We lost one of the week old kits today. And the worst part is that Phoebe keeps looking in her nesting box and then at me and then back in her nesting box and digging in the bedding of her cage like she knows one is missing. It just makes me feel so bad, because sure, you can say it’s just a rabbit, she can’t possibly know, but she does and she’s looking for it. She’s been such a good Mama and has done so well with her first litter and it just breaks my heart that she seems to be mourning the lost kit.
We found it dead outside the cage. All I can think is that maybe it had gotten out of the nesting box and when my son cleaned out the dirty hay it was in it and somehow fell onto the floor instead of the bin we throw the dirty hay in. And it even could have been alive up to that point, but then someone (my son, I think) stepped on it without realizing it. I just feel so bad for the poor wee thing, because that can’t have been a good way to die.
I don’t want to dwell on it. These things happen, life goes on, etc. But it hurts. Phoebe and I will turn our minds to the remaining kits and I will make sure this doesn’t happen again, by making sure all dirty hay is checked for kits and not just scooped out in a big bundle. Death is a part of raising animals, especially meat animals, but it’s different when it happens like this. It didn’t even have a chance at a life.