By Lisa Carolin
Eight-year-old Kayleigh Harris had a memorable debut showing rabbits at the Chelsea Community Fair.
She placed second in showmanship with Fisker, her mixed Lionhead and Netherland Dwarf rabbit.
“What I’ve enjoyed most about getting ready for today is being with my bunnies,” said Kayleigh.
Then it was on to the championship breed class for Kayleigh and her pure breed Lionhead rabbit, 9-month-old Lulu.
“She loves her bunnies to pieces,” said her mom Melissa Harris. “Kayleigh has loved animals ever since she could walk and talk. She’s wanted to be a veterinarian since she started riding horses four years ago.”
Kayleigh was inspired to enter the Chelsea Community Fair’s rabbit competition after watching a friend show her rabbit at the Saline fair.
Her mom says that learning about rabbits and preparing for fair has gotten Kayleigh more comfortable with her speaking skills and taught both mother and daughter a lot about rabbits.
From the American Rabbit Breeder’s Association judge’s standpoint, those showing their pets need to know the health of their rabbits and to be able to share their knowledge of the animal.
They also have to get their rabbits used to what they’ll experience from the judge, such as flipping them over on their backs so the judge can check things like toenail colors, which should all match.
Kayleigh practiced handling her rabbits and had to present herself appropriately.
She says all the work paid off, not only in ribbons, but also in the joy of spending time with her bunnies.