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Thread: New bun to bond

  1. #1
    Warren Scout JuliaW's Avatar
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    Default New bun to bond

    Wish me luck!
    We've just brought home a neutered doe (Boogie- I think I'm going to call her Boo) found via this site to try and bond with our existing neutered buck (Bob).The initial introduction at the kennels where she was staying seemed to go OK- small amount of fur flying but appeared to be mostly show- so we've brought her home. We've housed her outside in a large old hutch, set up a neutral area in the garage and will take it slowly. She seems to have already settled, taking food from our hands, is inquisative so we'll leave her tonight and try putting them together again tomorrow.
    Had a previous bad experience trying to introduce rabbits so am going to take it slowly and by the book. Any advice gladly welcomed.
    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Mama Doe MiniC's Avatar
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    How is she settling today? Have they had their date yet?

    Are their hutches quite close together? It's better if they can see and smell each other to begin, so your boy will need to be set up in the garage too just now. Boys are usually more accepting when you bring a lady bun into their space, so I hope that will make things easier for you.

    When I tried bonding ours, I found YouTube had some great videos showing how to set the space up and how to tell when things were going well. It's important to start with somewhere small and increase the space gradually.

  3. #3
    Warren Scout JuliaW's Avatar
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    Thanks for your reply.
    She's doing OK. We put them together in the garage in a small pen yesterday which did not go well so put a divide in and put them back in later on separated. Later we used a run in a small area of the garden, swapping them so they could see /smell each other and later still put them both in the run together which after some chasing/nipping eventually settled to them mostly ignoring and grooming/eating grass which we took as a positive. We left them in the garage in the separated pen overnight but our buck was very stressed this morning as he does not like change and his stomach was upset. He was OK after a couple of raspberry leaves but I've put him back in the house while I'm at work and she's back outside. It is too hot in the garage during the day to leave them in there anyway.
    I need to rethink the garage as if they both hate it it may just reinforce a bad pattern. I will keep trying the introductions I think there is a chance it may work but definitely not love at first sight.
    Videos on the internet are really helpful as it does give a gauge as to when you should intervene.
    Thanks!

  4. #4
    Mama Doe MiniC's Avatar
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    Sorry for not responding yesterday, it was busy!

    Most of the information I read into bonding seemed to suggest it is better to keep both bunnies in the same room, which is what I did. It's an idea to swap them over in their pens too, and to mix litter, to let them get used to each other's smells and avoid anybun considering their pen to be solely their territory.

    If your boy hates the garage, is there anywhere inside you could have both of them? Even a hallway?

  5. #5
    Wise Old Thumper MightyMax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JuliaW View Post
    Wish me luck!
    We've just brought home a neutered doe (Boogie- I think I'm going to call her Boo) found via this site to try and bond with our existing neutered buck (Bob).The initial introduction at the kennels where she was staying seemed to go OK- small amount of fur flying but appeared to be mostly show- so we've brought her home. We've housed her outside in a large old hutch, set up a neutral area in the garage and will take it slowly. She seems to have already settled, taking food from our hands, is inquisative so we'll leave her tonight and try putting them together again tomorrow.
    Had a previous bad experience trying to introduce rabbits so am going to take it slowly and by the book. Any advice gladly welcomed.
    Thanks.

    Hi Julia

    Sorry to he late to your thread, and let me know how it's going.

    I just wanted to give you a few links which might give you more ideas. You may have seen most of the material, but sometimes it's helps to read a bit more just in case it can increase your own confidence. It's really important to try and keep your own stress out of the equation, as that contributes to an unsettled feeling within the buns.

    Here's some links:


    http://rabbit.org/the-most-important...g-is-patience/

    http://rabbit.org/introducing-rabbit...oup-situation/

    http://www.cottontails-rescue.org.uk...nding-bunnies/ (good for pair bonding)

    http://www.fatfluffs.com/info/bonding/

    http://www.actionforrabbits.co.uk/bonding.html


    Book in RWAF shop:

    https://shop.rabbitwelfare.co.uk/pro...iona-campbell/



    Mischief and Tinkerís Mum
    http://forums.rabbitrehome.org.uk/sh...y-trios-videos!

    (some contradictory advice, but that's the way of all things, isn't it!)

  6. #6
    Warren Scout JuliaW's Avatar
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    Hi all.
    Thanks for the links and advice. Not going brilliantly I'm afraid. Having meetings 1-2xdaily for 20-30 mins but repeated bad behaviour from Bob. Mostly he ignores Betty (decided to go with Betty) but then only approaches her to attack. The attacking is trying to bite her, mainly her hind quarters. She runs off and either he loses interest or he chases her trying to latch on to rear with his teeth- which is when I break it up. She does not retaliate other than she is thumping alot- she is quite small though and it's very unimpressive thumping. Mostly she seems unconcerned and carries on like nothing happened. He seems to sit and stew, possibly plotting his next attack. On and off he appears to relax, grooms himself, will eat and turns his back on her. She just hops about grooms herself and eats and then seemingly not able to help herself approaches him which just prompts another attack. They cannot be within a few inches of each other without him attacking.
    Bob does respond to be spoken to sternly if he looks like he's going to attack and he freezes for a bit and sometimes forgets about it but I'm not sure if it is helpful for me to intervene by doing this.
    The video of the trio bonding was useful as I feel slighly better- Bob is alot like Primrose and she eventually gave it up.
    Am I right to continue the meetings if they are just following the same pattern? I tried the bathroom last night for a change but it was exactly the same. I left them in the garage all day yesterday in the separated pen where they mostly ignore each other and am doing the same today.I swap them each time I put them back in. I think as long as the weather stays less hot I will not put them back in their own hutches/space and leave them in the garage together as this does not seem to be doing them any harm now.
    How do you know when to give up? I'm just concerned Bob is too set in his ways and really does not want a companion. When we got him aged 1 (he is 3 now) he was covered in bites from his brothers one of which became abscessed. The cat and dog shelter had kept them all together and had only recently separated them. I don't know if he can recover from that experience.
    Thanks

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