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La Tercera Parte

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30 Agosto 2004

     Now that I am almost six months old, my Duchess of Parsley and my Royal Provinder drove me down to Oklahoma State University Small Animal Clinic where I met the doctor who will be doing my surgery on Tuesday, 5 October 2004. Pal, the Duchess's service dog and El Capitan des los Protectores Reales, went along to help the Duchess not fall over and, more importantly, to guard me from unwanted attentions from the peasantry.
     Upon being taken into  the examining room I emerged with my usual dignity and grace, to meet my new doctor.
     My surgeon's name is Dr. Lickey. I thought that was a nice name, although, of course, I did not bestow any bunny kisses on her, having just met her. I just might though, next week. She is very, very nice, and knows a great deal about rabbit health issues.
      The only problem that I have had is an itchy patch between my shoulder blades. The doctor examined it very thoroughly, even applying a bit of clear tape to my skin and examining it under a microscope to be sure that I didn't have any mites. She couldn't actually find any, but applied a dose of Revolution just to be sure.   
      Dr. Lickey explained to the Duchess that our decision to go ahead with my spaying operation is a very good one. Dr. Lickey told us that 60 - 80% of female rabbits over the age of 6 get uterine cancer. She also told us that the average life span of house rabbits is 12 years. (I didn't bother to tell her that I plan to rule my kingdom for much longer than the "average" rabbit lives. I think she could tell.)
      Although it is not quite the thing for grown-up ladies to talk about their weight, since I am not quite 6 months old I am not quite grown up. (The monthly anniversary of my most auspicious birth will occur 2 days after my surgery.) Therefore, I am most pleased to share with you that my weight is 3.9 pounds. Dr. Lickey thinks that I am in fine health and the diagnosis line on her official report said "healthy bunny." I suppose that one's surgeon may be allowed to dispense with the more proper "healthy princess bunny!"
     The Duchess and the doctor had a long conversation about the best diet for me to be on. It got rather boring in places, but since it was about one of my favorite subjects I tried to pay attention. Dr. Lickey told the Duchess that my diet is very satisfactory, and is, in fact, exactly what modern veterinary science says is best for house rabbits (not for breeding rabbits though). Since I am not going to have any babies (which I do not regret - I strive to emulate the example set by Good Queen Bess in all things) I do not need to have the higher calcium and protein of alfalfa hay. In fact my Royal Kitchen Staff has been moving me, very slowly so as not to upset my delicate constitution, from my baby food (alfalfa pellets) to timothy pellets.
     My main concern about the Royal Diet was could I still have my salads. When the doctor approved them, I was quite relieved, of course, as my two salads are quite the highlight of my day. I eat everything that I like in about 10 minutes. After that my disdain for the leftovers (currently I do not care for endive at all), comes to the attention of the Duchess, who removes them from my presence lest they offend.
      Dr. Lickey provided the Duchess with a pamphlet, produced by the Zoological Education Network, that explains the modern position that my doctor takes on diets and other things. The Duchess, as is her way, thoroughly researched this organization to be sure that they are legitimate and know what they are talking about. She found out that they publish a peer-reviewed journal called "Exotic DVM Veterinary Magazine" and that they have an excellent reputation in the Veterinary Sciences. (I thought it was very nice of the noble Peers to take time from their schedules of balls, soirees, and evening salons, to look at this magazine, myself.)
     The Duchess and the doctor had one more topic to discuss: whether or not I need a friend. The consensus seems to be that what with my Royally Enriched Environment I do not actually need a friend. However, they agreed that I should be given the chance to have a few bunny dates with some eligible bachelors of sufficient station to be appropriate for me to consider them in the role of Royal Consort and to leave the decision, as it should be, to me. After all, unlike my American cousin wild rabbits, my species, which has been civilized (or domesticated as the human species mis-names it) more than 2,000 years, dwells in warrens of many rabbits. Therefore, I will give this matter its full weight of consideration.
      Here is a link to Exotic DVM. I will also command the Duchess to place a link to these knowledgeable physicians on my Favorite Links page.
Thus ends part the third of the Chronicles Of Princessa Querida Conejo.

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"Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen." 
- John Steinbeck 

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