Bonded Bunny Dispute

Discussion in 'Nutrition and Behavior' started by charmangel, Mar 29, 2018.

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  1. Mar 29, 2018 #1

    charmangel

    charmangel

    charmangel

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    We have two dwarf Holland lops, one male, one female. They are about two months apart in age. We originally got Dmitri and Sasha together, but lost Sasha after two months. We got Tipsy because I read that rabbits need to bond with another rabbit no matter how much their humans love them.

    They've been together now for about seven months. They bonded immediately. Dmitri was protective of her when she first arrived, because she was so tiny, but Tipsy has proved to be quite spirited, and bold. Dmitri is almost a year old, and Tipsy is about two months behind. They have never seemed to have a problem until last night. They started chasing each other in a circle, and tried to nip at each other. It looks like Dmitri is the aggressor in this. We separated them for the night. My daughter is watching them today. She tried putting them together and they were okay for a bit, but then started again. Dmitri is happy as a clam now that they are apart, and Tipsy seems upset and withdrawn. What should we be doing about this?
     
  2. Mar 29, 2018 #2
    Are they spayed and neutered?
     
  3. Mar 29, 2018 #3

    charmangel

    charmangel

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    Dmitri has been neutered. We want to get Tipsy spayed, but finding a good small animal vet in our area is difficult. After losing Sasha, I'm skittish about losing another bunny. I don't think my heart could take it.
     
  4. Mar 29, 2018 #4

    Blue eyes

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    Sounds like Tipsy's hormones have kicked in. Not unusual for disputes to occur when hormones are active. You definitely don't want for that aggression to escalate because a fight now could prevent a future bond.

    To prevent that, it would probably be best to keep them separate until she can get spayed. Once spayed, they will need to be introduced all over again in hopes that they will bond for real ('bonds' with babies don't count as true bonds).
     
  5. Mar 29, 2018 #5

    charmangel

    charmangel

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    Except that Tipsy is not the aggressor. Dmitri goes after her.
     
  6. Mar 29, 2018 #6

    whispen

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    He could be instigating because of her hormones regardless, or maybe she is giving him some subtle body language or communication that you can't see. It is definitely most likely the fact that she is now sexually mature.
     
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  7. Mar 29, 2018 #7

    Aki

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    You have to get her spayed, there is no way around it. Your male is reacting to the hormones your female is emitting. I don't know why but being with a hormonal female seems to awaken 'phantom hormones' in males and will make them act like they are intact which can lead to agression from both parties pretty quickly. Don't put them together before your female is spayed and healed, doing it could be dangerous.
    Spaying is a pretty safe procedure with a competent vet. You risk a lot less spaying your female than leaving her with hormones that will almost certainly end up making her sick.
     
  8. Mar 29, 2018 #8

    charmangel

    charmangel

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    I'm convinced. I've made an appointment for her. It was something that needed to happen anyway. I'm just worried about my baby.
     
  9. Mar 30, 2018 #9

    Blue eyes

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  10. Mar 30, 2018 #10

    JBun

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    Best thing is making sure you have a really experienced rabbit vet doing it. It helps minimize the risks.
     
  11. Apr 3, 2018 #11

    charmangel

    charmangel

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    Thank you. The vet I chose is actually on that list, so I have some peace of mind with that. Tipsy has started biting, so it is definitely hormones for her. Hoping this will help, because they look miserable without each other. Separating them is hard on all of us.
     
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