CHAPTER 63 – Meet Me By the Fence
A month had passed since Bentley came to live with Dad and Abigail. Dad wanted to give Bentley time to feel comfortable in his new home. And he wanted to get him fixed so he would be less aggressive with Abigail.
“Abigail, I know I should have taken you on a date and let you pick your potential friend,” said Dad, “But Bentley needed saving, so there wasn’t much choice. Would you like to meet him?” Abigail was excited. “Oh yes!” she thought.
Dad arranged a date by the kitchen door, where their two worlds met. Normally, a solid door separated their worlds. Dad arranged an ex-pen in the doorway so there were two wire walls with a small space between them. Both rabbits would be able to see and smell each other, but neither could reach through and bite the other—just in case.
He placed some Small Pet Select hay between the walls to encourage the bunnies to stay for a chew. Kind of like a coffee date when humans first meet. The date was set, and Dad just waited.
Sure enough, the ever curious Bentley heard the ex-pen rattling and came upstairs to investigate. He sniffed the pen and tugged on it. The metal fencing made a clanging sound. In the living room, Abigail’s ears perked up. “What’s that sound?” she wondered. She hopped over to the edge of her territory to see what was going on.
“Bentley, meet Abigail. Abigail, meet Bentley,” said Dad. Abigail stared at the white bunny on the other side of the fence, staring back at her. He was twice her size! Always the shy one, Abigail demurely approached the fence and introduced herself, “Hi, I’m Abigail,” twitching her nose.
Bentley pressed his nose against the wire fence. “I’m Bentley,” he replied. Abigail hopped around on her side of the fence, and slowly approached Bentley for a closer look. Bentley sniffed at her, and then lunged at the fence, as if to say, “This is MY territory! Stay away!” Abigail backed away, thinking, “YOUR territory? I was here first!”
“Easy there,” said Dad in a soothing voice, “There’s no need to fight,” as he stroked Bentley. For several days, they met by the fence for a chew. But each time was the same. Abigail approached in a friendly manner, and Bentley would lunge at her.
Finally, Abigail asked Bentley, “What is with you? Why do you always lunge at me?” Bentley explained, “I haven’t exactly had the smoothest life. My first humans kept me in a wire cage, which made my feet hurt. They got tired of me and dumped me in a park, where I had to fend for myself. You’re a brown bunny, so it’s easier for you to hide. I’m bright white. I stand out like a big target! I was scared! I got chased by a dog who bit my ear. Luckily, I got away. Then some nice woman picked me up and took me to the shelter, where I was stuck in a cage again. But luckily, Dad came and rescued me, and invited me to stay here. I like this place. I like Dad, so I don’t want to lose this. That’s why I’m so defensive.”
Little Abigail sighed, “Don’t worry, you won’t lose your new home. I’ve been here for a couple of years. Dad is a man of his word. When Dad makes a commitment, he sticks with it. But we can share if you want.” Abigail hopped back to the living room. “This is not going to be easy,” she thought.