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Here's a sneak peek at this month's newsletter...  💕A few pairs of love buns celebrate Valentine's Day by telling their love stories, and a bachelor bunny asks their friends for dating advice. 
FEBRUARY 2021 NEWSLETTER 

❤️ Adoptable Bunnies Spotlight: Juniper Berry & Goji Berry ❤️

video by Nik Hassinger and Marie Boisvert
 
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, bonded pair Goji & Juni are now adoptable!
Watch this video celebrating their fairytale-like love story! 


Goji and Juni were spotted along a busy road with multiple shopping plazas. Rabbit Advocates previously rescued two other bunnies, Raspberry and Cranberry, in the summer of 2020 in the same area. Goji & Juni were living in the parking lots between a gas station, taco truck, and drugstore, frequently hiding under cars or behind dumpsters to get out of the cold rain. Goji was caught first, and Juni initially evaded the Rescue Team by disappearing into expansive Juniper hedges. Once reunited (in separate, adjacent enclosures), they were ecstatic to see one another. 

Juni later gave birth to 3 beautiful Berry Babies named Snowberry, Thimbleberry, and Huckleberry. The babies grew up with comfort and safety, and left the nest together to embark upon new baby bunny adventures. Now they all eat Bunny’s Best Bites hay instead of fast food leftovers, and live idyllic indoor house rabbit lives. 

After Mama Juni and Papa Goji were spayed and neutered, they were thrilled to finally be able to live in the same space with no more barriers. They are inseparable and excited to find a calm, patient forever home with lots of toys and fun places to explore together!
Walter The Bunny Bachelor seeks dating advice from his couple friends Panchito and Marisol.
comics + graphics by Olivia Evans
story by Victoria Muirhead
Stray Boy Finds Love in a New Home
by Paige Craine and Lori Babcock
 
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Osiris was adopted from Oregon Humane Society in early 2020. It took her some time to open up and learn how to be an indoor free-roam house rabbit, but her parents worked hard to earn her trust and help her feel safe. Over time, her beautiful black coat got softer and shinier and her adorable white swirls grew brighter. 

Meanwhile, Thor was trying to survive on his own after being abandoned on the Springwater Trail in Gresham. The tiny harlequin Rex was reported to Rabbit Advocates in March of 2020 and the Rescue Team spotted him along a deep ravine full of blackberry brambles that led to the down to the river. The team watched as Thor seemingly learned from wild rabbits how to survive out on the trail. Between noisy dogs and skateboarding teens, the Rescue Team’s efforts were thwarted. After grounds crews razed the blackberry bushes in April of 2020, Thor disappeared. 

A few months ago, Osiris’ parents decided to see if she might like to have a bunny friend and applied to adopt from Rabbit Advocates. After a few dates with boy buns that didn’t go well, Osiris’ family opted to pause their search. Osiris’ parents continued to volunteer with Rabbit Advocates, including being a part of the team that rescued Goji & Juni, the parents of the Berry Babies, whose story is also featured in this month’s newsletter. 

Then, in December of 2020, a kind lady managed to scoop up Thor along the trail. Remembering that her neighbors were “bunny people”, she reached out for help. After at least 9-10 months outdoors, Thor was beyond exhausted. Osiris’ parents got certified to foster him through Rabbit Advocates and they took great care in rehabilitating him. 

After Thor recovered from his neuter surgery, Osiris’ parents began to gradually acclimate the two bunnies to each another’s presence, allowing them to interact with an exercise pen separating them. When they started to mirror one another while lounging on their respective sides of the barrier, Osiris’ parents let them roam the living room together. They quickly became inseparable. Even though she is spayed, Osiris began to build nests, expecting that babies were on the way, even carrying her stuffed animals into the nests to tuck them in and keep them warm. 

We are so pleased that this legendary bunny couple has found love! To follow their love story, check out @osiris.the.great on Instagram. 

Love Buns 💕Bonding Experience with Ted & Izzy 

by Kyla Halter, RA adopter

Teddy, a 10-month-old Holland Lop, was tired of being an only-bun. He was looking for somebun who loved cilantro, zoomies, and was an expert groomer. Izzy checked all the boxes. She was a 6-month-old RA rescue bun whom he met on a "blind date". Originally named "Fury" as a newborn, Izzy was one of the Marvel Babies born into the care of Rabbit Advocates after their parents were rescued in June of 2020. We decided to embark upon a bonding trial run to see if Teddy & Izzy might be a match. 

The day we brought Izzy home, we headed straight from the car into a pen in the kitchen, a neutral territory. We placed them in a shared litter box where they started munching hay. Then, Teddy hopped out of the litter box and started to explore the penned off area while Izzy stayed behind, watching his every move. As Teddy re-approached the litter box, Izzy lunged at him, protecting the space that she had now claimed. This feisty behavior continued, so after 20 minutes in the same pen, we called it a day and put them away to explore their close-yet-separate enclosures.

Izzy was not a fan of Teddy coming near her side of the enclosure. She would immediately lunge at him through the bars, even nipping and boxing him. I moved their enclosures about 4 inches apart so that they could see and smell each other, yet not cause any harm. Each bun took turns free-roaming while the other stayed in their pen. Teddy was relatively unfazed by her presence, but Izzy really didn’t seem to like him. 

Since I was new to bunny bonding, I was scared to try the bonding pen again since she seemed agitated anytime he was near her. We decided to give Izzy a few days without any dates just to get used to her surroundings. Every 24 hours, we swapped their enclosures. This way they would have to eat, sleep, and go potty where the other bun had been the night before. We gave them a larger area to be “together” yet separated. This lasted for about 3 days before we braved the bonding pen again. I set up an enclosure in the bathroom which was not ideal but it was a small neutral space, and this time, no litter box to get territorial over. They went from ignoring each other, to flopping near each other, to enjoying a snack. Then Izzy even groomed Teddy a bit! This moment of glory didn’t last long, and shortly afterward we ended the date. I didn’t want to press my luck and thought it best to end on a high note. 

The next day we tried again, spending nearly 4 hours together in the bathroom. More great results and this time, they both took turns grooming one another. I was so excited I thought I had done it! One week in and already a successful bonded pair. Turns out, not so much. 

After their spectacular back-to-back dates, I got ahead of myself and set up the bonding pen in the middle of my living room -- NOT neutral territory. The second the bunnies got together in the pen, the fur started to fly. Literally. Circling, biting, fur flying everywhere. Ted even attacked the broom I was using to separate them then latched on to my pant leg before I could get Izzy back in her enclosure to safety. Luckily no bun was harmed but I was pretty shaken up by the whole experience and so we went back to swapping enclosures and visiting only with a pen dividing the two bunnies.  

It was another four days before I was brave enough to try the bonding pen again, this time, we moved to the kitchen. They had a much bigger bonding area but still neutral territory. I did introduce some toys and a litter box. All seemed well, back to grooming, snacking together and enjoying each other’s company. We continued the kitchen bonding for a few nights and expanded the space to include parts of the dining room. They spent all evening together with little to no issues. 

After several excellent kitchen dates, I decided to give a living room date another try. Again, a mistake. Chasing, boxing, thumping and definite unhappiness from each of them. After being separated for a few hours, I placed them back in the kitchen and they were back to being happy, snuggling bunnies. I kept increasing the time they were together in the kitchen, sometimes for 12+ hour stretches. They were about 3 weeks into bonding when I decided to try a slumber party in the kitchen. I slept nearby just in case any scuffles interrupted overnight, but they did great! I woke up to Izzy happily grooming Ted! He was living his best life snuggled in tight to her. After spending a full weekend together successfully, I decided it was time to prepare their enclosure for move-in day. I shampooed the carpets, wiped down all the surfaces and rearranged everything to make a fresh, new home for them. They spent a few hours together inside the enclosure during the day just so I could see how they were behaving and for peace of mind that things would be okay overnight. They did so well, and we haven’t looked back since. It wasn’t always easy, but seeing them together now makes it all worth it!

Interested in adopting a bond mate for your spayed/neutered solo bunny? Submit an adoption or foster application and the Rabbit Advocates Team will be in touch!
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About the Rabbit Advocates Newsletter

The newsletter contains the latest and greatest updates on Rabbit Advocates, as well as important information on issues concerning domestic rabbits in the Greater Portland and Vancouver Areas. 

The newsletter is prepared by the Rabbit Advocates Communications Team in partnership with the Board of Directors. Submit your newsletter ideas to communications@rabbitadvocates.org

Many thanks to Lori B, Olivia E, Victoria M, Kyla H, Marie B, Paige C and Nik H for contributing to the February 2021 newsletter. 
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