On the 12th of January 2012, I held my beloved bunny, Molly, as he passed from life to death. He had been at VCA Wilshire Animal Hospital for four days because of a serious infection. Given he was ten years-old (very aged for a bunny rabbit), Molly’s prognosis was grim from the get-go.
The death of my beloved bunny was one of the most profound experiences of my life. In the preceding days, I was not only distressed at the poor state of my Boo Boos; I also agonized over whether to euthanize him. Who am I to make decisions about life, death, and euthanasia? It was a responsibility I couldn’t bear to shoulder.
I was lucky: I had the caring and strong guidance of two amazing veterinarians, Dr. Edstrom and Dr. Jack at VCA Wilshire. They updated me daily via phone and during visits, imparting gentle and frank news. Both Dr. Edstrom and Dr. Jack own bunnies, in addition to several other pets. Their love for animals was reassuring, and their empathy for me and the Boo Boos is something I will remember for the rest of my life. When I tearfully told Dr. Jack that I was incapable of making a decision about Molly, she replied she and Dr. Edstrom would make the decision for me. Effectively, these doctors took the heavy burden from me and shouldered it themselves. When it became clear Molly was suffering and it was time, Dr. Edstrom banished my lingering self-blame and doubts by letting me know she is extremely conservative about putting sick animals to sleep. Molly, she told me with great care, had reached that point.
On the evening of the 12th, I spent an hour with Molly in a private room. I played music, sang aloud, and pet my bunny on his nose and ears (his favorite). He reciprocated with little bunny licks that sent a few more cracks through my heart. My amazing friend, Danielle, joined us for the second and last hour of Molly’s life. As I told Danielle, her tears allowed me to be calm for the first time since the whole ordeal.
Eventually, Dr. Edstrom — who had been stopping by the room every few minutes — gave my old boy a sedative. This made him gnash his teeth in a peculiar way, even after he was asleep. Then, while I held my precious Boo Boos in my arms, he was intravenously administered whatever substance is used to stop his heart. I hardly remember that moment. Boo Boos died within seconds. A minute later, the area around his mouth, once pink and warm, turned blue and cold.
It has been a very rough time. I wake up in the middle of the night, thinking I hear the bunny moving about. I gravitate to the produce section at the grocery store, forgetting that it’s no longer necessary to stock up on Molly’s favorite greens. I see bananas, remembering how Boo Boos was bananas for bananas. I miss his smell, his bunny licks, and our cuddle sessions in bed — bunny dozing while I read a book.
Molly a.k.a., The Boo Boos was my buddy for a decade. He was so good to me.
Thank you to my family and friends for their support and condolences. I’m so fortunate to have such great people in my life. Most of all, I’m grateful for the professional care Molly received at VCA Wilshire Animal Hospital. Dr. Edstrom and Dr. Jack are my heroines; they are brilliant, compassionate, and beautiful. I was even graced by a kiss on the cheek by Dr. Edstrom! Finally, thank you to Ne Ne for braving traffic to join me and Molly in our last moments together.
Rest in peace and bananas, my lovely Boo Boos.