austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

A pain in my heart and a pain in my chest

That our pet rabbit was not dead is not to say he was quite alive. He was a disaster. He had a lot of mess and needed showering to rinse the droppings and the urine out of his fur.

At the vet's we would learn it was worse, much worse than that. He had scalding on his fur, the result of staying flopped in his urine for too long. bunny_hugger's mother would blame herself for that, for not making him move enough while he was at their place for two days. We don't think she's at fault. He was not moving around enough for well before that. While it's possible the situation bot critical when he was at their place, it didn't start then.

This would begin a couple weeks of misery for our rabbit. The first is that he needed baths, not just once-a-week for the ringworm that we seem to have overcome. We'd need daily ones to clean out his fur and his skin. Also to rub a healing lotion on the sorest parts of his knees and underside. You may wonder what rabbits, a family generally not known for swimming, think of daily showers. Or even twice-a-day showers. The answer is they think this is a good chance to bite you. We understand.

He was spending a lot of time wet, which is not a good look for a rabbit. A wet rabbit looks like a weasel that's exploded. And he needed rinsing often enough he wasn't really drying, inviting its own perils. He would spend a lot of time looking raggedy and sopping and miserable. We started to work out better processes for drying him, though. And the vet techs shaved his back legs and belly, a long process --- the fur was matted densely and rabbit skin around there is quite thin and easily torn --- which he liked even less. But we got his needed baths down, and were able to substitute talc-free baby powder rinses more and more.

I'm not saying it was easy. It was a lot of work and now the second-most intense sustained effort put into him. But over the course of the following month he recovered to an extent nobody would have predicted. The vet tech we see most often for his cold laser treatment said so, in increasingly strong terms, over the course of weeks. By early July she was almost directly admitting that they thought he was a goner that first visit after. And now --- totally different.

On that front.

Trivia: The final selection for Viking 1's landing site was made the 14th of July, 1976, in the 22nd meeting of the Lansing Site Staff committee. Source: On Mars: Exploration fo the Red Planet 1958 - 1978, Edward Clinton Ezell, Linda Neuman Ezell. NASA SP-4212.

Currently Reading: The Camera Does The Rest: How Polaroid Changed Photography, Peter Buse.

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