Bonding rabbits different enclosures but same room?

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b.potter

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Hi guys I’m new here so go easy on me!
First time bunny owner did a lot of research for care and responsible bunny ownership.
I have my cute Netherland Dwarf (Oates) and today I’m getting him a friend a Holland lop. Obviously I can’t put them together because the both haven’t been spayed/neutered but I was told to wait till they are both 6 months. So I have separate housing set up. I want to hopefully bond them after they’re desexed, healed, and hormones go down.
My questions however: Is it okay if they are in the same room together in separate cages? Should I make them not aware of each other or is it okay if they can see/hear each other. I’ve heard of periodically swapping cages/bowls/toys so they get used to each others scent and can’t claim territory easily. Is this recommended right now? I know official same pen bunny dates can’t happen with them right now, but are there things I can do to prepare for bonding and increase likelihood of it going well.

thank in advance guys! :)
 

peanutdabunny

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I've seen people say before that if you put them near each other it will get them to use to each other. If it's a male and a female I would not know then. The reason I say that is because the male could get frustrated that he can't get to the female. But if they are the same gender it can be like a prebonding experience which I have seen many petubers on youtube do. I am not the most experienced in this field so I do not 100% know if this is correct. Your best bet is to get help from @JBun
 

Blue eyes

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A few things to consider...
If your goal is to have a bonded pair, then getting a 2nd bunny now is not the way to go about it. Getting one now is super risky in that there is a very real chance they won't bond and then you'll be stuck with having to house both separately for the next 10 years.

Ideally, and for the best chance of having a successful bonding, your current boy should be neutered first. Most vets will neuter a male as soon as testicles descend... often around 4 months of age. After neuter, it can take 4-8 weeks for hormones to fully dissipate.

Two months after he's been neutered, he can be introduced to other already-fixed rabbits to pre-screen for potential compatibility. Fixed rabbits are available at rabbit rescues. The advantage of taking this route is 1. you don't have to pay for surgery cost on the 2nd rabbit (for female spays, this can save you hundreds of $$), 2. if one potential rabbit ends up not being compatible, the rescue will allow an exchange. This almost guarantees you will wind up with a compatible match.

It truly is best if your current rabbit is the one to choose his bondmate (not you). But he can't choose until after he is neutered and hormones dissipated.

If you decide to get another young rabbit now (not advised) then any bonding they may seem to have, or any cuddling they do -- before being fixed -- is completely meaningless. If they have a hormonal fight, it could prevent them from bonding after they are fixed. But ultimately, there is no way to predict whether or not they will be compatible after they are fixed. It is a risk one takes by not allowing a fixed rabbit to choose his bondmate.
 

b.potter

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A few things to consider...
If your goal is to have a bonded pair, then getting a 2nd bunny now is not the way to go about it. Getting one now is super risky in that there is a very real chance they won't bond and then you'll be stuck with having to house both separately for the next 10 years.

Ideally, and for the best chance of having a successful bonding, your current boy should be neutered first. Most vets will neuter a male as soon as testicles descend... often around 4 months of age. After neuter, it can take 4-8 weeks for hormones to fully dissipate.

Two months after he's been neutered, he can be introduced to other already-fixed rabbits to pre-screen for potential compatibility. Fixed rabbits are available at rabbit rescues. The advantage of taking this route is 1. you don't have to pay for surgery cost on the 2nd rabbit (for female spays, this can save you hundreds of $$), 2. if one potential rabbit ends up not being compatible, the rescue will allow an exchange. This almost guarantees you will wind up with a compatible match.

It truly is best if your current rabbit is the one to choose his bondmate (not you). But he can't choose until after he is neutered and hormones dissipated.

If you decide to get another young rabbit now (not advised) then any bonding they may seem to have, or any cuddling they do -- before being fixed -- is completely meaningless. If they have a hormonal fight, it could prevent them from bonding after they are fixed. But ultimately, there is no way to predict whether or not they will be compatible after they are fixed. It is a risk one takes by not allowing a fixed rabbit to choose his bondmate.
Well I mean I already adopted both from someone who didn’t want them anymore so I mean this didn’t exactly help in my situation or answer the questions about the current set up because it’s all kind of describing the ideal situation and not really what I have. Thanks I guess.

edit: I’ll just house them separately forever I guess.
 

Blue eyes

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I have my cute Netherland Dwarf (Oates) and today I’m getting him a friend a Holland lop.
Well I mean I already adopted both from someone who didn’t want them anymore so I mean this didn’t exactly help in my situation or answer the questions about the current set up
Your first post indicates that you had only one rabbit at the time you wrote your question. My response was written accordingly and (hopefully) to encourage you to wait on getting the second one. If you just got it today, you may still want to re-consider and return the new rabbit. It would be better in the long run to return that second one and go through the process described. It would make things easier for the first rabbit and definitely easier for you in the coming months and years.
 

b.potter

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Your first post indicates that you had only one rabbit at the time you wrote your question. My response was written accordingly and (hopefully) to encourage you to wait on getting the second one. If you just got it today, you may still want to re-consider and return the new rabbit. It would be better in the long run to return that second one and go through the process described. It would make things easier for the first rabbit and definitely easier for you in the coming months and years.
The plan was to always adopt both of them from the person because they could no longer care for them. I would basically be returning one to a shelter and I really don’t want to do that. I’d rather just keep them both and house them separately if need be. Thank you for the advice anyways hopefully it’s helpful to someone else in the future who come across this thread. :)
 

b.potter

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The plan was to already adopt both of them from the person because they could no longer care for them. I got one set up for the first bun first and picked up the other one today. I would basically be returning one to a shelter and I really don’t want to do that. I’d rather just keep them both and house them separately if need be. Thank you for the advice anyways hopefully it’s helpful to someone else in the future who come across this thread. :)
 

Blue eyes

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You may get lucky and they end up bonding. In the meantime, be sure they can't reach each other. If you use an ex-pen, be sure there is space between their areas or they could bite each other through the bars. If you have cages, be sure the cages are not touching (for same reason).

Once hormones kick in, they may become agitated being in each other's presence. They also may spray urine. If this happens, it would be wise to separate them into different rooms altogether.

You'll want to reserve some neutral space for when bonding time comes. This should be somewhere that neither rabbit has ever been, so bear that in mind when deciding where to house them for now.
 

peanutdabunny

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You may get lucky and they end up bonding. In the meantime, be sure they can't reach each other. If you use an ex-pen, be sure there is space between their areas or they could bite each other through the bars. If you have cages, be sure the cages are not touching (for same reason).

Once hormones kick in, they may become agitated being in each other's presence. They also may spray urine. If this happens, it would be wise to separate them into different rooms altogether.

You'll want to reserve some neutral space for when bonding time comes. This should be somewhere that neither rabbit has ever been, so bear that in mind when deciding where to house them for now.
Hi, also I had a quick question about bonding. So we are looking for a friend for peanut and we found these to brothers who groom each other and hate to be separated. They are not neutered so I was wondering the reason for this? They love to cuddle and sleep on top of each other. They will start to breathe really heavily if they are separated. Are they somehow bonded?
 

Blue eyes

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Hi, also I had a quick question about bonding. So we are looking for a friend for peanut and we found these to brothers who groom each other and hate to be separated. They are not neutered so I was wondering the reason for this? They love to cuddle and sleep on top of each other. They will start to breathe really heavily if they are separated. Are they somehow bonded?
How old are they? Babies will often cuddle together and seem happily in love -- regardless of whether they are siblings or not. But that can all change with the onset of hormones. This is why "baby bonds" are not considered true bonds.
 

peanutdabunny

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How old are they? Babies will often cuddle together and seem happily in love -- regardless of whether they are siblings or not. But that can all change with the onset of hormones. This is why "baby bonds" are not considered true bonds.
They are 5 months old we think
 

zuppa

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They are 5 months old we think
This is interesting, are they larger breed maybe? Larger breeds mature later, but by 5 months boys would have to start humping/fighting. I would double-check if they are indeed both boys and not sisters or sister and brother. If they are both boys and regular size this would be rather rare, maybe they are just super friendly and laid back, maybe asexual or late bloomers.
 

peanutdabunny

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This is interesting, are they larger breed maybe? Larger breeds mature later, but by 5 months boys would have to start humping/fighting. I would double-check if they are indeed both boys and not sisters or sister and brother. If they are both boys and regular size this would be rather rare, maybe they are just super friendly and laid back, maybe asexual or late bloomers.
they are holland lops, so a dwarf breed. yes, they are both males as you can see their parts. but they freak out when they are not together. They seem to squeak very lightly. They really hate being apart. I was just going to adopt one, would it be cruel to do that? Yes they are super laid back though. as soon as you touch there head they melt into the ground
 

JBun

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Hi guys I’m new here so go easy on me!
First time bunny owner did a lot of research for care and responsible bunny ownership.
I have my cute Netherland Dwarf (Oates) and today I’m getting him a friend a Holland lop. Obviously I can’t put them together because the both haven’t been spayed/neutered but I was told to wait till they are both 6 months. So I have separate housing set up. I want to hopefully bond them after they’re desexed, healed, and hormones go down.
My questions however: Is it okay if they are in the same room together in separate cages? Should I make them not aware of each other or is it okay if they can see/hear each other. I’ve heard of periodically swapping cages/bowls/toys so they get used to each others scent and can’t claim territory easily. Is this recommended right now? I know official same pen bunny dates can’t happen with them right now, but are there things I can do to prepare for bonding and increase likelihood of it going well.

thank in advance guys! :)
As long as they don't show aggression or irritation at being next to each other, having them in adjoining pens can be helpful for them getting to know one another. If there are signs of aggression, it can sometimes be better to keep them in completely separate areas so they can't see or smell the other rabbit, until fixed and hormones are gone.

Other than swapping things to get them used to each others smell, not much else you can do. Though if they are at all aggressive and you have to keep them in separate rooms, I wouldn't do the swapping things until they are fixed, hormones have died down, and you are getting ready to start the bonding process. Otherwise swapping things when they are feeling aggressive and hormonal still, could backfire.

Most everything else will depend on what they are like after being fixed, if they have compatible personalities, and then deciding what bonding technique is going to suit them best.


 

TreasuredFriend

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I've been working on bonding our 10 yo NZW female and 10 yo rex male. Both are sp/eutered. NZW is a cuddler but is adamant, very assertive, and will bite thru her ex-pen bars if rex boy runs past her ex-pen. She is very decisive about who she wants to share her living room space with.

After rex boy's adjacent xpen bondmate passed away a few months ago, I moved NZW Aleena's area next to rex boy's area. With a brick or doorstop between like BlueEyes suggested. They can see each other. They are gradually learning to eat supper salads looking at each other and my cuddle-girl NZW is not trying to bite my rex boy's nose off.

Yes, you can house two rabbits in the same room. Will that arrangement make them bond easier? No. Always welcome a 2nd rabbit into your life with the notion that s/he may never bond with your first rabbit even after sp/euter. As Blue Eyes stated.

In our sanctuary home, we have multiple sp/eutered rabbits housed in the same room so they can observe each other. Convenience for litter-box changing, hand handouts, separate play shift hours.

Hope this helps as each member above (mod, admin, member, bun parent) provided beneficial advice in answer to your Q.

Kindly keep tabs on BlueEyes' rabbitsindoorsweebly site. Excellent information! She devotes unlimited hours to help answer concerns.
 

ArtistChibi

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I've skimmed through the forums and learned a lot of the advice here is most helpful. It is possible to have them in the same room, but in separate sides. We did this since Tu Shen is not neutered yet, while Xiao Wu is. Definitely heed staff advice. It won't always work out.

IMG_20210426_211605.jpg
 

TreasuredFriend

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Your fur-kids have a nice set-up @ArtistChibi . Looks like you can easily sit down on the blanket flooring with them. Your black and white roommates are fortunate as most humans gravitate to the hollywood-looking rabbits. At the shelter the plain black, brown, and white rabbits were largely overlooked or ignored when adopters came in.

The exercise pens are really nice! ~ Ear rubs to Tu Shen and Xiao Wu!

My friend used to be a moderator years and years ago and she told me she'd be up until 2 am sometimes answering concerned bun parents' Qs. I suspect the mods answering Qs aren't pulling in a salary to offer tips and educate.
--------------------------------------

Here's a few pics of my treasured elder Aleena. She was found as a stray, had babies and none survived, was spayed at the shelter's sp/euter clinic, then spent time at 2 different shelters before I said, "enough, you'll be forever loved in our home!" // Also 2 pics of stray captured Marietta who gave birth to 9 babies in our home -- soon after hub captured her. We quickly devised a towel surround once we saw her pulling fur. -- "Many, many babies born on the street" was the comment a man told my hubby.
 

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