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Forum HOUSE RABBIT Q & A Dog chased my rabbit

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    • Cookie Lop
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      First, let me explain that I do not live at home. I live in a (non pet friendly) apartment building on a college campus. My 2 year old mini lop rabbit, unfortunately, has to stay at my actual house about 15 minutes off campus. Therefore, I only get to see my rabbit a few times a week when I go home to check up on her. Other than that, my family (does their best) to take care of her. 

      So anyways, I come home today to my grandpa and mom telling me that my cousin came over to the house earlier in the morning to visit and let his pitbull run around the house without the leash – more specifically, let his dog chase after my poor rabbit! My grandpa and mom didn’t understand the severity of the situation and laughed it off. I, however, I was completely horrified and livid at them! They just casually told me that my rabbit was frantically running around so fast to get away from the dog! Now my poor baby is absolutely terrified of any sort of movement. Any type of movement or sound around her sends her running behind the washer machine (where she squishes herself in to hide). 

      I checked her to see if there was any injury and it does not seem like it. She seems to be walking, hopping, and (unfortunately) running fine. She eats and poops. She even flopped tonight! But still, now any movement or sound will send her running to hide. I know she is a prey animal and their instinct is to hide, but she usually is very trusting of everyone in the house but is now obviously very traumatized.
      Is this something she will get over? It just breaks my heart that she feels so scared and threatened and that I can’t take her with my to my apartment. I’m worried that now she will just spend most of the day hiding behind our washing machine, in fear that the dog will come back and chase her. How can I make her feel better? 

      Any advice, friends? 


    • jerseygirl
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      Oh that’s awful. I would have been so angry also. I hope they realised just how risky that was.

      Im really glad to read she is eating and toileting. Something like that could easily send a rabbit into gi stasis. She’s very much gone into the prey species zone by the sounds of it. She may become more confident again if things at home return to normal routine but it could take some time.Strong routine helps them feel more secure. My reaction when my rabbits have had a scare is to coddle them. I just want to hold them and make them understand it safe. It is SO hard to resist doing that! But really, we just have to act as if things are normal and allow them to come around on their own.

      So there is absolutely no chance you could have her at your college? Sometimes they allow rabbits as they are viewed as caged pets.


    • Whitesnowy
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      What a mess! Keep an eye on your rabbit. Sometimes stress can unleash diseases. Let’s hope she will overcome that event without further consequences.

      By the way, your “caring” parents and the owner of that dog are as dumb as hell.


    • Love4Bunny
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      CookieLop, I’m sorry to hear about this stressful situation. I, personally, would be so mad if anyone (family or not) unleashed an animal with prey drive on a prey animal (that’s one way of explaining it to your family). I don’t have anything against pitties, but that is an unequal dynamic. It’s like a large man chasing a small, frightened & crying toddler, and the adults in the room start chuckling about it. That being said, your rabbit is eating, pooping and flopping, and THAT is the best outcome of this situation. Even if your rabbit has changed some, continue to be gentle and patient with your rabbit. That is the best thing to do when we don’t know how to help (aside from the vets). Moving forward, I would make certain your family understands the duty of care to your rabbit. You have a right to ask this of them & will have to educate them. If it were my cousin, I would have a serious word with them about how that should never happen again in your house. Lay out some boundaries. I am older than all my cousins, so I do find it easier to do this, but if it doesn’t come naturally to you, this is a good time to practise! Your bun bun has the right to a safe environment and your cousin should care about you enough to do the right thing. After all, you are the rabbit expert in your household.


    • Cookie Lop
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      Oh gosh, I really hope this doesn’t lead to GI stasis. Yes, all I want to do right now is pet her and cuddle her but any sort of movement near her and she freaks out. I thought that would calm her down but it just freaks her out more. Now that you mention it, I guess I should act as if things are normal and let her come around. 

      And no, my landlord was very stern when she told us no pets allowed in the building. At least she’s within driving distance and I will get to move back home eventually after the school year is over… I’m just a very protective bunny mama and this whole situation has been stressing me out. It kills me that I can’t take her with me ): 


    • Cookie Lop
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      I checked on her again this morning and I could tell she was still jittery. She hopped around me and accepted a few pets but a lot of movement still freaks her out and she will quickly hop away and get ready to go into hiding. She is eating, drinking, and pooping though!

      And yes, I AGREE. I am still furious at my mom, my cousin, and that dog. I get so heated thinking of this whole situation. I live with my mom, sister, and grandparents. They all love having my rabbit around, but they of course aren’t as attentive (or anal )  when it comes to caring for her, as I am. After the argument I had with my mom, I think she understands that what happened was not okay. It’s just that since I live on campus, there is no way of me watching out for my poor bun bun 24/7 as I would like. Right now, I’m just so thankful that the dog didn’t end up catching my rabbit! I can only imagine what kind of injuries she would have if a dog had got a hold of my rabbit in her mouth. I just wish there was something I could do to make her feel better right now… I hate that I can’t have her live with me during the school year 


    • Cookie Lop
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      Of course, I don’t have anything against pitbulls either! It’s just any dog that comes after my little bun bun, will be on my hit list lol.  But like you said, it is like a scary man going after a toddler! I’m completely horrified and stressed out because I can’t take her with me to my apartment where I know I would be able to keep an eye on her better. 

      I got into a huge, heated argument with my mom and grandpa and I think my mom better understands the severity of the situation now. In my home there is my mom, sister, and grandparents. They all love having my rabbit around but they just don’t take good care of her as I do! Maybe I’m anal, but aren’t all bunny mamas?! Rabbits are fragile pets and I would be devastated if anything happened to Cookie. I also let my cousin to never bring his dog over again and if for some reason he is in the area, keep it on a leash! 


    • Odette
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      I’m glad you made it clear to your cousin that the dog was not to be in the house unleashed. I am also glad that you let your family know how dangerous and unfunny this was.

      I am an anal bunny mama also, so my heart went into my throat when I read your original post. My mom and bf don’t always understand why I am so cautious with Odette, but in the end, they agree that while we all love her, she is my baby and they respect my boundaries. Sounds like your family is willing to do that also and that’s a huge positive.


    • Jessica
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      not only is it unsafe for the rabbit, but it is enforcing the dog that its okay to catch and kill something smaller then itself.  i hope poor little cookie gets over this trauma without an issue and i hope your family has learned its not funny or safe to sick a dog on a helpless animal. i would of been crying and screaming bloody murder if that happened. 


    • Nishi
      Participant
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      Well, have you ever thought of having your bun at your apartment regardless if it stresses you that much? I had my buns in my dorm room for a year and assuming you have your own room or your roommates are cool with it, there should be no trouble even at an on campus apartment– the RAs are usually only intrusive at the dormitories rather than apartments. Either way, I got away with it. I believe the worst they could do if they found out is to make you get rid of them– then you can hand your bun back to your family’s care. But not trying to get you in trouble! :p


    • jerseygirl
      Moderator
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      They may have seen the dog as not a risk (and maybe he is gentle) and that’s why they thought it no big deal. But the fact is your rabbit wouldn’t know that. So unless a rabbit has been slowly introduced or raised with a dog, they’re going to be terrified.
      As long as they can try think from your rabbits perspective more they’ll hopefully be more aware.

      Make sure they keep her safe when children are around also. I know of a rabbit that died after children where chasing it around at a party. : (

      If your cousin cannot see the issue, use a scenario of something that would terrify his dog. Say like fireworks. How would he feel if you turned up at his place when he wasn’t there and set of fireworks outside. I can’t think of another scenario, sorry! But hopefully you get the idea. Put him and his dog in your shoes so that he understands.

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Forum HOUSE RABBIT Q & A Dog chased my rabbit