Portrait of the week: Julie adopts a rabbit in Bolivia

I met Julie in Argentina, El Chalten. She returned from climbing Mount Fitz Roy and I was getting ready to do it the next day. We saw each other only once but we kept in touch a lot. Four months later, we always give new each other almost every week and I decided to write an article on her and her rabbit adopted in Bolivia …

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An article with some tips & tricks to travel and cross borders accompanied by an animal.

Julie, this is a girl who lives fully without asking too many questions. Embodied kindness, she always has a thought for her friends and family. Julie is also madness, travel, stories and encounters!

So with over 19,224 kilometers away, a time difference of 12 hours, we managed to lay this “refreshing” and “light” interview that I hope you’ll enjoy!

Interview

Julie, can you introduce yourself and talk about your travel?

I went backpacking for a year in South America, from Argentina to Mexico. I will go through all the other countries, Peru, Bolivia, … My first goal is to meet as many premises to immerse myself in their culture and way of life.

How did you meet your rabbit?

I was in Bolivia in the city of Cochabamba and wandered in the market where I was going to eat every day. At each visit, I saw those little rabbits in a cage, at least 15 locked together and that hurts me. When I started to think about having an animal as a travel company, I rather thought of a dog or cat, but it’s too complicated. This makes noise, and ask a lot of effort to care for them.

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I already had rabbits in France, so when I saw them in their cage, I bought one. I think they was there to be eaten! The seller even showed me two other rabbits, indicating that it was the father and mother, joke !!

How do you called and why?

It is called “Dulce”. I told a friend I bought a rabbit for the price of a candy or 1.50 euros to the market, she laughed at me and replied, “haha, if you get busted at the border… precisely, it’ll not cost you a candy !! ” So here, it was found candy in Spanish, it makes Dulce!

In daily life, is that it’s easy to care for?

Yes it is pretty easy. I lugs around in a Peruvian hat and it’s pretty funny, it’s as if he understood. When he’s in his cap, he doesn’t move. The real worry is that it grows and begins to be agile enough to jump from bed to bed and so he poops everywhere. There, yes, it’s rather boring. I had to buy a poncho for him to do it. Before, this sometimes gives some surprise (see photo below).

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For food, I bought granules for bus trips or when I find nothing to give him. Otherwise I buy fruit and market women often give me clover alfalfa (that’s what she adds to the fresh juice).

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And then there are the lawns of the central squares of all the cities. I lay down on a bench, leaving the hat to the ground and he leaves frolic.

I understand that you crossed the Bolivia-Peru border with him?

Yes, and I can say that the day before the trip, I didn’t really sleep well! I inquired before to know the steps and many travelers have told me that this border was very easy to cross. I also made approaches. I went to the vet and then I went to Senasage but he didn’t really have any information on rabbits. I even went to the Consulate of Peru with Dulce. They laughed at me well and they knew no more. In the end, I ended up having the information * which are rather restrictive and expensive … For a rabbit paid 1.50 euros …

So I hid my rabbit in my little bag for 30 minutes to cross the border. Nobody saw it! Today, it grows more and more! This may be more complicated to hide it in my purse at future borders …

The people you meet are not astonished to see you with a rabbit?

A little bit, yes, but it helps to create links that I would not have imagined. At first, people think it’s a guinea pig, for they are fond here (and eat!) But then they are surprised and are softened. “Que lindo!!” they say. Everyone hugs him, on the market in the main square, everywhere! I am in Cusco for almost a month and sometimes when I don’t have it with me, people I don’t know anything just ask me where is my rabbit? So, I am amazed that anyone knows me through Dulce!

I took him in the community of Tankarpata where I volunteered and kids loved it. This is a true way to build links easily.

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Do you plan to bring him back to France at the end of your trip?

I must look at how this happens at the paperwork but I still have at least 7 months of traveling so I still have time! In any case, if I can’t bring him back, I think I’ll find him an nice adoptive family!

The final word ?

Having a pet during the trip is a real means of social links. I would not have believed that this allows to make as many games. Initially, I did not buy for more knowledge, well actually so, it works!

* The steps to get an animal from Bolivia to Peru (Thanks Julie for the info !!)

The process to get an animal in the law… Bolivia to Peru at least. You have to go to the vet who must make the necessary vaccines (can not be mandatory for the rabbits!) And give you an afficial healthy paper. Then, go to Senasac where to fill out a paper on the animal. Finally, it should go to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and finally the consulate. Each time you have to pay the amount of up to $50!

 

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