Saturday, May 20, 2006

New in Brno

Jesse appears to have new neighbors. This little pair has taken up residence on the landing to his new apartment. They were very excited when I came by. I'm not sure whether it was simply because they were having an extremely dull afternoon sitting in the cage, or because they could tell I was familiar with small mammals and wanted to meet them. Both the rabbit and the gerbil began bouncing up and down and asking for attention. They became even more excited when we brought them carrots, lettuce, and fresh water. Hay and fresh litter were also well received.
We have no idea who they belong to or how permanently they will be on the landing. Obviously, it's not a good place to keep pets of any kind. They can't be let out to exercise for fear they might fall onto the landing below or the yard, but the cage is too small for a rabbit and possibly also for gerbils.
They are quite friendly, especially to each other, but also to humans. The gerbil seems somewhat more confident about humans, while on the whole the rabbit is ok with humans but doesn't like anyone to stick their hand too far into the cage. While it is a little startling to have an otherwise agreeable animal fling itself at one and give a light bite, this is normal behavior for a rabbit that doesn't have enough space of its own and that doesn't have any overwhelming reason to trust the invader. This rabbit never made a real attempt to hurt me, just wanted to make clear that I should respect its space. With the right treatment, and more room to exercise (and a spay or neuter operation), it would probably have quite a nice life with its pal. I looked up gerbils, and they are supposed to be extremely friendly, so as rabbits also need at least one creature for company, it is no surprise the two spend a lot of time nestled together.


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