View Full Version : bonding, should I wait?

29-11-2004, 06:35 AM
I cant believe the forum was down all day!! just when I needed you!!!!
I will be looking up all the bonding threads today!

After the initial meeting went well at the sanctuary. (they were stopped before any nipping/mounting started and I was advised to continue like that ?)

Yesterday I put Brian :?: on the landing - bunny proof and nueteral, there were lots of boxes and such distractions, he was exploring and seemed happy.
Brought Blueberry upstairs as soon as she was out her carrier she started thumping, now a couple of times in the past she has got upstairs and as she cant get down again :roll: she panics. So I think this is why.

She calmed down. she chased Brian almost constantly trying to nip him.

The poor boy seemed terrified :(

I am wondering if it was her thumping that scared him?
but then he is new here so doesn't know us and has to get used to life indoors.
I'm wondering wether to let him settle in a bit more before trying again? but I dont want to lose the initial success! :?

29-11-2004, 01:54 PM

I haven't actually bonded a pair myself (will be in about two weeks), but personally I would continue to try. As I think it will be more unnerving for him, to let him settle in and then give him something else to contend with. The sooner they can get on the better for everyone concerned and as long as there is no blood drawn there really shouldn't be too muck worry. Although as I said I have no experience with it, it's just my thoughts on the process.

29-11-2004, 06:10 PM
All I did when I brought Sparkee home was........

I put Sparkee on the floor and let him hop around while Shadow and Bugzee were in there house. Sparkee went up to the house and sniffed them out etc.

After about 1/2 an hour I let Bugzee and Shadow out.

We sat on the sofa and watched but all was well as there was a bit of chasing and that but nothing major.

Nearly a week later I still have no indoor house for Sparkee (as dad hasn`t come round to finish it :roll: ) So he has free range 24/7 while Bugzee and Shadow go back to bed at night in their house and when I go out.


29-11-2004, 07:17 PM
I think Brian was probably a little overwhelmed by it all. If the bonding went well at the rescue then it's worth keeping them both together as the stress of the new environment should actually strengthen the bond as he seeks comfort from Blueberry. However, because she's a bit panicked by being upstairs, that's going to rub off on him and then they just end up winding each other up. I think you're just going to have to take it a little slower. As well as Brian getting used to Blueberry and his new house, she also needs to get over her fear of being upstairs. So I reckon, just follow the usual routine of introductions, but end it if there are any extended thumpy moments. You often get the odd thump, but if there's thumping and huddling in the corner you won't really achieve anything.

29-11-2004, 09:02 PM
Not sure how tonight went. :?
Blueberry seems to have got over her fear of upstairs!
Again Brian was out first, when Blueberry came out she chased him, I didn't intefere, she had a few mouthfuls of fur. the chasing wasn't constant, just every now and then, in between blueberry groomed, ate and flopped out.
But Brian I would describe -as you said Bertie -huddling in the corner. Wouldn't move unless Blueberry came near, at one point she seemed to be grooming his ears, but he was frozen.
What next?

29-11-2004, 10:25 PM
When I bonded Alfie and Jasper, at first Alfie spent a lot of time in the corner. Just keep on with what your doing and hopefully as the days progress you'll find there is less chasing, Brain will gradually get more relaxed and brave coming out of the corner a bit and they will settle down and get on.

Here's their bonding diary: http://www.rabbitrehome.org.uk/care/bondingdiary.asp

Blueberry sounds quite relaxed about the whole thing and think you'll end up with a pair of bonded bunnies fairly shortly.

Best wishes,

Bino Wabbit
29-11-2004, 10:28 PM
My bun was matched through a sanctuary an everything seemed fine ,until my back was turned an there was fur everywhere! i didn't panic because there was no serious fight or injury. This went on for nearly two weeks and then they were fine. I was told to take them for a ride around in the car as this would help them bond but i didn't need to in the end.

30-11-2004, 06:23 AM
Does Brian like his food? Maybe a plate of greens would tempt him out of the corner and take his mind off being frightened.

30-11-2004, 06:40 AM
Thanks Tamsin for the diary link, It sounds like Brian needs a while to get used to everything, he'd probably be happier in a run outside, but I can only do it in the evenings, I think at the weekend I'll try outside depending on the weather.
I did try tempting with food last night Bertie, I put the bowl right next to him when Blue was flopped out the other side of the room, but he wasn't having any of it! Blue soon found it though and scoffed it :roll: I will try with greens tonight and see if he's more interested in them.
Thanks everyone, I will keep you posted.

01-12-2004, 01:15 PM
Last night was better in view of chasing, she only chased him twice.
The rest of the times blue went over to him he just lay flat to the floor.
Brian most of the time did not move! I tried tempting him with veg and even a bit of apple, would not budge. I left a bit of carrot next to him, when Blue had finished hers she nudged him over with her nose and ate his :roll:
Twice Blueberry laid next to him, which I guess is good, but he still did not move.
I'll just persevere, how long should I make the sessions with him like this? Is it stressing him out been frozen to the spot?

I have been swapping them round in their cages during the day.

02-12-2004, 08:25 PM
Well Brian actually moved tonight!
The first time Blue was over the other side, he got to his feet from the submissive pose. As soon as she saw him she raced over and he went straight back down nose to the floor.
A bit later Blue had her back to him, he sat up and started washing :shock: as soon as she see him she ran straight over, he went down again, she then sat right by his nose and groomed herself.
Heres hoping he's beginning to get some confidence.

02-12-2004, 08:36 PM
It sounds like they are progressing nicely. You should find he gradually sits up more and she gets fed up of racing up to him each time he does. You might find they both start washing whilst sat next to each other and accidently one will wash the the other.

In a few more days he'll probably be exploring :D


03-12-2004, 07:04 AM
Thanks Tam,
It is reassuring to know it's going well!!

04-12-2004, 08:55 AM
Last night went the same, Brian getting slightly braver.

Today I have got all day, so I have set the pws panels up in the middle of the living room, with toys, boxes, food, water, hay.
Although it's not strictly neutral I can't sit upstairs all day!
This way I can get things done and keep an eye on them at the same time.
I shall let them get on with it and will update later.

04-12-2004, 04:59 PM
Well? Its later give us an update!!! :D


04-12-2004, 06:47 PM
Well, they were together from 7am till 1pm, a bit of chaseing,
Brian was more active. When Blue was washing herself he kept going up to her offering his nose for a lick but she just would not oblige :roll:
when Blue was asleep and he'd got the courage to move I put some more food in (Blue had eaten it all earlier) he was eating but it didn't take long for Blue to realise there was food, they so nearly shared, but Blue dug the bowl away from him and he went back to nose down.

I am pleased to see Brian getting more confident, he was washing himself quite a bit, but you can see him flinch when Blueberry moves.

I've used one of the pws panels as a divider, so now they are apart but closer than when I had Brian in the ferplast cage.

Does it sound like it's going ok? Any advice?

04-12-2004, 10:40 PM
It sounds like its going well, there are obviously no signs of aggression so its just a matter of them getting used to each other. Putting them next to each other with the divider is a good idea as then Brian can get more used to being around her.

I'm not surprised she didn't wash him, its usually the one at the bottom of the pecking order that does the grooming so it was a bit checky of him to ask. If he catches her in a good mood she might give him a quick lick but its unlikely he'll get a proper wash. When he gets a big braver she might demand he washes her.

Your doing everything right, its just a question of patiently waiting for Brian to get a little more confident, he's certainly getting there though :D