|Paddy on TOP of his hutch.|
I was SHOCKED. I did not see any blood evidence of a wound anywhere and just could not imagine what was wrong. I took him in to see our good country vet--a rare breed. She looked him over and said she would need to sew the eyelid closed and leave it for 2 weeks to try and save the eye.
She had a new assistant and during the examination I learned that she raised rabbits. So, I commenced to tell her the no-baby-saga.
ME: "I've been trying five years and regardless of what I try, my rabbits will not breed."
ASSISTANT: "I let the male/female get acquainted through a wire partition before I put them together."
ME: "Did that. In fact, they seem to be great buddies AS LONG AS THE PARTITION IS THERE."
ASSISTANT: "I leave them together for 2 days."
ME: "If I did that the fur would fly and someone would be dead. They're together 15 minutes tops. By the time I take out my female they are mortal enemies."
ASSISTANT: "Hmmmm. Maybe he just doesn't like your female."
ME: "I have four females."
So, I leave Paddy in the capable hands of my country vet and her successful rabbit breeder assistant.
The next morning I'm sympathizing with a groggy Paddy and his pirate-like eye. The vet is giving me instructions as she hands him over and almost as an after thought says, "Oh, and by the way. Paddy is a female."
We all had a good laugh. At least that explained the no-baby-bunnies at Rocky Creek.
My husband said they were going to have to revoke my "Farmers License" over this. In my defense, I NEVER CHECKED!! I took the Angora Breeder at her word. Live and learn.
I went to check on Paddy (Patty?) 2 hours after I brought him home and he was dead. Oh, that broke my heart. I called the vet and she said, "You know, I haven't been able to get Paddy off my mind. I believe he had a brain tumor."
So, it's just as well he passed on to a better life. I envision him not in a rabbit cage--as wonderful as Briarpatch is--but in an open grassy field with lots of dandelions (which he loved), sunshine, blue skies and all the other bunnies I've loved and lost to keep him company.
PS I know he was a she, but I didn't have her long enough to make the transition to the she pronoun. He will always be a he in my memories. :)