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July 12, 2011 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Bunny races: Jump high. Save yourself!

The weird summer tales continue. Bunny races and trials are saving some of the fuzzy guys from the pot. (Cooking pot that is – as this is a European tale, it’s best to clarify.)

A new sport from Scandinavia leap to Germany just two years ago: Bunny Olympics including a race course and hurdles, an event called “the bunny hop” for obvious reasons. No, this isn’t some drunken bar joke – it’s a serious sport. Watch the Today Show video of one competition. No dumb bunnies here. Some were judged not good enough for show breeding, and could have ended up as dinner. But wily and clever, they displayed their athleticism to someone and jumped to safety in a new sport.

Cuddlie-cute, even if too shy to compete on occasion, rabbits make good pets. Clean, box trainable, able to walk on a leash, they are quiet – but not silent.  We once had an Australian Rex that barked and growled at the dog or when some unwitting visitor tried to pick him up. Bunny, who had the softest fur and most beautiful markings ever, obviously subscribed to the “cuteness is a curse” philosophy. Quite self-confident and vocal he could quickly shred  your arms or legs with his displeasure. Possessed the defiant “you don’t own me” attitude you always see in teenage girls. (or maybe really just possessed) It was pretty obvious he was related to Bunnicula. We never really knew if his attitude came from being jolted by all those electrical wires he chewed through as a youngster. (They’re always cuter and innocent looking when tiny.) This one got us all trained in no time.  He became a free range atrium bunny and had no intention of going back to a cage or hutch, ever, thank you.  Come to think of it, his adopted brother, the school guinea pig reject got pretty cocky once outdoors, too. They often watched people TV through the windows and seemed to chuckle a great deal at the continuous stupid human tricks. No end of amusement – on both sides.

But bunny enthusiast in Sweden and Denmark have really gotten into the bunny sporting events for both adults and children. Here’s a great Danish website with videos of the 2009 and 2010 Danish Championships as well as a hutch of information about training, event class descriptions, and even how to build your own practice jumps. There are even events where the handlers jump in tandem with the bunnies. (Please, people, don’t get distracted while jumping and forget to watch carefully!) There are some videos of high jumping bunnies hopping over 30 inches. Leaping lizards, oops, that’s bunnies, 39 inches is the world record. No little trick of mere fluff there.

Now some will say, “Bunny sports events?  Seriously? Only through an alcohol induced haze”  Others will note where the sport is popular: where winters are long and cabin fever makes strange things occur. Cabin fever? Maybe. But then, maybe that’s why there might be a future for the sport around here.  This year’s extreme heat and drought are certainly forcing everyone to hold-up inside. (Do you even have to ask how crazy bored everyone is getting – and it’s only July!) So bunny sports? Stranger things have happened!

Meanwhile, jump bunnies. Jump high! Save yourselves!

Searching for Bunnicula,

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge


  1. kathryningrid / Nov 20 2011 11:09 pm

    I’m just going to take a wild leap here and assume your bunny shared some, ahem, bloodlines with the Killer Rabbit of Monty Python fame!


  2. pnwauthor / Nov 22 2011 2:37 am

    I intend on getting a pet rabbit. First I need to find a home that allows pets.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Nov 22 2011 3:28 am

      Bunnies are really sweet, but can be rather determined to have their way….and it’s true the are on a search and destroy mission for electrical cords. THey do live a long time. Our talked and had a limited vocabulary. Best wishes with your rabbit search. Thanks for joining the conversation



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