Sunday, May 21, 2017

Snickers, the World's Greatest Rabbit

"Baby" Snickers ("Snicks") Lafferre died peacefully Wednesday, May 17 in the arms of his loving mother and the caring and wonderful staff of Animal Care Clinic. He was seven years, three months, and three days old at the time of his passing. Although several underlying medical conditions contributed to the death of Snickers, ultimately his body just wore out.


Snickers was born February 14, 2010 and was adopted by his mother on August 7, 2010, at almost six months of age. He was blessed by Father Jim Sobus at a special Mass for animals in October 2010. From his birth, Snicks was a very special rabbit. He never thumped. He never kicked or scratched anyone. He liked to be petted and cuddled. His mother always said he was a pacifist, and he was. Snickers's wonderful doctor, Dr. Ellis, once told his mother never to get another rabbit and expect it to be like Snickers, because Snickers was just a very strange rabbit.

Throughout his life, Snicks brought happiness to many people. He volunteered at many organizations for children, including Huntington Dance Theatre, the Huntington Museum of Art, a vacation bible school, and a local preschool. Snicks loved chocolate, bananas, apples, kale, broccoli, oats, chewing paper (especially gift bags), good manners, clean things, being organized, his mother, his Uncle Allie, naps, sleeping under the bed, being petted on the head, the Mountaineers, and Jane Austen. He very much disliked carrots, being brushed, taking medicine, his things being moved around, and leaving the house.

Baby Snickers was a good boy every day of his life. His mother used to tell him he was a very good rabbit, and then she realized he wasn't just a good rabbit. In fact, he was probably not a very good rabbit at all. What he was was just a good person. As Anna's friend Story once wrote, "She lives with a rabbit who is not really a rabbit, but a person who just happens to be trapped in a rabbit body. He understands her more than any other human, and even though he’s silent, he speaks a thousand truths." Story was right.

Every day that his mother ever lived alone, Snickers was there. No matter what time his mother got home, Snicks was faithfully there. He was the softest thing his mother ever touched, and that soft fur held his mother's tears when she was sad. He also helped his mother when she was scared, and he always made her feel like she was never alone. He had impeccable manners. He never hopped into the kitchen, even though his food was there. He would politely wait outside the kitchen door, until his mother was ready to give him his snack. He had been known to chew a cell phone charger, but only if his mother was stupid enough to leave it within his reach.

Although there are too many to list, some of Snicks's mother's favorite memories of him include:

  • The first night he was ever with his mother, she got up 10 times to make sure he was still breathing. 
  • Before Snicks's mommy realized how much he loved apples, she left a glass of cider on the floor. She came back to see Snicks's face squished in the glass, as he struggled to lick the juice.
  • Anna's brother Thomas once went to her apartment to feed Snicks while she was out of town, and Thomas called Anna to tell her he couldn't find Snicks. He had checked everywhere. All of a sudden Thomas said, "There he is!" Snicks was just hanging out in the middle of a room Thomas had already checked. That's when they all found out that Snicks was a ninja. 
  • Once, Anna accidentally left Snicks shut in a closet all day while she was at work, and when she got home and opened the door, Snicks just came hopping out, all casual. Anna checked and realized that Snickers hadn't used the bathroom all day because he knew he was only to go in his litterbox.
  • Snicks liked to sleep under the bed, and you could tell him it was bedtime, and he'd go. In the morning, Anna would open the bedroom door, and Snicks would come tearing out like a bat out of hell. Anna realized once that she could trick him into thinking it was morning because one night, she got up a few minutes after getting into bed to get water, and the second the door opened, Snickers came tearing out. Anna had to say, "No, Baby Snickers, it's not morning. Go back to bed." And he went back.
  • How Anna learned that Snicks could jump up on the couch was one evening, she was lying on the couch, and the next minute she had a bunny butt on her face. 
  • Once during the Christmas season, Anna was wrapping gifts. A piece of ribbon got stuck to Snicks's bottom, and he didn't realize it. So Anna watched and laughed as he dragged the ribbon around the room.
  • Snicks used to like to lie on heating vents, sucking up all the heat from the room. This would also cause him to turn into one giant ball of static, and he shocked his mommy often. 
  • Once, Anna was moving some things around in Snicks's room, making things nicer for him (she thought). Snicks started running around and around, until Anna moved everything back. Then he calmed down. 
  • If you were petting Snicks's head and stopped, he would nudge his head under your hand until you started again. 
  • Once, his mother was eating some small chocolates and left the wrappers on the floor by the couch she was lying on. When she reached down to get them and throw them away, they were gone. She found Snickers licking them behind a chair. 
  • Even though Anna didn't know that Snickers would never come home again, the day she took him to the vet for the last time, she gave him some oats and some chocolate right before they left the house. It makes her happy to know he got to eat his favorite treats in his final hour on Earth.  

Snickers's health began to decline back in July and August of 2016, but his mommy begged him to please not leave her alone. Anna and Snicks would go on to meet Joe, Anna's now-fiance, in September 2016, and Snicks got to know Joe. While on a trip in Georgia in April, Anna and Joe became engaged, and Anna returned home April 17 to tell Snicks the news. Exactly one month later, Snicks passed away. As always, that sweet boy kept his promise to his mother, and he didn't leave her alone. It is the belief of Anna and some of her friends and family members that Snickers waited to die -- and God waited to take him -- until he knew she wouldn't be alone. 

Even in death, Snicks was the best boy imaginable. He was gentle and well behaved, even at the doctor's office on the day that he passed away. In fact, he even chose to pass away on a day that was most convenient for his mother, as she was getting ready to leave town to chaperone a class trip and would be gone for two days. He waited until summer, since he knows how much his mother hates winter and how it makes her sad, and he waited until school was almost out of session, giving his mother time to grieve his loss privately. Anna knows she was not always the best mother to Snickers, but she sincerely hopes he knows how much he was loved.

Anna would like to ask that everyone remember Baby Snickers. She is scared people will forget him, and she really doesn't want that. Please ask Anna about Snickers from time to time. It will make her cry, but they will be happy tears that someone is taking the time to remember her little boy. If you would like to do something in Snicks's honor, Anna requests that you hug your pets extra tightly this evening. Additionally, you can donate to Animal Care Clinic in Snicks's memory. They do a lot of work for rescue groups in the area and can be reached at 304-525-7649. Anna would especially like to thank Dr. Ginger Ellis, Shayne, and Judi, who all cried with Anna as Snickers died, as well as the entire staff of Animal Care Clinic, who, throughout his life, provided Snickers with the best care his mother could have ever asked for.

Although Anna knows in her heart that God's timing is always perfect, she is seriously struggling with the profound loss of her sweet boy. She is trying very hard to rejoice for all of the time she got to spend with him. She knows it was a miracle that they found each other to begin with, and she knows God meant them for each other. She always told Baby Snickers he was God's favorite rabbit, and she knows he still is. As the art on Snicks's bedroom wall says, "Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart."

In loving memory of Baby Snickers, February 14, 2010 - May 17, 2017.

Rest in peace, my sweet boy, in the arms of St. Francis of Assisi. Please know how much I miss you, and I will love you forever. Until we meet again ... Love, Mommy

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