Super Hero Rabbits

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Hero Rabbits in the Face of Adversity

Disabled Zoo RabbitThe 'Strong Willed Rabbit' at Liuzhou Zoo, Guangxi Province, China

This little guy may look like he's showing off one of his latest acrobatic moves but in reality he has really suffered a great hardship.

“Difficulties strengthen the mind,
as labor does the body.”

This clever little bunny has not let his severe disability of having no function in his rear legs get in the way of his quality of life and has overcome his misfortune with sheer grit and determination.

His very impressive walking hand-stand now affords him the freedom to enjoy life again, not too far removed from that of a normal bunny. 

You can find this brave hero rabbit at a zoo in the Chinese city of Liuzhou, Guangxi Province and the sheer determination of this little guy to battle against adversity has caught the admiration of zoo visitors too, who refer to him as ‘strong-willed rabbit’ (意志坚强的兔子 or Yìzhì jiānqiáng de tùzǐ).

“We could never learn to be brave and patient if there were only joy in the world”
Helen Keller

Make Believe Hero Rabbits

Mystique Xmen rabbit

To quote Mystique in the new Xmen film (Days of Future Past)...

"Nothing will go wrong on my watch...
...And by nothing, I mean everything."

My pet rabbit gives me this strange feeling. Like Mystique, in Xmen, my bunny is mischievous, naughty and playful but always endearing and will do anything for a 'treat'.

To me all pets are like Xmen heroes, they all have they're own 'issues', but they still wrap little protective blankets of love around your heart and you don't even know they're doing it until they're not there any more ;-)

You see, to me, rabbits are heroes, everyday in my book and they don't even know it.

They do this by just, being. Yep, by just 'being' in your life.

Now you may be thinking, "Oh, come on you big tree-hugging wuss-bag", but actually it's a known scientific fact.

Super hero rabbits

By taking time-out to stroke and care for something other than yourself, something cute and fluffy even, actually lowers blood-pressure and relieves stress... For both of you!

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Don't underestimate the value of
Doing Nothing, of just going along,
listening to all the things you can't hear, and not bothering.

- Pooh's Little Instruction Book

Real Hero Rabbits

But rabbits can be 'real heroes' too. Yes, the caped-crusader bun-to-the-rescue type...

There's talk of a story about three brave super-hero bunnies, have you heard it?

Kerry's hero angel rabbits

"Once upon a time, there were three little bunnies who went to the police academy. And they were each assigned very hazardous duties, but I took them all away from all that and now they work for me. My name is Kerry."

Some of you may remember words to that effect being used to open the Charlie's Angels TV series from the 1970s.

But three modern day rabbits have taken the places of the sexy-trio and have been out battling evil , fighting crime and saving lives, in their own special bun-tastic way - with better hair-styles too!

Here are three incredible stories, 'episodes', if you will, of hero rabbits Hammie, Hershey and Blazer...

(There's a lot more than just three stories to tell, take a look at these super hero rabbits...)

Episode One - Angel in the Dark

Hammie the hero rabbit

It is 2 O'clock in the morning. A Californian seaside town is fast asleep including 13 year old Emily, and her adopted rescue rabbit, Hammie.

After only a few days settling in to his new house, Hammie started thumping. Thump. Thump. Thump.... Thump. Thump. Thump.

Emily's Mum climbs out of bed to investigate. She steals down the dark hall-way towards Emily's room. At the end of Emily's bed, Hammie sits upright in his cage, wide-eyed and alert.

Hammie had been thumping the bottom of his cage. Very loudly. Why? Were the cats harassing him? No, they were asleep. Were the dogs in the room? No, they were downstairs. Odd.

Before returning to bed, and as she was awake now anyway, Emily's mum decides to check on her daughter's blood glucose. Being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at age 8, following a viral illness, Emily's blood glucose levels must be checked several times a day and more so during times of growth or illness.

But, Emily isn't sick and her glucose level had been as stable before bedtime, but remembering the thumping, Emily's mum checks it anyway.

Horror. Emily’s blood glucose meter registers a dangerously low number, 42, less than half the normal reading. Normally waking when glucose levels drop, Emily does not stir. She's sweaty and pale - a dangerous hypoglycemic situation. She could die.

Shaking with adrenaline, Emily's mum quickly treats the hypoglycemia and stays in the room until the blood glucose returns to a safe range.

Hammie stays on alert, in his cage at the bottom of his best friend's bed, but doesn't thump again; he returns to his 'bun-loaf'  position as Emily's mum leaves the room.

Hammie the hero saves the day again a few weeks later, proving his ability at sensing danger. Hammie only thumps at danger.

How does he know? Can he smell the difference? Can he hear the difference in sleep patterns? It's a hero-cloaked mystery for this story, but what we know for sure is, this bunny, who got a second chance at life, saved a life, twice. 

Hooray for Hammie, the hero house rabbit!

Episode Two - Rescue Fire Angel

Hershey the hero house rabbit

Hershey - A Hero Rabbit - A Story of Bravery Retold by Georgiana Hall

"For decades, I have loved rabbits. About eight years ago, I bought one at a pet store, not knowing too much about them. Snowball soon died of an unknown health problem, so a vet friend convinced me to get another one, but to adopt from a shelter. Cocoa, a dwarf black bunny, came home with me and soon had another rescue pal named Muffin, a tiny Holland Lop. Pumpkin was rescued from a pet store. Pepper was the "toy" of some neighborhood children until they relinquished him to a better life with me. My family room was an extension of the kitchen and had plenty of space for the rabbits' pens.

About the same time I took in Pepper, I agreed to foster a rabbit from the shelter. He was a dwarf mix, white with brown spots and big brown eyes. Somehow his assigned name of "Tucker" seemed too mundane. I renamed him "Hershey" because the color of his eyes was the same as Hershey's Cocoa powder. He turned out to be a charming little guy with a big personality. He could binky right up onto my couch and was especially good at this when I was drinking cranberry juice. Soon he and Pepper became "buds".

My husband left for a month-long hiking trip last July, so I decided to take a dance class at the local college in the evenings. I arrived home late one evening famished from the workout. I decided to scramble some eggs. What a treat they would be, sizzling in butter and topped off with salt and freshly ground pepper.

Retreating to my bedroom with my snack, I gobbled it down and quickly fell into a deep sleep. Probably about half an hour later, I awoke to loud thumping. Rabbits, of course, thump their hind legs when they sense danger. My rabbits would rarely thump in the middle of the night, unless something, such as an outdoor cat, had their attention. I knew immediately that something was wrong.

I stumbled out of bed half awake and somewhat confused. The thumping continued. I flicked on the hallway light and ran into the kitchen. By now, smoke was coming out from the kitchen. The pan I had used to cook my eggs was smoking. I immediately grabbed a towel and threw the pan into the sink. Then I cranked open the windows and opened up all of the sliding glass doors. How stupid could I be to leave the pan on the burner and not turn off the stove?

As the smoke cleared, I glanced over at Hershey. He was hunched in a corner of his pen, stomping his hind legs. His eyes were wide with fear as he continued to thump; the other rabbits hid in their cardboard boxes. As the smoke finally dissipated, I realized the worst: the smoke could have killed Hershey and the other rabbits. I sat down on the floor beside him and stroked the soft fur on his back, assuring him the warren was safe.

Most people don't realize that rabbits can make intelligent, adorable pets who can be taught to come when called and adore affection. And after Hershey probably saved me and my home, I can honestly say that perhaps they are good watchmen as well!"

Hershey Inspires a Novel

Georgiana Hall was so impressed with Hershey and his spirited personality, she went on to write a beautiful book that tells of his adventures.

Based on the life of real pet rabbit, Hershey, Georgiana begins his tale as he arrives at his new home, newly adopted from a shelter.

Hershey soon meets other pet rabbits in the family along with some other unusual and interesting creatures, and quickly learns how to secretly explore the large house and garden that he lives in.

Episode Three - Blazing Angel

Blazer hero rabbit

Hero rabbit saves owners from deadly gas leak?! Really? Wow!

We’ve all seen or heard news about dogs and cats saving their owners’ lives, but rabbits?

Oh yes, here comes another heroic rabbit credited with saving its owners’ lives.

A pet bunny named Blazer saved her human family, Jake and Mary Pruett of Bridgeton, New Jersey, from a deadly gas leak.

Blazer has a litter box, so she is allowed to roam the house like a dog or cat. There are pet steps next to the couple’s bed which enable Blazer to get up and down, although the bunny usually comes up during the daytime when the couple is awake and rarely visits the bed during the night.

Mary Pruett recounts that at approximately 2:30 a.m. on Saturday night, Blazer woke her up by “walking on my face and making noises like a horn was stuck in her nose.” Once awake, Pruett immediately smelled the gas leak and roused her husband Jake. They quickly got out of their house with Blazer, then called the Bridgeton City fire department.

Fireman Steve Chambers observed that “it is lucky that they got out alive.  Leaks like this are often fatal either due to death from toxicity of the gas or an explosion.”

According to the Center for Disease Control, there are as many as 500 deaths a year due to gas leaks. Since carbon monoxide causes unconsciousness, victims who are already asleep often die without waking up.

In the case of the Pruetts, the gas leak was due to a faulty stove installation.  Firemen were able to stop the gas that same night, and the Pruetts and Blazer returned to their home the next day, Sunday, after the fumes had vented.

Blazer, one of many hero rabbits saving the day, and night, yet again.

Sleep easy tonight folks, your rabbit has your back!

Do you have hero rabbits?

Has your rabbit saved your life
or the life of a loved one?

Share your wonderful story
with the Just Rabbits readers,
and don't forget to include a picture
of your brave little bunny -
you never know,
you could make the headlines too!

Unsung Hero Rabbits

There are many fantastic stories about rabbits saving the lives of their human companions. But Why?

Rabbits are very social creatures. They form a strong bond with those that offer them love, attention, affection, and of course, food and shelter. Humans offer all these things to their bunny friends and so form part of the rabbit hierarchy system that is familiar to the setup of wild bunnies.

Rabbits will protect and defend their 'herd leaders' with the dedication and determination that any wild warren rabbit would do. As a provider of shelter, protection and food, a rabbit owner is usually given the position of herd leader, and so reaps the benefits. And the gift of life is the best benefit of all!

Let's look at some other hero rabbits that have saved the day...

Hero Rabbit Top Dog Toby

Toby the hero rabbit

Toby, a giant pet rabbit acted as a family’s burglar alarm by scaring off intruders in the middle of the night. Hospital nurse Kimberley May, 30, was woken by big bunny Toby thumping on the floor of his cage in the kitchen.

She went back to sleep with fiance Martin, 33, while three year old daughter Olivia was in another room. But in the morning the family discovered they had been burgled.

Two year old Toby, who weighs 10lbs and is 2ft long, is thought to have frightened off the raiders, who managed to escape with a laptop, iPad and First World War medal belonging to Kimberley’s great grandad. However, they left a load of valuables piled on the sofa, swag the intruders probably ditched when they heard Toby’s alarm call.

Kimberley, from Plymouth, Devon, said: “When Toby thumps the floor, it’s incredibly loud and it echoes around the house. He has done the job of a guard dog. We’re so proud of him and have rewarded him with a new play tunnel.”

I bet that was a big tunnel Kimberley!

Dory, High Karate Kicker Hero Rabbit

A diabetic man is crediting his giant pet rabbit with saving his life when he slipped into a coma.

Simon Steggall, 42, of Warboys in Cambridgeshire,UK, said Dory, a one-and-a-half stone rabbit, jumped on his chest and thumped furiously when he passed out while watching television.

Dory's odd behaviour caught the attention of Mr Steggall's wife, Victoria, 32, an ambulance driver. When her attempts to bring him round failed, she rang 999 for paramedics for help.

"I work for the ambulance service and I'm embarrassed that the rabbit spotted it before I did." Mrs Steggall said.

Mr Steggall said his wife thought he had simply nodded off. "When I told my specialist about what had happened he said he had heard of cats and dogs acting this way, but never a rabbit." he said proudly.

Mr Steggall continues, "When I have one of these turns I can't speak or move, but I can still hear and I heard Victoria's voice tell Dory to get down. Although she is a house rabbit, she's not allowed on the furniture. The rabbit came up on my lap and started tapping and digging at my chest and looking at my face. That caught Victoria's attention and she realised something was wrong."

The couple have only had Dory for three months, Mr Steggall, a diabetic since childhood, who has to inject insulin four times each day, said he does not get any warning when he's about to be unwell.

"One moment I am vertical and next minute I am waking up with a paramedic. It's like a flick of a switch."

I think The Steggalls will be keeping this hero rabbit close by in future!

Emergency Wonder Hero Rabbit

Michelle and Gerry Finn of Melbourne, Australia were less than a week away from completing a home remodel. Unfortunately, a smoke alarm had been removed while painting a back room in the home.

Luckily the Finn’s had a different kind of warning system: their pet bunny, “Rabbit”.

Gerry Finn heard Rabbit “furiously scratching” at the bedroom door. Finn was stunned to find that a fire was quickly blazing through the back of his home.

Six-month old Rabbit miraculously survived 45 minutes of heat and smoke inhalation before alerting his owners.

Patricia Mulcahy, president and co-chapter manager of SDHRS says, “Rabbits do bond with their humans so it makes sense that rabbits would consider their human families to be part of their ‘warren’, and want to warn them of life-threatening situations.  

So, next time you look at your rabbit, realize there is more than soulful eyes and cute, floppy ears. Mulcahy agrees: “Rabbits are far more intelligent than most people realize. They are capable of great affection and strong emotional bonds with their human caretakers.”

So, you just never know when hero rabbits might save you from a, hare-y situation. But if you want to increase your chances, you need to have bunnies in your house!

Be in the hero club and share your life with rabbits!

Super-Hero Rabbit Senses

So how do our clever little bunny heroes know that danger is in the air?

Our rabbit heroes have some pretty powerful super-powers...

A Hero Rabbit Nose that Knows

The synonymous twitch of a rabbit’s nose, developed for it's own survival, is now being utilized as an important factor in identifying possible victims buried under collapsed building rubble or under-ground disaster sights.

Rabbit Nose

Rabbits constantly sniff the air rather than just breathing it in. They have over fifty million receptor cells in their nose, compared to only six million in humans.

Rabbits, like dogs, have two types of scent detection cells in their nose. Olfactory sensory cells detect ordinary airborne odours, while a specialised group, the Jacobson Organ, pick up heavy moisture-borne molecules and pheromones. Moist air carries more scent, important when searching under buildings or underground.

When rabbits breathe in, their split top lip parts and moistens the air as it passes movable folds inside the nose. This enhances any scent and helps the rabbit discover more about the smell ahead.

Read this great story about how 'Sniffer Rabbits' saved the day...

Hero Rabbit-Radar

Just by one look of a rabbit you can see by their appearance they clearly indicate a keen sense of hearing.

They have their own built-in radar system!

Rabbit Ears

With the rabbit being a prey animal, their ears have developed an important role in the detection of movement. In many cases they are life savers.

Not only can they can pick up sounds from as far as two miles away, but they can also interpret these sounds and distinguish between them.

You can often see wild rabbits at the side of a busy road, not even flinching when a huge rumbling lorry rolls past, but the sound of a cracking twig in the hedge behind, and they're off!

Rabbits can hear much higher pitched sounds which include mechanical or electrical sounds we can’t hear. Acoustics help to overcome the any reduced visual abilities by allowing the rabbit to navigate without difficulty.

Sound waves bounce off objects, allowing the rabbit to recognize the arrangement of his surroundings. When alert, the ears move forward and backward, independently of each other so the slightest sound can be detected from very far away.

Hero Rabbit Bunny-Vision

But it's not just a rabbit's sense of smell and hearing that are being used to rescue people.

They have quite extraordinary abilities of sight too.

Rabbit Eye

Their large eyes are located on the sides and upper part of the head, enabling each eye to see more than one half of a circle, so together, they can see in every direction.

But it's at night and in the dark when a rabbit's eyesight is particularly exceptionally and very accurate. Perhaps it's all the carrots they eat!

Share Your Story...

There are so many untold stories of brave, clever hero rabbits out there that need to be told. If you have a hero rabbit or know of a brilliant inspiring tale of hero rabbits that saved the day, then please share it with us all.

Why Bark When You Have a rabbit?
You never know, by sharing your stories, you may inspire others to rescue rabbits. Others can find out for themselves, among many other great things, to appreciate the companionship and 'guard-dog' qualities that having rabbits in their lives will offer them!

Just share your hero rabbits story in the comment box below...

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