View Full Version : How do you know when a bonding isn't working?

20-10-2004, 04:06 PM
How do you know a bonding is failing? I don't want to let it get to the point where the bunnies are scared or hurt.

Wilson still seems to just hunch up in a corner and get mounted by the other bunnie. This is 3 days later and a couple of sessions a day (all quite short times). Today she rubbed her chin on his ears, but then seemed to try and get under him. Then she pulled out some of his fur. But in all of this he didn't seem to run away. In a less neutral area he ran and got upset, here he just seemed to freeze. But I don't want him to get too stressed out.

20-10-2004, 04:14 PM
Alfie spent a lot of time sitting in a corner getting his head humped at first when I was bonding him with Jasper. Gradually he got more confident though and they ended up great friends.

Bunnies have scent glands under their chin for marking, it sounds like she marked him as hers and then asked him to groom her by sticking her head under his nose. Its a bit rude not refuse to groom a bunny so she might have nipped at his fur to let him know she was anoyed.

It really does sound like she wants to be friends and he's just a little nervous and needs more time to get used to it all. Just keep up the sessions extending them as he gets more confidence.

The worry now will be all worth it in a few weeks when you see they cuddled up together.

Tam :)

20-10-2004, 04:19 PM
She was trying to get under him more at the back end. She does do the head down thing with me so I was watching out for that with no luck ;-( Maybe it doesn't matter what end she goes down at? He did just look very scared - I can see why he probs heard me running from his this am when she nipped me ;-(((((

I did read the bonding diary and saw we we at the first stage. And on one day they did lie about and groom themselves and things. But after a few time of her nipping me more than five minutes and I start to get nervous. Its only a small bathroom there is nowhere for me to hide ;-(

20-10-2004, 04:22 PM

http://pages.prodigy.net/indianahawkeye/newpage06/1.gifTAMSIN!!!!!!!! :shock: I have never seen you using that word before! http://pages.prodigy.net/indianahawkeye/newpage12/1.gif

20-10-2004, 05:28 PM
Humped does sound more like it is - mounted sounds more Jackie collins ;-)

20-10-2004, 05:30 PM
I've read a few old postings and articles on bonding including this one


I must admit that I would most certainly fall into the "quitting at the first sign of trouble" category as I don't think my nerves could stand the stress of them fighting/ establishing dominancy etc.

Good luck girl


20-10-2004, 06:40 PM
He does look kinda sad and all disevelved when shes ruffed him up a bit. But now they are both all relaxed and chomping on carrots. Maybe this is a good sign? I hope so cos I am all willing to stay up all night, they aren't coming out of that bathroom untill they are best pals!

20-10-2004, 08:45 PM
It all sounds very positive, Amber!!!

I know, I am still a "bonding virgin" but knowing how intact rabbits interact (or fail to!) when fighting or mating, believe me, if this relationship was doomed, you would have had World War Three by now and two very upset bunnies. They take milliseconds to decided they don't like each other and then the fur flies.

Truth be told, she probably puzzled why he hasn't wanted to jump her bones, as most male rabbits are unstoppable sex machines! They have some minor political niceties to establish from the sound of it... an entire female is always going to rank above a neutered male.... and then I think all will be very well indeed :)

20-10-2004, 09:02 PM
Hi Amber

He sounds like Kip, when I was bonding her to Buster she went into shock mode when he first humped her and spend a lot of time being nipped and in a corner (protecting her rear), you have to be tough tho and let them get over it. She went very very quiet for a few days and I was worried about her.

In the end I just dumped them in together in their new run and let them bloddy well get on with it (scuse the french) and hey are fine together now. :lol: I did worry for about 2 days tho and spent a lot of time with them while they are in the run.

Good luck and I am sure they will be fine

With love

20-10-2004, 09:28 PM
But surely you can have the other failier - when one just isn't interested? But in that case will they also act agressively? Or just sit there and take it?

Now at the stage where she seems to be damanding attention and hes not for giving it. She seems very put out by this. But thanks to the hand over eyes instructions I got given shes now not nipping me (hey I am inchange here love!)

20-10-2004, 09:43 PM
He's shy!!!!!!!

Poor little bloke, quite likely the last rabbit who ever paid him any attention was his mum... and he's neutered so he won't respond with the usual Buckly "unstopppable sex machine" mode... no wonder he's confused!

But he doesn't hate her... he's just wondering what to do next!

Soon as he feels secure enough to hold up his own head, I bet he will cautiously, shyly, start responding. I would like to be a fly on the wall when he ventures to return his first lick.

Golden rule - if they aren't trying to disembowel each other, then something is going well, and just have patience :)

20-10-2004, 09:50 PM
Oh I do hope its that. Shes such a love (bar the nipping but that WILL be sorted out!) and really seems confused by the lack of love back from him. I am hoping that another bunnie with chill him out, give him confidence and kinda take the attention heat off him.

Oh well, I bet you can guess whose going to be posting to the early hours eh?

21-10-2004, 07:06 AM
Rabbits who don't live with rabbits often just don't know how to interact with other rabbits when they meet. They learn from each other. Chips has been bonded more often than our other bunnies, due to him being the oldest, and the difference is obvious. When we first bonded him he was skitty and nippy and nervous and didn't know what to do. Now he's done it a few times, he's used to it, knows how to interact with other bunnies and can just get on with it. The bunnies with less experience are still unnerved by the experience.

If you'd lived all alone all your life and suddenly another human showed up and wanted to be friends, you'd be a little unsure of yourself too. He just needs some time to get used to things.

21-10-2004, 10:58 AM
I guess so. But then they seem to know other bunnie signals - like the ear moorse code and the chattering teeth.

By 3am (my bed time) she had mounted him (several times), they had relaxed and eaten together, and he had groomed her a few times.

I have just moved them (after bathroom time doing much of the same) to the bit they will share with the cats in the babies room. Hes a bit more feisty today. She has previously run round this space on her own for a day and he has used it for many days for exerice. So its a half way point really. Hes a bit less happy about being sat on and she seems more jumpy also. But we will see.

21-10-2004, 11:15 AM
Already hes groomed her and they are both flopped out now.

Ohh last nite I got to stroke Wilson when he was flopped out. This girl is a great inflence on him :) Plus this gives me time to clean the bathroom before my housemates back.

21-10-2004, 11:18 AM
Awww, thats great news, bunnies only flop out when they are relaxed! Maybe you can fit in an afternoon nap, I think you deserve it :D


21-10-2004, 11:35 AM
Its ok I slept from 3-9am this morning. I just didn't have the guts to trust miss destructive with the wire from the storeage heater. They can pack a fair old wallop. But I have left the day free for just letting them get on with it, so we will see how it goes.

21-10-2004, 11:44 AM
Sounds like you're doing a great job :)

Keep us posted. Maybe Wilson letting you stroke him was his way of saying 'thank you' as deep down he really does want a girlfriend. :wink:

21-10-2004, 12:21 PM
I do hope so!

I still don't get if there is a disintristed bunnie who doesn't strongly object ie you can have no violence but it just doesn't work out.

21-10-2004, 06:44 PM
points to her two bunnies in Wilson hutch. Beams

21-10-2004, 08:18 PM
Yay!! Well done for sticking out all the stress! :D


21-10-2004, 08:25 PM
But worth it to see them snuggled up together :shock:

21-10-2004, 08:47 PM
just caught up with this thread. sounds like you're really doing a grand job! hope all is well at the mo and continues that way. good luck.

21-10-2004, 08:53 PM
Well hopefully bar litter training (that shes lost since coming to my place :( ) its all job done.

Now I just have to find a scatter proof food dish. The run looks like someones being running over the food dishes and scattering them everywhere, erm hey wait....

21-10-2004, 09:03 PM
woo hoo!

Seeeeee..... told you it would work!
Well done for having nerves of steel and patience... patience always wins.

Three cheers for Wilson, poor liddle shy bunny done good :)

21-10-2004, 10:24 PM
My housemate just came back from a work trip. I proudly showed him the bunnies all curled up together. He just said 'see I told you to just stick them together'.

21-10-2004, 10:53 PM
Tch! typical :roll:

Well done you for persevering!!!!