maple passed away today

Posted: July 13, 2010 at 6:02 pm

there is a big discussion on one of the message boards about how little society values small companion animals like rabbits.

i have to say that the small animal rescue folks are right. it is not that the majority of the human race wishes them ill..it is just that not too many folks get their warm and fuzzies from bunnies..dogs, cats are more interesting to invest  the effort to get to know and develop relationships with.

maple has been parapalgic for many years. the past few months, her weakness has been getting worse. for months now, she has required almost daily baths..it is fly season, she is always wet or damp, either from urine, or from her baths. today we found maggots on her. it was time to let her go, so i did.

 maplemaple

 

i went looking for maple when she was a baby. marilla was getting close to the end of her life and i was desperate for sweet and shy and horribly traumatized little clover to not be left alone. he needed marilla…she nutured him and cared for him, she told him all was well and safe and loving in his world.

i called one of the small animal rescues and said i needed a young bunny to be clover’s very good friend. they sent out maple, she was crippled from a birth injury and about 3 months old.

clover was terrified of her. marilla was not. she instantly saw a little baby bunny who needed some mothering. and she started to mother her. clover still needed marilla too and the only way he could have it was to accept maple too.

they became a family. marilla died a few weeks later and maple took over the mothering of clover and he did ok with marilla’s loss.

we lost clover a couple of years ago..he was getting old. and because of first marilla and then maple and later the others that joined them..he never felt afraid or alone.

when sidney and puff and spiffy joined maple and clover, maple mothered all of them too. marilla had taught her well.

Sidney and Maple
sidney and maple

and maple became the pivotal center of that rabbit pen. everyone loved her, everyone had felt her kindness and compassion surround them.

these last few months as maple’s disability took over and brought her low…her family was there for her. they cared for her, they cuddled her, they surrounded her in the same kindness and compassion that she had once shared with all of them.

Sidney cuddling Maple and  Puff & Spiffy
bunnies

maple was my last tie to marilla, an extraordinary rabbit..i am so very sad to see her go.

and i know that puff and spiffy and sidney are really going to feel her loss too.

rest in peace maple, you were an extraordinary rabbit too.

10 Comments on "maple passed away today"

  • Charlotte says

    RIP Maple. Sounds like you were a very good bunny.
    How old was she, anyway?

  • Carol says

    she was 5 and a half years old.

  • Jenn says

    Such an amazing bunny. When I first learned about bunnies the thing that I had never known before is how they can create such a strong bond with another rabbit that when their friend dies they can something become so sad they can die of a broken heart. I am sure Sidney, Spiffy and Puffy are hurting right now … especially sidney. But it was her time. She had a good life at SAINTS and she will be missed by her small and large friends.

    Here is the table tale from last year’s gala that carol wrote about O’grady and when he lost his bella and then found lincoln if anyone is interested http://www.saintsrescue.ca/wordpress/?p=2694 (all of the table tales from last year are categorized under “animal stories” on the right hand side of this blog).

  • laura says

    Hop free dear Maple…and watch over your crew.

  • Mauro Salles says

    She was so young!! What’s her story before SAINTS? What happened to her?

  • Carol says

    her pelvis and hips fractured at birth and then healed but improperly. the problem with parapalegic animals is…their internal organs shift because of their inability to walk..they drag themselves along on one preferred side or the other..it twists their spine and ribcage and shifts everything inside…it also places a great deal of strain on their hearts because they have to work twice as hard to move around. and rabbits in general are REALLY prone to heart attacks..they caan literally die from extreme fright.
    parapalegics age faster because of the constant strain on their hearts and muscular/skeletal systems. this past year has been a steady decline for her with several different health problems….her little twisted body was wearing out.

    she actually did very well to live for almost 6 years, it was longer than i expected given her progressing disability..the average healthy well cared for bunny lives about 8 years….marilla and stu were very old to have lived until 10 years…most rabbits we don’t know how old they are when they get here..but i knew (know) marilla’s age, maple’s age, stu’s age and spiffy and puffs ages too…and now the brown betty’s and billy’s too because they are all very young and born this year.

    i think tu is really old because i have had her for more than 5 years too…and o’grady is ancient, we almost lost him to congestive heart failure as a result of grief when his long term partner bella passed away…now he has a new friend in lincoln and is feeling well again.

    rabbits are such quiet and unobtrusive creatures but the depth of their emotionality and the inner strength of someone as frail as maple, is truly humbling.

  • Poppy says

    Sweet Maple RIP. How fortunate Maple found her way to SAINTS where she could live her life out happily. She was very lucky to have been found by you Carol. So sorry for your loss.

  • Kim says

    By, sweet bunny, Maple. You always caught my eye in the bunny room, your markings were so pretty. It’s always been nice to see your little face on the face page.

  • Lisa says

    Oh no……how sad….I accidentally ran across this post. Rabbits are very stoic and quiet about any suffering they may experience. It is so sad when their spirit out lives their bodies as they have such strong spirits yet such fragile bodies.

    Maple came to us initially from CAS and then onto Carol….I think we brought Rudy & Tu at the same time?
    Seems like yesterday 🙁

    How are Rudy & Tu doing?

    RIP Maple…..you will have many friends at the bridge. Some of the best bunnies I know will be waiting for you.

  • Carol says

    rudy passed away several months ago..tu also started to decline immediately afterwards…we were able to bond thumper with her (he had lost his best friend muffin too) and now they are both doing well…i actually think the bond with thumper is deeper…at least it is more apparent because there is a lot more cuddling and grooming going on.

    rudy had the worst case of malocclusion i have ever seen..for the past couple of years he literally needed his teeth cut back every two weeks, it used to be a lot less but each year it increased in frequency….i have never seen any grow as fast as his did near the end. it used to blow my mind how fast they grew…and i was always so afraid i would cut off his busy little tongue or lip or something…thank god that never happened but every time, the thought of it totally freaked me out!
    i really miss rudy but i do not miss his mutant teeth!

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