Ash Bradley Barlow is a 2 year old black and white dwarf bunny who needs your help.
Life was not always kind to Ash.
Just before Christmas 2019, Ash was abandoned on the Pat Bay Highway. A kind-hearted young hitchhiker tucked the freezing bunny inside his jacket and trudged up the long steep driveway in the snow to drop him off at the CRD Animal Shelter.
More dead than alive, the dedicated staff focused on saving the bunny they named Bradley in honor of his rescuer. In January they posted Bradley’s photo and profile on their website and 23 year old Kailyn Barlow fell in love at first sight.
Life was not always kind to Kai either.
Shuffled from one home to another, 12 year old Kai finally went to live with her grandparents. She lives a lonely reclusive life, exacerbated by Covid 19, in a rural home with no driver’s license and no bus service. Painfully shy and currently unemployed, reliant on a meagre disability pension, she spends her time avoiding people and hanging out with Ash and online friends.
Kai was actively searching for an emotional support animal. Noting that Bradley was described as “shy”, she realized he was the perfect fit and filled out the online adoption application on the spot.
Weeks went by with the CRD staff unsure if Bradley would ever fully recover. But even at the height of a blizzard, Kai visited Bradley twice a week and made a nuisance of herself phoning the shelter.
It was pretty clear to anyone with one good eye and half a brain that Kai and Bradley had both decided they belonged together.
In March, Kai got the long awaited phone call…
“Come and get him.”
Bradley and Kai were inseparable. She renamed him Ash and started the process of registering him as an ESA (emotional support animal).
Spring gave way to summer and both Kai and Ash came out of their shells, becoming a familiar sight to families at Country Maples where they went camping with Grandpa every weekend.
Until the day Ash couldn’t move. Accustomed to his high energy hopping and “zoomies” Kai couldn’t figure out what was wrong.
A new compressed hay bale was the suspected source of a neurotoxin; maybe mold spores or pesticides.
Within two days Ash couldn’t stand on his back legs and tried to drag himself forward on his belly using only his front paws.
Kai took him to a vet; $400 dollars later she left with X-rays, antibiotics, and pain medication.
Months went by. Despite her efforts with massage and exercise, Ash was not getting better. He could no longer even drag himself.
Kai couldn’t bear to see the change in him and began to talk about euthanization if he was hurting. But he was otherwise healthy and she wasn’t ready to give up. So she phoned and emailed local rabbit breeders and other vets hoping for an answer.
Jackpot. Everyone suggested the same local vet at a nearby animal hospital.
Ash had his second appointment on 03 Dec.; sedation, X-rays, blood tests, a consultation with a specialist and finally an answer…
a hairline fracture of his left leg and some possible dietary changes.
Recovery is possible, but the treatment plan includes a bunny wheelchair and follow-up physiotherapy.
(Still woozy from the sedation)
Unfortunately this level of care does not come cheap. BC’s disability pension doesn’t provide nearly enough money to pay for the treatment. By the time Ash is finished with his treatment Kai’s looking at a minimum of $3000, almost a quarter of her entire annual income.
And yet she can’t bear the thought of euthanizing her healthy, affectionate, intelligent friend because of a fixable broken leg.
Kai and Ash are hoping that some compassionate animal lovers can find it in their hearts to contribute a small amount so they can enjoy their first of many Christmases together.
We know that 2020 has been a tough year for some folks, and $3000 is a lot of money, but if you could spare even a few dollars it could make the difference between a cast and a casket.
And if you would further help by forwarding Ash’s story to all your friends and family they might make a contribution too. Kai and Ash are counting on your kindness.
If you’re seeing this on Facebook , you can contact Kai directly to help with an e-transfer, or go to her Go Fund Me page. Please keep in touch if you want to follow Ash’s progress.
- Judith Corbin
- Don Thompson
- Jennifer Hansen
- Shana Barlow
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