soft, furry objects, it has been so fun to watch them with this bunny. They love to feed him carrotts and lettuce and pet him. Now, Fluffy is somewhat ok with being pet while in his cage, but the second he thinks your gonna try to pick him up.....the crazy wild in him comes out!....so, i have told the girls all along that we will have to release him when he gets big enough....of course, they heard me, but they did not "hear" me. So...yesterday, I decided was the day. I knew if I put it off any longer, they would really start getting attached, and it was just going to be even harder. So...I announced that those who wanted to say goodbye to come with me, we were having a "letting Fluffy go" ceremony. I grabbed the cage, and everyone followed me out back to the creek....there are tons of rabbits out there, and I knew he would have no problem at all finding food and shelter.
Now....our back gate to our fence looks out to the area where we were, and that fence is chain link. Meet Andie.
This is our sweet, gentle, loving puppy dog, Andie. She really is, sweet and gentle. She doesnt mean to kill bunnies. REally, she doesnt. She just like to chase them, and sometimes, well...she catches them. Actually, let me rephrase that. She USED to be able to catch them...she has not touched one in a few years. (dont worry, i'm not going to tell you she killed fluffy) Anyway....andie was looking at us thru the chain link fence last night as we stood there, saying our goodbyes to fluffy. As a precaution, I checked to make sure that andie was safetly tucked away in the backyard before letting fluffy go. So....goodbyes said, I put fluffy on the ground, and my sweet, sniffling children watched as fluffy loped slowly away.
Andie, seeing fluffy hopping away....burst thru the chain link fence and the chase was on. She ran past us so fast that she knocked a few of the kids over and complete and utter mayhem insued! The girls were screaming, I was screaming and chasing the dog, chasing the rabbit, running for its life! Luckily, we were close enough to the creek that the bunny was able to escape into the brush and Andie, knowing she was NOT going to find that rabbit, and knowing she WAS in alot of trouble, slowly came back to me. My kids were crying and screaming, and angry. One in particular was just traumitzed! She was certain that Andie ate Fluffy, and it took me 30 minutes to convince her that I promised with all my heart that Andie did not catch Fluffy, and Fluffy was safe in the woods.
It is amazing how, with children and animals, things can go from slow paced and gentle, to complete chaos in a matter of seconds! I was trying to give my kiddos a loving experience releasing an animal back into the wild and teaching them that, even though they really, really, really wanted to keep fluffy forever, that it was best for fluffy to be able to live in its natural habitat. Instead, I ended up giving them a fast paced, traumitizing episode of wild kingdom! ~sigh~ Oh well....i tried.