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BINKYBUNNY FORUMS > BEHAVIOR > Teaching bunny to leave the bunny room
Last Post by jerseygirl at 11/07/2012 6:31 PM (5 Replies)
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User is Offline Karla
1600 posts Send Private Message
11/05/2012 9:59 AM

Very short: I have a female of almost 2 years. She is very nervous and is confident everybody and everything is placed on this earth to eat her...It has taken a long time to get her used to normal noises, to the sounds and sight of my boyfriend and I, and even to the presence of other rabbits. She is getting better for each day though and seems more and more confident.

SO...

I have a bunny room which always has the door open. My bunnies are freerange and can move around in the house as they please day and night. This is something my female has never taken advantage of. She refuses to leave the bunny room. She has never made any attempts to do so, even if it means that she is left completely alone for several hours.

Right across the bunny room we have our dining room table with a big carpet. I often give treats right there, and so she often sits in the doorway of the bunny room and looks at the others getting treats because she knows the sounds of the treat bags (of course, I always end up going over to her and give her some).

My question is: should I  give treats only on the carpet opposite the bunny room, so she has an incentive to leave the bunny room one day? Or is just too mean to let her see what is going on without her getting any?

I have tried placing her in the living room or even just a few centimeters outside the bunny room, but she completely freezes. Her legs fall out to each side and she just lies completely paralyzed. I did that a few times to teach her it was fun outside, but I didn't like forcing her like that. It is not because she has a problem with the floor, because it is the same type as in the bunny room.


User is Offline Sarita
(Dallas)
Forum Leader
18049 posts Send Private Message
11/05/2012 10:21 AM
I wouldn't deny her the treats. For her that may not be an incentive anyway - treats may not equal trust.

I think if she is comfortable where she is at, then I would let her come out on her own will if she so pleases on her own time (if ever).

User is Offline Karla
1600 posts Send Private Message
11/05/2012 7:05 PM
She is just in so many ways a hutch rabbit - she doesn't get exercise, she doesn't do binkies, she doesn't run around. She just sits, sleeps and eats. I really would like for her to want to get out of the room.

I have put her outside in the garden some times, and she loves it. She changes into another bunny - she does binkies, she examines everything, she jumps on top of things and she just seems to happy and active. Then I take her inside, and she changes into this strange little bunny that is afraid to move out of her safety zone.

Is there not any suggestions to what I might do to make the outside world attractive to her? It cannot be healthy for her not to exercise at all.

User is Offline jerseygirl
Australia
14999 posts Send Private Message
11/06/2012 1:49 AM
So she manages ok on the floor in the bunny room?

What about placing a tunnel from the doorway to the living room rug?

When she had time outside, is it in a pen? Or if they get to free roam during time out there, is the garden smallish and enclosed?
Whoever says "It's only a rabbit" has obviously never loved a rabbit.

User is Offline Karla
1600 posts Send Private Message
11/06/2012 6:35 AM

Yes, she manages okay on the floor. That was my initial thought as well, that it might be the flooring, but it really shouldn't be.

When she is outside, she runs free. We have a big rabbit proofed garden which they have enjoyed all summer. You were thinking that it might be because she feels safer in small, closed areas due to her first months, right? That has been my theory as well, but not until I saw the way she lived up and became a happy bunny outside. She is not afraid of anything when she is outside. She changes personality completely.

 I like the idea of using a tunnel. I will test it out tomorrow.


User is Offline jerseygirl
Australia
14999 posts Send Private Message
11/07/2012 6:31 PM
You were thinking that it might be because she feels safer in small, closed areas

Pretty much. That perhaps the wide open spaces in the house were daunting to her... but as you say, she's not affected by this outdoors.

Mmm.... could it be the way sound travels in the house or smells?

It's interesting as Jelly acts very cautious in new spaces inside, mostly due to his lack of vision. But outside in a pen he is pretty good. Initially I thought it would be overwhelming to him but he surprised me. He was quite content. Normal nature sounds, cars and planes did not bother him. He only got scared when hearing human noises (adult and a kid).  I think to do with his past.

With flooring, have you experimented with different types of mats (carpets or other) to see what she does? Not just for traction but colours too. Some rabbits are even cautious about patterns or colours.

Whoever says "It's only a rabbit" has obviously never loved a rabbit.
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