Three Hundred Games & Pastimes - complete online book

A Book Of Suggestions For Children's Games And Employments.

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What Shall We Do Now?              305
If you find you have an intelligent rabbit who quickly learns to come to you when you call him by name, you will find, with patience, you can teach him that when you say " On trust," he must not touch the dainty you offer him, and that "Paid for" means he may have it. He will also learn to "die," and shake hands when you tell him to do so.
Cowper's description of his tame hares proves that they can be turned into very charming pets too. But a bachelor poet, with plenty of time on his hands, has a better chance of giving them the attention they need than you would have. Still, if a young or wounded hare ever strays into the garden and is caught, it would be well worth while to try and tame it. It should not be kept as closely to the hutch as a rabbit ; indeed an enclosure is better for it than a hutch can be. The same food as the rabbit's will serve.
Guinea-pigs need treatment and housing similar to rabbits.
Squirrels and Mice
In buying a squirrel make sure it is a young one, because whereas a young one is difficult enough to tame, an old one is not to be tamed at all. Unless you can give him a really large cage, with room for a branch on which he may leap about, it is cruel to keep a squirrel at all, so beautifully free is his nature. A little side compartment containing a revolving wheel should be added. Your only chance of taming him is to be extremely quiet and gentle in all your visits to the cage and in giving him his food—nuts, acorns, grain, cold boiled potatoes, dry bread, and now and then a small piece of cooked meat. A very charming account of what it is possible to do with tame squirrels will be found in a little book called Billy and Hans, by Mr. W. J. Stillman.
Mice should have a cage with two compartment?, one of which should have a door in the wood-work but no wires. In
X
Teaching rabbits.
Wild hares.
Guinea-pigs. Squirrels.
Mice.
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