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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 sharing food

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    • alix
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      2 posts Send Private Message

      Hi all,

      First, thanks so much for all your advice on the forum – I have been lurking and reading a lot since adopting my first bun in the fall. I recently adopted a friend for her and they have bonded pretty quickly, and honestly act like they have known each other forever. My new boy is very food motivated and always looking to eat. My girl is a slow eater who likes to eat her salads and pellets in several courses with naps in between, only now that he is in the picture she can’t really do that because he’ll just eat everything. How have you all dealt with this kind of thing? Do buns start eating more efficiently as they get used to being in a pair/group? I have started having them forage for their pellets which seems to have helped, but I’m worried about things continuing to be lopsided. He doesn’t seem to prevent her from eating at all, and they share food without any aggression I can see, it’s just that she will just wander off and leave him to continue vacuuming it up. I am probably also being a bit protective of her since he’s the new kid, even though she seems very happy to have a friend and they are very sweet together. They are both free roaming in the same space, so it’s not super practical to feed separately but I could definitely make things work if necessary. I have two litter boxes side by side with a large pile of hay between them since they seem to prefer this setup, so I am not as worried about her hay consumption.


    • pinkiemarie
      Participant
      372 posts Send Private Message

      Honestly my experience has been the opposite. They used to gobble their food up like little fluffy wolves and now they eat so slowly that sometimes they don’t even finish their pellets, and they only get 1/8 cup per bunny per meal so it’s not like they have a lot. I even switched from Oxbow Essentials to Garden Select because I thought the flavor might make them eat faster. I think that the slowness comes with food security because they’ve never missed a meal so if they aren’t hungry right this second they aren’t worried about not finishing. Your boy might slow down after he’s been there a while and knows he’s always going to have enough to eat. In the meantime he could get fat and it isn’t fair to your girl to miss out. Are you at home during the day so it would be possible to feed less but more often?


      • alix
        Participant
        2 posts Send Private Message

        Oh, great point about the food security- he was dumped in a vacant lot so he may just be feeling insecure still. I unfortunately work outside the house but I could maybe do smaller amounts of both pellets and veggies twice a day (I have been doing pellets in the morning and veg in the evening) or maybe even a second dinner at night when she is more active. I kind of did that last night and I think she got most of it since he had filled up earlier.


    • DanaNM
      Moderator
      6232 posts Send Private Message

      I was worried about this with previous pairs, but they seem to sort themselves out and eat what they need. You can keep track of your slow-eater’s weight to make sure she isn’t losing weight if you’re worried about it. I think doing a couple smaller meals is also a good idea, as long as it doesn’t reduce hay consumption!

      . . . 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.  


    • Susanne
      Participant
      191 posts Send Private Message

      Hi, I’ve been in a similar situation. My newest Rabbit also eats much slower than my original.  Instead of trying to separate them, she basically just gets a little less food which seems to work fine. She maybe has figured out she needs to eat what she can in one sitting at least. I cut them back on morning pellets because he was overeating, but for some reason they’ve both lost some interest in pellets and they both at least get some throughout the morning. She also doesn’t eat veggies so I have been feeding her a few extra pellets while the other gets veggies, and sit and monitor until they finish. He used to try to go steal them but not much anymore. I have learned how much she can eat in the time he can eat all the veggies 🙂 When I give them a treat I give her less and they finish at the same time.

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Forum BONDING sharing food