A PET rabbit from Goring has been nominated for a Pet Survivor Award after a fox attack left it fighting for life in October.
Four-year-old Thumper is competing against five other pets in the competition, which is run by People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals.
Owner Emma Miller, 25, rushed her beloved pet to the Grove Lodge Veterinary Group in Worthing after finding it in the garden.
Vets warned her that Thumper might not last the night.
“When I heard this my whole world fell apart,” said Ms Miller.
“Thumper has been with me through thick and thin and I would be lost without him as he’s part of my family.”
The attack left Thumper with a neck wound where it had been shaken, four fractured ribs and a chance of spinal injuries which would mean it would be paralysed.
Vet Laurel Bowker said: “Thumper was mostly paralysed but he was still fighting so were we not prepared to give up on him.
“Most rabbits would have died from shock after an attack like this but not Thumper – and our nursing team wanted to give him every chance.”
Gradually the rabbit became more responsive, and the vets confirmed that it still had feeling in its legs so it was almost ready to go home.
Ms Miller had to make sure that it had daily medication and attended physiotherapy sessions to help repair its nerves.
She said: “Thumper could not hop for two weeks but now he can do four hops and the vets are all amazed by his progress.
“They call him the bionic bunny!
“He was so scared and in so much pain, but he still didn’t give up, he battled on. He is our miracle and the bravest rabbit I know.”
PDSA Vet Elaine Pendlebury said: “Thumper must have been just a whisker away from dying.
“Rabbits are very prone to shock so it is a miracle Thumper pulled through. That Thumper overcame all of these injuries is inspirational and he truly can be called a survivor.”
Pet Survivor judge Liz McClarnon added: “Judging was so hard. I know all too well about rabbits dying of shock, when I was younger mine died after a fox attack – Thumper is so brave.”
Vet and TV presenter Steve Leonard added: “Judging this competition was tough as there are so many hard-working vets and owners looking after pets that have really been through the mill.
“Reading these stories made me very proud of my profession and grateful to work alongside some dedicated animal enthusiasts.
“Thumper is a very plucky rabbit who pulled through against the odds.”
The winner will be announced on Sunday.