Remember Noelle? The sad-looking Rex is still at my house. Her fur feels so much nicer now that she has proper nutrition, but she still has quite the scruffy look. Her nails are normal length (although still a little curly) and the sores on her feet have improved. She has put on weight (man, she loves to eat). As her health improves, some personality traits have emerged, like the unfortunate tendency to be territorial while in the cage. She also breathes quite loudly, but the vet thinks that's probably stress.
The biggest issue was her walking. If she couldn't walk properly, it would be close to impossible to adopt her out. Her last check-up with the vet showed little to no improvement, and the decision was that she probably couldn't be adopted from our shelter. We started trying to transfer her to Rabbit Rescue.
I was disappointed by the lack of progress. And then today I put her on the ground while we cleaned her cage, and Noelle totally blew my mind.
Just try to ignore the chaos in the room - she's in our sort-of-storage room because we want to keep her away from our boys in case she has some sort of respiratory infection coming on. Also, she likes to kick hay on the floor because she's a little trouble-maker.
But check out that running! In the first few clips, that was honestly the fastest she could move. That was her top speed. Notice how she was mostly shuffling, and was very hesitant to hop (extending her back legs) or move at all. When she did hop, it was slow and careful.
But in the most recent clips - man, can she move! I was utterly astonished. She was fully extending her back legs with every step. She is still a little off balance, and she seems to be favouring one leg, but she's got speed and strength and it completely astonished me.
We will start giving her much more exercise now, in the hopes of building up her hind leg muscles. Maybe with practice, she'll be able to walk normally - maybe it'll be impossible to tell anything was ever wrong.
Up till today, I didn't think that was possible. But now, who knows.
Go, Noelle, Go!