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Old 10-18-2007, 08:35 AM   #1
SnowyShiloh
 
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Hi everyone! I was wondering if anyone has ideas for what I can do to bond with Rory and make him feel more comfortable? Things I have been doing:

-hand feed him pellets
-rip his romaine lettuce into small pieces and feed them to him by hand
-sing to him
-pet his head (tonight he started closing his eyes and his head slowly sank down until his chin was almost on the floor!)
-talk quietly to him
-take him out of his cage for 5 minutes or so at a time and hold and pet him and try to put him back in before he starts getting really jittery

Any other ideas would be great!


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Old 10-18-2007, 10:52 AM   #2
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It sounds like you ae doing a good job. sometimes though, it can be very battering for a bunny in a new place to be constantly stimulated like that (oftrn they need time to get sued to it). I've found that just sitting/lying next to them and effectively ignoring them (maybe reading, doing a puzzle, watching tv), will ignite their curiosity and get them used to presence in a non pressured way. That might encourage him to come out to you, and also get him used to your presence without you necessarily interacting with him.


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Old 10-18-2007, 11:12 AM   #3
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Flashy you took the words right out of my..... fingers!

I always suggest that a new bunny owner find a place safe for both you and the bunny... block off a room, Sometimes kitchens are good because there are fewer cords down low.... whatever - find a bunny proof place and get a blanket if you have to or whatever and lie on the floor and read or watch tv, or evenrest but don't sleep- let the bunny play a bit and come to you. If he does - just let him smell you and hop on you or whatever - and if he seems ready for a stroke then give him a gentle one and let him decide where he goes from there.

A huge part of bonding is letting them get to know you and trust you.
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Old 10-18-2007, 11:45 AM   #4
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Perfect. I was going to say laying down while he is playing in a small room. If you are going to pick him up again do it in a small room and when he is ready to jump off your lap let him. It is amazing after a while they get curious and sometimes jump right back up on your lap. I would wait to pick him up though until he is comfortable enough with you to come up to you while you are laying on the floor. It can take a long time and some rabbits never liek being picked up.

Gook luck and have fun!

J
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Old 10-18-2007, 11:47 AM   #5
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Right!

and Bo used to love for me and the kids to lay on our stomachs and he'd hop all over our backs - of course the kids giggled! In time Bo realized what they were doing and thought it was funny as well ....... he'd get all wound up and start binkying across the room when they would laugh. Which of course..... made them laugh harder!
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Old 10-18-2007, 11:49 AM   #6
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Hi guys! Thanks! I will try the laying on the floor thing in the morning. We actually did do that the other day, at first he just sat on my lap, then he explored a teeny bit but kept running back to my lap. Then he sat on my leg and peed off the side and started getting scared. I will try again, though! So hard to not want to take pick him up and cuddle him all the time... He's so soft and usually doesn't struggle when I pick him up or put him down or when I'm holding him.
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Old 10-18-2007, 11:54 AM   #7
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Sometimes we have to let them know it's ok to explore and that will also make the bond stronger. Bo was like that too and now he's my boy! We have to be careful cause if the kids are holding him and he sees me, he tries to jump to me.... which can be far away at times.

I think I had little bunny footprints inbedded into my skin for awhile when Bo was a baby lol. I was his security.
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Old 10-18-2007, 12:01 PM   #8
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it can be hard to not pick them up, but remember to think what is best for him, not you, and that might make it easier

Also, it might be worth trying not to pick him up and start him on your lap, but maybe to put him down next to you (or have his cage open and sit next to it) to allow him to go where he wants to, try not to over fuss him, , and just stroke if you think that is what he wants.

Also, sitting next to his cage whilst he is in it, and its closed and ignoring him can have a similar effect of removing the pressure.

Good luck, you sound like you're doing really well.
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:04 AM   #9
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Hi again! Thanks for the tips! His cage is in our living room and we spend pretty much all our time in there, so we're always close to him. This evening I reached in to pet him, then left him alone with the door closed (usually it's open and I go to pet him or talk to him frequently). Then the time came for him to hop around the kitchen. I took him out of his cage and carried him to the kitchen, then sat him down a foot or so away from me like you guys said to do. He almost immediately hopped over and jumped into my lap and was standing on his back legs to sniff my face and stuff. He then settled in there. We got him a piece of romaine and tried having my boyfriend feed it to him, but Rory wouldn't take it! He would only take lettuce from me. We tried having Paul hand me the lettuce, then give it back to Paul, and then Rory would eat it. It was like he was checking with me to see if it was safe. After the lettuce, I petted his head and he rested his chin on my leg. Throughout all this, I could still tell he was a bit nervous. Then I took him out of my lap and scooted a few feet away. Once I did that, he started exploring! Hopped around, pulled a paper bag off the shelf and went in it, came to visit me a couple of times. He still looked nervous, and after about 5 minutes of exploring we thought he'd had enough and I put him back in his cage. I will do it again 2 or 3 times tomorrow and try to go for longer. He didn't poop or pee and let me put him back in his cage easily. What a good boy!
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Old 10-19-2007, 11:29 AM   #10
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He's doing GREAT! He's looking to you for security and that's adorable! If he's not sure of your b/f - and hesitating to take things from him and all - he's bonded with you already. As sweet as he sounds - he's going to be your shadow before it's over! LOL!

Remember - bunnies are nervous animals by nature. I'm so proud of him for not peeing or pooing outside either! how good is he?!

I'm happy he got the bag and went in. That's a big step for some of them - Clover hesitated for about 1/2 hour the first time we gave her a bag. Tony did too - of course now he thinks all the bags are his and we aren't to touch them LOL!

Keep us posted on the progress he makes - he sure sounds as adorable as he looks!


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