Johnny found and/or killed two little rabbits in the past few days. It’s probably my fault for having given him those toys which he promptly killed by biting off the squeaker hidden in the tail.  Before he dismantled the noise box, he chewed the paws and nose off his “totally indestructible” toys.

The baby rabbits were part of a litter of rabbits unhoused by Garland’s fence building crew which removed 50 cubic yards of fence tangled in Japanese Honeysuckle, Virginia Creeper, and English Ivy several feet thick, from his back yard.

We were happy to see the fence restored, but felt a twinge of sadness at the demise of all that wild life.  What will the local Red-Tailed Hawks and Coyotes eat for breakfast? Such is life in the Nation’s Capital where nature lives by tooth and claw. 

Before Johnny would drop the dead babies which he mercifully had not had time to chew, I coerced, cajoled, and yelled at him, and he growled menacingly at me.  I might be 40 times bigger, but he’s 100 times bolder.  When I got the broom after him, he finally let his victims go peacefully. For a while, I gazed at their little dead bodies and wondered at the sadness of life, where something is animated in one second and devoid of life the next. Such tiny rabbit ears.  Jesus said, God hears the least sparrow fall, and I suppose that counts for little rabbits, barely a month old.

I had no idea my darling dog was so vicious.  Goodness me, he sleeps next to my bed at night and weighs 12 pounds.  He can get on my bed but could never get his little jaw around my fat neck should he decide I am fair game. Anyway, he prefers sleeping in his baby crate, and I think he loves me.


This morning, Sweetpea my little fire-tailed Conure began making strange gurgling sounds.  I thought she must be dying. Lately she has taken to ripping up the newspaper on the bottom of her cage every night.  I feared she might have incidentally ingested a few lines of type, however, I know modern newspaper ink is relatively harmless, so I my second thought was, “perhaps she has found a new way to get my attention.” 

“Grab a banana,” I told David who stood anxiously waiting behind me.  “Now cut a piece off the end and act as if you are going to eat it.”  All of a sudden we had a miraculous cure.  Bananas do it every time.         

Sometimes, my critters are pretty foxy.


All things bright and beautiful,  All creatures great and small,

10 thoughts on “Ethology?

  1. Sorry about the baby bunnies, but many locales complain of an over-abundance of them, much as other places are over-run by those darling deer.

    Enjoyed hearing about the psych games your bird plays — had no idea they did such things.


  2. I thought that everybody would find this one amusing as did Alice. No cooking. Just put it in the microwave as it comes from the stalk, turn on high, and he says leave for 8 minutes an ear. I thought that a little long as I like semi crunchy corn.


    • So far, Johnny has not harmed any of my birds, all of whom are flighted. They can lift off and get away from him should the need arise. I only let a bird out under very close supervision and then one at a time. Those photos of Sweetpea are from before I had Johnny. She almost never comes out her cage these days. That’s why she pulls some of the antics she does to get my attention.


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