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Letters from the Emperor: Trouble with Tribbles, Real Life 


Well, my dear subjects, it has been a while since you heard directly from me, your royal feline emperor. I have missed writing letters to you and sharing my wonderous life one-on-one.

Summer was relatively smooth sailing in my kingdom this year, aside from the usual hiccups with Dog. I found that Dog’s belongings are actually of much use to me, something I can benefit from at his expense: his beds, his pillows, sometimes even his toys. Although the beginning of my relationship with Dog was tenuous, he has turned out to be an excellently naive and unquestioning subject. As this summer closed, I took great pride in the knowledge that I, as emperor, had fully survived the coup attempted by Dog last year. My rule and my power seemed to be going ever upwards, with humans and Dog alike deferring to me.

But then another creature came, another invader of sorts. Something unlike anything I had ever encountered before–something that vaguely reminded me of a rat, but not enough to be certain. Small, black and white, with kicking, thumping feet and weird little teeth constantly gnashing. A pet rabbit, the humans said. Abandoned at the park and needing medicine and food.

Dog was ushered out of the room, but I in all my regal demure-ness, was allowed to remain to supervise and observe. Dog whined and moaned outside the closed door, and I smiled smugly to myself. The humans did a similar routine as they did with Dog so many months ago when he was small: blankets, towels, food and water, and many checks between the two of them. Then they began making many phone calls. I was relieved to know this stranger was not going to stay forever the way Dog did.

So far, Rabbit has kept to himself, content to stay in the room the humans cordoned off for him. He does not seem to be interested in taking power, gaining territory, or staging a coup. In fact, he does not seem to be interested in much at all except disgusting green food. When he had first arrived, I had hoped that perhaps his rations would be interesting, something to supplement my dog food tithes with. Sadly, the humans keep giving him the most unpalatable things, vegetables and the like. Dog’s food is better.

Dog is more tormented by this visitor than I am. Once I saw what little of a threat Rabbit was, I was completely at ease, and have since forgotten about his existence most of the time. Dog, on the other hand, has been desperate to get into the room. He says he just wants to say hi, but for some reason — perhaps the wildness in his eyes, or his drool — this seems rather implausible. Whatever his true intentions are, it’s no concern of mine. Rabbit doesn’t bother me and that is all that matters. The humans have assured me that Rabbit will get a family of his own soon. In the meantime, he will stay with us in his own private hotel — out of sight, out of mind for me, and well out of reach of Dog.

Until my next missive,

Emperor Julius

photo by Clarabelle Fields

Note from Julius’ human: Before finding this abandoned rabbit, I didn’t know how common it was for people to dump rabbits in parks. Unfortunately, this is extremely common, especially in the months after Easter. Many people buy rabbits on a whim around that time of year without realizing the commitment required to properly care for this kind of animal. There are so many abandoned rabbits in the US that they are often euthanized immediately if they are surrendered to a shelter because there is simply not enough space to house them all. Because of this, we are holding onto this little guy until we can find him a new home. Please take careful consideration before adopting a rabbit (and any pet, for that matter). The ones abandoned outside often die very unpleasant deaths.

Further resources:

Abandoned rabbits

Things you should know before getting a rabbit

Is a rabbit the right pet for you?

Rabbit rescues overloaded

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