Truly Underestimated Animals

In my life I’ve had the pleasure of having many different animals live with me and have been able to study their behaviors.  I’ve had cats, dogs, hamsters, and rabbits. All of my animals have taught me that we don’t ever seem to give them enough credit for being intelligent. My dogs and cats have always been pretty easily trained, most people can do this, but most people look at me like I’m crazy when I talk about how my hamster was trained to come, give kisses, and open his twist top food container and pull the lid off. He really did do these things on command.

For some reason some animals don’t get the same recognition for being smart as others do. Even I’ve not fully understood how smart some animals were until I spent some time with them. My rabbit for example, Sir Runt (AKA Runt), is one of the smartest animals I’ve ever encountered. He’s almost two (his birthday is in November) and he’s only one of the twenty-two rabbits we used to have but had to rehome due to my mom’s allergies.

All of our 22 rabbits showed us time and time again how smart, loving, and adventurous rabbits could be. Having had only Runt has allowed me the time to properly train him in ways I didn’t have the time to do with the others. By his first birthday I had him litter trained, trained to go back into his cage when told, and to come when called. My (Economics teacher looked at me like I’d lost my mind when I told him I had a trained rabbit, I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone look so perplexed and amused all at once before.) Runt is now trained to do all of those things in addition to jumping into my lap when I tell him to say goodnight as well as getting into his bed when told. Although I doubt I’ll ever get him to stop tossing his bowtie when its around his neck (he hates that thing).

In addition to being incredibly smart, rabbits (as I’ve witnessed in the aforementioned 22), are also extremely compassionate and loving creatures. Maybe even more so than dogs. The girls would literally band together when one got pregnant/had babies, allowing their hair to be ripped out to form nests and caring for the babies in shifts.

Whenever I’m feeling down or sick I can count on Runt bounding up to me and either nudging me until he knows I’m okay or tossing me his toys and playing catch with me until I’m laughing.

I know to a lot of people this sounds crazy but its all true. I just wanted to share this and let everyone know how underappreciated rabbits seem to be as pets, honestly I couldn’t ask for a better animal companion than Runt. While I wouldn’t recommend a pet rabbit for little kids (although Runt does really well with toddlers) I would recommend them for anyone who isn’t allergic… just remember if you want two make sure both are girls and never let two boys be together for territorial reasons.

Thanks for reading,

-A

 

 

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