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Food aggressive bunny

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Farm_Lover_With_Bunnies

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Hello fellow bunny lovers!
So my bunny twilight has been food aggressive for a while now, probably about a year. I’ve always been able to manage it but it’s been getting worse and worse. She is a sweet bunny and loves attention all the time but whenever you try to feed her she becomes a little devil. She is fine if I go in her cage and pick up her bowls and anything like that but the second I put food in the bowl or if I have a treat in my hand she attacks my hand or if I’m walking with her food she tries to attack my feet. I’ve tried making high pitch noises and whistles when she does it so it sounds like another bunny saying ouch and she stops for about a second and then does it again. I’ve also tried pushing her away and she’ll stop trying to bite but she still lunges and grunts. I’m at a loss at what to do and I just got another bunny and they are in separate cages but same room and they seem to be doing very well so I don’t want to bond them and the other bunny who is way smaller get injured because of her food aggression. The bunny twilight who is aggressive is 3 years old, I’ve had her since she was weaned from her mom and she was spayed august of 2019 so she’s been spayed for almost 2 years. Any help will be much appreciated as I have no clue what else I can do and how this will effect her being able to bond with another bunny
Thanks!
 

CamelNewt528962

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My grandad's rabbit is the same way. We tried moving the food bowl to a different area in the cage everyday. It actually worked for a while. We also tried an activity feeder. The thing that worked for the longest time though, was scattering the food in different places rather than in a bowl. Please let me know if any of these work for you!
 

Apollo’s Slave

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I would try feeding her in a different room. Keep making the high pitched “ouch!!” when she bites. And maybe clap your hands. Make sure you wash your hands before and after feeding her to be sure that she doesn’t bite because she think you have food in your hands. I’m not sure if this works on rabbits, but when my dog used to bite when we went near his food, we diverted his attention with a treat, and then picked his bowl up. Let him see that the bowl was up and then put it back down. This worked on Zeus.

As for the bonding the two rabbits, I don’t know if I recommend it (just to be safe haha). But Athena was quite food aggressively with Apollo so we fed them separately, a pen keeping them apart
 

Farm_Lover_With_Bunnies

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My grandad's rabbit is the same way. We tried moving the food bowl to a different area in the cage everyday. It actually worked for a while. We also tried an activity feeder. The thing that worked for the longest time though, was scattering the food in different places rather than in a bowl. Please let me know if any of these work for you!
Thank you! She seems better without the bowl but still aggressive when I out her food down, I may try an activity feeder
I would try feeding her in a different room. Keep making the high pitched “ouch!!” when she bites. And maybe clap your hands. Make sure you wash your hands before and after feeding her to be sure that she doesn’t bite because she think you have food in your hands. I’m not sure if this works on rabbits, but when my dog used to bite when we went near his food, we diverted his attention with a treat, and then picked his bowl up. Let him see that the bowl was up and then put it back down. This worked on Zeus.

As for the bonding the two rabbits, I don’t know if I recommend it (just to be safe haha). But Athena was quite food aggressively with Apollo so we fed them separately, a pen keeping them apart
okay thank you! I’ve tried distracting her when I would grab her bowl but if I wasn’t quick enough she would get me lol but I will try a different room and see if that helps. Yeah I’m worried about them because I know it just takes one time for her to injury him especially since he is smaller, they are in separate pens but they can reach each other through the pen now and when I feed them I try to put their food in the same place one either side so they eat next to each other and she doesn’t try to attack him even if I feed him first so I’m wondering if it’s just with people now lol but if they do go together I would definitely still feed them separately, thank you!
 

Blue eyes

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My Sapphire was food aggressive but it never translated to aggression toward either of her bondmates (she had one bondmate after the first one died). She just went crazy for her pellets and would almost knock the bowl out of my hand if she was near. No attempts at teaching her to be calm seemed to work. It was if she was so over-focused on the food, that she just couldn't think straight.

We dealt with it by turning her food fettish into something positive for us. Since she was free roam during the day, I would use those pellets to get her into her overnight housing. She'd be out in the room and I would put the food bowl down in her cage. She'd run greedily to it and that's how we got her (and the bondmate that followed) in for the night. (I also kept the food container on top of her cage so I wouldn't have to walk across the room with her pellets.)
 

Farm_Lover_With_Bunnies

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My Sapphire was food aggressive but it never translated to aggression toward either of her bondmates (she had one bondmate after the first one died). She just went crazy for her pellets and would almost knock the bowl out of my hand if she was near. No attempts at teaching her to be calm seemed to work. It was if she was so over-focused on the food, that she just couldn't think straight.

We dealt with it by turning her food fettish into something positive for us. Since she was free roam during the day, I would use those pellets to get her into her overnight housing. She'd be out in the room and I would put the food bowl down in her cage. She'd run greedily to it and that's how we got her (and the bondmate that followed) in for the night. (I also kept the food container on top of her cage so I wouldn't have to walk across the room with her pellets.)
Yes that sounds just like what she does, I just finished with their fist bunny play date and I had some veggies scattered and hay piles and even though Oakley (the smaller male bunny) was eating veggies twilight (the larger aggressive bun) was wondering checking out the area not caring for the food or the fact that he was eating which is why I’m wondering if she will be okay with?


Today was the first day they were able to have a play date (they were in separate cages apart but able to see each other for a week and then separate cages but able to touch each other for a week) I had them in a bathroom and there was a new box for them to hide in and then like I said veggies scattered and two hay piles and I put Oakley in first so I could get the blanket to be ready as the first bunny I tried with her didn’t end so well so I wanted to be prepared, I even had a spray bottle lol and then I put twilight in, Oakley ate the veggies the whole time and twilight took some veggies but then explored all the new things. She also came over to him twice while he was eating and sniffed him then walked away which I then put them back as I wanted to end on a good note, I’m new to bonding bunnies but isn’t this a good sign? Sorry for the long post
 

Farm_Lover_With_Bunnies

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I may end up starting another thread for bonding them lol as I’m confused as to what I should be doing as I really don’t want to mess this up. I did the same thing again today, for a little longer though and they had two small fights, nothing bad just a grunt and lunge from twilight, the first time was kind of random as she was just walking near him while he was eating the veggies but the second time was when she was in the box and he came over close to her. What’s weird is that when they were back in their cages they were putting there noses together (like the image) a lot. Should I continue doing the same thing, maybe without the box? Should I continue with the food or just do maybe a hay pile and that’s all? 65F7CE32-0A9D-4F3A-9B45-E344EE18B38E.jpeg
 
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