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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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Forum BEHAVIOR Rabbit seems scared of me suddenly

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    • Remisaurus
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        I’ve had my three year old bun, Cindel, for a little over two years now. She has always been really chill, letting me pet her and hold her.

        Now she is running from me, grunting and even lunging at me if I try to touch her. She will still eat out of my hand, but I cannot pet or hold her anymore.

        This all started when I took her out of her hutch for my 2 year old niece to pet, sho she has never met before. She did not even get to touch her before Cindel bolted back into her hutch and hid in the back corner. She then ate out of my niece’s hand, but still wanted nothing to do with her physically.

        Is it possible she does not trust me anyone because she didn’t like my niece? I don’t remember if the shelter I got her from said anything about her with kids, so maybe she got scared?

        Health-wise she seems perfectly fine. Eating fine, drinking fine, pooping fine. She plays by herself like normal as well, and when I’m not close to her, her body language says she’s relaxed.

        Any ideas on what’s going on? Or how I can fix our bond? I feel so bad if my niece did scare her and now she doesn’t trust me.


      • DanaNM
        Moderator
        8839 posts Send Private Message

          How long ago did this happen? What is her housing set-up like? Do you always have to pick her up to take her out of her hutch? It does sound like your niece scared her, but I’m wondering if she feels more vulnerable because you always have to pick her up?

          . . . 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.  


        • maanmallik1
          Participant
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            It sounds like your rabbit Cindel’s sudden change in behavior could be attributed to the stress or fear she experienced when she was introduced to your niece. Rabbits are sensitive animals and can be easily startled or stressed by new people, environments, or experiences. Here’s what you might consider:

            1. Stress and Fear in Rabbits: Rabbits can exhibit fear or stress through behaviors like running away, hiding, grunting, or lunging. These behaviors could be triggered by new people, especially young children who may be unpredictable in their movements or noises.
            2. Building Trust Again: To rebuild trust with Cindel, it’s important to give her space and time to feel safe again. Avoid forcing interactions and instead let her approach you on her terms. You can encourage her by offering treats and speaking to her in a calm, gentle voice.
            3. Slow and Gentle Reintroduction: If you want her to get used to your niece or other new people, it should be done very gradually. Let Cindel observe from a distance where she feels safe, and only proceed if she shows curiosity or calmness.
            4. Ensuring a Safe Environment: Make sure her living space is comfortable and secure. A consistent routine, a quiet environment, and familiar objects can help her feel more at ease.
            5. Monitor for Other Signs: While you’ve mentioned that she seems healthy, it’s always a good idea to monitor for any other signs of illness or discomfort, as health issues can sometimes cause changes in behavior.
            6. Professional Advice: If her behavior continues to be aggressive or you’re unable to rebuild trust, consider consulting a veterinarian or a rabbit behavior specialist. They can provide more specific advice and rule out any underlying health issues.

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        Forum BEHAVIOR Rabbit seems scared of me suddenly