Saturday, January 21, 2017

Stow Away in my Tack Room

I was saying in Wednesday's post that I was happy to find my tack room clean after a wild rabbit hopped out of it.  It had cleaned up all the food pellets I spilled on the floor and saved me from having to sweep.  This last hay bale I broke open had ridiculously thick and heavy flakes.  It was difficult to break them in half, so I just gave each horse one and opted not to give them their grain, because that would be way too much food.  It's been raining a lot, so I'd just assume not hassle with the grain in a downpour.

This morning I broke open a new bale, and this one has much smaller slices.  I unlocked the tack room to get the horses some grain, and while I was opening it, something told me that someone was inside.  One of my biggest fears is that I'm going to open up my horse trailer or tack room some day and find a crazy person sleeping inside.  We do get quite a few homeless people passing through, and have had police manhunts in our area as well.  Even though we have a beautiful view and live in a resort-like atmosphere, the reality is that this is not a very safe, clean, crime-free area.

I opened the door slowly and immediately saw that all three of my feed buckets were tipped on their sides and scattered on the floor.  Then I saw pee stains... everywhere.  Dang!  There must have been another rabbit hiding inside when I locked up on Wednesday night.  It would have had plenty of food, but no water.

I suspect that something psychic was going on with me, because I did two things I normally don't do in the morning.  I fed the horses before the dogs, and I wore my headlight even though the sky was lighting up.  Without the headlight, I would not have been able to see in dark corners to search for the rabbit.  I found it cowering behind some buckets.  It obviously was weak, because it would wait until I touched it before moving.  I was trying to herd it toward the open door, but right when it reached freedom, it kept bolting back into the tack room.  It was as if it was saying, "I've been a kid locked in a candy store for the past two days and three nights, and I'm not ever leaving this place."

I lined up a barrier of rectangular feed bins to direct it out the door, and it still found a small slot to squeeze through.  So, I placed buckets in front of all the gaps, and tried again.  I got it in a corner, and it was trying to jump over the barriers, so I tried picking it up with my gloved hands, but I was too gentle.  I didn't want to squash its tiny bones, so it slipped right out of my grasp and made a beeline for the gap by the door.  But the gap wasn't wide enough and it got stuck.  It was skittering through this hole, finally trying to get out the door, but its butt was stuck.  I was about to pull the barrier away when it broke free and did go outside into the rain where it could have all the water it desired.

Now I've got a huge mess to clean up in the tack room.  There is rabbit poop and pee everywhere.  I'm not kidding when I say that my entire life revolves around cleaning up animal waste.


Grey Horse Matters said...

Maybe now that it's released back to where it belongs the bunny won't come back to the candy store.

Camryn said...

Glad you'd been prepared for the situation. That is a little more than coincidence isn't it. Poor bunny!

TeresaA said...

Poor bunny! I'm glad that you rescued him (or her)!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

A few days later I noticed a pee spot under the saddle rack and thought I'd better check the condition of the saddles since the rabbit seemed to have spent a lot of time there. Sure enough, it chewed the nylon latigo to Rock's saddle. The leather stirrups appear to be intact, at least.