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Through Abigail’s Eyes: “My Space”


The twig ball came rolling towards Abigail. Even though it was bigger than her head, she grabbed it with her teeth, and with all her might, flung it back towards Dad. Dad grabbed the ball and tossed it back at Abigail. Abigail liked playing this game. It usually went on for five or six times and then she’d get a Healthy Snacker as a reward.  

Just then, the ball sailed past Abigail and landed against the window by her home base. Dad reached over to grab the ball, but Abigail lunged at him and grunted, “Stay out of my space!” Dad pulled back. “What?” he asked. Abigail thought, “Doesn’t he know? This is MY space!” 

Although Abigail considered the entire living room her territory, she understood it was shared space with Dad. But there was a space along the window which she reserved only for herself. It was her safe zone. She had marked it with little poop signs, which, to a rabbit, said, “Abigail’s space. Keep out!” Any rabbit would know that, but humans seemed to think that stray poops were the result of poor bathroom habits, rather than signage. Abigail thought, “He must not read rabbit signs. How can I explain it to him?”

Abigail looked around. Running along the wall was a long black “root”. Dad had said something about “covering the cords” with it when he placed it there. Using her teeth, Abigail moved the root about six inches away from the wall, all the way along the window. “I’ll draw a line that he can see!” she thought. When she was done, she looked up at him, and with her eyes, said, “this is my space!” Dad watched her and smiled, “OK, I get it now. Don’t cross that line!” Just like humans, every rabbit likes to have their own personal space – a place where they can go to be alone and feel safe, and not be messed with. Abigail knew her Dad was smart enough to figure it out – and respect it. 

And he did.

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