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Thread: Bonding advice with a humpy male

  1. #1

    Default Bonding advice with a humpy male

    Hi all, I'm new here, wondering if you can offer me some bonding advice please. I have already successfully bonded a trio of Netherlands, they're happy and great, this is about my male rex (Theo) and my doe (Biscuit).

    I had Theo neutered 3 (nearly 4) months ago, and Biscuit 2 neutered months ago. Both are rescue rabbits, probably over age of 6. They have been side by side for nearly 2 months, as soon as I got Biscuit neutered they went next door. I've been religiously swapping everything in their cages every day, litter trays etc. They nuzzle through the bars, lie side by side etc. She is very keen to get to him.

    Been trying to put them together for about a week and a half in neutral areas, and every time they're together, he humps her. Only stops if I put my hand on him. I really growled at him a few days ago (bad mum) and he didn't hump her for almost a minute after that, and she was licking his face. Then he went straight back to humping. I have tried stopping him, but as soon as I let go he's back on her. I've tried letting him do it, he climaxes, rests for less than a minute then is at it again. is relentless.

    I'll add that i have read a success story post form September by dollyanna, where her doe kind of accepted it, and they persisted, but Biscuit is very, very distressed by it. She panics, runs around the area, bites at him etc. When he stops humping she leaves him alone, and as I said she even licks him. Then he's straight back on her.

    What can I do? I can't have them separate forever, it's really not fair, and I don't have space to get another male for him, for instance, and another bunny for her as well. I just don't have the space. Which is my fault, I know it is, so please don't bash me for that, but I honestly thought it would be okay, all the advice says once he was neutered the hormones fade after a month or two, tops. My Nethie male stopped being sexy after a couple of weeks, if that, and now lives in harmony (touch wood) with his 2 ladies.

    Do you have any advice please? Will he ever stop trying to hump her? It's been nearly 4 months, I would have thought the urges would have gone.

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by MidnightGem View Post
    Hi all, I'm new here, wondering if you can offer me some bonding advice please. I have already successfully bonded a trio of Netherlands, they're happy and great, this is about my male rex (Theo) and my doe (Biscuit).

    I had Theo neutered 3 (nearly 4) months ago, and Biscuit 2 neutered months ago. Both are rescue rabbits, probably over age of 6. They have been side by side for nearly 2 months, as soon as I got Biscuit neutered they went next door. I've been religiously swapping everything in their cages every day, litter trays etc. They nuzzle through the bars, lie side by side etc. She is very keen to get to him.

    Been trying to put them together for about a week and a half in neutral areas, and every time they're together, he humps her. Only stops if I put my hand on him. I really growled at him a few days ago (bad mum) and he didn't hump her for almost a minute after that, and she was licking his face. Then he went straight back to humping. I have tried stopping him, but as soon as I let go he's back on her. I've tried letting him do it, he climaxes, rests for less than a minute then is at it again. is relentless.

    I'll add that i have read a success story post form September by dollyanna, where her doe kind of accepted it, and they persisted, but Biscuit is very, very distressed by it. She panics, runs around the area, bites at him etc. When he stops humping she leaves him alone, and as I said she even licks him. Then he's straight back on her.

    What can I do? I can't have them separate forever, it's really not fair, and I don't have space to get another male for him, for instance, and another bunny for her as well. I just don't have the space. Which is my fault, I know it is, so please don't bash me for that, but I honestly thought it would be okay, all the advice says once he was neutered the hormones fade after a month or two, tops. My Nethie male stopped being sexy after a couple of weeks, if that, and now lives in harmony (touch wood) with his 2 ladies.

    Do you have any advice please? Will he ever stop trying to hump her? It's been nearly 4months, I would have thought the urges would have gone.
    I’d leave it another couple of months before trying to put them together again. The hormonal behaviour in Bucks neutered in later life can persist for several months. If he was a Stud Buck this will be even more of an issue as he will be imprinted with the idea that any direct contact with another Rabbit involves mating. In the meantime I would not swap their litter trays etc around as the smell of the Doe will continue to excite your Buck. I would actually keep them well away from each other for the next couple of months.


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  3. #3
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    I am sorry IM but can't agree really. The humping is a stage in the bonding which they have to go through. It usually lasts 2 or 3 days and as long as the Doe can hide away if she wants to then it is normally fine. You can try to distract him by treats or new "toys" or just a quick NO! but it is best to get it over with as he will most likely do exactly the same thing in a couple of months, if you leave it. Can you post a photo of them so we can make a better judgement? Most bonds go through the chasing, fur pulling and mounting stages and it isn't pleasant to watch but it won't last long. Have you seen them eating together or sitting relaxed close to one another?

  4. #4

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    My rescue boy is the king of the humps. I felt like giving up on day 3 of 24/7 bonding but i carried on, I even took him to the vets to make sure he did in fact have his nuts removed as it was so intense. Dolly was scared at first, nipping him and biting him, but by Day 6 he had calmed down slightly, now we are at 13 days and they eat together, play and snuggle but every so often throughout the day he starts again. My doe is not scared anymore, she doesnt react to him, she just moves away from him and eventually he calms down. I don't know enough to tell you what to do as i relied totally on this group and a few glasses of wine to get me through it , but this is my experience and it is a very stressful thing to watch but worth it.

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  5. #5

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    Thanks for the tips guys. Okay, so maybe if I put a hide or something in the bath with them it might help her? And keep persisting, it's good to hear there may be hope. Cause when they're side by side he is completely calm, it's just when she's in his face, he can't resist.

    I've bonded rabbits a few times and have never had issues like this. Humping, yes, but usually just a little, not constant. Poor Biscuit 😢

    I'm not sure how to post pics, I'll see if there's a sticky on it 😊

  6. #6
    Moderator Zoobec's Avatar
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    I wouldn’t recommend stress bonding in the bath. Some people do bond in short sessions like that but I think you go back to the beginning each time you restart and it’s better to set aside a time and put them together and leave them together, watching them 24/7 But I do agree with what Inspector Morse has put about waiting a while before trying again, especially if he is continuing on a humpfest in a permanent bonding session.

  7. #7
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    It was my thread you found, and aside from waiting a bit longer and adding some low hides but with open sides, my only other suggestions (and I am by no means an expert) would be to try and do 24/7 bonding when you can - the reason we ended up with this was that it became very quickly obvious that each new sessions just started us back at square one, they never made any progress. Odin literally never stopped, ever, it was so so hard to watch, but over several hours it gradually eased. I just kept them apart by hand for brief periods to make sure she had moments to eat, and I did end up separating for a few hours the first night as she was exhausted, but after 24hrs it was starting to ease and by 36hours it was obvious they were going to be ok, albeit still very humpy. It took months to settle, but we have no problems now at all (5 months in) - they are a truly lovely and balance couple.
    The other thing we found so useful that you haven't mentioned is pet remedy calming spray - I used the plug in later on, but initially the effect of the spray was remarkable. I sprayed my hand and then wiped it all over her especially her bum (so he got a faceful when he tried to hump) and his face and ears. It immediately switched him to grooming instead of humping, though we did have to apply a few times a day sometimes, but then had a few days of not needing it at all.

  8. #8
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    We did experiment with smaller spaces, but this caused so much distress to Freja we increased the size again, she was much happier and coped better when she had enough room to just keep moving away - by going under and through things she could create brief moments of rest for herself before he managed to squeeze in and chivy her out with a nip.

  9. #9

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    Hi again everyone, I can't thank you enough for suggesting the hides. I put one in the bath yesterday, as soon as she went in, he ignored her. When she surfaced, they had a good sniff and were okay for a good half hour, Biscuit retreating under her hide every so often.

    I was brave and put them in the big cage together, and after some hump attempts from Theo, and a bit of panicked running from Biscuit, she realised it was multi storey. They spent most of yesterday morning swapping levels, but by afternoon were spending time on the same level.

    They're not happily ever after yet, but ate breakfast together.

    So thank you so much!!!

  10. #10
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    Sounds like they are getting there!

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