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View Full Version : Are baby rabbits suppose to bite/nip?



Mel D
09-03-2010, 07:31 PM
Hi, My 10week old lop doesn't like being handled he constantly nips and nudges your hand, what am I doing wrong?
I have 4 other bunnys and they didn't bite/nip when they were babies.

Becky86
09-03-2010, 07:35 PM
Not all rabbits like to be handled :) When a rabbit is picked up, its either 'flight or fright' Theyre either absolutely petrified so they dont move, or they jump! Your baby is obviously scared :( Id spend time getting down to his level and talking to him so he gets used to your voice. Offer him treats so he gets used to coming to you :)

Are you sure he is nipping? Scamp spends ages licking us! xXx

VickiP
09-03-2010, 07:38 PM
It depends on the rabbit and the way it's been handled. This rabbit may have already learned 'self-defence' - the only way they can defend themselves is to bite/nip us, it's indicative I think that your bunny is actually fearful. I would avoid picking up and start at the beginning by letting your bun come to you, sit on the floor or lie down and remain still, when your bunny nudges you it means it wants your attention so ensure he/she can see your hand by coming round the side rather than from the front over the head which can frighten them, hold your hand flat as you would with a horse and let your bunny sniff you before you stroke it. Make the effort to hand feed your bunny and a baby particularly will need lots of toys/things to do to burn off excess energy. Hormones of course may play a part but, often this sort of behaviour indicates frustration in one form or another.

Does bunny have lots of hay and tunnels/boxes to jump in and on and it's own little zone?

Mel D
09-03-2010, 07:40 PM
quote=Becky

Are you sure he is nipping? Scamp spends ages licking us!

He is definately nipping, sometimes he does it when he wants the toilet but he seems to do it alot now, I should give him time as I have only had him 3 days.

VickiP
09-03-2010, 07:43 PM
quote=Becky

Are you sure he is nipping? Scamp spends ages licking us!

He is definately nipping, sometimes he does it when he wants the toilet but he seems to do it alot now, I should give him time as I have only had him 3 days.

Gosh yes Mel, very early days and in fact if he is nipping to tell you something that is actually really good, I would avoid telling him off at all costs, keep it really positive, sounds like you might have a switched on little buck actually!

Mel D
09-03-2010, 07:57 PM
I don't know whether I have done the right thing, I thought he might be a little bored, So I slowly introduced him with my neutered 8mth old male yesterday with no problems and today they are getting on really well and are cuddled up together in their house I think they have made friends, there has been no sign of aggression and when they are running around in the living room they do a dance and they run around kicking their legs in the air.

bunnyhopper
09-03-2010, 09:47 PM
I don't know whether I have done the right thing, I thought he might be a little bored, So I slowly introduced him with my neutered 8mth old male yesterday with no problems and today they are getting on really well and are cuddled up together in their house I think they have made friends, there has been no sign of aggression and when they are running around in the living room they do a dance and they run around kicking their legs in the air.

See this thread... DONT try to put two male buns together, especially if one is un-neutered.

http://forums.rabbitrehome.org.uk/showthread.php?t=219021

Your bun is still trying to adapt to new surroundings, and you, and is showing you signs that he is frightened.
Give him chance to acclimatize to his new family, before you consider having him neutered and then possibly (but not recommended) introducing him to another male.
You would be much safer after he is neutered to get advice on bonding him to a female neutered rabbit.

Gem
09-03-2010, 10:46 PM
As he's still so young, I'd say you were safe having them together as long as you keep an eye on them and have your young one neutered as soon as possible...it may come that they need to be separated before his op but rebonding after the op should be easy. :wave:

I'm guessing he's Snowy in your sig? :love:

A lot of bunnies are very tolerant of younger un neutered partners even when they hit maturity, just be very careful would be my advise and yes we've had two un neutered bonded bucks come in and be perfectly fine together :?

bunlover
09-03-2010, 10:48 PM
As he's still so young, I'd say you were safe having them together as long as you keep an eye on them and have your young one neutered as soon as possible...it may come that they need to be separated before his op but rebonding after the op should be easy. :wave:

I'm guessing he's Snowy in your sig? :love:

i agree if already geting along then jsut keep an eye on them x

VickiP
09-03-2010, 11:05 PM
:lol: So you had some conflicting advice there regarding the bonding of the two boys, I can't really advise on that tbh as I haven't ever had direct experience however, I have read through a lot of threads and had a male from a baby and I would say that it is the older one you will have to watch I think, if he is unneutered his hormones will be up and down and he may intimidate the newbie - I personally wouldn't have introduced the newbie to the older male so soon just because you need to bond with him first and it's an awful lot for a new rabbit to take on board when they are still adjusting to their new home. I think if it were me I would look to house them side by side so that they can still see each other and smell each other but, not harm one another at all - no nose nipping though the bars. Get them both neutered and keep them like that maybe for a couple of weeks to settle down and then bond them on a neutral area. I don't think I would risk a young male in with an older one in those circumstances, it will be difficult to monitor eating and output with them together aswell and you need to monitor the newbie for at least a week to ensure he is eating and well. Really he should have his 'greens' introduced at a slightly different rate to the older bun aswell.

Dustyrabbit
09-03-2010, 11:22 PM
Is it not necessary to observe a period of quarantine with new rabbits before you introduce them to existing buns?

Gem
09-03-2010, 11:39 PM
It really depends how you feel on 'quarantine' because some things can show up after you've had the rabbit more than a period of time, such as two weeks :)

areia
10-03-2010, 11:45 AM
see personally you get a new bun you keep them apart from other buns for around a two weeks period, you dont know exactly the history of the wee thing, and just because hes so young, doesnt mean hes not carrying anything,

As for bonding, two males that are not brothers are more difficult, at the mo because his hormones havent kicked in, he may not feel a threat, or be a threat to the other bun, once they do, ( as this can start as young as 12 weeks ) you may have a problem, if they fight, there is a high chance of ruining the bond even after neutering.

While its not impossiable, to me the risks are too high, nipping is normal and often settles along with litter training after neutering,
uneutered boys fighing is truely a horrific sight often ripping holes in ears and damaging testicals as main points,causeing lots of damage and a very expensive vet bill, and unless you can keep and eye on them 24/7, ( it can take 30 seconds to inflict that amount of damage and once locked its very hard to seperate too, for which you can cause more damage).

I'd go on the safer side of caution, and wait let your wee one settle get used to you then once both buns are neutered and hormones have settled after, takes average 6 to 8 weeks post op for this, then consider bonding

Please do not feel you are in any rush, bunnies take quite a lot of time to adjust to everything, :) I dont mean to sound harsh, but its coming across very rushed, Id just enjoy the lil one they dont stay so cute and teeny for long then the mischief starts, :lol: