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Forum BEHAVIOR [venting] My bunny can be very difficult and sometimes I can’t handle it

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    • Lewis n Pumpkin
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        I don’t dislike him. I love him very much. But I dislike the anxiety and worries he gives me because of his behaviors. He has always been very curious and active and brave, which is a good thing. But because of his personality, he gets into trouble that could’ve gotten himself killed. Once, when I was changing the sheets and had to lift the extremely heavy mattress up, he jumped underneath it and couldn’t make it out in time when i put the mattress back down. Good thing I started looking for him as soon as I finished with the sheets that i realized he must’ve been curious and crawled underneath, and of course there he was, laying flat (he’s ok afterwards). He’d eat rubber, house plants, just anything he could get into his mouth. He used to pee the bed at 2 am and right next to my face. He bites me when I groom him and is impossible to hold still for vet check ups. He attacks my cat and she’s scared of him. And every time i clip his nails it literally takes 3 days to finish. Last week, he went out of our bedroom when I went to turn off the lights in the living room, and couldn’t make it back in time when I went in to sleep. I was so tired I fell asleep right away. The next morning when i couldn’t find him, i thought i was going to die of a cardiac arrest. But he ate a whole banana i left outside and some old hay when I took their litter trash out the night before and managed to survive. So many times he could’ve literally been killed, but because he’s a fuckin rabbit and all there is in that coconut head is bananas and strawberries, he still does the same shit, getting too curious and doing things recklessly! I have pretty bad anxiety about their health from reading people’s stories about their sick or injured pets, and I’d get pretty bad headache and stomachache whenever these things happen. Like if their pooops change color, i get anxiety. If they lose like a gram in the weight, i lose my mind. Yes, I know hes a rabbit and he didn’t mean it. Yes i know i should he patient. Yes i know i should be grateful that he’s still healthy and alive. But oh my god… it’s going on 3 years with them and my body gives out all the same whenever sth unwanted happen. this whole pet ownership thing has tested my ability to be resilient so many times. Sometimes I feel broken by the challenges i’d faced emotionally. And sometimes I feel empowered by the length i’ve gone to take care of them despite my distress. Today i feel very broken, though…

        ps: i just rlly needed to vent cus i dont have other rabbit owner friends i can talk to about this. So pls dont judge me…


      • Bam
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          You’re very welcome to vent!

          And yes, life with rabbits often is a bit of an emotional rollercoaster. They are so fragile and yet so resilient in many ways.
          Your bun seems to be a very adventurous little boy! That’s extremely charming of course, and it means he leads an interesting and probably very fulfilling bunny life -but it definitely is deeply exhausting for the human to have a bun that gets into trouble pretty much all the time.

          To have anxiety is not good of course, but I think rabbits need humans that are very vigilant. We do need to keep an eye on their poop and various other subtle signs of changes in health status. Non-bunny people often cant understand this and might even consider it ridiculous or neurotic. But buns are not wait-and-see-animals. It is very difficult though to know when we’re over-reacting – because sometimes, or even many times, we do over-react. And that’s why I find it so very helpful to be able to discuss these things with other bunny people.

          A thing to keep in mind when reading forum posts about rabbits or really any other pets, is that people mostly post about their pets when there is some sort of trouble that they want help with or input on. Pet forums are kind of the opposite to Instagram where people tend to mostly post about their pets when things are great. The actual “truth” to pet parenthood lies somewhere in between.


          • Lewis n Pumpkin
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              Thanks for this I really need to hear it from somebody else… and you’re right about the truth in between. I definitely will keep that in mind next time instead of spiraling (and we know there will be a next time…). Cheers! 💕


          • DanaNM
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              Ah the joys of pet ownership! Some of them really seem to love to try to off themselves! I currently have a cat with food allergies that tries her hardest to steal food any chance she gets… she was eating mouthfuls of pancake batter when I turned my back for ONE SECOND. lol. we laugh so we don’t cry of course.

              You are certainly welcome to vent.

              One thing I notice is it sounds like your bun is mostly free roam but has a tendency to get into some trouble. Perhaps adding some fencing and reducing the area he’s allowed in a bit to safe-zone would help a bit? I have found that when I’m getting really frustrated with a pet the best option is to remove them from the situation (e.g. the cat is being obsessive with trying to steal our food: solution is to lock her in the bedroom while the food is out so we don’t all go nuts). With dogs especially it’s important to figure out what you want them to do instead of the troublesome behavior. With buns I think this applies to creating spaces that are their safe areas and toys that are their safe toys, so we can redirect when we need them to stop getting into all of our stuff.

              It is important to find healthy ways to calm down and regulate emotions when our pets are stressing us. Of course the usual deep breathing can help a lot. Also don’t be too hard on yourself. These things are stressful because you love him.

              . . . 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.  


              • Lewis n Pumpkin
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                  I will make note of that, thank you! I definitely was hesitant to quarantine them if I can’t keep an eye on them because I feel bad, but no more! The devil works hard but Lewis is always working harder…

                  I do get down on myself whenever I lose my cool… I lectured the kid as if to him it isn’t gibberish and noises. At the end of the day, I guess the frustration is probably better translated in other ways or maybe just let pass instead of letting it grow too big. I’ll try to laugh it off next time — feels like that’s a better coping mechanism. After eating a handful of my plants the other night, he turned out to be fine. So maybe Bam was right up there I was probably overreacting…

                  I bet the batter was delicious and your cat enjoyed it for as long as they could lol. I assume that made for some pretty funny photos!

                  Thanks! 💕


              • LBJ10
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                  I think we can all relate! I do agree with Dana though. Sometimes structure is a good thing.


                  • Lewis n Pumpkin
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                      Thank God! You can’t imagine the number of times where I’d thought I was the worst pet owner in the world.

                      Will definitely be putting my foot down from now. Unless he puts his down first. Then he gets what he wants… (kidding)


                    • LBJ10
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                        I know you feel bad. Especially when they throw a tantrum realizing they aren’t going to get what they want anymore. But it is for the best, it really is! I use grid panels to keep my bunny out of certain areas and he’s not allowed in certain rooms at all. I don’t want to think about what he might do if he were to get under my bed, for example.

                        Fun fact – I used a toy blocker to keep him from going under the couch. I don’t need him trying to burrow into the underside of it.


                      • DanaNM
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                          Agreed! Grid panels are awesome for blocking off areas. I use a combo of pet gates and grid panels to keep my buns where they’re supposed to be when they are free-roaming while we’re home and awake, and then they get locked into pens (also made out of grid panels) when they aren’t supervised or if we need them to be safely tucked away for any reason.

                          . . . 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 BEHAVIOR [venting] My bunny can be very difficult and sometimes I can’t handle it