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nunyabeez

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I need advice. I have had my male bunny for quite some time and he is so very chill and never leaves the carpet. He never goes potty outside of his box. I was fearful he was getting lonely and we got him a female. They had bunny love at first site and bonded immediately. The problem is that she is insane! She almost never uses the box, she gets into and on everything. She is crazy full of energy and she isn't much in the personality department. I got her to make him happy and she did. So none of this bothers me. My husband on the other hand, he is ready to toss her. He can't stand for her to poop on stuff, and what a pain she is to let out of the cage. She instantly tries to get in between the couch and the wall, under the couch and about a dozen other places she shouldn't be that my male never goes. I guess I had it good with him. I can't stand to break his heart by getting rid of her. But my husband is threatening that they will both go if I don't get rid of her. Is it better in bunny world to break the bond and return her to the shelter or to let them go together? I hate giving him up and I hate breaking his heart . I am at a loss here.
 

Acacia-Berry

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First and most importantly, how old is your male and how old is the new female??

Is your boy neutered? Is she spayed?

If either of them is intact then you could run into some problems pretty soon. She sounds energetic because she is young and probably a small breed- this is fine, let her go crazy. You cannot take the fun out of them if they're free. The poop is signs of territory, without being properly litter trained they will just poop everywhere. You want to supply an extra litter box for her.
 

existenziell

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Yeah, my guess is she is probably not spayed. Also, do keep in mind that rabbits don't just come litter trained. It takes time and patience. You have to work with her, study her habits, and place a litter box according to where she goes to the bathroom. Some rabbits have a hard time grasping the concept. Pooping outside the litter box is a thing you may always have to deal with. It's their way of marking their territory. So as long as she is not peeing outside of the litter box, that's good. Poop is not very hard to clean up.

Caring for two rabbits takes time, patience, and commitment. Perhaps you should have researched more before you got another one. It sounds like you have a really well-behaved rabbit, but not all are as well-behaved. It's a shame that this rabbit may have to suffer and be given to a shelter just because you don't have the patience. I don't mean to sound critical, but caring for an animal is not something to be taken lightly. Just because they aren't always perfect and conform to what you want, doesn't mean that they can't still be good and loving pets. Give it time. Try and work with her. And explain to your husband that you just need to work with the new one more. Also, get her spayed if she isn't already. That will eliminate a lot of behavior problems and aid in litter training.
 

nunyabeez

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They are both about 2 years old, both are fixed. I got them both at a shelter on different ocassions. Although she was more recently fixed than he was. I have 2 litter boxes in the cage and she does use it most of the time for pee, but some times she just goes anywhere she wants. I haven't seen her pee outside of it anytime she's roaming free, but she does in her cage. She's also gone next to it and over the edge. One of the boxes is a high back box to prevent that but it's not the one she likes to use. I figured she would scent the cage with poop, and I was fine with that. I am trying my hardest to convince my husband to keep her. I knew what I was getting into when I adopted her. I felt lucky for the fast bonding because I expected to have to work for months at it. We even took him to the shelter with us and had several bunny play dates before we met her. She's just a tad bit psycho and my husband can't handle it. I have been able to convince him to give her more time. Because she was recently spayed I know she's still full of hormones. I just wish she'd calm down some. She is a dutch rabbit and he is an american. I have heard dutch bunnies are more hyper.. Maybe she just always will be?
 

nunyabeez

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You said these problems can be rectified with effort. do you have advice on how? I'm willing to take the time. I just don't know where to begin. I spend every night on the floor with them letting them run around.
 

Acacia-Berry

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It sounds like the new bunny is just enjoying herself with you guys and her new friend. Sounds like you did everything right. The only "problem" is the threat of your husband. He's going to have to just accept that your female bunny is spry and energetic! A lot of the dwarf breeds have a few years of extreme energy, I'm not sure about dutch rabbits specifically. You're right, with a bit of time her hormones will subside and she should get calmer but wishing her youth away is just tragic. :<
 

JBun

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You could try limiting her play area, by using an xpen. Then she won't be able to get into things that are causing problems, but still have some extra room to run around and play. Just make sure to give her plenty of activities in this area, like cardboard boxes, a dig box, phone book to shread, toys, etc.
 

nunyabeez

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thanks, I actually keep them in a 4X4 x- pen. I was thinking of getting some baby gates or something to block off the areas I need to keep her out of. I'll keep everyone updated. Thanks for the advice
 

Azerane

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How long have you had her for? She may be marking territory still if you haven't had her very long and the mess making may settle down, since she obviously knows where she's supposed to go.
 

PaGal

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It might be helpful if you could explain the cage set up you have for them, even better post some pictures. Is there hay or pellets for her to eat in the litter boxes or hanging above the litter boxes? How long have you had her? How long ago was her spay? Maybe explain or post pictures of the areas she gets into that you do not want her in. You mentioned she gets behind the couch. I remember a member on here (can't remember exactly who) had this problem and so fixed it by placing a cardboard tube sold at home improvement stores for concrete behind the couch. It's inexpensive and makes a great tunnel for buns to run in. What toys do you have available for the buns? She may just need more to do that you allow her to do so she does less of what you don't want.
 

nunyabeez

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I added a picture, though its not a great one, sorry. They are both in an x-pen almost 4x4. Today I also added a shelf for her to climb on. I'm working on a ramp. Yes, she has hay in the litter box. I actually took out the second box today to try and give them more room. Neither was using it often. I am going to see how that goes and then possibly replace it if need be. I only adopted her on April 5th, so I assume her spay was about 10 or so days prior to that. She still had shaved hair on her tummy but was healed. She had only been at the shelter for about 3 days when I adopted her. The very first day she was home with me she jumped up on the couch and then climbed onto the side table and then jumped onto the coffee table. Just to give you an idea of her inquisitive nature and jumping ability. I LOVE the idea of a tube behind the couch. I wonder how big those are exactly. My fear is that she would go on top of it instead of through it. But I will try anything. She has several toys in the cage. They have cardboard boxes, chewing blocks, carpet squares, toilet paper rolls, and a hay ball. I've been looking for a phone book too, but don't have any of those laying around. There is also an old bathrug in there that they like to lay on. I used to have a small house in there that my male liked to nibble on, but I took that out because she did not like it at all. She got real agitated when it was in there. He doesn't seem to mind since he just nibbled on it. I just need to find things to block her from going the places she shouldn't be so I can relax some also. I hate chasing her out from behind the couch. You can see in the photo there is a pillow shoved on one side for now, which she digs at and basically just plows over to get behind the couch. I definitely think she is just more active than he is. She can barely wait to get out the door and go crazy when I open it. He just kinda ambles around like an old lazy guy. :) Definitely very different personalities!

photo (23).jpg
 

Imbrium

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I have 2 litter boxes in the cage and she does use it most of the time for pee, but some times she just goes anywhere she wants. I haven't seen her pee outside of it anytime she's roaming free, but she does in her cage.

are you using any sort of bedding/litter on the floor of the cage or ONLY in the litter box? (in the pic it looks like just in the litter box, but I wanted to make sure, as having bedding in the cage can confuse them into thinking the entire cage is a potty)

I only adopted her on April 5th, so I assume her spay was about 10 or so days prior to that. She still had shaved hair on her tummy but was healed.

based on that time-line, she's only 2-2.5 weeks post-spay - females can stay hormonal for up to a month... combine that with only being in your house for 9 days (meaning she's eager to explore and territory mark... the latter of which is naturally going to be made worse by the fact that everything smells like "that other bunny")... and yeah, she's going to be a bit insane and it's totally understandable that she'd be driving your husband nuts :p

see if you can explain the whole "lingering hormones" and "brand new environment" thing to him and convince him to wait until you've had her for about 2 months before revisiting the topic of "she might not be a good fit for our home". two months (less than 7 more weeks now) should be a short enough period for him to begrudgingly agree to give her time to settle in and calm down... but it's long enough for her hormones to disappear, the "newness" of your house to wear off, your two bunnies to finish solidifying their bond and for you to come up with some solutions for keeping her out of things she shouldn't be in. it also gives her time to do cute things that might make him get a little bit attached to her ;)

binky bunny's bunny proofing page - http://www.binkybunny.com/BUNNYINFO/tabid/53/CategoryID/8/PID/940/Default.aspx - has some great tips for keeping bunnies from getting under/behind furniture where you don't want them :)

as for the cardboard tubes... they're called "concrete forms" and (at least at my home depot) they're 48'' long and come in widths of 8'' ($6.98) or 12'' ($11.42).
 

BugLady

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Definitely give her more time!
When I brought Appledot home the dynamic was similar - I started with a well behaved bunny (Rascal), and added a psycho bunny (Appledot). They had a "poop war" for two weeks as they sorted out territory and who knows what else.... by one month everything was smoothed over, and she was learning the rules of the house.

Good luck!
 

nunyabeez

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Thanks for the advice! I think I have convinced him to give her more time. There is no bedding in the cage, just litter in the box. I'm going to home depot today to check out the tubes. There has to be a way to make this work! Thanks everyone
 

bellaterra214

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haha you should tell your boyfriend, if the rabbits go, you go!! LOL ~~just kidding. we dont want to make him more mad.

my belief is, there are only 2 reason why you should give up your pet. Health/Finances. other than that, you should expect to care for the animal at least a few years good or bad.

Everything you listed as a problem can be solved with just a little patience and tlc. do you know her history? did she come from? Bad home, wild, found?

And since she is fairly new, she probably marking her territory. I would give her some more time to adjust. It may take weeks or months, but please be patient and work with her to improve yours guys relationship. it will be well worth it.
 

nunyabeez

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haha! Since it's my husband of 11 years and we have 2 children and a happy marriage I'm sure the rabbit would go before him. Thankfully he hasn't put his foot down about it yet and I think she's beginning to chill a little more each day. Unfortunately I do not know her history. There was nothing on her sheet. I never thought to ask.
 

existenziell

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If I may make a suggestion...

It looks like the cage you have them in is too small for 2 rabbits. They need more room than that. Giving them a bigger cage might actually help with some of your problems and make for a calmer bunny in general. On the litter training, she may still be getting used to the idea. My bunny, Hegel, is litter trained but occasionally he has "accidents" outside of the litter box. It's just something you need to be patient with. At least she doesn't go outside the cage. That means she gets the concept somewhat. Just be patient and give it time. I'm sure things will work themselves out.
 

nunyabeez

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As much as I would love to give them a bigger cage, it's just not possible. I have no room for anything bigger than 4x4. However, I only work 2 hours a day so they have free roam for several hours a day. We even have an outdoor fenced area that I take them out in on nice days. Of course I live in WI so we are only getting nice days randomly now.
 

PaGal

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She will hopefully calm down as her hormones dissipate and as she adjusts to a new home, your other bun, and your family. The only thing I know to do for litter training as my guy was quick to learn is to pick up poops outside the box and place them in the box, for any pee soak it up with a paper towel and put that in there as well.

It sounds like you may just have to think outside the box to keep her out of certain areas, cover all wiring. Is your couch up against a wall. If it is and it's like mine there is still a space between the back of the couch and the wall. You could try getting some metal shelving and placing it on end wedged between the wall and couch. I have done something similar but with a chest freezer. Or you could try a larger piece of cardboard folded over to black the space. Picture cardboard folded into the shape of a U with the bottom of the U being as wide as the space between couch and wall. One side of the U against the wall, the other against the back of the couch.
 

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