Friday, November 23, 2007

The Great Bunny Rescue

Wendell Floyd has produced one of the biggest shows in Huntsville, Texas: The Bunny Show. The spectacle takes place on a stage between his home and the apartment building he owns across the street. The set features a grassy fenced yard, two large pens, a quaint little house, several trees, strategically placed branches and three large wooden structures. The actors: 15 rabbits.

According to Wendell, people come by every day to witness the romping, frolicking and general cuteness of the rabbits. The show is ongoing; price of admission is free.

The rabbits took their show on the road from the Reno rabbit rescue ranch to Wendell’s home a couple of weeks ago.

“People have always associated me with bunnies,” said Wendell. “Anything bunny related always seems to come back to me.”

When the story about the Great Bunny Rescue appeared on the Best Friends Web site, he received links from his sister in Atlanta, a woman from Connecticut and four other people around the country. (Apparently there are A LOT of people who associate Wendell with bunnies…)

He called the Rabbit Rangers and said he’d be happy to make a new home for a dozen rabbits. The Rangers said great! How about 15? Wendell decided the more, the merrier --- 15 would be even better.

He said the rabbits are enjoying themselves, sunning, playing, burrowing in the dirt and resting in the shade. They’re mostly feral until it comes time to eat. Wendell fills a commercial cake pan with feed. When the rabbits here the pelting of the goodies against the metal, they come running, even if they’re in the middle of a performance.

“I also give them apples and veggies,” said Wendell. “I can now get within a foot of the rabbits without them running away.”

That’s big progress. When they first landed on Wendell’s property, the bunny stars exhibited considerable stage fright in front of people, hiding wherever the could and ignoring the greatest theater mantra of all time, “The show must go on.” But little by little, encouraged by the friendly faces of enthusiastic spectators, the rabbits found the courage to carry on, or, rather, scurry on. Many now seem “ready for their close-up…”

The apartment dwellers in Wendell’s building enjoy box seats to the performance from their windows. And what a great landlord --- he doesn’t even charge them extra!

“One of my tenants insisted she be the one to name them,” said Wendell. “And another one brought me a cowboy hat with rabbit ears, you know, because of the whole Rabbit Ranger thing.”

Wendell said he’s having a great time with his new friends.

“I’m an animal person,” he said. “I’d be surprised if they could find a better home.”

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