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Thread: Two female rabbits fighting - please comment

  1. #11
    Mama Doe RogerRabbit999's Avatar
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    Actually, I think if I were you, and especially if you don't really want to bring a male bunny into the equation, who knows, another bed, equall feeding rights, and some mental stimulation with clicker training may be all that you need to sort your 2 out, and in a round about way you will have got them to conform without them even realising it. If you want to try clicking with them, I would have 2 clickers, one for each hand, and decide which bunny is going to work either left or right, which is what I have done with 2 buns before, and then you must stick with that arrangement or you will just confuse them and kind of defeat the object. I am sure when you have got both buns rushing up to you on their appointed side, when you have clicked them and called them, you will be thrilled to bits with your 2 beautifully behaved buns. Once your buns have sorted themselves out with your help and guidance, I am sure you will then find them far more affectionate and loving towards yourself. I think it is fair to say that bunnies are very selfish, and won't give you a thought or kiss if they are at loggerheads with each other. One of my bunnies, Dipsy, used to really upset me with all his attacking and biting, but in 5 weeks with real determination, he has now been turned around, is clicker trained, no longer aggressive, and because all is well in his world, which after all, is all that matters to him!! I am now able to cuddle him a couple of times a day and he gets 'sleepy eyes' and has a bit of a doze, and when he is out which is all day now because he is such a good little guy, he constantly hangs out by me, and comes up for a fuss and head rub, and it used to be a nightmare trying to catch him at night to put him to bed, but now he is called and clicked, immediately jumps into his den, and sits in his food corner, waiting for his bowls to be put down, and if I'm really lucky, do sometimes even get a bunny kiss on my hand!! Clicker training is usually very quick and easy, so please don't think you have to spend hours a day for weeks teaching it, probably 15 mins a day for a couple of weeks would be sufficient, and you know what they say about 'a dissaplined child is a happy child' well, I think the same can be said for rabbits, and no, I haven't had to 'clicker train' my daughter lol

  2. #12
    Warren Veteran esupi's Avatar
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    how bad is the 'fighting'?

    My two sisters hump each other every now and then. When Truffle humps Fudge, Fudge just sits and lets her, but when Fudge humps Truffle, she'll often get a tuft of Truffle's fur and then Truffle chases her away.
    I see this occasional humping/chasing as fairly normal behaviour though - I wouldn't say it's particularly aggressive (they did fight propoerly when they were younger and it's nothign like that!) and nobody gets hurt. The majority of the time they're buddies so I don't see it as a problem.

  3. #13

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    Thanks so much for your thorough reply RogerRabbit! :-)

    I'd really like to try this clicker training - sounds like you've had a lot of success with it! What would you say is the best source for info for it in the internet? Do you follow some method or book? I watched some youtube videos on it and it seems like a lot of fun for both bunnies and people. I find it amazing you've managed to train two bunnies at the same time! I hope I can do the same. I believe this is the kind of thing that would get their minds out of fighting with each other. Because now it's colder outside, they don't like running as much on the balcony, and tend to spend more time indoors. I have different games for them: tunnels, different willow toys, pile of carpets that they dig etc., but I feel like they probably need even more activities.

    Also, I'm going to try two separate food piles for the bunnies' dinner tonight!

    To esupi: thanks for your message - I think you're right that to a certain degree occasional humping and chasing is normal bunny life. But lately my bunnies do it, depending on a day, about 4-6 times and sometimes even more, and they seem generally more uptight. p.s. Your bunnies look adorable!
    Last edited by silli; 13-11-2012 at 04:54 PM.

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aly&Poppy<3 View Post
    What would happen if they all fall out then? Could you accommodate 3 single buns? And then find friends for them individually?

    Perhaps a rescue could help out? A neutral area where neither of them have been and start from scratch. I wouldn't consider another bun unless they were being separated and having their own husbun. A male won't necessarily be the dominant one In my male/female pair, it's the female who's boss!

    Rabbits won't listen to you so trying to be dominant won't work Have you tried taking them on a car ride in their carrier? Don't know if that will help but that's what people do when bonding.
    Thanks Aly&Poppy<3, yep hopefully they'll be friends again after I introduce even more activities for them :-)

  5. #15
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    Can you describe the 'fighting'?

    Also, when you talk about 'bed' is that somewhere you shut them away overnight or anything? Or is it something they have access to all the time?
    Please Remember to Advocate for your Rabbit.

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  6. #16
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    Having had rabbits over many years I am now of the opinion that any rabbit relationship can be unpredicatable and not guaranteed - whatever the mix of sexes. I would be very wary of introducing a third bunny unless you have plan B for separate living arrangements for them all.

    I have had to rebond my two recently (male and female) and I actually think they are better together this time, rather than first time round, but it was totally back to bonding basics with the pair of them and even that took two weekends.

    As for food - try scattering it rather than a bowl (I may have missed that suggestion on this thread). Food is definately a flash point where my bunnies are concerned.

  7. #17
    Mama Doe RogerRabbit999's Avatar
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    That's brilliant news about giving the clicker training a go, and maybe more mental stimulation is what your buns need, and to give them something else to think about. I think people tend to forget just how intelligent rabbits are, and it does kind of make sense, that sheer boredom and frustration could well prompt some fallouts. Actually training 2 rabbits at once isn't hard, as when you think about it, that is the whole cause of a lot of your bunnies fallouts, i.e. both wanting to be doing or using the same thing such as the bed. Often you see rabbits copying each other, because they don't want the other to have or be doing something that they aren't doing or haven't got, and so when I started training Dipsy, it was probably all of about 30 secs before Marshall was then wanting to have a look. You can make it a lot easier if you can find something that your bunnies really, really like, as they will then be wanting their treat so much, you will be amazed at how quickly they respond to the clicker. I probably implied that of course I give them healthy treats, but actually their passion is the Belvita Breakfast Biscuits!! Obviously, they don't have a whole biscuit, every time they are given a treat, just a tiny bit of it. I know a lot of people would frown on that, but there are worse things they could have, and I was really tearing my hair out with Dipsy's aggression, and after looking into it a lot more, I kept coming across people that had used 'clicker training' with very aggressive rabbits, with excellent results, which is what prompted me to give it a go myself. The book that I found the most useful, and suited me, because it's like an idiot's guide to clicker training, is 'Clicking With Your Rabbit' by Joan Orr and Teresa Lewin. I'm sure you will find that if your rabbits start to do something positive and fun together, that that will help their relationship a lot, as don't forget they remember their fallouts with each other, which obviously has a very negative effect on their relationship, and I think when rabbits have just had so many fallouts, you do then reach a point where all you can do is seperate them permanantly, and no amount of going back to the basic's, and starting the bonding process all over again, is ever going to get some bunnies to like each other. If I could just say, I saw the idea about scattering the food about, and I think this is fine for bunnies getting along well together, but I personally feel that food can be a real bone of contention with rabbits not getting on, and you need to have a lot more control over the situation, and to feed them and then stay with them to make sure they stick to their own piles, and when you've been clicking them, as one goes to go to the others food, you will be able to click them back to their own food. However, if it is scattered all over the place, mealtimes are just going to become absolute mayhem with you run ragged trying to maintain order, and your clicker won't even help, because there will no be one designated food pile for the bun to return too. Don't forget when one of them goes to the other's food, you probably think they will just be hopping all over the place and how on earth can you keep them at their own food, but as one starts to move away use your clicker and tell her to sit, and then guide her back to her own food. Sounds mad I know,but Dipsy is only 4months, and he comes when he is called and when I want him to go to bed, he will sit, and he understands 'stay' and I used this to stop him attacking me. Believe me, if an asbo bunny like Dipsy can become a reformed character in a few weeks, think how good your two could be and also much happier, and working together.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aly&Poppy<3 View Post
    What would happen if they all fall out then? Could you accommodate 3 single buns? And then find friends for them individually?

    Perhaps a rescue could help out? A neutral area where neither of them have been and start from scratch. I wouldn't consider another bun unless they were being separated and having their own husbun. A male won't necessarily be the dominant one In my male/female pair, it's the female who's boss!

    Rabbits won't listen to you so trying to be dominant won't work Have you tried taking them on a car ride in their carrier? Don't know if that will help but that's what people do when bonding.
    Not strictly true - I have many rabbits I can calm/control with my voice

  9. #19
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    Roger Rabbit, can I ask about the clicker training please. I can see how it works with a rabbit who has issues with the person because the issues are only present when you are there so if the clicker works, then that eradicates the problem. However, in this situaton potentially the problem can occur when the person is not present so can't use the clicker training if she find it works. So what would you suggest for that unsupervised time?
    Please Remember to Advocate for your Rabbit.

    'I have the responsibility to do what I want in a world of others, but so does everyone else and it works best if we take each other into account.' (EVD)

    Please feel free to visit my therapy website and also my Professional Facebook page and Blog. You might find something interesting there!

  10. #20
    Mama Doe RogerRabbit999's Avatar
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    Until the bunnies were getting along a lot better, and are not fighting so much, I would not leave them together unattended. I would separate them for peace of mind that no serious injury could occur while I was out. The 'clicker training' has been proven to have excellent results with treating aggressive rabbits such as my Dipsy, who was a absolute horror, and to be honest, I was becoming really scared of him, because his attacks were really nasty and painful, and I really did loose blood most days!! I'm not meaning that clicker training will make them get on much better, but rabbits always at loggerheads with their friend, don't tend to be happy bunnies, and I think it is worth giving it a go to try and give them something else to think about, stimulate them more mentally, and rabbits tend to remember their fall outs which can ultimately prevent them from ever getting on, and to give them more memories of fun, good things they have done together, so that hopefully in time, they will view each other as a good bunny to have about, and not a fighting opponent.

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