Bun won't submit to me >:(

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poopandpee

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Hi All,

I've read a few posts about rabbit dominant behaviour if the buns let you/buns hold their head down to show they are being submissive.
My housemate was just petting her normally before and I noticed she had her head down in a submissive way.

I tried to pet her later and hold her head down (veryyy gently) She refuses to budge and keeps wiggling her head back up which makes me laugh.. does she think she's my boss?
Is this why she keeps peeing on my bed? :(
 

Marikristine

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hi! try giving her some food/pellets/hay maybe than could make a trick to submit herself to you :) how old is she? is she litter trained?
 

poopandpee

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hi! try giving her some food/pellets/hay maybe than could make a trick to submit herself to you :) how old is she? is she litter trained?
she is almost 3 :) she is somewhat litter trained.. but will pee/poop on MY bed and the couch - she was just spayed 4 weeks ago.
if I give her pellets she will just be busy eating with her head down, would she even notice she is being submissive if I my hand's on her head haha.
 

Hermelin

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Bunnies aren’t like dogs. We that are bunny owners will not be the top dog. You put up rules but if you turn your back and leave the bunny will still break the rules.

When you friend cuddled with your bunny they can lay down their head. It will be them asking for a grooming. Often it’s the dominant bunny that will ask the submissive bunny to groom them. But this is something we can’t say a bunny act submissive or dominant towards us.

Peeing on the bed have you done a thoroughly cleaning of your bed with washing the mattress and so on. When it still smell with urine the bunny will use it as a toilet. They also like marking the bed because the bed have ours scent on them. So they also want to mark to tell others they also are a part of the family/ territory.
 

Preitler

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As Hermelin said, you seem to misinterpret some of their body language. Unlike dogs, imho rabbits are well aware that we are not fellow rabbits. They don't submit to us, we're something different. I would say dominance is more of a character trait, I wouldn't put two pigheaded bossy does together, trying to force dominance on a rabbit is an uphill battle and imho isn't the way to stable relationship.

There are many situations when the head is down - it depends on the context what it means.

Holding their head down is an affront, they don't like being constraint in any way. Putting the hand over their face is pretty much trapping them. If they hold a grudge for that depends on the individual. It can be used to help picking them up if it is necessary, but better have a treat ready :).

About peeing where she should not, for me the only way that worked more or less was cleaning, and blocking off that area for some weeks.
 
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poopandpee

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yep I immediately spray vinegar where she peed and wash.
she pees at different places not at the same area.

I don't know if it's coz it's painful for her to jump down the bed to go to the loo, or if she's marking :(. She has weak back legs but seems to have no problem jumping ONTO the bed. She will jump up 20+ times when she's at peak energy around 8pm and I would put her down immediately to avoid the peeing.
Will they constantly keep jumping this if it hurts them?
 

Preitler

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My buck has athritis, that didn't stop him from following his cuddlebun around for hours every day all spring and being a PITA to her. He didn't jump much lately though, but I think they register pain in a different way than we do, helps them hiding it from predators and they keep acting normal although it hurts. And it sure did hurt.

He's on painkillers for a week now, I'm not sure if the vet didn't give me Ecstacy instead :D, what a difference.
 

Juste

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I have the same problem with peeing/pooping on bed. Otherwise when she is in the cage she is doing her busines mostly in litter tray, she never does anything on the floor from the first day, but she choose my bed as a big litter for herself.. tried everything what i read on the internet.. i guess i need to wait for when i can neuter her and praying that this would help 😁
As well my little Diva never ask to be petted :(
 

Blue eyes

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Hi All,

I've read a few posts about rabbit dominant behaviour if the buns let you/buns hold their head down to show they are being submissive.
My housemate was just petting her normally before and I noticed she had her head down in a submissive way.

I tried to pet her later and hold her head down (veryyy gently) She refuses to budge and keeps wiggling her head back up which makes me laugh.. does she think she's my boss?
Is this why she keeps peeing on my bed? :(
As others have noted, you seem to be misreading their body language. When your housemate was petting her and the bun had her head down, that isn't "submission" but a pose to receive grooming. If a rabbit approaches you and puts her head down, that is considered almost the opposite of submission. it is a request (demand) for grooming.

On the other hand, if you push her head down and hold it, that is considered punishment. It is what is recommended to correct naughty behavior. She would see it as discipline. (It's how a momma corrects her kits.)

If you try to pet her and she does not put her head down, that simply means that she isn't in the mood. It isn't personal, just the typical finicky-ness of a rabbit.
 
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