I love animals. I love to garden. Can you see where this is headed? Rabbits. They are a lot smarter than I give them credit for. I’ve always thought of them as cute little bunnies who are preyed upon by the stronger species. In the last decade, I have learned differently.

When I lived in Chicago and was a new mom, I didn’t have time to garden at all. Yes, I helped my parents with their community garden raising vegetables, so I had training.

When we moved to Pennsylvania, I had time to garden. I learned what to plant so that rabbits and deer wouldn’t eat my flowers. We lived on an acre and had a wooded back yard where deer and fox coexisted with all other creatures.

One day, while working in my home office, I noticed this rabbit carrying her babies and placing them in the front garden which consisted of colorful bushes. When I looked closely, the babies had no heads. I admit, I was grossed out. What was going on? I called my husband at work and he told me to suck it up and throw them in the trash. Nope. Not happening. Then I watched as the crows descended on the babies and this fierce mama bunny WENT AFTER THE CROWS! I had never seen anything like that before. I called my neighbor, a retired doctor, who came over and explained that foxes like to bite the heads off the baby bunnies. This mother bunny in her grief was trying to protect her babies. He told me when rabbits are provoked they will attack to protect their young. And I thought the killer rabbits in Monty Python was a joke. Ha!

Fast forward to Texas. I have a garden and so far I’ve had no rabbit problems until last year. They ate everything. My farmer friend said to use paprika because they don’t like the smell. It didn’t bother them at all. (Texans like spicy food.) Maybe they told their relatives because I have rabbits eating my grass and I haven’t planted any plants yet. What?

At Lowe’s, I noticed this small animal spray specifically designed for rabbits and squirrels. The scent is to drive them away and it won’t hurt them. I tried it taking caution to spray the soil of the garden and the holes under the fence where the rabbits slip in. I looked to see if there were any nests in my yard but I couldn’t find one. The scent was so overwhelming, I had to close the screen door and my windows.

Sure enough, the bunny came out and went flying and hopping around the yard as if it were on drugs. I had a repairman working and he stopped to watch because he had never seen anything like that before! Then it was gone. I did a happy dance thinking my problem was solved.

Wrong! It is pouring down here like a monsoon. We are to get six inches of rain. Guess what? The bunny is back, munching away because the rain has washed away the spray. Sigh. I can’t win…..