Yesterday was one of those days that felt like an emotional roller coaster as far as the rabbitry was concerned. I started the day super excited because I knew I was scheduled to meet with my friend April over at OlivYew Farm for two new Harlequins.
The sad news is that I walked out for the morning rounds of feeding and saw Pearl. To make a long story short, about four days ago she started acting a little bit off. Since then we had ups and downs and I thought she was going to recover twice. Then yesterday morning I went out and she had taken a nosedive overnight until it was apparent that she was not going to survive the day. I tried to make her comfortable, but even that failed and I had to make the difficult decision to euthanize her. Afterward I knew it was the best decision for her as she had multiple failures in her body systems as it turned out (heart, lungs, GI tract, etc.). I have no idea why this happened and was very upset about the whole situation. To make things worse, her kits were not old enough to be weaned. :(
I don't have a lot of options for them, but I am trying to partially foster them onto my other doe Kari (but she already has a litter of 7 big kits) along with bottle-feeding to supplement. I know the survivability of kits that are bottle-fed is very low, but I am hoping with a rotating system that with the other mamma I can somehow get them through until they can eat on their own.
But this post is not just about the sad events of yesterday. It is also about the very happy events that did so much to lift my spirits when things were looking grim. I still met with April and it was great to see her again! It's funny how sometimes just visiting with someone briefly that shares your interest that you haven't seen in a while can make things seem better. It was also great to meet our two new additions, Tacoma and Bonus! I was so excited to see how beautiful they are and wanted to take this moment to thank April again for them. :)
The dynamic duo were originally produced by Hoppe's Harlequins and I am very impressed with the type in her stock. I also really appreciate that she breeds for ideals that I also support, like health before markings, for example. In a marked breed it can sometimes be difficult to find a program like that. I am sad that April isn't able to work with Harlies anymore because I know she felt the same way, but I am still really glad she is going to be working with Dutch because they are also a marked breed and they are adorable and practical as well. Sometimes I really wish I had given the couple of Dutch I had a longer try because I think they are a great breed. :)
Anyhow, can I say again how great the new Harlequins are? Tacoma is a chocolate Japanese doe and Bonus is a lilac Japanese buck. I will be posting a few quick snapshots of them when I can get them uploaded here in the next day or two. I will also post an update with the babies once I can get a better idea of how this bottle-feeding rotation is going to work out.