Tuesday, November 25, 2008

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck...

When we were driving across country last year Mario developed a little problem.  He started chewing on walls.  Rabbits are funny in that they can ignore something for YEARS and then all of a sudden decide it's a great chewing toy.  Once this happens they don't stop.  Unfortunately for us this habit carried over once we settled in our current apartment.  Thus far a loud "Hey!" or "No!" or hand clap will stop Mario dead in his tracks when he starts to do something he knows he shouldn't.

As a rabbit owner I know it's my responsibility to make sure everything Mario can touch is chew-friendly, but there are some things you just can't easily bunny-proof.  I only get a little annoyed at Mario because I know he knows he's not supposed to be chewing on the walls.  That's the part of it that drives me nutty.  I can say this with certainty because when I had two buns and one of them was misbehaving only the guilty rabbit would jump around at attention when reprimanded while the innocent bun went on with whatever they were doing.

That's right:  Bun A has jumped up onto the sofa, Bun B is lounging by the fridge.  I clap my hands and say, "Hey!"  Lo and behold Bun A jumps quickly off the sofa and gives me a "I wasn't doing anything!" look.  Bun B continues lounging.  They are smart little cuties.

I'd like to submit my first piece of evidence against Mario:



And another:



When I start to hear the tell-tale chewing and give him an aural cue to stop, he quickly jumps 180 degrees around and looks like this:

Pretty innocent looking, huh?

But after you stop looking at him the chewing sound eventually starts up again!  I have to start taking better measures to break him of the habit.  There are a few isolated areas where he's gotten the paint off of the wood, but I'd like to minimize the damage as much as possible.

Beginning tonight as soon as he starts chewing he's going to get marched to a time-out in his pet carrier.  Last night I put him back in his cage when he started, but I hate to associate his cage with bad feelings.  So carrier it is!  I will let you know if this little project works or not.

Hey!  Stop!  That's private!  Who said you could take a picture of that?!  (The rabbit equivalent of hand in front of camera lens)


I apologize that the running news has been pretty minimal lately.  I went on a 2 mile run yesterday.  Today my right shin feels the teensiest bit tender so I took the day off.  I think all of the steep, STEEP downhill running on Sunday caused some strain.  I'm hoping to do 5 miles Thursday, an easy 2-3 miles Friday, then back to the group run Sunday.  I was going to make this my first 5 day running week since the shin catastrophe of August, but will hold off at 4 days of running for at least another week.

10 comments:

bunnygirl said...

Oh, Mario. Cadbury well understands how once a bun gets a notion, there's just no stopping!

losangelesdaze said...

I love the innocent bunny look!

Mica said...

Pets are so funny that way. Maybe Mario is anxious about the holidays!

If you don't post before Thanksgiving, I hope you and Mario have a great one!

ShirleyPerly said...

I really had no idea bunnies could be trained not to do this or that. I hope that paint has no lead in it. Are there bunny chew toys?

furrybutts said...

I know what you mean about bunnies not stopping once they get a little idea in their head! Buttons is exactly the same, she's the most hard headed of the bunch.

There are some pet-friendly nasty tasting liquid which people use to spray on furniture to stop their pets from chewing on it. I'm not sure if it would work with a determined bunny, though :D

Let us know how time-out in the carrier works! I tried it with Buttons once, but she was so darn sad and cute inside that I just couldn't take it.. I let her out within the minute hee hee

Erin said...

Oh yes, those pictures look very familiar. I should post my bad bunny evidence as well!

d. moll, l.ac. said...

Ah, yes, the Spots have plenty of sicks and I even made them a box with sticks stuck in in so they were stable like a wall, but there is still door and wall gnawing. I have covered some favorite places with duct tape. strong scents like Tea Tree can repel buns as well. Of course I worry about toxics in the paint, but plenty of Cilantro should take care heavy metals...

Runner Leana said...

My dog had a thing for chewing door frames when I first got him. Luckily it didn't last too long, but let's just say that I didn't get my damage deposit back at that apartment complex...

Sorry to hear your shin feels a bit tender. Hopefully the day off will do it some good. Have a terrific Thanksgiving!

FrecklesandDeb said...

Love the innocent look! When we stop Freckles from doing something we don't want her to do, we don't get an innocent look -- we get the "How-dare-you glare."

The Bunns said...

Sticky paws is a sort of tape we used for the cat ... until the cat decided to leave!

However ... the evidence against Mario is weak, very weak. You are going to need DNA we suspect. For now, Case closed. INNOCENT. THUMP.