Bonding problem

Discussion in 'Nutrition and Behavior' started by Gina&Co, Jun 24, 2019.

Help Support Rabbits Online by donating:

  1. Jun 24, 2019 #1

    Gina&Co

    Gina&Co

    Gina&Co

    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Canada
    Hi!

    I wanted a friend for my spayed female bunny named Gina so I recently adopted a neutered male from a shelter. His name is Tony.

    I went to the vet with Tony for a check-up and I did one and a half week of pre-bonding.

    Tony is a very sweet and calm bunny but my girl is nervous and territorial, I thought maybe Tony would be a good friend for her since he’s so calm but turns out he’s a very dominant bunny!

    When they first met in the bathtub, Tony was humping a lot and Gina didn’t like it at all. Since then , I had 4-5 more sessions and I observed that Tony really wants to be groomed and tries to hump her but she doesn’t want anything to do with him. Even when they are separated they can see and smell each other and Gina tries to bite him trough the bars that are separating them.

    During the sessions I stopped a couple of little fights and the best I got from the sessions is them doing nothing and being stressed out.

    I don’t think they are a good match, but the shelter didn’t offer bunny meet-ups before adopting and I love Tony so much he’s such a good bunny I can’t give him up.

    Do you think I should continue trying to bond them or let them live their lives separately?

    Here’s a picture of Gina and one of Tony :) CEDA1A62-A4C5-4611-B5C0-F146B69EA349.jpg IMG_1023.jpg
     
  2. Jun 24, 2019 #2

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

    Blue eyes

    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2012
    Messages:
    6,016
    Likes Received:
    2,156
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Was it a generic shelter (dogs, cats, etc) or a rabbit rescue? Typically rabbit rescues will bunny date first because they understand the complexities of rabbit bonding. Shelters seldom know this. Your ultimate decision may be already determined for you depending on the rescue/shelter.

    There are definitely times when individual rabbits refuse to bond. If this is the case with your rabbits, you have a few options. One, is to separate them for weeks then start again. This can work sometimes, but from what you described, it doesn't sound like they've ever shown much in the way of positive bonding possibilities. This course of action might be recommended for those pairs that showed some promise but had a setback.

    Two, you can do as you suggested and keep them both but they remain separate. There are some things to consider with this, however. One is that they may still smell the presence of the other, which could still cause constant stress. It also means that they will remain single. Trying to match up either one with a 3rd bunny will escalate the competing scents of the rabbits and would make for a potentially difficult situation.

    Three, you can return Tony to the benefit of both rabbits. Tony would get the chance to be adopted to either a bondable rabbit or to a home in which he is the one and only 'king.' Then you can try again with a different rabbit for Gina. Then she gets the benefit of having an actual bondmate.

    If Tony came from a generic shelter, then their return policies would need to be checked. If they aren't aware, they may even need to be educated on the fact that not all rabbit pairings work. This is why I mentioned that the decision regarding returns may not be yours - it may depend on their policies. Hopefully they will work with you.
     
  3. Jun 25, 2019 #3

    Gina&Co

    Gina&Co

    Gina&Co

    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Canada
    Yes, I think it’s a generic shelter unfortunately. I couldn’t find a real rabbit rescue near where I live in Canada and there are so many rabbits in regular shelters it breaks my heart!

    I’m going to think about the options you said, thank you very much for the advices :)
     
  4. Jul 18, 2019 #4

    Mackenzie Salm

    Mackenzie Salm

    Mackenzie Salm

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2019
    Messages:
    81
    Likes Received:
    15
    Location:
    Wisconsin USA
    I doubt this would be the reason but have you checked that when he was neutered he had both his testicles removed? Not that they missed one... Even thought I doubt it. I don't know to much about bunny testicles I just know what they look like, what they do, and where they are placed. But taking them off I know next to nothing about. Just a suggestion:) hope it helps
     

Share This Page