On occasion, I hear the rabbit hissing insults at me as I do the laundry.
“I don’t like you,” he says.
“I don’t like you either,” I reply.
“You like me. Admit it. You think I like you, but I don’t.”
“I never thought we shared mutual affection, rabbit. And by the way, I need to clean your cage tomorrow.”
“That’s why I don’t like you.”
Once, when I walked back there to do the laundry, he was standing with one paw on the poop pile holding it just so. Yes, truly.
“Don’t move a pellet,” he said. “It’s perfect.”
I ignored him, bent over the dryer to locate a stray sock and I heard him again.
“I don’t like you.”
The dog told me our rabbit uses foul language. I believe it. This explains why the dog won’t even look at the rabbit anymore, but the rabbit brightens up each time the dog and I pass, glances innocently at me, and then when my back is turned whispers negative thoughts to the dog. Now, I do recall a certain incident where my dog clamped her teeth around the head of the rabbit to carry him. This could explain a bit of the animosity, but my dog is not clever enough with her feet to have done otherwise. The rabbit, on the other hand, even thumb-less, can hurl a pellet with fierce top spin through the wires of his cage, file his nails, and apparently, neatly stack his pellets into a pyramid.
This morning, watching the rabbit scoot around his cedar chip palace, I asked him if it was time to refill his water bottle.
“Yes, but with electrolytes this time.” I don’t know how he tells the difference. I pouted for a moment.
“Rabbit,” I said, “I don’t like you. I don’t like you at all.”