We first got cottontail in April 2002, but she was born January 15th 2002. Traveling up to Sabastabol was an adventure in itself, and I still vividly remember seeing the boy on the side of the road riding a lama. Then once we arrive at the "rabbit ladies" house she lays out a row of seemingly identical rabbits. My sister, having an outgoing spirit herself, of course chooses the first rabbit to bolt from the line, and that rabbit was cottontail. Heading home from the breader, we stop at an old 50's style dinner. Walking over to the car while our food is being prepared, I sit with the rabbit in the car. Obviously scared by its change in surroundings, I try to comfort cottontail by petting her, and that was the first close meaningful interaction I would have with a pet. Once we get home, my family immediately disregards the breaders recommendation of keeping the rabbit in the cage for the first 2 weeks, we base this decision of the fact that animals should never be in cages. Letting cottontail out of the cage, she bolts across our living room, kicking her back legs to the side in a sign of pure happiness. As a kid who always wanted a puppy, I finally had some kind of pet.
However, having a rabbit is hard, and cottontail did not make things easier. I always wanted a pet that I would take on walks, play catch with, and cuddle with at night, yet cottontail was having none of that. This rabbit was freethinking, violent, and wasen't about to take anyones shit. Attempting to hold her when she didnt want to resulting in a good thrashing, and I have a myriad of scars to go along with the stories. Cottontail also escaped multiple times. Finding her in such places as a fireplace, between my sisters bed and the wall, inside the walls of our house, under the playhouse, and my backyard in general. Yet, despite the wonders of the outside world, cottontail would always return for food and a warm hay box. I almost forget to mention her undefeated fighting record; she killed a snake and scared off a cat...thats what I call hardcore.
Around the 3rd year we had cottontail, we got her a companion rabbit, Floppy. These two at first were petrified of each other, but soon became my personal symbol of true love in the world. These two never left each others side, taking great care of each other in the process. When I heard cottontail had died, I wasn't shocked in the least, to learn that floppy had been standing outside their house, keeping constant guard over his fallen companion.
In the end, cottontail was the best pet you could have asked for. She had a unique way of showing love, but she definitely showed it. Be it cleaning floppys fur or letting you pet her, she had a subtle soft side. It's heartwarming that a small thing like a rabbit dying can cause a human to reflect on their own mortality, but cottontail has done just that. I would be lying to you if I didn't say that while writing this, the memory of cottontail had led me to deeply reflect on the time I have left on this planet. So as I say goodbye to an old friend, I just have to say that we love you cottontail, and the world will not be the same without its ninja bunny.
Today the 13th of November 2009, we buried you next to the play house. I scratched you behind the ears for the last time, your favorite spot. It always calmed you down. I hope you felt it somehow.