Our much loved pet rabbit Tickles died yesterday. We suspect she had developed pneumonia and she died on the way to the vets. She had been very much part of the family, living in the house with us for six years, so needless to say my two daughters were very close to her and are very upset.
We felt that it was important that the kids had the chance to understand her passing because death tends to be such a remote and taboo topic these days. We brought her body home and lay her on her blanket in her hutch. Her body was still relaxed and warm and it was striking what a short step it is from life to death. The sense of the life force having recently departed, the departure of that character that she was.
2 thoughts on “On death, dying and rabbits”
My daughter’s rabbit also died a few weeks ago. Ran away in a storm and got run over by a car. She had been with us less than a year. But still it’s a big thing. And an excellent opportunity for practicing dealing with death. Because, after all, it is not quite as hard as if it were a human member of the family.We had a cat years ago who had moved over to one of the neighbors, probably because we had gotten other cats, and we hardly ever saw him again. Except for one day when it became time to die. Suddenly he came back, spent a day on the bathroom floor and died the next day. The neighbor family come over to us for the backyard funeral. We understood why he came back, because they were so attached to him that they had a really hard time dealing with it, and somehow it was gentler for everybody that he came and died with us.
I am forever amazed at the sense making of supposedly dumb animals.