I have owned or handled every “scary” animal I can think of. Toxic moniter lizards, tarantulas, huge snakes, scorpions… Even cleaned a tank full of pirhannas with my bare hands. My neighbor’s dogs is a MASSIVE pitbull mix and the first time we met he was loose and charged me barking like a crazy beast. 100lbs of muscle and power with teeth an inch long coming straight towards me and I stared him down like an alpha. Next thing I knew he was a shy meek sweetheart, turned out he’d slipped his tie-out and ran off. He was an abused rescue, striking first out of sheer terror and not being able to back it up. Not once was I scared. Nervous, yes. But not back-away-don’t-touch scared.
These rabbits on the other hand have been kicking my ass. The babies do not like when I do things like weigh them or put them back in their cages. They kick and claw like nobody’s business. As a result I have a huge number of scratches littering my arms, hands but mostly my wrists. It happens to be that my wrists are a convenient target for their hind feet as I lift them, regardless of how I do so. I now have a large number of VERY deep scratches on my wrists. People stare at them. They ask if I’m alright. I have to assure them; No really, I’m NOT suicidal or severely depressed… I just own rabbits. Most people are skeptical.
They just don’t know any better. I have started making Greg do it. He’s better at it than I am.
Maybe I will get some leather armguards.
Completely, completely agree. My hubby says it looks like I put my arms in a blender. I went to the Doctor the other day, he was doing a check over, took hold of my arm, and then looked up at me. On the bright side, it ended in an interesting conversation about raising rabbits. A few things that have helped me: 1) Revised the hutches to be top-opening. I find being able to get them from above means I have waaay better control. 2) With the young ones, I wrap one hand around their back end, support the front as I pick them up and rest them against my chest. I continue this technique as they get bigger, so far they seem to understand I’m just picking them up – and I haven’t gotten kicked yet doing this. (I did do this with my senior buck too, and it actually went well. The does and I have…trust issues. Both ways.) 3) One of the judges at the show had the ankle part of socks cut off and put around his wrist. I thought that was pretty freaking genius. (It won’t help as much as leather, but it must work fairly well if a guy who works with rabbits all the time does it?)
Love the illustrations again, just too cool!
Oh man, I am glad I don’t see doctors very often. I go to a clinic that treats a lot of troubled kids and they would distinctly take it the wrong way.
My rabbits start kicking before I can ever get a hand under them, and keep kicking when I have it there. It’s just this batch of kits that does this. I have given up – most are going to be processed in just two days time. The remaining two (one to keep and one for sale) will go into a cage that will make them easier to handle… Because they will escape less. 😛
I’m glad you like the pictures!
Now you have me worried about getting rabbits. Like you most animals don’t bug me. When I read the title of your post I thought immediately of Monty Python. Now, “I’ve soiled my armour because of you.” (British accent)
Well, I have sincerely ben injured by more rabbits than almost any other animal, although I think that may be because I am always handling them. Ferrets make a pretty good effort to destroy hands as well and if I worked with ferrets I’d wear gloves.
Normally it’s not too bad. I exaggerate a little because most days I can get by without anything even handling the kits and it’s easy. But this particular group of kits have recently put three very long, deep, bleeding cuts into my wrists and they hurt (and itch) like mad.
Unfortunately I don’t think you’ll avoid the scratches entirely. Even sweet bunnies kick. So I suggest doing what I do; just keep a bottle of peroxide handy and man up. I’m sure you’ll be fine. :3 And if not there’s always a holy hand grenade… And by that I mean butcher block. (I know that’s where MINE are going soon!)
Bring out the Holy Book of Armaments. Sounds good, thanks.
Ok, I fully understand your situation. I too have experienced scratches. So most of the time I wear long sleeves, grab hold the ears keeping the rabbit down then reach and grab hind feet with other hand lift and pull from cage then keep them close to body, walla less scratches. Loved your post.
See – it’s the part inbetween the grabbing the rabbit and the close to the body that they get me. 😛 I have tried picking them up in several different ways to no avail. These particular bunnies enjoy thrashing about quite a bit. It’s no matter, though… Soon they will be dinner. :3
True on my part too, I processed 2 yesterday putting in freezer for now. With 2 males and 2 females mating.
My right arm is a mass of scratches and my left wrists, from the two days I didn’t wear long-sleeves. Even with long-sleeves, it doesn’t stop the buggers from scratching the backs of my hands. There’s only a couple that do it, and I keep reminding myself how good they will taste.
Yeah, that’s kind of where I am too… It’s my left wrist and my right arm. We’re keeping the biggest and calmest of this lot just because she has good parents, selling the next calmest and eating the rest.