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|Belle, Our Library Bunny|
Belle, our resident, real-life, and legendary rabbit, is a favorite of the children who frequent Pequot Library’s Children’s Department. Staff members and adult patrons also enjoy the company of our pet. Belle helps children learn kindness, respect, and consideration for animals. They experience the companionship and humorous antics that pets can provide as they enrich our world.
Belle was born on Christmas Day of 2007 and came to the Library in February of 2008. She had big shoes to fill after the passing of our beloved Puff, who had resided here for the previous two years. Belle is a beautiful, Mini Rex rabbit, with characteristic velveteen fur.
She can be placed on a child’s lap, read to, and petted. Emerging readers enjoy the fact that a rabbit does not care if they make a mistake. Research indicates that children benefit greatly from this kind of early reading interaction in a non-threatening environment.
Kids can even check out Belle in her pink “Puffmobile” stroller for a walk in the neighborhood, weather permitting and with an accompanying adult. She is often spotted on these outings to the delight of passersby.
In the spring of 2010, a number of our youngest patrons—together with the wonderful support of their families, came together to create a vegetable garden for Belle. This required two workdays: one to create the beds, and one to plant the seedlings that children had chosen to bring. A picnic and cake followed in celebration of the garden’s inauguration. Since Belle requires three fresh greens a day, we are now able to hand pick these greens from just outside her door. These events, together will a fall 2009 program to build a compost bin, are part of Pequot Library’s new “Green Initiative”.
Children enjoy caring for Belle. You may bring healthy treats for her, which she much appreciates. Suggestions include: dark leafy greens only, including spinach, kale,collards, carrot and beet tops. Her favorite treats are dill, parsley, basil, and of course fruits like bananas, berries, and apples. Please no iceberg lettuce. Please see a staff member before feeding her.
We invite you to visit Belle and experience the joys of “labor-free” pet ownership!
Special thanks to Dr. Timothy Plunkett of Fairfield Veterinary Hospital for donating his services and taking excellent care of Belle and her predecessor, Puff.