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Old 10-11-2011, 10:04 PM   #1
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occasionally my rabbit nips me. how do you 'punish' or let your rabbit know that bitting is not o.k?


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Old 10-12-2011, 12:10 AM   #2
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Usually yell "ow" loudly although nips are usually not that big of a deal, but, biting is. By biting, we mean broken skin and bleeding. If it escalates, we still do the "ow" thing but also pin them down or roll them on their back and pin them down. We had three biters in the last 9 years and that solved the problem. They stopped biting and we stopped rolling and pinning.


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Old 10-12-2011, 01:26 AM   #3
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my rabbit would squirm and try and jump out of my arms. she usually nips when i'm holding her so i apply more pressure on her as if to hold her more firmly against me, but all she does is wiggle backwards... any ideas?

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Old 10-12-2011, 03:00 AM   #4
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Does your rabbit like to be held? Because it sounds like your rabbit doesn't like to be held. But you should be able to hold your rabbit to do some things with your rabbit, like nail trims. Some rabbits don't like being held and others like to be held. I have been very fortunate and have rabbits that like to be held.
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:58 PM   #5
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Gus used to be a nipper. My youngest son bursting into tears and Gus being banished to his cage with no attention seemed to get the message across it wasn't okay to nip. We tried pinning him, but it just seemed to escalate the tension. Putting him in a bunny "time out" worked well for him. (It works well whenever he's misbehaving, actually!) Buthe lovesbeing out of his cage and being allowed to be with his "people." So that may not work well for a bunny who likes hiscage better.

If your rabbit is nipping to be put down, you can't let her win. Wear some padded clothing and gloves if necessary, wrap her in a towel or blanket and practice holding her--not for very long. Only a few moments, then put her down. If you can successfully pick her up and put her down before she nips (or kicks) enough times, she'll learn that being held isn't bad. If shenips or starts kicking, you need to hold her till she stops. It can be a challenge if she's learnednipping and kicking means she gets put down. But once she learns that you can't be bossed around, she'll stop.

Hope that helps!

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Old 10-12-2011, 10:57 PM   #6
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Timmy was quite a nibbler when we first got him. He'd nip my skin or my shirt a lot. Not enough to break the skin, but enough that I noticed. Whenever he bit, we'd let out a short, high-pitched squeal as a way to say "ow" that he'd understand. It seems to have worked as it's not a problem anymore.
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Old 10-14-2011, 10:58 PM   #7
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I have a similar problem!

Hamilton has learned to nudge (he actually started nudging instead of nipping), but he nips after licking me. I'm not exactly sure what to think of it. Maybe he thinks i'm tasty?

rue - good idea on the gloves! I never thought about that. I'll have to do that when clipping hammy's nails.
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Old 10-14-2011, 11:22 PM   #8
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Nipping during kisses (lite tooth scraping without breaking the skin) is how rabbits groom other rabbits. Its far more uncomfortable to us since we don't have the fur to groom, but in general it's a show of affection.

If they are nipping while you hold them, they are expressing extreme discomfort the only way they can. Either don't hold your bunny, or do the bunny roll if it's for maintenance.
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Old 10-14-2011, 11:36 PM   #9
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Ah, it is definitely the former.

What is the bunny roll?
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Old 10-15-2011, 03:23 AM   #10
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Bunny roll/burrito



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