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Who's To Say...



Who's to say that one species is smarter than another? I thought about this today. As well, it's something I think about quite often. And in saying species, I'll include all humans currently alive on our planet.

As humans, we have tests created mostly by scientists. However, there are other tests which either have yet to be created. Or are not public or are unknown to us fully.

When our youngest remarked last month to me that Guinea Pigs were smarter than Bunnies. I thought since she is nature and science driven, she might be correct. However, I too, am science and nature driven. I know that there is a vast unknown in practically all of science no matter the vein of science that may exist. Too, ask any good brain surgeon how much we know about human physiology and its functions, and they will say '...about 10 to 15 percent.' Yep. 10 to 15 percent is what we know about human physiology. 

Reflecting today about how our oldest bunny, knew how to care for her illness eleven days ago, I'd not seen this often among domestic animals. This intelligence she had, that is what I'm speaking of. I feared my lack there of mine, on her issue could be to her demise. But I knew that a twelve minute ride in her holder in my car could shock her, then she with certainty would die. 

Or worse yet, get to the Veteranarian, pick up something and bring it home to our Guinea Pig and he'd be dead before we knew it. Guinea Pigs are fragile. They can be infected by humans with colds and such. Which a human's cold to a Guinea Pig could mean certain death. Our whole family always knew that. And that is why our Guinea Pig is nearing 130 years of age, yet still spunky enough to crawl up out of his cage, scamper fifteen feet to eat outside his cage with two bunnies twice his size. Eating at times more than his share of organic kale and apple for dinner. As crazy as that may seem. He also had the capacity to take instruction, remembering it after only two weeks of training a month ago. 

In order to keep everyone safe and having a quality living, scarily I opted to take a chance that our older bunny knew how to tell me her needs and for me to just be patient. Accepting whatever lie ahead for her future. I allowed her, nature and intuition to dictate my responses.

I can say, it wasn't an easy feeling for me. The only thing I had was prayer, and holding to all my daily activities with normalcy, peeking in where ever she'd placed herself. 

So, on January 31st, she jumped into her open cage, breathed and stared out. I asked her if she wanted anything. Her answer was her breathing. She stayed there, mostly in one of two positions for twenty hours. Then her bunny sister, jumped into her cage. Our older sick bunny, who'd barely moved now in nearly twenty-four hours got angry. She chased her younger sister hopping mad into the opposing cage. As she hopped into her sister's cage, she ran her sister into the corner with her actions. As if to say, "I told you, to leave me alone!"  

The older sick bunny hopped back out and back into her cage. That never happened again. The first two nights were touch and go. As I'd finally seen her come out and drink water from one of two water bowls twenty-four hours later. Then she sat in front of both bowls rocking in a panting mode. I'd seen her do this before when she was healthy. Yet then she'd only rocked. 

I realized that I had to wait till she laid in a prone position, feet and back legs comfortably stretched out before I'd attempt a good petting for her. And once I had, then I had to feel, then listen for her bruxating purr, to know if she was content or in pain.

Because of her aging back legs over the past three months, I'd added more towels to my living room wood floor, so she wouldn't hurt her spine as she hopped across two rooms. She'd also accepted full bodied therapy from me, around her hind legs, which was not usually accepted by her or her younger sister until a two months ago on a regular basis. 

I knew once I'd felt the bruxating purr from her, as she settled into a near trance-sleep mode that my therapy was needed and accepted. And I realized that even if she didn't pull away, but the calm bruxating purr was no longer there for about eight seconds, I knew to leave her alone.

Finally, nearing 72 hours of her illness, lack of heaviness in both litter boxes and a small amount of her poo, in practically miniscule sized (a quarter to a third normal bunny pellet poo size), some had urine in it. And as if one didn't know, Bunny's poop, we've called 'hay-poop'. It is because it's dry, filled with mostly digested hay that for added nutrients like Guinea Pigs, is then eaten and digested again by that same Bunny or Guinea Pig.

Meanwhile, I'd gone through my mind of what was different that may have set off her illness.

She refused snack after that for all days but one. But she drank water, and by the fourth day ate a bite of organic kale with her siblings for five minutes, and crawled into our Bunny Maze box and rested.

She refused fresh apple, all snacks and refused to even try to eat her pellets. Yet, she'd eaten three types of hay, the bulk of which was Western Timothy Hay. By the fourth day, she and her sister laid prone next to each other under a reclining chair as was normal. Her sister became more caring of her, helping clean her face and as well her back, which has not been so common between them.

By February 5th, she ate a little longer with her siblings, although appearing confused. By February 7th, she now had allowed me to caress her, like before her illness, she gave me constant bruxating purrs. February 8th evening the 9th day she ate the amount of kale she'd normally ingest in an evening. But the next positive sign came eight days and twelve hours later, the main litter box was heavy with urine. Also by this time, I decided it was something new with sugar that caused this. It was a new rice treat gotten as a gift. Different brands can do that. It happens to us humans, who's to say, 'why not the bunnies?' 

Yesterday, I realized I'd saved something that was like catnip to bunnies, yet it's like cardboard. It's palm leaf pieces. Bunnies love chewing on cardboard. Too, she'd began slowly chewing on cardboard on the 8th day of her illness. So I went to our Bunny extra care spot and grabbed a palm leaf shaped bowl and threw it down so she'd be alerted. She came out from the Bunny Maze box and began to chomp with incredible vigor. Ten hours later, there was demand for even more, as the two sisters argued over the last remaining piece of palm leaf. I found another palm leaf bowl and broke it in half and threw it down, both were all over it. Still she was refusing snack, apple and pellets. Her hay-poop had yet to normalize. But everything else seemed in order.

This morning as I cleaned the main litter box, I heard pellet chomping. It finally was her eating pellets. Then her hay-poop was producing near normal size and weight.

I can say, her intelligence was a chance we had to take. I knew if my husband were alive, he would have had me keep the Bunny warm as we drove to the Vets. But again, my fear was her picking up something there, either killing her or giving it to our Guinea Pig and it killing him, who is otherwise healthy for any age of a Guinea Pig. 

I still believe nature and our bodies are the most intelligent in deciphering what's best for our health and quality of life. I've learned how to panic less. And realize the cold-hard fact that being human is just another species that resides here on earth. It's just that we kind of rule the earth or think we should. And the down side of that is we think we need to be rich at any cost to one another. But let me remind you, "You don't need pockets when you die." And who's to say, what other things, beings will say upon the death of the vessel we reside in, in our human form after our death. For the spirit of our existence may still remain. ---Jody-Lynn Reicher 




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