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Home Forums BONDING Adult spayed female bonded with a baby bun?

This topic contains 22sd replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  TheDuchess 6 months, 4 weeks ago.

Viewing 23 posts - 1 through 23 (of 23 total)
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  • #1323016

    Alisha
    Participant

    I was planning on getting a second rabbit from the beginning but we wanted it to be my boyfriend’s rabbit and he lives in England and has come back and forth. She’s finally spayed and will have a few months to settle before he comes back and picks one out and I’m pretty sure he’s going to want a baby rabbit (I do plan on getting shelter rabbits in the future – I know I’m part of the problem HAHA) and it might be a boy but he could always choose a girl too. Does anyone have experience with this type of bond? 

    Honestly, I’m wondering if she’ll actually be excited because she perks up at children being around because they’re smaller and she wants to play and she’s been in a pseudo pregnancy for months so maybe she’ll even want to fill that mother void? I’m thinking she’ll be excited to have a bun to play with, especially if he’s just a small thing she can feel like she’s taking care of. But I’d like any input on this from someone who’s done this or just bonded bunnies in general. I’m not really into the “stress bonding” idea. I was thinking have them in their own spaces near each other for a little while and then have them hang out in an neutral territory and see how it goes. 


    #1894455

    LBJ10
    Moderator

    You can keep the two bunnies side-by-side to get things started in the bonding process. That shouldn’t be an issue, but you never know how your existing bun with react. If she seems to be enjoying the new bunny’s company, then things should go smoothly once the formal bonding begins. You will need to have the new bunny spayed/neutered before they can truly be bonded. Hormones will get in the way. Even if they seem to get along OK in the beginning, sexual maturity will likely change that.


    #1894456

    tobyluv
    Participant

    That would not be an actual bond. You can only bond rabbits when both have been spayed or neutered, then gone through the bonding process. Even if your rabbit tolerated a very young bunny for a short while, all that would change as he reached puberty. He would start humping her and she would react to his hormones and there would likely be fighting and injuries. It really would not be a good idea to put them together at all at that point. If you did get a baby bunny, they would have to be kept completely separated until the new bunny was spayed or neutered. So it would be months before you could start the bonding.

    Since you have already planned to get shelter rabbits in the future, why not get a companion rabbit from the shelter when your boyfriend comes back. The rabbit will likely already be spayed or neutered, which saves you money and after care, and you would be able to start the bonding after he had settled in for a couple of weeks.


    #1894458

    Alisha
    Participant

    I want to get a shelter bunny but he really wants a baby and it’s HIS rabbit so that’s why. I was wondering if if I got him neutered as soon as he was old enough, if I could get it done before the hormones come through? I don’t know how male rabbits are but Luna didn’t show any hormones until like 6 or 7 months of age which seems late probably but I didn’t get her fixed until recently because of money reasons and I’m more prepared for an early spay/neuter this time around. I could keep them separated for months if I needed to really but if they would do well together while he’s still little, I wonder if it’s worth putting them together until I felt I needed to separate them again


    #1894459

    LBJ10
    Moderator

    Boys can be neutered before girls can be spayed. For boys, it can be done as soon as their testicles make an appearance.


    #1894460

    Alisha
    Participant

    Good to know. I’ll ask my vet about it probably before I even get one. And I’m still open to all opinions and input, just know in the end (with all your knowledge you’ve given me) I’ll probably just end up leaving it to instinct on whether it feels like a good idea or not. I am a whiz with NIC grids. If I have to build two bunny castles then so be it hahaha Luna was free roam until she figured out how fun carpet is… I’m so terrified of her eating fibers that I just keep her in the bunny condo most the time. I want her free roam again but I’m too paranoid. I even have tiles laid down on all these spots. She’ll just find another. I really need to just get a place with all hard floors and get bunny appropriate rugs. She’s only getting out of the cage every other day right now. I feel terrible. It is a large cage though, it’s like 3 floors and she has the ability to sprint around in it.


    #1894462

    Doodler
    Participant

    I wasn’t going to respond because based on your statement I am not sure it will do any good. I appreciate your honestly on this! I understand going with your gut but I hope there is a reason you reached out for advice. I just feel obligated to back up the advice you’ve been given.

    How she responds to children and a pseudo pregnancy really wouldn’t be anything I would use to decide on how to go about this.

    I agree with the others that they can’t be bonded until they are both altered. It is not worth having face to face meeting until this is done and they have been prebonded. The risks are just too great and it’s truly not worth it. The problem with feeling like you can just go with your gut is that your gut won’t tell you when things will change. It’s impossible to predict the second hormones will kick in, or when unbondes bunnies will decide their tolerance is over. Things can become very violent, very quickly. There is a YouTube video that will show you what can happen when an adult bunny decides to take a bite at a baby. The sound and picture is not something I will ever forget.

    Trust me when I say it’s worth taking your time to do bonding slowly and safely. Please just keep in mind that if you decide to introduce them too soon that a fight can not only have tragic consequences it can also lead to a much harder bond later on.

    Good luck and I hope your vet experiences are much better this time around!


    #1894474

    Dface
    Participant

    I want to get a shelter bunny but he really wants a baby and it’s HIS rabbit so that’s why

    So here is a sticking point, it wont be his bunny if it lives with you and you care for it. It also wont be his bunny if your girl bonds with it, because he can never seperate them.

    And if it wont bond with your girl, will he refuse to give back HIS rabbit? And then what, 2 unhappy bunnies? You say ideally youd like free roam again but thats not going to be possible if they wont bond.

    Me and my boyfriend played this game and im here to warn you it is not a good game to play, because when fights start between the rabbits people get stupid about it too.
    Honestly you could try what I did. My boyfriend was allowed to pick a shelter bunny that was a boy, then we took Yumi to meet him. If she didnt like the suitor he picked for her, he would just pick a different boy, because at the end of the day we were getting another rabbit to bond to HER.
    His rabbit and my rabbit shouldnt be a thing, it should be “our” rabbit. And you should do whats best for the bunny that is currently there.

    Babies are cute but their personalities change, they have underlying conditions you cant forsee, and you cant predict if your bun will even like them. Plus you have to wait for their testicles to descend, for one of my boys that took until 6 months, but he was hormonal for a lot of that time and we couldnt do anything about it.


    #1894476

    Alisha
    Participant

    I feel like I shouldn’t have asked anything seeing how negative it’s becoming. Yes, it’s his rabbit, he’s moving here. He was never going to separate them anyway. I don’t need judgement, I was just asking about the bonding process, not about all my choices about how and when I’m going to get a rabbit etc. Not sure why the phrase “HIS rabbit” is so triggering. -.-

    Doodles – I think doing things slowly and safely is going to be the best thing. And I did try to convince him maybe a shelter rabbit would be a better option but he saw me get a baby rabbit and how we bonded so well. My rabbit basically thinks I’m her mom so we have a strong connection. I work from home and have been with her basically every day and before she became more bunny condo bound, she was full free roam as a baby and would sleep on me at night and he knows getting a rabbit from a shelter would mean it would be less attached but I also can’t predict how the baby bun would act either. I think part of it had to do with my bun naturally had it in her personality anyway. She’s just very cuddly and loving. Sometimes rabbits don’t like attention and I haven’t experienced that yet.

    The most important part in all of this honestly is that one day my rabbit will have a rabbit friend. And there are multiple ways to get there


    #1894489

    Dface
    Participant

    You asked for advice I merely offered some, based off of my own experience and from knowing that people who have a “my pet and your pet” dynamic can often lead to issues further down the line (especially as animals pick their favourite people) which is nicer to avoid from the outset. Its your choice, but this forum is for people to offer advice where they think it might be helpful.

    To address your point about babies bonding better to their humans, I’d say youd be right in thinking that its down to personality and not age or background. There are plenty of people here who will tell you shelter buns are just as loving(if not slightly more desperate). My girl Yumi camr from a crappy background, but is a love bug, who lives for bed cuddles and couch naps with us, and Moink follows us around like a puppy. As a contrast I had another from 8 weeks old, who took about a year to be friendly with people, just because he wasnt intrested.


    #1894493

    DanaNM
    Moderator

    Hi there Alisha, I think it’s great that you reached out for info!

    I won’t repeat what other’s have already said (but I agree that babies and adults do not bond). I think people are extra sensitive about babies this time of year, because so many baby bunnies are gotten on a whim for Easter. Not saying you are doing that, but it is certainly on my mind, and I am reading other’s comments through that lens!

    I think the main benefit about getting an adult is you already have a sense of their personality, and can start bonding sooner. Babies are really a crap shoot. You don’t know what you will get once they reach adult hood, and whether they will get along with your bun at all.

    On that front, I do want to share a true story about getting a baby to eventually to bond to an adult (that I think might also be on folks minds as they give advice on this, as a lot of members on the forum followed the ordeal from start to finish).

    Another member here had adopted a baby with the plan to bond to her current spayed female. She knew all about waiting till after neuter, and did tons of homework on bonding. She followed all the correct steps (waited for hormones to settle, did loads of pre-bonding, etc.). But unfortunately it was not a good match and she wasn’t able to bond them. This all happened after she had the baby for months (got him, waited till he was old enough to neuter, then pre-bonding, then months of bonding). She decided the best thing was to rehome the “baby”, which was heartbreaking because she had already fallen in love with him after having him for I think almost 6 months.

    When she was ready to try again, she adopted from a shelter after speed dating, and now has a happy bonded pair.

    Now, adults are not guaranteed to bond either, but if you can do some speed dating with adults, it can at least rule out which buns will not be good matches and take one risk factor out of the equation. And, if things don’t seem to be working, you will know sooner. With an adult you might also have a better sense as to whether they could be free-roam (they will know more about their behaviors). Plus added bonus of not having to pay for the neuter!

    I think you should at least take your BF to visit some buns at the shelter. I think there is a misconception that all bunnies are fearful or mean unless they are babies…. but he might be surprised to find that there are loving sweet adult buns that will practically crawl into your arms because they want snuggles (my most recent bun, Bun Jovi, did this, and he was 9 years old)! And earning the trust of a shy bunny is one of the most rewarding things in the world (IMO). You might also find a recently neutered bun up for adoption there, so could get the best of both worlds.


    #1894498

    Doodler
    Participant

    I might be taking things differently but I don’t find this topic becoming negative in the least. As Dface said we are just trying to offer help. I personally appreciate when people point out things I might not have considered.

    In my response I did not in any way say he shouldn’t get a baby, nor did I mention at any point that you should get a bunny from a shelter so I am not sure why you directed those statements to me. Although I didn’t get my bunnies as babies, they did not come from a shelter so I can’t judge you for not going to a shelter. I was simply saying that if you get a baby you really shouldn’t do any face to face meetings or try and ‘bond’ them until the new one is fixed (of course healed and hormones settled as well) and they are prebonded, which is exactly the input you asked for.

    I also had the same concern as Dface but decided not to mention it because I am not sure what your agreement or arrangements are with your boyfriend if your circumstances change. I will refrain from voicing another concern that hasn’t been brought up since that is not what you are looking for and can only hope you are already aware.


    #1894552

    Asriel and Bombur
    Participant

    I think I’m general, you should also discuss what should happen to the pair *if bonded* should anything happen between you and your BF (not being mean, just an actual plan for the worst situation). Bonded bunnies are just that. They are bonded. They will become incredibly depressed if they are ever separated. So I think that is something to consider if you attempt bonding with your BFs future bunny vs getting another one of your own.


    #1894563

    Alisha
    Participant

    The reality is the bunny stays with me and I have two. The bunny isn’t leaving here at all. He lives in another country and I’ll be taking care of it if he does have to go back at any point. If that helps. If we break up, nothing will happen to the bun. I definitely believe in consistency


    #1894576

    sarahthegemini
    Participant

    Hormones can appear within the blink of an eye so you should not put a baby bun with your current bun til you ‘feel the need to separate’ You’re not going to be able to supervise them 24/7 so they could fight before you even have a chance to react. And bunnies can do serious damage to each other This would obv be traumatic to the bunnies but it can also make bonding in the future difficult so it’s better for you too if you keep them separate until it’s time to start bonding sessions.


    #1894585

    tobyluv
    Participant

    I wanted to add that it’s possible to get baby bunnies from a rescue. I follow several rabbit rescues on Facebook. It seems like there is always one that has just taken in a rabbit who presents them with a surprise litter in a few days. You would still have the situation where you would have to keep your rabbit and a baby separated for months before they could be bonded, but your boyfriend would get to have the baby bunny he wants. If you have rescues in your area, or are willing to drive out of your area to adopt, contact them and see if they have or will have baby bunnies available. With Easter coming up soon, many rescues do not adopt out in the weeks beforehand, so there might not be as many available until after Easter.


    #1894592

    Alisha
    Participant

    How do you know I can’t supervise 24/7? I work from home. I’m home 24/7. I wasn’t going to throw them in together right off the bat. i explained in the beginning that I had a process of putting them in enclosures near each other for a while. Yes, I live in Utah and there isn’t much rescuing here. There is one institution and I regularly check their stock and they rarely change. I know my system here. Just saying. I wanted a baby because I didn’t want a 5 year old rabbit right now. I will still be checking on the off change they have a much younger rabbit but I haven’t seen anything under a year old yet.


    #1894594

    Bunny House
    Participant

    Because a bun can kill a bun within seconds when you look away, one of mine almost did when I turned around, a few years ago and i didn’t know anything about bonding back then, it was the most horrific thing I ever saw. The advice has been given to wait until the new one will be spayed because you would hate yourself if when you went to the bathroom and came back and one was dead because of the other because of hormones.

    We are looking out for the new bun when you get it because they shouldn’t be put in a situation where they can’t fight back and can’t tell you they are scared and don’t want to be put with a big adult bun yet.


    #1894596

    tobyluv
    Participant
    I don’t know how long you want to wait to get the bunny, but a couple of months after Easter, there are always young bunnies showing up in rescues. I volunteer at a Rabbit Sanctuary, and one of my jobs is to be in charge of the email account, where I have to tell people over and over that we are full. I frequently check area rescues to see what rabbits they may have and if they have any space to take rabbits so that I can refer people to them. From what I see, most rabbits are around a year old or less, I have rarely seen 5 year old rabbits up for adoption. The majority of rabbits that our sanctuary takes are also a year old or less. Most people figure out that they don’t want them pretty quickly, when they are young.

    I don’t know if you are anywhere near Best Friends Animal Society in Utah.  I just checked and they have 75 rabbits available for adoption.

    You could also contact area vets. They may know of someone looking to rehome their young rabbit, or they may know of someone whose rabbit recently had an accidental litter or who rescued a rabbit that gave birth. Sometimes, wildlife rescues will take in domestic rabbits, and they may be pregnant. That just happened in my area.

    To me, the better idea is to adopt an adult rabbit from a rescue or shelter, one who may already be spayed or neutered and even litter box trained, so that you can start bonding sooner, but there are other options you can try to find baby bunnies.


    #1894598

    sarahthegemini
    Participant

    Posted By Alisha on 3/25/2019 9:09 AM
    How do you know I can’t supervise 24/7? I work from home. I’m home 24/7. I wasn’t going to throw them in together right off the bat. i explained in the beginning that I had a process of putting them in enclosures near each other for a while. Yes, I live in Utah and there isn’t much rescuing here. There is one institution and I regularly check their stock and they rarely change. I know my system here. Just saying. I wanted a baby because I didn’t want a 5 year old rabbit right now. I will still be checking on the off change they have a much younger rabbit but I haven’t seen anything under a year old yet.

    Yes I see that you were going to put them in enclosures close to one another to start with but once you’ve got them together (which you said you wanted to do before neutering the new bun) you’d need to supervise constantly because hormones will still be a problem when they develop regardless of how happy they were together beforehand (so, having them in cages next to each other to start with won’t actually help the hormone issue)

    How do I know you can’t watch them 24/7? Because even tho you work from home, I assume you will still shower/use the toilet/sleep so you can’t physically watch them 24/7? You haven’t mentioned having someone help you.

    I don’t know why you’ve got an attitude. People are trying to help


    #1894607

    DanaNM
    Moderator

    I want to thank everyone for offering very sound advice and solutions so far.

    I also want to remind everyone that the OP’s original question was on bonding techniques for babies to an adult. I think the point has been well made and backed-up that this is not a good idea, as it is dangerous to the baby, and not possible to truly bond anyway until after the new bun is spayed/neutered. I do agree (and I chatted with my rescue about this, as they just dealt with a bunch of litters and ended up bonding some of the siblings in pairs and trios) that if you wait to separate until you see hormonal behaviors, it can be too late, and the chances of bonding are much lower.

    The OP’s original point was not “whether I should get a baby or adult”, or whether it was appropriate for her bf to have partial ownership, so let’s try to keep the discussion on the original question.

    I think that the key points have been made (and repeated), so let’s try to not to circle around and around repeating ourselves.


    #1894766

    Alisha
    Participant

    Agreed, Thanks for any input. *closed*


    #1894833

    TheDuchess
    Participant

    Hi Alisha,

    It’s been a while since I’ve been on the forum, but I was peeking around and noticed your thread.
    I believe Dana was referencing me in regard to her earlier reply. As a new bunny owner, I too wanted to get another cute little baby that I could bond with my spayed female. I also believed that rescue buns would be more likely to exhibit “bad behaviors” (totally untrue). So I did my research, I prebonded for months, got him neutered, waited for residual hormones to dissipate, and started the bonding.

    At first, they seemed to just love each other. But as things progress and we tried expanding bonding areas, introducing semineutral territory, etc. they just didn’t get along anymore. They would be fine for sometimes hours at a time but then have outbursts with eachother. Rabbits are so unpredictable and when things start to turn with them, it all happens VERY fast. I had to rehome him because I was not well equipped to house them separately. By that point I had him for 6 months and I was devastated and heartbroken to have to part with him, but they just weren’t going to work.

    Now, last year I went on a trip and dropped my female off at the rescue to be “bunny sat” while we were away. I asked them to introduce her to some buns while I was gone. I truly didn’t care about breed, age, sex, or any of that. I just told them to find somebun that she really seemed to click with. When we got back a few days later, they told us that Ophelia and Sven were basically in love. They had stayed together almost their entire stay at the rescue and they came home with me and immediately went into a room together and they’ve been perfect ever since.

    Aside from the fact that choosing a rescue allowed us to have a really smooth sailing bonding process, I’m just so grateful that Ophelia has found a partner that she really does just love. It’s turned her into a totally different rabbit. She used to be so stressed and scared of everything and she would lash out and get aggressive if she didn’t get her way. Now she’s so much more chill and relaxed, and she’s a total sweetheart. That in itself is validation that I did the right thing for her by letting her pick her own partner.

    I know it was a long post, but I hope you’ll see my point here. I’m sure you don’t want to deny your bun the opportunity to find the prefect match. And while we can love our buns very much, we just can’t make that decision for them.

    Best of luck


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