Bonding an ornery adult female with a young male

Discussion in 'General Rabbit Discussion' started by bunniecope, Nov 14, 2019.

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  1. Nov 14, 2019 #1

    bunniecope

    bunniecope

    bunniecope

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    Sugar: 1 year 6 months dwarf hotot doe, not spayed yet.
    Morty: maybe 3 month old netherland dwarf male(?)

    Sugar has been living in this apartment since we moved here, the only neutral space is the bathroom. I did their first meeting in there and Sugar sniffed him a bunch, chinned him tons, then proceeded to mercilessly hump him until she was exhausted. She never once tried to bite him and he never once fought anything she was doing, he just sat there and took it and sniffed her occasionally. Sugar was never socialized, Morty doesn't mind other buns. Sugar chinned EVERYTHING she could in the bathroom multiple times. Both buns stay in our room, the rest of the house is ruled by a kitty. Now she is living in her crate where it has always been and he is in her old old cage from when she was a baby that we occasionally use when boarding her. The cage was thoroughly cleaned before moving him in. He just chills and sleeps and eats, when she has floor time she goes up to his cage and used to slap at it but now she just sniffs him and occasionally licks him and chins every inch of the cage and tries to chin him. When he has floor time he has dropped a few poops around the outside of his cage, and he tries to go up to her cage and sniff her but she slaps at him really aggressively. He got scared and peed on the carpet last night and sugar is out right now, she is chinning his poops and literally everything in the room including his blanket covered cage and me and my laptop and phone and the walls and literally EVERYTHING. She is leaving poops everywhere she goes and she reeks of pee so even though I haven't caught her in the act I'm pretty sure shes leaving little drips of pee around the room. We rent, so this isn't great if it gets off the rugs and onto the carpet. She is currently chewing the bars of his cage through the blanket I have over it. She just flopped in front of his cage. Every time I get out of bed and walk around or sit in the floor she circles me, she has also been hopping around the whole room at attention and making these little chuffing croaky grunty sounds that I have never heard her make before. Shes experienced false pregnancy brought on by the scent of a male before and she isn't showing any of those behaviors. Morty is still just passively loafing in his cage from what I can tell. Sugar does not seem to like this new addition to our family and has repeatedly done everything in her power to establish dominance. What do I do?? I want to bond them and let them out at the same time, we got him so she would have a friend. Note also when he is out and she is up she chews her bars very loudly. I want this bond to work, any suggestions?
     
  2. Nov 14, 2019 #2

    Catlyn

    Catlyn

    Catlyn

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    It's best to get both your bunnies fixed when the male is old enough. If you want Sugar to stop reeking from pee, that's about the only option you have. Otherwise, she'll continue being dominant, endlessly chinning and scaring the buck when he gets close.
    You don't eant any unexoected lityers either,right?
     
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  3. Nov 14, 2019 #3
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  5. Nov 14, 2019 #5

    TreasuredFriend

    TreasuredFriend

    TreasuredFriend

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    Bonding takes time. You rarely find a couple that instantly get along prior to choosing their own partner. Rarely. Bonding links are plentiful. I totally relate to the loose marking marbles of unsp/eutered rabbits, and those who are not a bonded pair. Marking territory, part of rabbit language. And the circling, grunts, hums, buzzing, buns mounting your pants leg, etc. are cute up to a point b/c the obnoxious dominance mounting can be aggravating and frustrating if it doesn't result in a fight or injury to the innocent partner that didn't want the intrusion.

    We took one of two unneutered male dutch buns at an old-technology farm living in the same wooden hutch. The couple would give the surplus buns out to kids at birthday parties. Essentially novelty free disposable pets, i.e. rabbits and kittens (you can pass out anything that's cute and cuddly!), to attract money for booked birthday parties. I took the smaller male who had bite marks and scabs on his back. One of the other baby dutch buns from this place had coccidiosis, so glad we treated for that.

    At the shelter our advice to all adoptive human parents; do 1-2 dates in neutral space territory first, watch for bonding chemistry, read up on bonding links. It may be that your two precious buns never get along to live harmoniously with each other. OTOH, some of our house buns, all sp/eutered, eventually bonded with no dates done beforehand. Living side by side, in adjacent xpens.

    I hope things work out for Sugar and Morty eventually. Or they co-exist in the same bunny room with different play hours. ~ I hear you on socialization and prior background.

    Bunnies can have different personalities, likes/dislikes, for sure.
     
  6. Nov 14, 2019 #6

    bunniecope

    bunniecope

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    I'm keeping them separate until a while after Sugar is spayed, I knew that had a lot to do with her behavior but didn't realize how important it was. Scheduling an appointment soon.
     
  7. Nov 14, 2019 #7

    bunniecope

    bunniecope

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    Thank you so much for the helpful links and reply!
     
  8. Nov 14, 2019 #8

    zupper

    zupper

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    Hi, I would say that is very stressful situation for her and if he's 3 months old he already can make babies I am surprised he's not trying to. If you are not sure if he's a male I would say he could be a female as well it really makes sense that Sugar is trying to establish her dominance over a newcomer. I can't be sure but at 3 months males are quite active sexually, some starting humping even from 9-10 weeks so I am really surprised he's so calm.
    Anyway, older female is trying to dominate and humps the baby.

    Firstly, I would try to find out if Morty is a male or female, then if he's a male I'd separate them completely so they can't see and smell each other until Sugar is fixed and healed, at least for one month so they can forget each other, then re-introduce them but you have to find some place unfamiliar to both, maybe take them for a ride or use your friends apartment for that.

    Would be good to know if Morty is a male or female. Some males are quite calm with fixed females, but you can also neuter him when he's 4-6 months old, depending on your vet's experience and if they are happy with his weight too.

    At 12 weeks you should be able to sex him properly, it is important to know so maybe try again. Here's how to do it properly https://www.rabbitsonline.net/threads/sexing-rabbit-pictures.44936/
     

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