Mars & Jupiter

September 1995 - February 2003

Our dwarf bunnies, Mars & Jupiter, sitting together in the garden

Our first pair of bunnies

My first rabbit, Thumper sitting on my dad

My first bunny, Thumper

Derek says he was inspired to get get bunnies because they reminded him of gerbils, just bigger! “It’s the way they hop about” he says. After six years of looking after bunnies he has learnt what complex little characters they are.

I’d had a rabbit ‘Thumper’ when I was little, and I’d told Derek many stories about the trouble he got into. While my Thumper lived in the garden and had a large run he regularly came into the house to eat the furniture.

Our bunnies, Mars and Jupiter, are Netherland Dwarfs, a little easier to handle than a full size bunny. We had wanted a pair of bunnies and thought dwarf rabbits would be more manageable, my Thumper had grown into a very large bunny and the thought of two of him was a bit much!

Mars & Jupiter as babies

Mars & Jupiter as babies

Mars & Jupiter's indoor bunny home

Mars & Jupiter's indoor bunny home

It was late September and very chilly when Mars & Jupiter came to live with us. They were so tiny we couldn’t bring ourselves to leave them in the garden that night, so their large hutch was brought inside. The next day it was a trip down the pet shop to get them an indoor home, they now come in every night. Mars & Jupiter share a bedroom with our two house bunnies, Flower & Thumper, and our guinea pigs, Coco & Clipper.

As babies Mars & Jupiter were very overwhelmed by the outside world. It took them several days to venture off the patio onto that funny green stuff we call grass. They would run backwards and forwards along the edge of the patio, sniff the grass and then run away from it. Mars was the first to take the plunge soon followed by Jupiter. It’s hard to believe now, how nervous of the grass they were.

During the day our little bunnies play outside, they have the run of the garden. I am a stay at home bunny mum, so I am there to keep and eye on them. Derek made our bunny run, as we couldn’t find anything suitable in the pet shops. A bunny door was very important to us, so Mars and Jupiter are free to run round the garden. We like to put our bunnies back in their run when we we aren’t around to keep an eye on them. Mars and Jupiter are both very good at going back into their run when we need them to. We just have to clap and off they go. Sometimes, usually if they have been sleeping behind a bush and just woken up they can be a bit naughty, but it doesn’t happen very often.

Mars & Jupiter's outdoor run

Mars & Jupiter's outdoor run

When the cold weather comes Mars and Jupiter like to spend most of their time in the house, only going outside for a couple of hours, just enough to stretch their little legs. Some days when it very cold and wet Mars and Jupiter get to play in the house. They are not litter trained like our house bunnies, Flower and Thumper, and this results in a sea of bunny pellets littering the carpet. They don’t mind not going out especially if it has been cold for a few days, in fact sometimes when we open their cage to get them out they run off and disappear under our bed.

We're having a snow day

It’s a chilly start to December as far as the bunnies are concerned. Though we’ve not had much snow fall, nor are expecting much more, Mars and Jupiter are not impressed. They have never been ones for the cold, much preferring to come in early than be out in the cold and today was no exception.

After a brief explore of the snow covered garden, our boys soon made it clear they wanted in. Sitting near us on the patio they both made a big show of pulling snow out from between their toes and looking as unimpressed as possible. Derek and I had no choice but to obey our little bunnies and we brought them in where it was warm and dry.

Our bunnies not impressed with the cold, and then safe and warm inside

Our precious little bunny Jupiter has died

Our dwarf bunny Jupiter sitting on the lawnJupiter needed an operation to have his back teeth clipped and unfortunately he did not recover from the anaesthetic. Jupiter had been having problems with his back teeth for some time and we regularly took him to the vet to get them checked. The call from the vet came as a big shock, we were expecting them to call and say he was fine and we could bring him home.

Jupiter had been with us for just over 6 1/2 years and we were in no way prepared to loose him. While we love our other 3 bunnies dearly, things just won’t be the same without Jupiter, he was such a special little bunny. It is going to be hard getting used to his absence, and we will take extra special care of his brother Mars as we don’t know how the loss of Jupiter will affect him. Jupiter was an exceptional little friend we will miss him and all his naughty little habits very much.

An update on our bunny Mars

Our little bunny, Mars enjoying life as a house bunnyAfter the sudden loss of his brother Mars was very lonely for several weeks, he would just sit squashed up against the back of the house. We both spent a lot of time with him in the garden, but of course we weren’t Jupiter. Mars used to spend most of his time following Jupiter around the garden, they spent very little time apart and they would always disappear behind the plants together for a nap. It took a few weeks before Mars settled down and started enjoying being out in the garden again, though we did begin to notice he was getting tired, he just won’t go for naps like he did with Jupiter.

We have adjusted the amount of time Mars spends outside now, even on nice sunny days he likes to come back inside after a few hours. His cage in the house is very large and of course we keep it very clean for him. So if Mars wants to spend most of his time indoors, who are we to stop him. He is seven years old now and we love him so much we are happy to do what ever he wants. Our sweet little Mars is still going strong and is looking very handsome for all the extra bunny beauty sleep he is getting.

Our sweet bunny, Mars has died

Our dwarf bunny MarsHe had been having some breathing problems for a while and seen the vet and tried some medicine, but nothing had worked. Mars was still a chirpy little chap enjoying being a house bunny, he wasn’t going to let anything stop him having fun. Sadly this evening he took a sudden turn for the worse, we rushed him to the vet, but it was little Mars’s time to go and he died in Derek’s arms.

Compared to his brother, Jupiter, Mars was a little crazy and unpredictable. He’d often growl at us and give a little lunge for no reason, but that was just part of his charm. Together the boys were complete opposites, but that’s what made them so special. They brought our garden to life with their funny bunny antics, helping with the gardening and those beautiful bunny faces.

It is very hard to say goodbye to Mars, after seven wonderful years of his troublesome ways. Mars and Jupiter were Derek’s first ever bunnies and now they are both gone, it’s the end of an era. Both bright eyed, cheeky little chaps will live forever in our hearts and on this web page.

Our dwarf bunnies, Mars and Jupiter relaxing in the garden