Later today, I plan to list Cocoa Puff for sale on our local yard sale FaceBook site. But, first, I wanted to give my blog readers the inside scoop. If any of you would like to take her in, I know she would be in good hands.
It saddens me, but sometimes in homesteading, you just have to know when to throw in the towel. When we first got Cocoa Puff 2 1/2 years ago or so, she was a rescue. She was slated to be dinner for a snake at the pet store. We brought her home and turned her into our "fertilizer factory." She took up residence in her 30x30" home but most enjoyed the time she got to spend in her playpen out in the yard or on her leash. But, the reality has been that I am much too busy right now to get her out of her pen for playtime every day.
For awhile, I told myself that it was okay. Surely a 30x30"-existence was better than no existence at all. I mean, after all, we'd rescued her, right? But, I think that reasoning is flawed. Every animal should be treated with respect and care. A domesticated rabbit should be able to enjoy the things that rabbits enjoy -- like fresh grass underfoot and the space to jump about.
Even our chickens that eventually make it to our plates have better lives than poor Cocoa Puff. Our chickens are treated like chickens, given plenty of space to scratch and peck at fresh ground. I've always been proud of the way our animals are treated here at our farm. From their diets to their shelters, we just do right by our animals . . . except for Cocoa Puff.
Acting on these convictions, I had resolved awhile back to do better. I would get her out of her cage at least every few days; it's what she deserves. But, I just couldn't keep up with it.
And, with our house on the market and our impending move to a small mobile home, it's time to throw in the towel and seek out a better home for Cocoa Puff.
She is free to a good home and comes with her custom-built home, feeder, and waterer.
The black tray underneath the wire cage slides in and out and serves to catch her droppings. We would dump it weekly onto our compost pile or garden. One of the great things about rabbit manure is that it doesn't have to compost before being added to the garden. It's one of the best fertilizers. Of course, the cage is built so that you could remove the black tray and place a worm bin beneath her -- an idea that we played with but never tried.
She does not like to get wet, so at our house, she lived on the back porch so that she'd be covered. Her name is written in chalk pen on the cage, so it could be changed or removed.
As rabbits go, SHE IS HUGE! And very soft. And very strong. She would never bite or intentionally hurt anyone. However, she is timid and has scratched me up pretty good in the past by trying to jump from my arms when scared, unintentionally catching my arms with her back claws. For this reason, I would suggest that she be handled by an adult when carrying her about. Kids could definitely walk her on a least or hold her still in their laps so that she feels secure.
She has proven a bit picky about her rabbit food. But, she likes the feed they sell at the co-op in the 50lb. bags. One bag will last you a very. long. time. Also, she loves carrot tops, celery, and any type of lettuce.
My hope for Cocoa Puff is that she'll acquire a home that will provide her more time to play outdoors. If you think you may be the home for her, please let me know quickly. I plan to list her on the FaceBook page this afternoon.