I had to make one of the hardest decisions of my life yesterday. On Friday night, my Dad put one of my bunnies in a cage on the front yard. It was this make-shift cage that was pretty big and he made it so that my bunnies could have more space to run around while still being contained. When Sniffles was in there, a dog came walking past with it’s owner. I don’t know how big the dog was, but it was enough to scare Sniffles a lot. I thought this was really weird though since Sniffles used to be my sister’s bunny and my sister had a dog for quite a while before we took Sniffles from her. Anyways, Sniffles got really scared and ran around the cage at top speed several times. He then hit the fence so hard that he popped his eye out of the socket and punctured it. My Dad was afraid to tell us about it and didn’t tell us until about 3 hours after it had happened (we were away when it happened and didn’t get home until about 2 hours after it happened). Sniffles’ eye looked so painful, but other than that, he seemed pretty normal. He wasn’t completely his lively old self, but he was still jumping around a bit. We tried to keep his eye lubricated with polysporin drops, but it didn’t seem to help. His eye had almost completely dried out by the time we were able to take him to a vet the next morning. When we got there, the vet said we basically had 3 options: 1) She could try to put the eye back in, sew his eyelid shut, and then see what happened over the next few months (she did not recommend that we do this though as the eye was very infected and the infection would probably just spread to his brain); 2) she could do surgery to remove the eye, but Sniffles probably wouldn’t survive because she would have to give him a lot of anesthetic in order to put him out enough that he wouldn’t feel the pain; and 3) she could just put him to sleep and stop the pain for him; Tyler and I deliberated for as long as we had and it was the hardest thing that I’ve ever had to do in my entire life. This rabbit had become like a child to me. I know that a lot of people are thinking that he was “just a rabbit” – even my own mother verbalized this to me afterwards. It literally was tearing me up inside. The vet told us that he was probably very stressed and in a lot of pain, but that rabbits don’t typically externalize their feelings. When I walked in the room though, he kind of came over to me and smelled me. I thought that maybe he would be okay. But then I held him… Sniffles was always an overactive bunny. He would climb all over me and the furniture and would chew on my sweater strings and even on my sweaters. But when I held him yesterday, he just sat there. And that’s when I knew how much stress and pain he was in. Tyler and I eventually made the decision to just have the vet put him to sleep. She told us afterwards that she thought we made the best decision, but that doesn’t really help me right now. My Mom and Tyler’s Mom were there with us and I felt like my Mom was pressuring me to just make the decision to put him to sleep. At one point, I even said that I wished that it hadn’t been my decision to make and my Mom asked me if I wanted her to make it for me. I knew that she would automatically say that he should just be put to sleep though. I loved Sniffles so much. It feels like I’ve lost a child and I keep asking myself if I made the right decision. I now feel like I did not. I feel like we should have tried the surgery and seen what happened. If he had passed away under the anesthetic, then at least we had given it a chance, right? I feel absolutely horrible. Who am I to decide if a creature lives or dies? I did not want that responsibility, but I couldn’t put it on Tyler. I was the one who agreed to take Sniffles from my sister when she said that she couldn’t take care of him anymore. I miss him so much. I got to hold him yesterday just after he died and I think that was the worst part. He was still warm and so soft. It was like he was just asleep. We buried him in my parents backyard last night and I’ll never forget how he felt. He was so stiff and so cold. Like he wasn’t my bunny anymore. I feel like I absolutely made the wrong decision. I let the pressure get to me and I chose the wrong one. I would give anything to have Sniffles back now. I loved him so much. I let myself be pressured by my Mom. She would never have understood paying $600-$750 for a surgery on a bunny and I knew that Tyler and I didn’t really have that kind of money to pay for it right now. I would give anything to go back to that moment though and tell them to just do it. I feel like my heart has been broken into a million pieces. I want him back so much. I can’t believe that I made the decision to kill another creature. I feel like I never want to get any pets again because I never want to have to endure the pain or stress of having to make that decision again. Now I’m also wondering what we would have done if it had happened to our other bunny Darwin. I feel like we would have said to do the surgery without question. What does that mean then? Why did I make this decision for Sniffles? I would give ANYTHING in the entire world to go back right now. I couldn’t sleep last night. I couldn’t think. All I could do was lay there and cry. I feel like a monster. And no one understands me here. Everyone just keeps giving me looks like “Oh my God… It was a RABBIT for crying out loud. You’re an idiot if you’re going to pay $750 for a surgery that might not even work.” But what if it had worked? What if I were going to pick him up right now? Oh God… The what-ifs are killing me right now. What if Tyler and I just had not gone out on Friday night? We would have been here to take him to the vet right away. What if we hadn’t brought him home this weekend? What if we had said to do the surgery? Would he have survived? Or would I still be sitting here crying? At least if we had tried the surgery, it wouldn’t be on my conscience. I feel horrible. Like I played God or something. This has been the worst weekend of my life and now I have to live with the repercussions. I don’t know what to do with myself….
Rest in Peace Sniffles… I love you so much buddy. I miss you!!!!! I love you!
November 20, 2007 – May 1, 2010