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The subject of intentional breeding or meat rabbits is prohibited. The answers provided on this board are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. It is your responsibility to assess the information being given and seek professional advice/second opinion from your veterinarian and/or qualified behaviorist.

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BUNNY 911 – If your rabbit hasn’t eaten or pooped in 12-24 hours, call a vet immediately!  Don’t have a vet? Check out VET RESOURCES 

The subject of intentional breeding or meat rabbits is prohibited. The answers provided on this board are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet.  It is your responsibility to assess the information being given and seek professional advice/second opinion from your veterinarian and/or qualified behaviorist.

BINKYBUNNY FORUMS

Forum BONDING Feeling in over my head….

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    • Donteattheapples2
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      I have a 7 month old neutered male and recently took in a 3 year old spayed female in the hopes that they might bond and I could adopt her. It’s only been a few days but after I read and followed some bad advice on bonding I now know is wrong the two got into a pretty vicious fight (thankfully through cage bars).

      They’re both very sweet buns but the new female is very territorial and keeps trying to attack the male when they’re close. I’ve been keeping them in separate rooms with a baby gate they can’t bite through so they get used to each other but I’m wondering if it’s even worth it.

      Could they bond after fighting like that? And if it’s better not to try, should I keep them completely separate until the foster finds a forever home?

      I’m new to bunnies and I’m just really not sure what to do in this situation.


    • Ellie from The Netherlands
      Participant
      2418 posts Send Private Message

      Bonding is a very stressful process for everyone, and there is no golden standard which works for every pair of rabbits. That makes it difficult.

      We’re reintroducing a brother and sister after they’ve been neutered/spayed. They seemed really at ease with each other and even had some dates on non-neutral ground. It all seemed to go so well until we had a big fight: beating at each other with their paws, nipping legs and fur flying everywhere. But now they’re very calm on neutral ground and can be with each other for 1,5 hours without fighting.

      We’re new to this too, but this is the advice that we got here on the forum: put them in pens with some distance between them, and have them swap pens every 1-2 days for a month. This makes them less territorial.


    • GlennTheLionhead
      Participant
      267 posts Send Private Message

      I don’t think a fight through the bars means that they wont bond, I’ve heard lots of stories where bonding has worked in spite of a fight.

      First things to consider is how long ago they were spay and neutered, its advisable to wait at least 5 weeks after spay/neuter for hormones to die down befire begining any bonding or pre-bonding.

      In some cases its best to separate the buns for a couple weeks out of sight and mind to let them cool down.. However that is usually in the case of severe fights and given this was between cage bars it was possibly not actually that severe.

      Given the fight happened through bars theres a few things you could try. Firstly, pre-bonding is very important for most pairs, have them housed side by side but not sharing a fence as you have pictured in the photo, you may house them like this for 2-4 weeks depending on their behaviour, do scent swaps i.e swapping their toys and blanket. Feed them together in sight of eachother so they can become calm in eachothers presence… They should eventually get used to eachother. Swapping which side of the habitat they are in every day or so can help, although I have not used this method before but only because my boy goes insane if you pick him up and takes a few minutes to actually catch… So it might not be worth the stress to them in certain circumstances but if they will allow you to pick them up definitely try it.

      You should notice them calm down overtime hopefully, they should start flooping together (which i see they are in the pic), mirroring eachothers behaviour such as eating hay at the same time, using the litter tray at the same time.. all positive things.

      Some buns are just super territorial in their spaces and end up behaving completely differently when bonding in neutral space.. My previous female Bella would strongly guard her territory but ended up bonding with my boy and being very loving.

      Bonding is super stressful and can be lengthy but the majority of pairs do work! 🙂


    • DanaNM
      Moderator
      7577 posts Send Private Message

      Glenn and Ellie gave excellent advice, agree 100%. 🙂 I would give them some cool down time and more pre-bonding and see how they do! If no bun was injured in their fight then I think they have a good shot.

      . . . The answers provided in this discussion are for general guideline purposes only. The information is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or a qualified behaviorist.  

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Forum BONDING Feeling in over my head….